Third Week Check-in; (My) Normie Thoughts about the Fediverse
It is now 9 AM, Sunday morning and I've been awake for roughly around one and a half hours now. I'm usually the first person awake at home, regardless of which day of the week it is, so I know that's a “healthy habit” I've finally accomplished this quarantine. Other less desirable quarantine habits I've unlocked are drinking home-made lattes every day and sleeping at 3 AM on more than a few occasions. I know, I should be getting more than 8 hours, and I'm still working on it.
I've never written a journal entry this early in the morning, but I suddenly had the urge to fire up the computer. Usually, I'd flip through my phone for hours while laying in bed for quite some time before deciding to start the morning (at mid-morning time), which I also know is a bad habit. A lot of people advocate for getting up early, meditating, stretching, journaling, but my idea of peace in the morning is catching up with my friends on the other side of the world – when I'm waking up, they're about to go to sleep. When I'm about to go to sleep, they're about to start their day. Those little spaces of time where we're all both physically awake give me a sort of calm and structure – I wake up with my friends on my mind, and I go to bed with their words echoing in my dreams.
But going back, I guess what I wanted to write about really were some thoughts I had last night with this whole experience being in W.a and the fediverse. I'm writing this as a very light, and casual user, so apologies if at some point I sound very ignorant and uninformed, and feel free to share your opinions with me as I'm still learning. We all have to start somewhere!
As we all know, I started out searching for a platform, and W.a presented itself as the perfect place. I briefly had a Medium account with none of my writing in it, just to see how I felt about navigating through their features, and I had issues with their paywall. Not to mention the quality of the articles that were thrown in my newsletter inbox – I for sure didn't sign up for a ThoughtCatalog or Buzzfeed, so why was I getting so much of those kinds of articles? I also tried making an account with Proseful, at the same time I made this blog, but the community aspect of W.a won in the end. It also immensely helped that I started writing at the onsent of 100 Days to Offload, which I was quick to email Kev Quirk about, enthusiastically telling him in an email (despite not knowing who he was personally) that oh man, I really am down for this thing.
It's been a little over three weeks and since being here, resurrecting Feedly and reading everyone else's daily thoughts, I've learned a little about the fediverse and decentralization. I'm no techie and I use the internet based on familiarity – meaning, what my friends use, I'd use because they're there and of course, there's FOMO involved. It's also half because that's what was recommended to me or it was what I found during my research on things (not too deep research then), so again, familiarity. But I'm glad to be experimenting and although I'm just watching everything from the sidelines, I'm curious about how this all works. Security? Yes. ActivityPub? Amazing. The idea of not being locked into just one space? Brilliant! No one posting to chase clout and being entirely just themselves? Absolutely.
So I try to bring all this knowledge back to the friend group where, if we were all physically together, I'd be met with blank stares. It's as if I said something that was way too woo-woo and totally above their heads, and I'd get a polite nod for my efforts. For a hot second I thought maybe this was a niche thing I was excitedly getting in to, or maybe I just wasn't explaining my recent discovery properly, but there's also the realization that people aren't as enthusiastic as trying out new things, especially if there is no hype for it, or if it doesn't serve them any immediate purpose or reward them in a significant way.
In that area, I feel utterly defeated, and I slip back to my own corner. At least in my case, no one wants to leave what they've become familiar with. Am I the exception for going against the tide? But then again, I have to explain time and time again to everyone who asks, even to relatives, why they're not able to follow (stalk) my life so easily. Sometimes I feel like it's a sin against society not to be “online” present, but that's not the community I want to be in either! I like the current set-up I have right now: write, share things, interact, be happy, and get on with my day.
I'm currently doing a challenge called “100 Days to Offload” – you can join in the fun too by visiting https://100daystooffload.com
If you'd like, drop me a message here – I would be absolutely thrilled to hear from you!