To the extent that you learn about a community during a crisis, I wonder what our reaction so far says about us.
Many are mocking the ticket seekers, suggesting this is a kind of Darwinian victory: if you can’t get your ticket you don’t deserve to get there. The Onion parodied Burning Man with a similar conceit about eight years ago. It was funny then, but it still wasn’t original.
It’s less funny now, because it’s become apparent that some very good people are being left on the outside: people who clearly have a lot to offer. People who would be a benefit to the entire community – and I don’t just mean “big name DJs.” In fact, I’m not talking about them at all. However few tickets there are, Burning Man will never run out of DJs.
But we have run out of space. In my previous post I suggested that 21st century Burning Man was a culture of abundance, and this is our first meaningful encounter with scarcity. I made a few suggestions about what to do about it.
Many people writing in the comments section had much better ideas than I did. But by far the most trenchant idea proposed was this: the future of Burning Man belongs to the regionals.
They got what I’d missed: the ticket limit is potentially a catalyst turning the regionals from followers to co-conspirators. “Burning Man” itself would become a kind of pilgrimage site that the faithful try to get to once in a while, but “Burning Man” culture would be led by dozens of regional events around the globe.
How you feel about that might depend on your experiences with the regionals. It does for me. Would you mind sticking around while I explain this? Read more »