Mona Lisa / da Vinci/ Salai Theory: iDenity
|Mon Salai (my site)|
Yesterday I checked my google alerts and saw dozens of stories with headlines like "Mona Lisa claimed to be da Vinci's boyfriend" and various other variations on very high profile news sites. I was excited at first because that has been a theory I've been developing over the last 10 years and is the basis of a book I've been working on. I then realized it had been released by someone else. Someone who was also on a National Geographic episode we were both on a couple years ago. I thought I would post another blog about the theory and the timeline in case the increased interest the news articles brought more readers here. Hi!
Click on the link to view my site which has more information and graphics. Mon Salai (my site) There is more to the theory which I'm not going to post yet for what should seem like obvious reasons if you stick around.
The themes being released by someone else does take away from the impact and validity of my work when I do try and release it myself. It's no longer "news" and the story would then seem that someone else is trying to claim the same thing rather than it being about the theory itself. Or in other words it's a spoiler for that particular theory which would then make it become old news. It takes the wind out of my sails before I've even set off. It takes it from a breaking story to an already broken one.
Writing this makes me feel a little whiny and petty. I feel like if this was someone else complaining about the same problem I would tell them - "ohh poor you, shut up and do something about it, fix the problem!" SO I guess this blog post and what I do next will be the solution.
What do I do?
I guess I tell my story and what I've found and leave the rest up to you - the reader and those that can help share it.
In 2006, when I was 23, I began writing a book about Leonardo da Vinci and various discoveries I made regarding his art. One of which (which this post is about) was about a painting of Salai, Leonardo's lover/ pupil combining with the Mona Lisa when they were superimposed.
In 2011 I was asked to be featured on a National Geographic TV show about Mona Lisa where I talked about this theory. On the same episode there was another guy who was featured for his plans to dig up real life Lisa's skull to do a comparison with the Mona Lisa's face and for findings numbers and letters in the painting. Also that the Mona Lisa was inspired by Salai and a real life Lisa combined.
Between 2006 and up until a couple years ago I was posting my theories and a preview of my book (and the entire previous version of it) on my website. I also had press releases sent out and a couple articles written about it. During this time Salai as a search term was relatively unpopular online. Since I posted images of him and my research they became ranked in the top images if you searched for the term "Salai". So while I would not come up for any "Leonardo da Vinci" searches (at least not near the top) I would be in the top 10 for "Salai" and even the very 1st picture you see when searching. Clicking on it would then take you to my web site where I explained my theory. Not only that but the images that I created by combining the face of the Mona Lisa and Salai would be shown in these searches meaning that anyone searching for the term "Salai" would be exposed to my research even if inadvertently:
So if you were to have searched for "Salai" you would see a picture like the one above. Even if you didn't go to my website where I went into more detail the graphic is enough to realize the implication. Salai and the Mona Lisa's face are nearly identical. So you would realize they are connected - just by searching for Salai - and this was from my web site and research. This was why I started putting really annoying watermarks across the images because people would use them and then not say where they got them from - thus leaking the contents and theories and research from my book. This enabled people to 'use' my work and ideas and then spread them as their own. Kinda like taking someone's pictures and articles and posting them without the source instead of re-blogging them. Some of you will know what that means and other will not. Essentially it's taking peoples stories and pictures and posting them as your own without giving credit. It could be because you either don't know the source or you want to make it seem like it's your own idea. It's possible for someone to do this without knowing that it was by someone else but that is different than claiming it was your original idea. You see there is a difference between an idea and a story and a theory and then someone's exact words and images. You can take someone's story and re-write it and say it's yours but you can't use their pictures without permission or their exact words.
When I started I didn't' know about these things so I posted my entire (400+page) book on my web site and paid someone to put out a press release giving out the theories and discoveries I had made. These were then used by other people but without using me or my site as a source - intentionally or not - I don't know. But like I said it would have been nearly impossible to do any kind of research into Salai during the last 10 years without coming across my site and seeing my theory. That is how and why I was contacted to do a tv show about the Mona Lisa - since it was about her identity and Salai. On that show was someone who just released a story that is making headlines about this same idea.
