Read to the end for a good tweet
Great overview of the current state of affairs, Ryan! Thank you!
I tried to go POSSE a few years ago, but ran straight into the wall that was "lack of engagement." It seemed pointless to syndicate everywhere when people would be engaging within walled gardens. I still hold out hope for a federated future, but honestly at this point I'm thinking in reverse: engage on a small number of platforms that work for you, and archive everything to your own site as a repository. I'm an archivist by training, so to me the real issue here is about individuals maintaining ownership of what they create rather than "how far can I spread this essay/vid/podcast?"
I'm not particularly settled in how I'm doing this yet...I have two podcasts, two YT channels, and am active on bksy, tumblr, substack, facebook, and reddit. So if anyone reading this has suggestions on how to automate archiving all of that content, lemmeno!
In your internet is over section, Sam Kriss wrote about this about a year ago, coming to a similar conclusion.
Regarding the "fixing the internet" portion of the article, I personally am a big fan of the "re-wilding the internet" movement. A return to the late 90s-early 2000s era of personal websites/blogs/domains/forums/chatrooms. Despite the "ugliness" of that era (which, being called 'ugly' as it's own problems) I feels a lot more genuine than 'Squarespace Aesthetic Social Platform With Scrolling Feed That Looks The Same On Desktop & Mobile #456'. I'm also completely done with having everything be centralized, and done with traditional social media in general. I erased my Twitter months ago (though it's still up since I haven't figured out how to export a list of my mutuals yet), I closed my Squarespace account and taught myself how to code my own art website that's completely personal to me over Neocities, and most recently deleted my Spotify and all the data with it. Yes, I'm going to lose engagement, but I'm done with that. Ngl, having a bunch of websites be "decentralized" in a way but still linked to ActivityPub to create "The Site" that Ryan describes sounds like a nightmare to me lol. I'm going back to niche forums & meeting people at conventions and printing physical zines and collabing in person. The way I feel about my online presence now, if someone wants to find me, they'll have to work to find me. Why would I want random people who don't share any of my interests being able to find me online with one search of twitter, when I can have my close knit group of 100 people in a semi-private Discord server who all create the same kind of art as me? This is all just me, however. I get why some people would find it difficult to "leave the walled gardens" so to speak. It was difficult at first, but then I kept reminding myself of how I'm being taken advantage of by all these giant tech companies.
Twitter drama and it's main characters used to be everywhere before Musk. Having to find out about the glory hole post through a newsletter, when it would've been all over my feed before, shows how different and weak the site has become
furries aren't doing anything special right now, we're just on telegram
What a ride this article was. I loved it hah. Keep up the great work Mr Garbage.
"Which means I sort of think whatever that new status quo is, it’s already arrived and that the rut we feel like we’re in is possibly already over. Somewhere, at least...there is some pocket of the web out there that has already defined our digital future. We just haven’t noticed it yet."
I hope that's true and if it is...can someone fuckin point me to it???
I quit twitter months ago because it was unusable and awful. Every area of interest in which I want to visit sites means I either deal with a patchwork of small substacks or blogs with no cohesive community, or "enshittified" sites with zergnet ads that are owned by one company that controls 20 other similar sites. (e.g. for film writing and news, I can check out great newsletters like The Reveal that understandably can't cover things very broadly, or I can read The Playlist which posts 5 separate articles dribbling out non-news any time a director appears on a podcast and is so bogged down with video ads it makes my computer heat to boiling point.) The few social media sites I use, like Instagram, just serve me trash from the 4 other sites. Even what I consider basic functions of web browsing are infuriating now. Just last night my girlfriend and I felt like geezers because we were agreeing that there's almost nowhere to dependably check *the weather* online now. The major sites are stuffed with ads and roving video pop ups that make the sites unusable. (I found WillyWeather, which seems good despite the terrible name.) I'm this close to returning to phpBB forums where there are 5 posts a day across the site, because at least those work properly.
For real, if anybody knows where these pockets are...tell me
Wow, this piece was unlike so many I have read and I really enjoyed the unique way it was written! I’m glad I explored out of my more common genres.
I can agree that things like Discord can be used in malicious ways. Although anything can. I think it's great that you were able to use a game like Roblox to spread awareness about what is going on in the world for younger audiences. Every website nowadays now feels like a mob with ads. You have to press 30 buttons to be able to get the information you've been looking for.
That was literally an episode of It’s always sunny in Philadelphia
The success of Dropout TV? Uuuh, Ryan, it was CollegeHumor's attempt at a "pivot to video" like 5 years ago, and it killed the company.
Heck of a roundup today, great edition.