The piece is titled,
|NUTRITION IS A FORCE MULTIPLIER|
|A MONTHLY GASTRONOMIC CHRONICLE OF WAR|
|by Roland Thompson, stationed in Iraq|
And it begins,
In my midst are soldiers who have been shot, blown up, burned, and rehabilitated. Whether they chose to return to Iraq or not, I don’t know. In any case they’re here at Camp Anaconda, and unless I see them in the shower I can’t tell them apart from the nonwounded. Likewise, it’s not until I walk a mile with a guy named Eric that I notice the merry-go-round action of his hip.
Eric and I enter the dining tent together. Traffic is one-way through the crowded tent, where food is arranged buffet-style. Our mainline choices are horse cock or triangle fish. Side dish options include raw onion, mayonnaise, grits, and fresh cantaloupe.
I get my cantaloupe and sit next to Eric, such that our arms touch from shoulder to elbow. Eric’s arm feels shrunken and insular. Later Eric tells me that his arm was shot off and reattached, but for the time being we don’t talk. We just eat, wounded or not, like everybody else.
Several paragraphs later, it says,
To read the rest of this piece, please purchase this issue
of the Believer online or at your local bookseller.
Anyway, I found the Believer though this post by JP, who says,
You see, I’m with Doc. I believe in VRM. I believe that in the 21st century, product-driven advertising is fundamentally flawed. Personal recommendations, whether direct or via collaborative filtering, count for a lot more. Recommendations from people I know and trust, recommendations that scale now that I have the tools and the technology to discover the recommendations and act on them.
So I enjoy reading magazines that have no ads in them. Magazines printed on good paper, with loving care taken on format and layout. Magazines that cover a range of subjects, enticing me into finding out more about things I know little about. Magazines that have copyright-free content. Magazines like the Believer.
So the Believer may have copyright-free content (is there such a thing? I dunno…), but it’s still mostly locked behind a subscription wall.
Which is my excuse to say that I’d like to see VRM make it possible for the Believer to expose their content and get paid for it anyway, because it wants to be in relationship with its readers — one that involves readers paying for the goods as part of that relationship.
Because I also believe that writers (and publishers, broadcasters, and artists of every sort) who give their goods away yet need to be paid for their work, are more likely to be paid by those with whom they enjoy a degree of relationship.
In short, I believe that relationship pays — or can, once we put together the protocols, tools and other stuff to make it happen.
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