Friday, March 02, 2007

An Emergent Manifesto of Crappy Marketing

So, there's a new book coming out soon from your conversational friends at Emergent Village - it's called An Emergent Manifesto of Hope. And they made a promo video for it and stuck it on YouTube, starring Tony Jones and Doug Pagitt. Those guys are both very smart and sincere (though perhaps a bit elitist), and I think they've stirred up some good thinking. But this video is horrible . . . I couldn't even finish watching the thing. Exactly how many times can you sound natural fitting the words "emergent manifesto of hope" into a sentence?? Uhhhh, how about NONE?

I'm quite certain that someone in the marketing department of the publishing house had the idea, and that Tony and Doug were more or less dragged into this, but come on! It's this kind of marketing that causes people to question the motives of Emergent in the first place . . . as in, it's not about rethinking faith or mission, it's really about selling books.

I'm not a fan of the label "emerging church," even though I've used it a good bit, and advocated for the category. But I've always made a point of distinguishing the emerging church (little "e") from Emergent (big "E") - it's confusing for people, and at times, pretty unhelpful. Anyway, this video is a good example of why I'm not a fan.

posted by Steve at 2:25 PM
link |

4 Comments:

Blogger tony commented at 6:24 PM~  

Thanks for your thoughts, Steve. Sorry to disappoint. No malice intended, of course. We're just doing our best, like you, to follow Jesus (poorly most of the time, as you say).

Peace,

Tony

Blogger Steve commented at 9:30 AM~  

Thank you for your words here Tony. You have shown more grace toward me than I did toward you. For that I'm thankful, and I apologize for making things too personal. If you wish, I will edit the post to be more appropriate - but I'll wait for your direction. When I go off and make a nuisance of myself like this, I leave the post there as a record to the world that I'm still a broken guy in process. However, if the words are hurtful to you, I will gladly remove them.

Thanks again, and by the way - I do know you guys are trying hard, and doing your best. You do good work. Oh, and I really enjoyed your book, "The Sacred Way."

Blogger tony commented at 11:34 AM~  

Don't sweat it, Steve. As you might guess, I have a pretty thick skin by now. And I, too, am reticent to ever edit my blog posts in an effort to revise history. So I say, let it stand.

The history: we were, indeed, approached by Baker Books, our publishing partner, about this idea. The filmmakers are a couple of younger guys who have launched their own production house called Creo. I think ours was their second or third project. They are great guys, very earnest and hard working, and they're trying to hone their skills in the world of viral videos.

The larger issue, it seems, is an issue about marketing in general. Is emergent/Emergent/Emergent Village a mechanism to move product? Surely not. But we have been convinced that the friendship that we started 10 years ago is life-giving to lots of people -- and the only whay most of those people know anything about it is because they read a blog or a book or went to an event. So, while "marketing" may be a dirty word to some Christ-followers, some of us have had to make peace with the concept and are attempting to live faithfully in a world of many competing messages.

But hear me well: criticism makes us stronger. We in Emergent Village do not shy away from our critics, but instead attempt to embrace them, respond to them, and adjust as needed. So, thanks for your honesty.

Blogger Bill Bean commented at 5:09 PM~  

Both of your gracious. Though I respect that the people who worked with this video were doing the best they can it is unfortunate. It would seem that a target other than the emerging church was who they had in mind. Granted, we tend to be a cynical, suspicious, and easily dissapointed group. I'm disappointed but it ain't personal.

Want to Post a Comment?

back to main page



spirit farmer data

I'm Steve Lewis. This used to be my blogging home. My online home is now at SpiritFarmer.com. When this blog was my active online home, I lived in Seattle. Now I live in London, UK. I follow Jesus (poorly most of the time), worship simply, read a lot, watch culture, go to school, listen to music, write, enjoy art, and drink a lot of coffee.
e-mail me: spiritfarmer@gmail.com
xml



seattle spots

victrola coffee
zoka coffee
university of washington
church of the apostles
quest church
sanctuary church
shoreline vineyard


sites i visit

off the map
theooze
next-wave
metacritic
nt wright



a few of the blogs in the feedreader

tallskinnykiwi
jason evans
joe boyd
kevin rains
alan creech
chris marshall
bill bean
eugene cho
jordon cooper
dwight friesen
john chandler
amy palmer
ryan bolger
rudy carrasco
ryan sharp
sings in the sunshine
rick bennett
scot mcknight
karen ward
alan hirsch
dan kimball
petey crowder



i'm reading it

colossians remixed
africa unchained



i finished reading it - 2007

generation me
jesus and the restoration of israel
god's continent
glocalization
globalizing theology
gustavo gutierrez: essential writings
jesus and the eyewitnesses
garlands of grace
twenty poems to nourish your soul
the black swan
dancing in the streets
made to stick
signs in contemporary culture
hit the bullseye
revolution
the politics of jesus
readings in christian ethics
toward old testament ethics
the kite runner
principles of conduct
velvet elvis
the irresistable revolution
they like jesus, but not the church
the great omission
ishmael
charisma: the gift of grace, and how it has been taken from us
the starfish and the spider
a perfect mess
the world cafe
the new faces of christianity
leaving church
journeying in faith
the creed
creators
transforming mission
metaphors we live by
foolishness to the greeks
personal knowledge



states i've spent time: 2007

washington
texas
british columbia
oregon
california
georgia
oh yeah, denmark, too



i wrote it

managing conflict in the 'new world'
music review: over the rhine
film review: bonhoeffer
music review: fighting jacks
film review: the passion of the christ
how reality tv changes lives
the best tv article you've ever read
corks & caps: a wine lover's story of change
america's idols
random, disorganized thoughts about life after the katrina disaster
missional . . . plain and simple
on becoming post-gnostic



i blogged it

04/01/2002 - 05/01/2002
05/01/2002 - 06/01/2002
06/01/2002 - 07/01/2002
07/01/2002 - 08/01/2002
08/01/2002 - 09/01/2002
09/01/2002 - 10/01/2002
10/01/2002 - 11/01/2002
11/01/2002 - 12/01/2002
12/01/2002 - 01/01/2003
01/01/2003 - 02/01/2003
02/01/2003 - 03/01/2003
03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003
04/01/2003 - 05/01/2003
05/01/2003 - 06/01/2003
06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003
07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003
08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003
09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003
10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003
11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003
12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004
01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004
02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004
03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004
04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004
05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004
06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004
07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004
08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004
09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004
10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004
11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004
12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005
01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005
02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005
03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005
04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005
05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005
06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005
07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005
08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005
09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005
10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005
11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005
12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006
01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006
02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006
03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006
04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006
05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006
06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006
07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006
08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006
09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006
10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006
11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006
12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007
01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007
02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007
03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007
04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007
05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007
06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007
07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007
08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007
09/01/2007 - 10/01/2007
10/01/2007 - 11/01/2007
11/01/2007 - 12/01/2007
12/01/2007 - 01/01/2008
01/01/2008 - 02/01/2008
03/01/2008 - 04/01/2008


misc

Google
flickr
wikipedia



Tweaked from a design by mela