2019-06-21 The lesser, non-commercial web

Recently, cmccabe asked: “what websites do you like on the www? In particular, what lesser known websites do you like? No Wikipedias or Project Gutenbergs.”

If I had to say where I spend my time online, it would be this:

  1. Mastodon (I have active accounts on Octodon Social and Tabletop Social)
  2. Lasagne Social, written, maintained, and hosted by Paolo Greco; a very simple, low-traffic social media site for role-playing games
  3. Pluspora, a Diaspora pod; I’m not too active on it, but if post something, it’s probably related to role-playing games as well
  4. RPG Planet is a single page feed aggregator for blogs about role-playing games
  5. in theory, I also run a few wikis but in the end, I don’t really use them all that much: Campaign Wiki, Emacs Wiki, Community Wiki, Oddmuse Wiki, and a bunch of others.

I think I mostly miss wikis in my life. Back when I discovered the Portland Pattern Repository and Meatball Wiki I was on fire! 🔥

These days, I’d say Community Wiki would still be a relevant place to write about social media, about online security, privacy, civil rights, moderation, power, government, and many of these topics that I care about. But a wiki must attract a community that feels like reading and writing in the shared space. Micro-blogging sites like Mastodon and Diaspora give us all the illusion of having our own space to write in, where we can mute and block others while still exchanging ideas with others, where we can be as isolated as we want. Without a core of people interested in the wiki idea, feeling a sense of shared ownership, watching each other’s back, this won’t happen outside of these micro-blogging sites.

Oh well.

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