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in the past month or so i've been contemplating my identity as darknote and i'm thinking of retiring it.

it was back in 2002 that darknote was born here on livejournal. at the time, the only other "darknote" that existed was that of an old hack program. i would have preferred it if it had no other context, but there wasn't going to be any problems trying to distinguish between an old hacker's program and an intellectual entity. it wasn't too long after that that i grabbed darknote.org and established it even further as who i was, and then a couple years after that i made darknote at gmail which is my primary email address. i consider myself darknote as much as i consider myself mendel.

in 2004, an icelandic heavy metal band formed and gave themselves the name Darknote. okay, it's vaguely annoying, but realistically? c'mon. "darknote" is not rocket science to come up with. it's a straightforward enough thing that anyone could decide to use it (there's a korean female on deviantart that also chose darknote as a handle in 2007 and i'm sure she didn't know either me nor the heavy metal band), so it was only a matter of time, it couldn't stay unique forever. if people stuck darknote into a search, my identity of darknote came up as a pretty even match against the metal band, and what i heard of the metal band was pretty good, so it wasn't like i even minded sharing the name.

but now things have changed. Darknote the band was in a nebulous space from its birth until around 2009, only having released one or two songs and going through a bunch of changes to their lineup &c, but in 2010, they stabilized enough to come out with a self-produced EP, and although they don't have a contract with a label, they've developed a following and have a lot of presence on the internet due to their own promotion and their increasing recognition. they have a myspace, a facebook page, and their own domain of darknotemetal.com (even though that currently reroutes to their myspace page), and if you put in a google search, while my darknote domain does come up second, a good majority of the first 20 hits pertains to Darknote the band, and only two of those hits now have anything to do with me.

hence this recent contemplation. Because although i've had darknote as an identity since 2002, the recognition of me as "darknote" is more of a niche label rather than an actual identity. some people on LJ might think of me as "darknote" more than "mendel", but most people see darknote as just a touchpoint to me being mendel. Very recently that idea was something i further enforced when i rebranded my webdomain as "darknote.org | mendel lee" for professional purposes. As a composer, arranger, and all around professional musician, i am Mendel, not darknote. the only claim that i have to darknote professionally is the ownership of darknote productions as an ascap publishing company that i haven't done anything with since i created it around 2003.

what this tends to make me think is that my identity as darknote is now a hinderance. professionally that identity is secondary to my real identity as mendel lee, which means that my hold on darknote as a brand is much weaker than Darknote the metal band's hold on it as a brand. people that want to search for me will search for mendel lee, not darknote.

resultingly, a part of me started to wonder whether now almost ten years later if it was time to shed this identity and either a) come up with a new handle, b) more aggressively push my alternate handle (shadowaccent), or c) abandon the idea of the handle and just go with my name. i'd switch this webspace over to mendellee.org or shadowaccent.org or something and put a placeholder here that says that if you're looking for mendel go here, if you're looking for the metal band go here. i'd also create a new gmail account, probably mendellee@gmail or something similar.

alongside this, i'm exploring a life blog reboot. malsperanza was kind enough to give me a dreamwidth invite code, so i set up a journal over there under the moniker of shadowaccent. Of course, now that i've set that up, i'm having doubts about whether or not i actually want to use that handle in favor of abandoning it for mendellee or something.

which is odd because the idea of a handle used to be incredibly important to me. i think facebook changed that, but that may not be quite true. maybe it's just shadowaccent. the handle is too long and it doesn't *quite* fit the person that i am or how i want to present myself. i have to give it some more thought, which i don't have time for right now as this is just an exercise break between writing a malaguena drum solo.

i'm not going to shift away from LJ just yet or start posting on DW instead. I just wanted to set it up to start my brain thinking about exactly what could potentially happen and to explore DW's features. We'll see what happens.


( read spoken (5) — speak )
Robert Thatcher
Jun. 3rd, 2011 07:39 pm (UTC)
rEoM. Old school.
Jun. 3rd, 2011 07:53 pm (UTC)

now *that* would be a blast from the past. :)
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 7th, 2011 03:09 am (UTC)
yeah, but rEoM isn't really me anymore.

neither is it a good Brand. I mean, it's an okay Brand because of the unique capitalization and all in terms of recognition, but it doesn't have the sort of identity and strength that a brand should have.

darknote is a pretty strong brand to me in general, but has now come into conflict. Mendel Lee i think is a decent brand too because how many of those are there. It may be time for me to start marketing myself as such.
Jun. 4th, 2011 09:00 am (UTC)
I remember being sad when HardCandy because a nail polish at Wal Mart. I can't imagine you as anything other than darknote. Except maybe Mendelicious.
Jun. 10th, 2011 09:06 am (UTC)
i adopted technomouse
A little earlier than you with Darknote and i have had the same thoughts, i mostly do not listen to techno that much any more and then there is technomouse from the Mighty Boosh , but at the same time it identifies a point in my life and that is the point of my journal. So i have kept it and i use on many other accounts.
( read spoken (5) — speak )


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March 2017