Note – This project is super early. I’m working on this full-time at the moment, but it’s not at a point where anything actually runs. Check back in a few days.

Preface

Social media platforms have done great work in facilitating new connections between people. However, they are increasingly transforming into parasitic entities. Their primary goal is to enrich the platforms themselves, as well as their direct corporate and buerocratic stakeholders, oftentimes at the expense of the users they are purported to serve.

The damaging effects of social media are well documented and do not need to be reiterated in detail. However, the 3 areas we see as being most aggregious are:

  • Banning/boosting content depending on whether it’s amicable to the platform stakeholders
  • Purposely architecting their products to maximize their addictive nature
  • Needless warehousing of vast quantities of user data for questionable purposes

Numerous solutions have been tabled to purportedly “fix social media”. However, they range from complete technological digressions (blockchain-centric solutions), attempts to move the problem around rather than actually solve it (alternative social networks), and unscalable designs with unsolvable user experience issues (federated models).

These solutions are misguided. In order to put an end to the nefarious activities being carried out by the dominant players in the space, the platforms need to be superceeded by another system that operates from a fundamentally different premise.

This project is an exploration of the idea that the problems with social media could be fixed (at least to the degree to which “fixing” is possible) by introducing the concept of a “network of social media micro-platforms”.

A “Social Media Micro-Platform” is a social media platform that only has a single user, and this user is the sole owner, operator, and manager of the platform.

There are important differences between this model and a blog. Today’s blogging engines (WordPress, Ghost) are purpose built for high-effort, long-form articles. While this is certainly an important niche, this isn’t the kind of content that dominates social media: captioned images, short video clips, and concise text posts. Social media micro-platforms would be geared towards posting this kind of content.

GitHub

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