Tag: internet (page 1 of 19)

It’s all about the DMs

I think it’s fascinating that this article uses a zeugma to explain what’s happened to places that we’ve called home online. In other words, we’ve moved from social media to social media with the emphasis on the content and performance rather than the sharing.

The fatigue average people feel when it comes to posting on Instagram has pushed more users toward private posting and closed groups. Features like Close Friends (a private list of people who have access to your content) and the rise of group chats give people a safer place to share memes, gossip with friends, and even meet new people. It’s less pressure — they won’t mind if I didn’t blur out the pimple on my forehead — but this side of Instagram hardly fulfills the original free-flowing  promise of social media.


Despite the efforts of big incumbents and buzzy new apps, the old ways of posting are gone, and people don’t want to go back. Even Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, admitted that users have moved on to direct messages, closed communities, and group chats. Regularly posting content is now largely confined to content creators and influencers, while non-creators are moving toward sharing bits of their lives behind private accounts.

As more people have been confronted with the consequences of constant sharing, social media has become less social and more media — a constellation of entertainment platforms where users consume content but rarely, if ever, create their own. Influencers, marketers, average users, and even social-media executives agree: Social media, as we once knew it, is dead.


And if Instagram was the bellwether for the rise and fall of the “social” social-media era, it is also a harbinger of this new era. “If you look at how teens spend their time on Instagram, they spend more time in DMs than they do in stories, and they spend more time in stories than they do in feed,” Mosseri said during the “20VC” interview. Given this changing behavior, Mosseri said the platform has shifted its resources to messaging tools. “Actually, at one point a couple years ago, I think I put the entire stories team on messaging,” he said.

Source: Social media is dead | Insider

Switching to Arc

It’s not often I’ll post tools here, but after a few days of using it, I’m sold on the Arc browser.

My web browser history over the last quarter of a century goes something like: Netscape Navigator –> Internet Explorer –> Firefox –> Chrome –> Brave –> Arc.

Perhaps I should record a screencast, but the three things I like most about Arc are:

  • Build in ‘Spaces’ (for client projects, etc.)
  • Split screen view
  • Easel (clip *live* parts of web pages)

Like Brave, it’s based on Chromium, so all of the Chrome web extensions I’ve been using just work. Awesome. There’s lots of reviews on YouTube.

Experience a calmer, more personal internet in this browser designed for you. Let go of the clicks, the clutter, the distractions.

Source: Arc | The Browser Company

The internet should be a place for connection, surprise, and delight

As new platforms try to imitate existing ones, it becomes more challenging for users to find unique and diverse voices (and content).

So it’s important for users, developers, and investors to encourage innovation and diversity in online spaces, instead of solely focusing on creating platforms that trap users and prioritise profit.

You know, the internet still has the potential to be a place for connection, surprise, and delight. But it requires a collective effort to resist the monopolistic tendencies of a few dominant players.

This kind of duplication isn’t just a clear a failure of imagination; it is the kind of innovation that capitalism rewards. Don’t make something new, make the same thing that someone else made very successful, but slightly better. To have a proven concept, after all, is to plagiarize. It’s annoying to see millions of dollars thrown at making more-or-less literal dupes of internet companies that everyone is already using begrudgingly and with diminishing emotional returns. It’s maybe more frustrating to realize that the goals of these companies is the same as their predecessors, which is to make the internet smaller.


The death of Google Reader is much bemoaned by bloggers like myself, many of whom believe that its end was why blogs died. That’s a beautiful revisionist history that I won’t be taking part in here. Google Reader, which was essentially a very well-designed RSS feed with a mild interactive component, died because Google decided they didn’t want to play the game in the way that its founders had said they’d play it. Those ethical foundations proved extremely easy to discard once some shiny new companies, most notably Facebook and Twitter, began raking in billions of dollars.


The reason the death of Google Reader matters, here, is that it marks a pivotal moment in the deliberate and engineered shrinking of the internet. When Google Reader died, article discovery shifted. People were no longer reading RSS feeds, finding new sites, following them, and being updated when those sites posted. Instead, they were scrolling on the endless feed of Twitter, and (at the time) Facebook, and they got whatever they got.


It is worth remembering that the internet wasn’t supposed to be like this. It wasn’t supposed to be six boring men with too much money creating spaces that no one likes but everyone is forced to use because those men have driven every other form of online existence into the ground. The internet was supposed to have pockets, to have enchanting forests you could stumble into and dark ravines you knew better than to enter. The internet was supposed to be a place of opportunity, not just for profit but for surprise and connection and delight. Instead, like most everything American enterprise has promised held some new dream, it has turned out to be the same old thing—a dream for a few, and something much more confining for everyone else.

Source: The Internet Isn’t Meant To Be So Small | Defector