Going Silo-Private to Prefer the IndieWeb, Leave Silo Publics, and Pioneer Privacy on the Independent Web

on (ttk.me b/4fo1) using BBEdit

I changed my silo (social media) profiles to private today to:

  1. Direct new people to my indieweb site (instead of silos) where people can read my posts directly, or get automatic updates using new IndieWeb readers like:
  2. Deliberately step back from silo “public discussions” which have descended into anywhere from:
  3. Take an incremental step toward outright leaving silos, as others have:
  4. Treat Instagram in particular as primarily a means to the ends of processing/posting photos and videos on my own site.
    • Though I continue to admire (and document) their “reading” user experience: how much more focused, primarily positive (perhaps choice of followings), and just overall pleasant it is to follow posts from people on Instagram.
  5. To be an indieweb canary. Many of the tools and services we have built in the IndieWebCamp.com community are designed for public posts and interactions, including with silos. I changed my silo profiles to private, or to make private posts by default, e.g. Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Flickr and documented how to do so here:
  6. To learn firsthand what the challenges are, both user experience and technical, e.g.
    • How do people interact with private POSSE (syndicated) copies of public indieweb original posts?
    • What are the personal challenges of understanding the different publics of mixed private silo vs public indieweb posts?
  7. To start better understanding existing private account and privacy user experiences & expectations, and documenting them to accelerate indieweb “best of the best” privacy & private publishing design.

In that last respect, this is just one of many private vs. public experiments I will be conducting, including with my own website and posts, to gain real world experience of the privacy design challenges and opportunities for individual or small group independent web sites, inspired but not burdened by existing silo designs.

Starting in 2010-2011 we the IndieWeb community pioneered and documented details and best practices of how to POSSE (Publish on your Own Site, Syndicate Elsewhere) by doing so live on our own sites to various silos like Twitter.

By 2015, POSSE had grown far beyond the indieweb community and became an accepted open independent web practice, with many others reconceptulaizing or redeveloping it, e.g. POSSE to Medium by “Creating Medium stories via RSS”.

It’s now 2016, and just as 2010 felt like the right time to develop and show POSSE (and outdo silos at & with it), now feels like the right time for those of us with our own indieweb sites to take steps with those sites to pioneer, develop, document, and show how the independent web can do better at private accounts & posts, improving upon silos both technically, and more importantly, with better user experiences.

Read more at IndieWebCamp.com, and join the discussion at #indiewebcamp.

Thanks to Ben Werdmüller for reviewing and providing feedback on this post.