Discussion topics, Identity, Politics
What do people talk about? Why do we bring up certain things and leave others sealed away? unfinished, unvoiced. The main limitation is time, there is not enough time to say all of the things that might be said, there will always be more things to say than time to say them, as each thing said spawns a thousand others to consider.But more immididate to the human experience is relevance, if you're going to put the effort into making a message for other people to understand you're probably wanting the person you're talking to to *do* something with the information. A change in behavior, a change in thinking, relaying techniques, or just knowing someone is willing to listen to you. Everyone will at some point have all of these things play into why they say something. Not to mention the times where you don't say something because it would do something you don't want. The nuances of when and how the information you say can best be used is pretty much the main obsticle to getting basically anything done, as such I do not pretend to be particularly skilled in these things. That being said, the reason that this is relevant to this zeine at all. The things that are going to be relevant are going to be much different online than elsewhere. For example, the kinds of things you're going to say on a tech support forum is going to be different from chatting with internet randos on a chatroom (e.g. discord, IRC, matrix, ect.) is going to be diffferent from the comment sections on YouTube. Charicter limits, the emotional state that people are likley to be in while communicating. And that's just the format, not anything about the types of people that would be present in these spaces. If you take one mastadon instance and compare it to another there will be events and tendencies that would be shared between them regardless of the differences in what people populate each. This can be expanded to meatspace as well, the format of a city council meeting will create similar tendencies any other city council meeting. The impact on the individual person might be similar as well. Boredom, feeling alone in a crowd, frustration at a newcomer who doesn't understand the environment, petty personal beef, being shunned, ect. And it has provided countless people an outlet to explore themselves and learn things they never could have hoped to otherwise. Especially in regard to queer issues there has been a massive expansion of the ability for individual people to express themselves and have an outlet for things that they might have nobody in meatspace to discuss with. That is especially true to people in rural areas (like myself) who have a smaller pool of people to interact with and that tend to be much more behind the times on social issues, in this way being able to talk to anyone else with an internet connection instantly at any time is incredibly powerful in allowing for a sense of belonging. The internet has it's own ways of making one feel alone however. being able to talk to anyone also means you can find an endless supply of people who are cruel, stupid, fanatic, or otherwise just unpleasant to interact with. The endless supply of information to consume can also be a source of lonelyness, both in a feeling that you will will never be able to take in everything that you might want to, but also in getting sucked too far down taking all of your time you might have spent on interacting with real people. And of course there's the issue of becoming engrossed in something fringe (like say political content) to the point where it starts to keep you from socializing with the people you know beforehand.
I quite like the yesterweb project, it's a bunch of people who were dissatisfied with the way things were and decided to spend their time doing something different, the would would be better if everyone were to do that more often. Until quite recently I have spent most of my time (I mean total not just online) on the big tech/web2/proprietary sides of the internet, and I *still* have a severe addiction to youtube dot com (there so much good stuff there). As someone who has had a decent amount of expereince in the various things that happen to get the government to exist, it really is just people who have decided to participate, for good reasons or otherwise. Online communities have many of the same failings of governance that happen in the real world, people who want the power for itself and not because of the changes they can make with it, communities becoming hyper insular and rejecting all outside ideas, inflexible leadership causing the entire organization to be ennervated by refusal to delegate or wasting resources on pet projects that aren't worth the effort. Being in charge takes many of the same skills no matter where you are.
I guess the moral of the story?: run for local office. You're not going to be that much worse than whoever happens to already be there.This article was created by Unk