There is nothing done on Twitter or anywhere else online that isn’t driven in some fashion by desire to have other people see it. That includes everything Henke writes online, everything Treacher writes online, and even this blog post. That's the whole point of the forum. If you didn't want to make your ideas known, why bother to even post?Exactly. The term "self-promoter" is commonly used as a pejorative, but one of the great insights of the New Media age is this: If you don't promote yourself, nobody else will.
If you have your own TV or radio show, if you have a new book or a political campaign, you automatically enlist the support of professional P.R. people whose job is to get you publicity. But if you're just a blogger, a writer, a consultant -- an individual without your own built-in publicity apparatus -- it's up to you to make yourself known to the world.
Self-promotion is entirely legitimate. If you do good work, if you've got ideas or services that can be helpful to others, then self-promotion -- i.e., do-it-yourself publicity -- is actually beneficial to others because, without it, people would be unaware of your good work.
You know who taught me this? David Horowitz. From his years of experience, Horowitz evidently discovered a profound truth: Publicity is too important to be entrusted to the P.R. staff. If Horowitz has a new book or activism venture, he does not hesitate to become personally involved in the promotional effort. Many were the times, during my years at The Washington Times, when Horowitz would call or e-mail me to say, "Hey, why haven't you written about our new project?"
Now, if someone as eminent as David Horowitz can do that, who am I to disdain such methods? I'm a shameless self-promoter for the simple reason that there is no cause for shame. I'm a capitalist: I Write For Money.
I'm selling a product in the marketplace. You -- the reader -- are the consumer. If my stuff is good, then making other people aware of my stuff is a philanthropic humanitarian endeavor: Let all mankind benefit from the blinding brilliance of my sagacious insights!
Megalomania? Maybe. But it's a far different thing than the self-obsessed narcissism involved in a quest for mere celebrity -- the Reality TV Ethos wherein talentless people seek to become famous for being famous. I'm not a wealthy dilettante like Paris Hilton or Meghan McCain.
I'm an online freelancer -- a New Media entrepreneur. I'm actually working for a living here, and self-promotion is part of the job. To repeat myself:
Just because you don't know what I'm doing, don't assume that I don't know what I'm doing.Capitalism is a beautiful thing. If I don't make money at this gig, it undermines the legitimacy of my megalomania-for-profit scheme. So hit the tip jar.