Archives For Twitter

The (Indie)Web we weave

December 27, 2013 — 3 Comments

I am making a note here, so when we take for granted how awesome our information streams are, we can look back at this snapshot and see how we did it in the ol’ days. Bonus humor, if you catch how meta the topic is.

  1. Mike makes a post about, among other things, blogging and the IndieWeb.
  2. Matthew leaves a considerate and detailed comment on Mike’s post.
  3. Matthew decides to document the sentiment on eir own site (correctly, I think).
  4. Mike employs a snarky editorial method and posts an excerpt on
  5. That gets me thinking, and I reply, both to that particular line and the observation of how RSS is used on the web.
  6. To ensure that my reply is part of a conversation, I post a link in reply to Mike’s post.
  7. Mike points out my reply in further commentary, on the original blog post.
  8. Since I am not participating in the conversation on the original post, and other reasons, Mike then replies with the link to this new comment in the thread.

The hosted software involved in this conversation includes one or more email stacks, WordPress, Drupal and, and content was published on no less than five websites (not including the federation in for non-participants).

Not our DRYest moment. ^_^

The important lesson here is that Mike, Matthew and I are obviously comfortable with all the software involved, and the additional cognitive expense in posting in multiple places is mitigated by other factors that include dopamine and connectedness. The same things that bring people back to Facebook and Twitter. It isn’t fair, but fighting to stop the exploitation of human nature was never going to be a fair fight.

I should say, mainstream and/or popular social networks. I don’t use Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. I use a self-hosted StatusNet instance, and of course I have this site.

Let’s start with what I am missing:

  • Connection with people I’ve met – I haven’t stayed in touch with people from my time in public education, nor do I follow up with most people I meet at meetups or conferences.
  • Timely updates – I don’t use social networks to keep up to date with anything, from major life changes in friends to memes or movements they find important.
  • Ease of using platform-specific technologies – I can’t see half the events people send me, since they are hidden in Facebook. There are games I can’t play, and people I can’t contact when they decide to leave an @handle instead of an email address.

I listed the cons first, because those are real things I miss out on, but they are also all reasons I don’t use those sites; hence, my pros:

  • I email, text or call the people I am interested in, and I have a very strong core group of people that I can rely on for various things. A strong tribe that isn’t diluted by casual connections.
  • I advocate the slow web. I don’t seek out information that is peripheral to the task at hand, and my tribe curates my news.
  • I don’t turn over my information, reputation and network integrity to companies that merely promise to be good.

I don’t think that social networks are bad, but we have a strong historical record demonstrating that companies lack the flexibility and power to be good stewards of cultural dialog. I believe that the internet has to be paid for, and since the consumer web was introduced it has been marred with an increasingly abstract funding scheme, where ads and private data are the currency. I would take it even further though, and say that humans don’t collectively understand how we’ve adapted to our computer-mediated communications, and that digital illiteracy has to be mitigated before capitalist principals loose grip of the popular web.

I am documenting this here mostly so I can refer to it later. I want to be on the public record saying that I don’t think social networks, or really social anything, is bad. But we can do better, and it is fairly straightforward.

How do you internet?

January 5, 2013 — 3 Comments

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Why would you trust Twitter?

February 19, 2011 — 6 Comments

Why would you trust a single point of failure like Twitter? Here are some reasons why StatusNet’s model is trustworthy because it assumes distrust.

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A few items

February 7, 2011 — Leave a comment

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Using social media

December 18, 2010 — Leave a comment

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February 23, 2010 — 2 Comments

I am no longer contributing to Twitter, and I hope others see it for the closed platform that it is.

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I rant about Facebook, FriendFeed, Twitter and the people who care about them. I also think I have some valid points, and I am willing to here your take on these issues.

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Trains should microblog

December 10, 2008 — 8 Comments

I stood around wondering where my train was for thirty minutes. I used that time to think about how to keep that from happening again.

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