Q. First question, to start things off. Setting aside the negative aspects of social media platforms like Facebook for a moment, what does, say Facebook do well? In other words, how can platforms like Facebook be used in a positive way by your average person? How can it be used in a positive way by someone who considers themselves an activist?
A. Its a pay to view platform for any outreach beyond family and a few friends. So you can keep in touch with family and a few friends while being reshaped by the algorithms into god knows what, but probably not very social.
You can run fluffy activism on #failbook but agen this will be shaped by the algorithms to create friction and then amplify this into social fires. Trolls will take over your pages after a time.
So good for making a few events happen then failing.
Q. Second question. Can you give an example of an alternative to a platform like Facebook, and describe two or three things that this alternative platform does better?
A. There are many good projects on the #openweb at moment, most of them built around a standard called activertypub. Currently you can reach over 2 million users based on thousands of different services that all talk to each other.
For activist you could try http://email@example.com for a fluffy view or http://firstname.lastname@example.org for a more spiky.
These platforms do not have the addictive algorithms that the #dotcons have so you get out what you put in. If you put focuses and activity in you will find yourself taking responsibility for building your own communities of new interesting people who tend to be much nicer that the people that #dotcons connect you too. The applications work easily across all formats with modern ui’s its a simple step, if you can focus for a time.
Q. Third question. Can you briefly describe why we need alternative platforms like the one you mentioned above.
A. The #dotcons shape us into being isolated individuals feeding our attentions/lives to depressing consumption and ecological disaster. All the time distracting us with cat memes and news gossip, to this despair its bread and circuses, an old trick.
Q. And if you’d like to add where you think a conversation like this ought to go, in terms of direction, topics to cover, that would also be really helpful.
A. Could talk about #XR