The Collective Cognition of the (Social Media) Burnerverse

All y’all are pretty great. And weird. And fun. And full of unending sarcasm. Over the last couple of years, spending my days behind the feeds of Burning Man Project’s social media channels, I feel like I’ve come to know some of you personally. I read all the comments, sometimes reply, and offer up that “Burning Man just liked my photo!” dopamine rush. The ultimate goal, however, isn’t just to delight you with nostalgic moments from Black Rock Cities past, it’s also to create conversation and spark inspiration … in between all those epic shots of art and mutant vehicles living their best lives, of course. 

Sure, Burning Man Project’s social media channels could talk AT you all day every day—we have many teams doing a lot of amazing work. But it’s more fun to let your Burner brains shine and include you in the content-making every now and then. 

For a couple of years we’ve been asking our followers to offer up their own thoughts on life in Black Rock City, and we’ve received thousands of answers and allllll the advice. Meanwhile, in the present, we’re getting our hearts, minds, and physical selves ready for our first official Burn in three years, and everyone—virgin Burners and veterans alike—could use a little refresher on How to Burning Man. With this in mind, I’ve gone back in time on our Facebook page and collected some of the Q&A posts that do just that.

Now remember, I didn’t say it’s all GREAT advice. I said it’s ALL the advice. Burners are hella snarky, after all. But in between all the “It was better next years” and totally off-topic rants (which can also be worth the rabbit hole), there exist truly authentic words of wisdom and substance. So sit back, put on your favorite Burning Man playlist, and take some notes. Enjoy!


For those of you who scrolled all the way to the bottom of this page, I thought I’d offer up a few more that I personally had a great time reading. They are less “helpful” and more “ridiculously entertaining,” so you can put away your packing list and just enjoy the read.

Cover image of “Identity Awareness Union” by Shane M. Pitzer, 2016 (Photo by @burningMarkNixon)

About the author: Deets Shay

Deets Shay

Deets Shay is on Burning Man Project’s Communications team, overseeing social media content strategy and execution, in addition to leading print production projects. She attended her first Burn in 2012, when she quickly realized she identified with the culture, and has been going back almost every year since. Prior to joining Burning Man Project’s year-round staff, Deets volunteered for the Department of Mutant Vehicles, where she helped process Mutant Vehicle applications before the Burn, and approved vehicle licensing on playa. You can generally find her hanging out with her amazing wife Ginger Snap, their Corgi, Mini Waffles, and Shiba Inu, Jinkx.