Recycled Thoughts

It’s day 14 of Blogvember. I’m following the prompts from Andrew Canion, which can be found here.

One of the interesting things about being back to writing more online has been giving myself permission to rethink things. The function of the personal blog, in many ways, is to think out loud. What makes it a unique medium is that others can write and respond, and you can learn from one another in unexpected ways. This is different from the stream of what’s become social media, in that the stream is really more akin to a firehose.

When you think about the dreaded term “engagement” which social media companies like to discuss, it often seems to take the shape of who can say the most, the loudest, the most frequently, the fastest. Take one look at the news and see how much coverage is devoted to tweets by the president, and you’ll see what I mean. Never mind that the president likes to threaten nuclear war on the platform, and stoke the flames of white supremacy, look how much engagement we have on our platform! Look at how many favorites and retweets and replies and eyeballs viewing all this information!

Recycling, in the manner I’m discussing here, relates to a return to the hobby that helped me see the good in the Internet to begin with. Writing longer form posts, and especially with this month of November being dedicated to daily posts, has made me see the true value of writing online. Instead of a quick tweet to show I’m thinking something, or trying to create a cohesive thread with counts at the end of each tweet, this writing requires more care and attention. Sure, it’s a stream of consciousness alone, but it’s less reactive and it’s easy to edit what I want before I click ‘post’.

The Internet is in desperate need of recycling. We need the fine folks who migrated away from independent writing, even of small thoughts or ideas, to return to the places they got started. We need a diaspora. We need many places and platforms which can connect with the power of the hyperlink, and we need far more people controlling far less large quantities of our Internet.