Curated Resource ( ? )

Evan Henshaw-Plath, Planetary.Social | The Institute for Digital Public Infrastructure

Evan Henshaw-Plath, Planetary.Social | The Institute for Digital Public Infrastructure

my notes ( ? )

One of a great series of Reimagining the Internet podcasts. Guest: the Planetary.Social founder, discussing:

  • the early days of Twitter: "Twitter's innovation ... happened all at the edges... users created everything... inline images and short links and retweets and the app, actual at and hashtags... the company... cultivated this garden where innovation can happen" Then they adopted the advertising business model, so "had to get rid of some of its openness... Twitter originally worked like Mastodon in terms of being federated"
  • decentralized social media: US social media regulation is "a lot like a shopping mall... feels like a public space... But if you try and hold a protest in a shopping mall, they will very quickly say that this is private property and the first amendment doesn't apply". Hence Planetary:
    • "Twitter is a single public space ... a collective conversation, but ... collapses context
    • We need ... something that is both governed as a commons and creates the structures by which communities can run themselves"
  • Planetary, running Scuttlebutt, "you see just the subset of the world around you" plus each server can block servers they don't like, and a trust net protocol sets out "how much you respect and how much you delegate authority" and to whom for deciding how far your network extends.
  • Not federated like Mastodon, where "your account... identity and [graph] exists on a server that someone is running ... who have the moderation tasks". In Scuttlebut there are relay servers and your relationships with people, valued between -1 & 1 (private to you):
    • "0" means "I am not blocking nor following nor relaying"
    • "1" means 'relay this person's content to all my contacts',
  • "software uses those numbers to handle auto blocking ... who we should expose you to, who we suggest you follow..."
  • your newsfeed algorithm "shouldn't be singly held by a corporation ... rather something that you could plug in different versions of"
  • growth models: attracting communities like "people violating rules on existing platforms... everybody who got kicked off of Tumblr ... doing things that Verizon didn't want to see", Mastodon users seeking different apps, Signal users seeking privacy, and "media companies that want to control their relationship to their audience".

Read the Full Post

The above notes were curated from the full post publicinfrastructure.org/podcast/03-evan-henshaw-plath.

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