X-Message-Number: 32425
From: David Stodolsky <>
Subject: Re: Do we want to be a Movement?
Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2010 20:19:56 +0100
References: <>

On 25 Feb 2010, at 11:00 AM, CryoNet wrote:

> The word "movement" suggests a cult to me.

I doubt if this perception is widespread. A cult tends to be closed,  
while a movement tends to be open. You have to be initiated into a  
cult. People join movements to help achieve their objectives. Cults  
are organizations. Movements are multi-organizational and can include  
independent persons, or can consist of only independent persons. Cults  
have a well defined membership. Movements either have no membership at  
all or have dynamic changes in membership.

> I think of cryonics as a
> field of study with practical applications in the same way that I
> think of physics. Wouldn't we project a better image if we called
> ourselves the cryonics community, defined as a group of people
> interested in the study and practice of cryonics?

Unfortunately, the practice of cryonics these days means a lot of  
social change effort, since the area is regarded by the mainstream as  
a cult or a scam. Attitudes like these are a threat to a good  
suspension, as we have seen with recent cases. These same attitudes  
could lead to cryonic suspension being outlawed, as is almost the case  
in Canada.

I started using the term 'movement', because cryonics is closer to  
that than any other construct used in social science. In the long run,  
we are better off selecting an accurate term, than one that sells.  
This avoids charges of misrepresentation, which have become all to  
common lately. An accurate term also helps participants understand  
their own role and how to act more effectively to promote goals. It  
also helps us understand what challenges we face, in terms of  
acceptance by the mainstream, and what risks we face.

Finally, social movement theory is now hot in marketing, which is a  
major problem for the Movement. Understanding ourselves in movement  
terms thus points the way towards greater success.


David Stodolsky
  Skype: davidstodolsky

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