Geek Contraception!

14 07 2008

Geek Contraception!!

What a wonderful term..

“The Scottish Government is investigating a cunning plan to use computer games to stop teenage girls becoming pregnant.”

That was the headline of a news article found at Fudzilla.

The news itself is best described as a joke. But the interesting part is the sub-title: “Geek Contraception”. At first, you get a good laugh at that term, but in the end, it does ring a bell of some sorts.

The term Geek is spread wide in the 21st century, almost internationally, as part of the global pop culture scene.

It is also globally agreed that Geeks are identified as “socially interactive nerds”. If you don’t know what a nerd is, imagine your classmate who was getting all the straight A’s with those thick eye glasses, and the momma’s boy uniform. All while having almost no social skills of any kind.

So, back to the geek stuff. According to Wikipedia, a geek is

“a peculiar or otherwise odd person, especially one who is perceived to be overly obsessed with one or more things including those of intellectuality, electronics, gaming, etc…”

I have to mention other very important facts and definitions about geeks (also from Wikipedia):

  • A person who is interested in technology, especially computing and new media. Geeks are adept with computers, and treat the term hacker as a term of respect, but not all are hackers themselves.
  • A person who relates academic subjects to the real world outside of academic studies; for example, using multivariate calculus to determine how they should correctly optimize the dimensions of a pan to bake a cake.
  • A person who has chosen concentration rather than conformity; one who passionately pursues skill (especially technical skill) and imagination, not mainstream social acceptance.
  • A person with a devotion to something in a way that places him or her outside the mainstream. This could be due to the intensity, depth, or subject of their interest. This definition is very broad but because many of these interests have mainstream endorsement and acceptance, the inclusion of some genres as “geeky” is heavily debated.

I find the 3rd definition to be the one closest to how I think about geeks. In fact, it’s the reason why I respect geeks, in contrary to the commonly used geek-rejection social behavior.

I know I’m a geek too (been called once by a former employer), & I fit perfectly into all the mentioned definitions. So, I’m aware that my opinion may be a bit biased. However, I feel it’s necessary to clear a few points out.

The most important fact that people usually tend to forget about, is the relativity between a geek and a certain society or culture. It is mentioned above (point 3) that geeks are put out of the “mainstream social acceptance”. It’s necessary for us to ask about the real definition of the term “mainstream social acceptance”, and how it affects the socially-common point of view towards geeks. If you ask about the other point of view here, you’ll find that geeks see other people also as “out of the social acceptance of the geek culture”, even if they -geeks- form a social minority. So, who’s right, and who’s wrong?! Does being counted as a mainstream person means that you’re exhibiting the right social behavior? Or is it because you’re a minority you think that you are definitely superior?!?

People also forget about the mutual relationship between these 2 social groups. When applying the definition of a geek to pre-popculture history you’d find that all the scientists, mathematicians, and physicists of the past are identified as geeks. So, it’s quite obvious that it’s mutual. Society NEEDS geeky people, and those geeks are left useless without the society they live in.

But imagine what happens when we try to merge both together! What would happen if geeks are put back into the “mainstream social acceptance”?? Wouldn’t that bring bigger benefits for both sides?? Wouldn’t it wipe the term geek from existence??

Let’s take into consideration that families usually panic when they find a family member exhibiting some of the geek behaviors. Most of those families try to change that member’s behavior in order to bring him/her away from a “disaster”. Only because geeks are not socially accepted!? Isn’t that a bit silly?!?

I think we should encourage the geek behavior, AND also work harder to eliminate the cement wall between geeks and society. That way, we can get a lot more benefit from geeks, AND most importantly, we’d also give geeks their social lives back, eliminating the imaginary geek disease.

So, going back to that article by Fudzilla, I’d say that the so called “geek contraception” is working well right now.. But it’s no laughing matter. I’d rather find ways to resolve this issue rather than crack jokes about it.

It requires a solution because you can’t make people love science and technology if you’re constantly reminding them of the “geek disease”. And that will hold us all back.

Oh, and girls, if you’re reading this please don’t get it wrong! I’m a nice man, give me a chance to prove myself! I’m not so geeky after all!! ;p