Conformity is the death of innovation. In every generation there are new ideas that come and go. Some succeed to the point of being profitable while the majority of new ideas die within the generation it is born in. What happens when those new and innovative ideas become the norm? Do they live on and become a part of the culture or do they wither with time?
With the majority of new successful ideas, what normally happens is it takes the innovator months, possibly years before the majority catch on with their innovative ideas and put them to use. In many of these cases, someone of influence catches their idea one day and eventually pushes the innovator’s creation. This is essentially how many ideas and inventions are pushed to public view. The internet does make it easier for everyone to have some form of access to the public eye, but realistically, without a major push, it will be harder for one’s ideas to be seen in the sea of ideas floating on the internet.
The cycle that normally becomes the result of almost every innovation usually ends up being lumped into three phases. I call them the Phases of Ideas
These phases are as follows:
To explain this briefly, The three Phases of Ideas are the pattern in which every successful business venture or idea falls into when the cycle begins. In the innovation phase, the idea is being manifested. it is simply born into existence or improves upon an existing idea in a way that changes the idea and can potentially become its own successful entity. This is an extremely difficult phase to encounter because the majority of ideas end up being discarded due to their inability to improve the quality of life of humans in any meaningful way. If an idea cannot entertain, enrich, or improve society in any way shape or form, it is discarded in order to move on to ideas that produce the desired results necessary to succeed. It truthfully takes a one of a kind type of organization or person to create an idea that can eventually set a trend for society, thus failure is a very real possibility that can befall the idealist at any given moment during the process of creating said idea or invention. The uncomfortable truth in this situation is that in the beginning, middle or even during the end of the process, the idea or invention can be discarded at the whims of the customer or critic who the innovator must sell the idea to. If one cannot sell the idea no matter how beneficial it may be, it will not see another set of eyes nor will the innovator profit. Therefore, if an idea is successful, some of it will be attributed to luck.
Once an idea or invention catches the attention of the majority, now it will fall victim to a stage where everyone will get used to it. The idea or invention becomes part of everyday culture. The idea eventually gets to the point where it becomes a part of the modern culture, essentially becoming a brand. When this happens, the innovator draws in profits, but eventually loses the ability to innovate because mass consumption takes over. This mass consumption takes over, giving the innovator no time to innovate because the product needs to continue to be made or the idea needs to continue to sell in order to maintain success. The problem with average humans is their consistent need to consume any idea or form of gratification until they run out of it. Their addiction to escapism or improvement eventually just creates competitors inventing a different version of the same idea. Whether this newer version of the same idea or invention is superior or inferior simply depends on either one of three things. They either depend on demonstrated results, public opinion, or the salesmanship of the competing markets. Average humans with their insatiable desire to consume and make the entirety of the world conform to their beliefs and customs will end up ultimately decide the success of any idea due to supply and demand. Once there is competition for the same product or idea, the idea is now normalized into the current generation’s culture. Normalization means it no longer belongs to the “cool kids” or the fringes of society who were using said idea before the Basic Beckys and Average Joes utilized them. It is now becoming stagnant and the fringe elements will have to find or create something new to be a part of.
Eventually, if the idea no longer innovates, it will stagnate to a point where it is saturated. A perfect example of this is a new song or a video game. A new video game is released in stores. Consumers will play it endlessly. Finally, they will grow tired of the product and move on to the next title. If the new product or idea wishes to remain relevant, it must remain innovative and create fresh ideas on top of the idea. Unfortunately, a video game can only give out so much downloadable content or sequels until the brand is dead. The same is true with ideas. All ideas unfortunately succumb to the will of stagnation due to humans’ insatiable desires moving faster than any invention can hope to satisfy. This drive to change is simply human nature and it is why we evolve in the first place. Therefore, the idea eventually dies, usually to be replaced by a newer and better idea. Conformity kills the idea because they consume and saturate it to the point where it becomes worthless. Most humans are not innovative; therefore they will only be capable of sucking the life out of any innovative accomplishment with their mundane overused conformity, transforming the idea into a shell of its former self. Conformity is the death of innovation.