His story has the same basis but doesn't go on to explain why or how. He says they are similar and are a combination of Lisa and Salai. I'm obviously not going to give out any more details than is already posted on this blog or my site until my book is done but here is the gist.
Mona Lisa or Mon Salai?
by Louie Parsons
Is a link to an article dated to 2006 which explains the exact same thing about me and my research.
In 2007 someone else released my research regarding the Last Supper and it's mirroring properties which was supposedly taken from my web site/ articles that were sent out in the press release. The subsequent news stories were not just about the Last Supper but that the story itself generated 15 MILLION hits to his web site, crashing it, in a single day. At the time my web site with the exact same story and my entire book i had posted online for free (to read before you buy) had only received less than 1000 hits - in total or more like 10 a day. I had been struggling with the notion that no one would be interested in my book or what it was about or that I was delusional for dedicating so much time to it.
So imagine you pay for someone to write and release a press release about a book and discoveries in it. Nothing happens. Then a couple weeks go by and that discovery is in the headline news - but by someone else... That is what happened.
Even if only 1% of those 15 million views would have been directed to my site where my book was for sale I would have made over a million dollars.. think about how devastating that was - and that was in the first year I started. Now imagine you've spent 9 additional years on the same book with no recognition or any income and probably over 100,000$ has been invested in this by my MOM! (thanks mom!)
Think about it. 10 years spent dedicated to a single goal - finishing a book. Losing everyone i cared about in the process and thought to be crazy. It was enough to drive someone crazy - and it did for a while! But that was a while ago and i'm at the best place with my book and my Leonardo research than i've ever been.
Is a link to the last time this happened (actually 2 times ago) that gives the evidence and explains exactly what happened.
The side effect of this process is having to work with not only no personal income but no validation or external motivation. It's like working at a job for 10 years in which you dont get paid for and you can't talk about with anyone that is interested or could help you. Then someone else posts your work before you're done. What is the lesson? Don't post your work before you're done!
It sounds weird and paranoid to say "i'm working on something really interesting and significant (historically) but I can't tell you what it is, I can't even hint about it before i'm ready because someone might take my idea."*eye roll*
Because if they use my research/ story and then announce it before I do then when I do it will seem like i am trying to take credit for something AFTERwards. Exactly what is happening in this post. So the story isn't about a discovery but who made it and when.
People would wonder - well then why didn't you announce it when you found it? I DID but I didn't know what I was doing or how to announce something or even how to write a book! I was 23, in college and working at the front desk of a clubhouse.
An analogy being you wouldn't post the design for a new invention before you patent it or you wouldn't share an idea for a movie or book until you're done because people WILL not only take it but take credit for it. Case is freaking point! it's not paranoia - it's how it works.
Hey, it sucks, but whatever, I've gotten used to it and it's helped by making my inspiration -self sufficient and also allowed me to avoid feelings rushed or compromising.
One last point which only adds to my frustration.
One person can present something and it won't be published. Another person can then take that and present it and it's published? Or why was a theory that I had first not able to be included but then the exact same theory by someone else was? If it's about the validity of the content - they are identical - so it's not that. Especially on Wikipedia. So what gives?
After writing all that i'm left with wondering what I want? Or more so - what is the point? I think this is exactly what I wanted, to be reminded that what i'm working on is worth it and that people might be interested in it when i'm done. Sure this story in particular will now seem like a re-blog if it were released by me - which is frustrating, of course. But I have to remind myself that I already released it 9ish years ago. I also have to remember that its only 1/2 of a chapter in my entire book and no one knows what the rest is really about. What is it about...it's about t... haha almost got me! You're gonna have to wait!
Thanks for reading!
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
"Every wrong shall be set right" - Leonardo da Vinci
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