Lindy, as a concept, refers to things that have been around for a long time and are likely to continue to be around for a while longer. The Lindy Effect is a term that has been used to describe everything from dance styles to businesses, but at its core, Lindy refers to the durability of an idea or a practice.
Here are good examples of Lindy activity:
- Jazz Music: Jazz has been around for over a century, and despite changes in technology, societal norms, and musical tastes, it remains a popular and enduring genre. The music’s ability to evolve and adapt to new times and cultures has allowed it to remain relevant and continue to attract new audiences.
- Baking Bread: Baking bread is a process that has been around for thousands of years. Despite advances in technology and convenience, many people still enjoy the process of making bread from scratch. The basic ingredients of flour, water, and yeast have remained relatively unchanged over time, and the process has become a time-honored tradition for many.
- Storytelling: Storytelling is a Lindy activity that has been around for as long as humans have been able to communicate with each other. From ancient cave paintings to modern movies and television shows, storytelling has evolved with the times but has remained a fundamental part of human experience. Sumerians created a hymn to their goddess of beer in the 18th century BC (!!!), giving us this all-time line: “He who does not know beer does not know what is good.” Crushing cold ones with the boys is a 4,000-year-old tradition.
Now, here are three examples of what is not Lindy:
- Fidget Spinners: Fidget spinners were a fad that swept the nation in 2017. While they were incredibly popular for a brief time, they quickly fell out of favor and are no longer in high demand.
- Social Media Challenges: Social media challenges, such as the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, often become viral sensations that capture the public’s attention for a short time. While they can be entertaining and even raise awareness for a cause, they do not have the staying power of Lindy activities.
- Watching a digital Travis Scott concert in Fortnite: It really shouldn’t be a surprise that real-life socialization quickly rebounded once pandemic measures were lifted.
- Diet Fads: Diet fads come and go, often promising quick weight loss or other health benefits. However, they are not sustainable in the long run and are often replaced by the next trendy diet that comes along.
Could JPMorgan have released a research memo in 2019 on the economics of the Metaverse and the value propositions provided by tokenized digital real estate? Certainly not, as almost half of the words used in the sentence did not even exist back then.
Lindy activities have stood the test of time and are likely to continue to be around for a while longer. They are enduring and often have deep roots in tradition and culture. While fads and trends may come and go, Lindy activities are likely to remain a part of our lives for years to come.