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Mage character

Open for comments and criticism

"It's called viral information. People these days read only the news they want, they tune to CNN or Fox news, they read blogs of people who agree with them, everything they want is cast to their tastes. That's where the world is and furthermore where it is going. People choose their search engines to conform to their biases. They turn on the news to their own particular flavour, waking up to the same old crap designed to keep them wearing rose-tinted glasses.

"So. What happens when a bomb goes off in Kasmir, kills two thousand people? It gets reported. But in this world of selevtive bias, what if the people who set the bomb were people who don't want you to know about it? What if they share your biases? Either way a massive human rights atrocity just occurred and the world is fooled into thinking that either it didn't happen or was a good idea.

"They have corrupted the concept of disseminated news reporting. They stole our revolution, now we're stealing it back. Viral information uses a number of techniques. Viruses that add a small process most people will never notice, but that archives evidence or serves stories. That's the easy part. The harder part is getting people to read. So we use social engineering techniques, choose word combinations designed to fool Bayesian filtering, play with structures of language to get a textual sigil, cast off into the great dark of the Journosphere.

"People will be enticed to read it. Whether they want to or not, they will read it. This little spun core of information, this carefully pruned and constructed memeplex fired straight into their pariatal lobes will make them sit up and take note. Slowly, the whole process will bring about a world in which people realise the futility of singular identity, singular biases. They'll move to a new, better world. A world where you can choose to be a Scientologist or a Catholic or a Republican for an afternoon to see what the world looks like.

"Imagine a world where individualism was eradicated not by herdthink but by breaking it up and splitting it down. The supercontext is approaching and that's the moment everything splits into the MeMeplex, it's up to me and mine to prime people for when that happens. It's up to us to save the world.

"How fucking cool is that?"

Name: Rich Calvell
Tradition: Virtual Adept/Chaotician
Essence: Questing
Nature/Demeanour: Visionary/Savant
Concept: Viral Metajournalist

Phy: 2/2/2
Soc: 2/3/3
Men: 2/4/4

Abilities: Alertness:2 Awareness:1 Expression:4 Subterfuge:2; Drive:1 Meditation:1 Stealth:2 Technology:1; Academics(Logic/Rhetoric):2 Computer:3 Investigation:2 Linguistics:2 Occult:2 Science(Info. theory):2

Arete: 3; Correspondence:1 Mind:3 Spirit:2

Backgrounds: Arcane:2 Avatar:2 Contacts:3 Familiar:2 Resources:2

Willpower: 6

Resonance: Dynamic: Revolutionary

Quint/Dox: 2/0

PDA/Phone Familiar
Type/Nature:  Construct/Pedagogue
Phy: 1/1/2
Soc: 1/4/0
Men: 1/5/2
Abilities: Streetwise:3 Technology:5 Academics:3 Computer:5 Science(Psychology):3 Enigmas:2
WP/Essence: 3/4
Charms: Control Electrical Systems, Cyberpresence, Jack In, Read/Write, Soak Lethal, Speech/Tiny, Immobile
Health: -0/-1/-2/-5/Incap

Jeremiah Richard Calvell was born to a strict Christian house in the late 1970s. Or he was found in a box under a pool table in a bar by a pair of hippies. Or his parents were cultists and he grew up loving the Leader on the commune. He never tells it the same way twice. Official records conflict over his date of birth and his first name, which he sees as no bad thing.

Whatever his history, it produced an intelligent child and then a rebellious teenager. Rich spent every moment he could from his 15th birthday onwards either high on drugs (mostly LSD and magic mushrooms) or joining protests and later riots. He left home at 17, moving in with a group of students who lived the life he thought he wanted. He learned from them how to program and how to exploit systems, how to write software that wouldn't leave logs and how to make elegant viral code that would evade antivirus programs.

Rich also found himself immersed in debates on liberty and revolution, and the Singularity that was rapidly approaching. he turned his eye to the media and wondered how the world had gotto the state it had. Around this time he vanished for a year, emerging with a head full of metatextualism, viral information theory, and chaos magic. Naturally, he took up a job writing for an underground webzine.

He was attemptng to write a computer agent program which would run on his PDA phone, but designed to not only respond but also to provide cross-linked information and to help with wording particular phrases to get the perfect expression. The code was a nightmarish jumble which should not have worked but Rich carried on. The deeper he got into the programming the more he tuned in to the outside world. He saw the way trust metrics and biometric analysis were being used to distort the truth and to lie to people. Taking a break from his half-finished agent code, he crafted a paragraph exquisitely, designing it to deliver an informational payload to the readers regardless of their biases or preferences. He wrote about atrocities carried out by the Western world and touted as successes or swept under the carpet. He focused on just one incident in Vietnam which had never been reported. Into the text he added small sigils, specific turns of phrase which he empowered with caffeine and Red Bull. Three days after he started, his three thousand word manifesto was ready. He had Awakened.

Now Rich works to expose the news people don't want to read and the facts they want to shy away from. He's hooked up with Chaoticians, mathemagicians and Secret Masters who understand the oncoming supercontext requires people prime humanity or it will all fall over. Rich has never been happier, even when running for his life through a disused South African diamond mine. He returned to his Agent code after Awakening and with the help of a Chaotician better versed in the creation of ephmeres managed to create and join an informational servitor to his camera-phone which has provided rather a worthy companion.

Rich's paradigm is centred around informatics. He uses language to manipulate information free of constraint from the world. His use of chaos magick trappings, particularly sigils and Ouranian Barbaric, are ways for him to project targetted information into the subconscious mental continuum. He uses smart drinks as a personal focus for Correspondance workings, and language for Mind magic. His preferred method for using Spirit magics again involves using language, this time Ouranian Barbaric, as a frame for understanding self-conscious memeplexes.

Rich stands just under six feet tall, with an average build. He wears his sandy hair short, and generally dresses in jeans and t-shirts. He's never without his PDA or a laptop, and usually has a six-pack of Red Bull within easy reach.

Comments

( 4 informants — We want information! )
triplee
Mar. 7th, 2004 02:32 pm (UTC)
That is a character I would entirely expect from your mind. A rebel, fitting very nicely with the VA archetype, but far, far removed from the bad stereotype.

And, as tends to happen with the best Mage characters, I can think of at least a couple other splats this, or a very similar character would fit into. I'd love to see a cabal of this PC, a psychosociologically oriented House Thig member, and perhaps a chaos math based VA or SoE.

~EEE~
(Deleted comment)
triplee
Mar. 7th, 2004 02:54 pm (UTC)
I love your icon!

Of course, this has nothing to do with me currently playing through FF3 for nostalgia's sake recently.

~EEE~
arist_one_eye
Mar. 7th, 2004 11:08 pm (UTC)
Excellent.

Odd point - what if he was running around with a guy like whats-his-name from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas? Or is that just me?
eyebeams
Mar. 8th, 2004 01:45 am (UTC)
Impressive. Actually, I'm interested in what you have to say about that topic (media cocooning) OOC.
( 4 informants — We want information! )

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