In response to my earlier post on Grokster stories, Alan Wexelbrat sent me a note, which I am posting, belatedly, with his permission:
You take my flippant headlines too seriously. If cornered, I will admit to believing a weak form of the S-W hypothesis. Certainly not the strong form. As for whether or not language resonates, I don’t think that’s it. As Lakoff describes (see both “Moral Politics” and “Don’t Think of an Elephant”) the power of resonant concept definition is not in some ‘recognized truth’ as you would have it, but in the simplicity and snappiness of the concept. In this case, “piracy” is a one-word concept identifier, reinforced by constant repetition and blockage of contradictory information. This has nothing to do with its truth value. That said, I’d fully agree that ‘Grokster needs a better story’ – I think it’s getting one via the amicus briefs at least. I’m much more worried about KaZaa’s story, personally.
Hmmm. I think I read Lakoff differently — snappiness is certainly important, but resonance counts for a lot.