Of all of the various concepts and neologisms that populate A Thousand Plateaus that of the "regime of signs" is one that never really caught on. It has not had the same effects as nomadology, rhizome, virtual, assemblage, body without organs, become etc., If I had to offer a quick explanation of this it is perhaps because the idea of the sign, and of a regime of signs, still seems like a remnant of an earlier period, more structuralist than post-structuralist. It is for that reason that it has remained something of a B-side or a deep cut, taking a clue from Deleuze and Guattari's assertion that the book is more like album with different plateau songs than a linear progression.
It is perhaps worth revisiting the regime of signs now. I am thinking of the following passage from A Thousand Plateaus :
This is the situation Lévi-Strauss describes: the world begins to signify before anyone knows what it signifies; the signified is given without being known. Your wife looked at you with a funny expression. And this morning the mailman handed you a letter from the IRS and crossed his fingers. The you stepped in a pile of dogshit. You saw two sticks on the sidewalk positioned like the hands of a watch. They were whispering behind your back when you arrived at the office. It does not matter what it means, it's still signifying. The sign refers to other signs in struck with a strange impotence and uncertainty, but might is the signifier that constitutes the chain. The paranoiac shares this impotence of the deterritorialized sign assailing him from every direction in the gliding atmosphere, but that only gives him better access to the superpower of the signifier, through the royal feeling of wrath, as master of the network spreading through the atmosphere. The paranoid despotic regime: they are attacking me and making me suffer, but I can guess what they're up to, I'm one step ahead of them, I've always known, I have power even in my impotence. "I'll get them."
I was reminded of this passage for two reasons. First, after teaching Kubrick's The Shining in my philosophy of film course I decided to finally watch Room 237, the documentary/video essay on the different interpretations of The Shining.