Why We Love Lists

1. We can disagree with them
2. They create an illusion of order in the universe
3. Our wannabe instincts get motivated by them…
4. Or they confirm our prejudices i.e. the Rich (or Greedy) list, the Top Intellectuals ( or Pretentious) list, the Happiness Creators ( or Clearly Deluded) list
5. They reaffirm that Alfred Alder, champion of the inferiority complex has been massively overlooked
6. And that his view that many of us are status obsessed is correct
7. Lists show us feel we can control something….anything!
8. And they make us feel significant: we have stuff to order.
9. 8.5 bloggers out of 10 write list posts constantly and 7.3 out of 10 web surfers read ‘em. List posts provide convergent content in a divergent online context: a path in the forest.
10. Sadly, they can indicate where you’ve gone wrong in life. On the Rich, Intellectual and Happiness Creators lists published last Sunday there is not a single psychologist. Oh dear, stuffed. Time to start the 5 Possible Reinventions list….

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2 thoughts on “Why We Love Lists

  1. An excellent list!

    They also provide a socal function in that they lead to discussion and argument. If one takes an interest in a list then one will have a view as to the order and what has been left out. This view will always vary from everyone else’s so it creates a point of discussion – online, down the pub, wherever.

    Whether it’s widely accessible lists such as the rich list, the charts or the top 40 favourite comedies or more esoteric ones such as the best prog band of 2010, the same effect is achieved with different sizes of populations.

    Where would we be without them?!

    • Thanks for such a well-written and helpful comment, David. Just spotted you’re a copywriter and clearly fab at what you do.

      This end, would certainly be all over the place without lists…

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