the temples of true believers, ardent faith has a way of prevailing. And so, in
the Dot-Com year of 2000, vast numbers of followers seem eager to fulfill a
sacred digital future.
and largely unspoken, the virtual Ten Commandments of Dot-Comity are now
shall have no other gods before media synergy.
shall not bow to any image above those of the profits. Technology and
venture capital are marvels that turn the Internet into a cosmic pathway for
the commerce of life.
shall not take the name of the Lord your Market in vain. It has little use
for those who squander opportunity. It will not hold guiltless those who
fail to appreciate Its transformative powers.
the stock exchange and keep it holy. You may pause and reflect on the
meaning of your labor, but for the long days and during after-hours trading
— with the help of cable TV networks and online brokerage firms as well as
some of the hottest investment websites around — the Lord your Market
blesses every breath you take and hallows it, especially when earnings soar.
your father and mother, for they made possible a balanced portfolio, taking
into account the strengths of blue chips and Nasdaq, with careful attention
to the most auspicious high-tech initial public offerings.
shall not fail to make a killing, within the constraints of mortal
fallibility, which must be reduced to aggregate the momentum of digital
technologies and the markets. In the Canaan of the Web, you shall revere
those who develop software to let there be cyberlight, making new fiduciary
horizons dawn and rendering mere human form secondary.
shall not adulterate the potential of Dot-Comity to raise our eyes to the
heavens of capital formation, IPOs and long-term advancement of New Media.
shall not steal. Above all, entrepreneurial fortunes depend on respect for
intellectual property rights.
shall not unduly cut corners for temporary advantage, lest you undermine the
Dot-Com faith that rockets the blessed of us to seven figures and beyond.
You should participate in all manner of fascination with interfaces between
the technical and the financial, subjecting them to interminable media
discourse, while bypassing qualitative evaluation of "content" and
thus minimizing public debate about the cultural and political messages most
widely promoted by centralized New Media power.
shall not covet the trademarked, copyrighted, patented or encrypted products
of competitors, but you shall be free to attempt capture of fabulous wealth
available to a small percentage of adherents. Take full advantage of the
Internet and satellite technology that was massively subsidized by the
federal government decades ago, but do not hesitate to claim that the Lord
your Market has made it all possible and therefore the private sector
deserves all its divine profits, and more, if only government would get out
of the way.
virtual commandments need not be belabored or even mentioned; they are mainly
internalized by the faithful. Every month, hundreds of hours on national
television and many large vats of ink go to prayerful meditations on how to
better understand and analyze the Lord our Market, seeking to assess Its will to
be done. Sanctified by an inexhaustible fountain of media reports and
discussions, the Lord our Market reaches new and transcendent levels, nearing
the iridescent light to shine on the human condition.
fundamentalist believers in Dot-Comity insist that the literal words of the Lord
their Market include this admonition: "As for others who fail utterly in
the glorious quest for rich holiness of the techno-age, you shall not be
distracted by their misfortune nor attempt significant aid. For I, the Lord your
Market, am a zealous god, smiting each generation with inequities that favor the
best and lay low those who cannot glorify the Lord their Market. This need not
bother the followers who embrace me and with steadfast devotion keep my
Solomon is a syndicated columnist. His books include "The Trouble With
Dilbert: How Corporate Culture Gets the Last Laugh."