I don't think blogs broke the internet

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I have been in the blogosphere for way too long. However, I don't have unbiased data backing my claims.

There has been an article around for a while claiming that blogs broke the internet. I have seen it quoted in very different places. The argument is that in the 90's, when very few people had access to the internet, everything was better, every single page was custom made and that gave creative freedom. Until someone came up with the idea of a platform to publish articles that would ordered in reverse chronological order:

And once you’ve had a taste of effortless updates, it’s awfully hard to back to manual everything.

So they didn’t.

And neither did thousands of their peers. It just simply wasn’t worth it. The inertia was too strong.

The old web, the cool web, the weird web, the hand-organized web… died.

The fact that the articles starts by remembering how the internet was in 1993 already tells a story of someone in a privileged position. Regardless of the age of the person, in 1993 very few people had access to the Internet. What I believe the article misses completely is that platforms such as MovableType, then Wordpress, lowered the barrier so much that anyone could generate content. This is democratizing the access to something that was restricted to very few people.

Despite the comparison with social networks and their streams of information, blogs (or we should called them content-management-systems) allow to keep data ownership if desired (and able to pay for). From the article to the comments, they don't need to be in the hands of a third-party provider such as Facebook or Twitter.

I do agree that the chronological order of our articles is not something that serves everyone's purpose. That is why I built this website as a digital garden , breaking the chronological order as an a-priori mandate. But one must also agree that for journaling people (e.g. https://aaronparecki.com/ is an extreme example of a continuous stream of data) the chronological order is what makes sense.

I think that writing an article claiming that the blog broke the internet in 2017, and then generating a reverse chronological order of articles is an oxymoron.

The blogs are not the problem of the internet, the problem and solution lies within the power of web developers , and how together they can work to make a healthier internet .


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Aquiles Carattino
Aquiles Carattino
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