Tuesday, February 05, 2008

MTV Switch

MTV switch logoTwo things make me despair - the unthinking consumerism of many young people, and the hempen earnestness of the green movement. I don't usually doom-monger, but we're all doomed if we can't get the next generation to embrace green ideals. I don't claim to be home with the downies myself, so I don't know how to engage the iPod generation. But fortunately there are some people out there who are doing a pretty good job of it.

For example, there is Zap Root:
ZapRoot is an unconventional bite-sized news show that covers the fast changing world of the modern Green Revolution. With sarcasm, silliness, & sanity, ZapRoot encourages you to have a better time while making a better world.

Which is part of Viro Pop:
ViroPop: Environmentalism Made Fun. Okay, let’s get this straight. ViroPop is NOT a new virus-flavored soda. And ZapRoot is not a show about bombarding plants with laser beams. What is ViroPop then? Well, you could think of it as a salad. It’s green, sure, but also cool, fresh, crisp and tasty. And full of surprises. And good for You. ViroPop is the first network on the Internet to treat the new environmental pop culture with a sense of irreverent fun. Long dreary powerpoint presentations…be gone! This is the happy Green Revolution.

And now there's MTV Switch:
Switch is MTV Networks International's Global Climate Change Campaign. We'll be looking for the best ideas and innovations that can help us reinvent how we live in ways that are cool for us and the planet. (We'll also be getting ideas from you guys, no matter how wacky...) This isn't about what we can't do, it's about what we can. It's time to Switch.

You can tell MTV Switch is cool and hip because it has its own blog. The blog covers everything from non-profit efforts, to "green" fashion, to practical tips on helping preserve the environment.

It gives me hope. Maybe sites like these will encourage a few young people to be more environmentally conscious. And maybe they'll even encourage a few green activists to be less sanctimonious and dull.

10 comments:

jodi said...

"hempen earnestness'!?! What a marvelous turn of phrase; and what a thoughtful, and thought-provoking, post you've created. The consumerism especially worries me, but the invidiousness of advertising is a tough goliath to slay. Good to hear there are some not-so hempenly earnest (?) sites out there who are shaking up those who aren't yet engaged in giving a damn about more than their cellphones and their shoes.

Anonymous said...

Your posts are interesting and thought-provoking. Unfortunately, many of the things you write about are the same things that influenced me way back in the 60s & 70s. I have a BS in Home Economics - most of my course work was in making the most out of the least. It was the time of Earth Day, the original Mother Earth News and back to basics. So, while I also hoped to influence the next generation, it will always be an ongoing battle.

To this day I pass along information (my spending rules)on recycling, reusing, rethinking, repurposing, repairing. My husband and I live on very little, have a great deal and love our life because we live by those self-imposed rules.

Advertising? I don't pay any attention. Neither my husband nor I could identify 90% of ads by music or logo. It just does not interest us. We have discovered that teaching by example has paid off - 2 of 3 sons are married and are paying much more attention to what and why they spend. AND they are passing this info on to their friends. The ripple effect at work. Bellen

Green Bean said...

We have got to get this generation on board with living lightly and letting go of all the material goods if we want a shot at slowing down climate change. Sadly, many do not seem to care about anything beyond their Wii's and iPods.

That said, the blo you mention is heartening. I was also happy to hear about the particularly high turn out amongst young voters here in the States yesterday. Many of them cited global warming as the reason they turned out. We can only hope . . .

Melanie Rimmer said...

Thanks, Jodi!

Anonymous wrote: "So, while I also hoped to influence the next generation, it will always be an ongoing battle."

I have good news, Anonymous. You did influence the next generation. You influenced me, and lots of other people like me. Now my generation has joined yours, and together we are are trying the influence a whole new generation. Don't say "Unfortunately, many of the things you write about are the same things that influenced me way back in the 60s & 70s". Of course we're still writing about the same things because what was always true is still true. In my more unrealistic moments I dream of a huge revolution in which everyone on earth will "see the light" and become an organic-food-eating, vegetarian, solar-power-using, love-bead-wearing hippy like me (and you, by the sounds of it). I still think that would be groovy, man, but it isn't going to happen. And to be more philosophical - diversity is good. We need the businesspeople and the politicians as well as the artists and the dreamers. We just need a better balance than we've had. Don't give up hope. We're getting there.

Green Bean - some young people are much more passionate about the environment than their more jaded elders. I don't think that consumerism is the sole province of the young at all. We just need to make sure our message reaches everyone, of all ages and backgrounds.

Anonymous said...

See your later post about not worrying about future generations. I'm reading this blog as a result of the "top 50" thing. I like that you're a Christian, I like that you're more practical than militant. I'm 22, and thinking, for the record. There are a lot of problems in the world. But ultimately, these aren't our responsibility. How we respond to them is. My mom used to say that she tried to live the day as an Armenian, and go to bed a Calvinist, and I think that's pretty good advice. I'll be praying.

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