What I've learned from centralising my communication platforms

12 Jul 2023

A couple years ago, I chose to go cold turkey and remove Instagram and TikTok from my phones, in the process converting all of my friends over to WhatsApp or Discord (the only normal social media apps I use). I felt really good about this and saw a nice uptick in my mental health now that I wasn't doomscrolling for the entire day anymore.

This was all working very well up until last month. WhatsApp Web logged me out. No big deal, I could just plug my (increasingly broken) android phone which I never use because it's very slow and buggy and runs Android 5.1 and I prefer my dumbphone anyway.

Except, it wouldn't charge. The microUSB slot had broken off the board. So I became stuck, I was unable to contact any of my friends since all of them talked to me through WhatsApp. I was rather lost.

Now, this wasn't a massive deal to me considering most of those people never talk to me anyway, but it still presented a dillema and showed me a flaw in my plan of using less and less communication platforms. The less platforms you have, the more margin for failure you have if one of those platforms goes bust.

This is presenting itself for everyone now as we see Twitter and Reddit slowly turning away from their core vision and start charging users for API access, or verificaton marks, or essential features etc. And as a result, people are seeing that social media is not a safe vessel anymore (granted it never was considering every 10 years, the main platforms of communication we use on the internet change, in the 80s it was all BBSes, the 90s it was forums, in the noughties it was MySpace, in the 2010s it was Twitter and Facebook, and now in the 2020s, it's increasingly becoming basically exclusively Discord) and many people are moving to Threads, Bluesky, Mastodon and other platforms.

This presents a fundamental issue with how we communicate on the internet today. We all stick to a small few platforms and we all collectively shit ourselves and hope for the best when they inevitably sink and potentially lose contacts on the way as we move. This is why I present the perfect way to combat this:

We all should have linktrees, contact pages, bio links and more to tell people: "Hey! I'm here too, in case this place goes down too!" and that way it allows everyone to stay in contact even if another so-called "smart business man" decides to fuck everything up. Another way to improve this is personal sites, if you own the domain and run the VPS yourself, as long as you have the money every month (to pay the VPS) and every year (to renew the domain), you will always have a presence (unless you say some Nazi bullshit but nobody reading this blog is a neo-Nazi hopefully).

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