The undocumented years

Back in the day, I had a Livejournal blog where I kept in touch with a few dozen friends and acquaintances. I used it to push out updates that I thought people might find interesting, when they had the time to read. I used to post about once a day. Reading back through those posts gives a decent feel for where I was and what I was doing at the time. The signal to noise ratio was decently high. Compare with the triviality of facebook and the raw static of Twitter. Sure, there were plenty of posts about what I had for lunch – but I can also piece together a lot of my life during those years.

Having a standalone blog like this one is different. There’s no community – and if there was a community it would be all about me and my posts. People would be checking on me in particular rather than checking in on what “the crew” was doing*. I think that’s why I feel no particular urgency to put anything here at all. The crew is gone.

I’m sort of sad that the world has moved on and I’m no longer living a documented life. I’m in a mood to get all retrospective, and I lack the tools.

Or more loosely:

You may ask yourself, what is that beautiful house?
You may ask yourself, where does that highway lead to?
You may ask yourself, am I right, am I wrong?
You may say to yourself, my god, what have I done?

*: Yes, I’m aware of RSS feeds. I offer them. The point stands.

2 comments to The undocumented years

  • Joshua

    So why did you ditch LJ?

    (I more or less have done so with that and with Dreamwidth because I have a Google+ presence now and I have about enough energy at this time to keep up with one social site. Your site shows up because your RSS feed is in there with my webcomics and Richard’s blog and a few other random bits.)

    I still want a federated solution rather than a walled garden, though.

  • This entry has been open in a browser tab for I don’t know how long, waiting for me to deal with it… tonight’s Insomnia Night, so that’s what I’m gonna do. You offer a RSS feed? Sweet. I’m so on it.

    I’d like to argue with your point here, though I don’t know how convincing I’ll be to you, or even myself at this hour. But it’s not obvious to me that there is not “a gang” of people who check on each other, but the fragmentation of platforms for doing so in recent years probably hasn’t quite settled down. What you may be seeing is more the usual attrition of people shifting through their lives, changing where they put their energy. Friendships change, wax and wane; blogging habits also change. There are well-trafficked forums out there for communities dealing with particular topics, such as Dinosaur Comics fandom or particle physics or whatever; other ad-hoc groups of people are subject to change, sometimes without notice.

    I think RSS feeds are actually not a bad answer to that. Previously, everyone had to be using the same platform in order to share information effectively. But now, anything that can be syndicated can be followed without too much effort. I find myself commenting frequently on blog entries that show up in my feed (assuming I have something I’m interested in saying). It may be the most effective way to comment on each other’s blogs in the absence of a unified platform. The expression of the social network has transcended the platform.

    Am I missing something? (Besides the DFP, I mean.)

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