Web for the people

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In November 2017, spurred by then-recent events, I published an essay called Plain old webpages still matter. It's one of my popular writings, and I was so proud to hear a friend (hey, Peregrine!) call it inspiring earlier this week.

I didn't know it at the time, but just the day before the web had been blessed with a much longer essay titled Against an Increasingly User-Hostile Web, by Parimal Satyal: a name more people need to know. Needless to say, it has a similar message, only it goes deeper into issues like too much capitalism.

Well, via the Dragonfly BSD Digest I just learned about the follow-up to the above: Rediscovering the Small Web. With many inspiring examples, it seeks to encourage readers into making their own. This isn't a singular effort, either, but part of a larger trend. Alex Schroeder for instance suggests wikis as another way to achieve similar goals.

My own website has long lost the sort of innocence highlighted by my illustrious peers. In my defense, it's still handcrafted for the most part. Not the blog, because blogs need a little automation to manage comfortably; but it's surprising how deep and rich a site will grow if you just keep adding to it year after year. Patience goes a long way. And there's nothing wrong with using a mixed toolbox.

So use whatever you're comfortable with, from the friendliest content management system to the most technical static site generator. Go with a free hosting service, or ask a friend who already has a server. And if you can, support those who still believe in a web for the people. It's already bad enough what's going on with browsers.

But that's a story for another time. For now, if you're going to join the conversation, do it with your own voice.


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Tags: website, culture, links