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Making the IndieWeb Open To All

Making the IndieWeb Open To All was a keynote by Jacky Alciné at IndieWeb Summit 2019.



This is something I've kind of toyed around a little bit personally and it's one of the core tenets of bringing the things we use every day -- like, bring it to other people.

So, a little bit about me.

I'm a guy who lives in someplace people call Nor Cal. I like to make things to help people, websites.

There's three things I want to touch on today. It took me time to get these words together. The first idea was around inspiration. How do we take the things that make us passionate and share them with people?

As shown before of Marty, there's things we do that we find that's enjoying, that's liberating, things that we can share with others, quirky, exciting.

There's a way to kind of encourage people to come do the same. To do the same with our sites.

Not just to keep the door open, but so we don't burn ourselves out trying to bring every person in.

We can start reflecting and investigating on the things that we know that are difficult and reduce the barrier to entry, thus making that doorstop something we copy and paste and put in other places

Starting off with inspiration -- hold on, I actually can't see my notes. That's funny, because I know what I'm talking about.

Inspiration is organic. It's something we come into. We enjoy and expand on.

I guess, like, one thing to -- my personal -- I used to run a static site.

I enjoyed it, it gave me a chance to tinker and mold. My site was clay, I could take it and mold it and record it and share it with other people.

When it came to things I did on my site, I saw people doing more in-depth things. They were capturing where they traveled to, things they consumed -- I mean, if it can be recorded, it can be captured and that led to prove that this is something that can be done not only all the time but also very simply.

And definitely, in this age, if it's a low-effort and, like, a high return thing, we're going to jump into it every single time.

So, there's a few ideas and things that I will try to propose today and hopefully you can lead to other conversations in our breakout sessions today.

One thing's always worked out is kind of giving people a chance to manipulate data and see how it's presented in realtime.

I'll going to start with Bonnie and Clyde. So let's say Bonnie and Clyde were on the same social network and they happen to be across the country.

Clyde sees a post about Bonnie breaking into Cay's Jewelers, we can manipulate and show how the blocks can tie into other things.

This is a way of demonstrating a post that Clyde would make on his own site. Each part proves that Clyde goes into there, tying into how one person's identity on their own site -- it could be something you post somewhere else.

Each step can be demonstrated up and down here. This is something I'm trying to work on, I'm pretty sure somebody has a better idea. How do we show how content kind of moves around. On some platforms you can see Clark liked Lewis' posts.

It could be one person who starts their site and they invite two other people. They start talking to each other and a person who is outside the network then pulls another friend in and they start communicating.

The thing is, right now, for you to do this, you have to click the post. If there is a way to easily demonstrate how these things are shared, it would encourage people my content can travel.

I don't have to worry that it's trapped on my site, there's other places it can go to.

Visualizing how interactions spread across the web through the internet.

Yes, this is going to be a fun one. You might see your self on here. Also demonstrating how we present our own content on our own sites.

One thing we have the amazing luxury of is not getting stuck in cookie-cutter presentations.

We're not some blue text on a random site. We can demonstrate things how we want. I can show you how people tend to reply to my site or how someone else may want to check in at a place. Or short notes that people have on other sites. And so on and so forth.

And it can be also you up here. Each person is not constrained by whatever platform they have because the platform's on their own definition.

In order to -- not only let people in, but make them feel they can stay in the space when they work on things. We have to put tape on the floor. Like this is the easy way but from here you can do other things.

One thing I try to personally point on other sites is to ensure it's always explained. If you want to talk back, this is something you can lead into.

Lead into other venues for anonymous identities and making it easier for people to kind of get into places, which is tying into invitations.

This is something I know, as somebody who runs -- or used to run monthly dinners. Inviting people to a place is always difficult.

And, trying to make it something that's easy to automate, easy to copy, easy to run it's always going to be hard.

If they tell you, I can't make it today or when it comes to Homebrew Website Clubs, it's usually oh I can't RSVP to the site because of X Y and Q It's usually because of something that either we haven't fully provided yet or a barrier.

We reach halfway, are we on the same kind of road? Are we communicating from different paths?

This ties into -- the IndieWeb has a list of 12 principles --

>> [Away from mic].

>> Got you.

This is one that I've read over and over.

Whenever I try to do things, I do it for me, but the most immediate people to my circle.

And working and building those two things together are always kind of difficult for me. Juggling how I can make something I can share with somebody and also pull in other people. It's something I grew up with -- I'm the oldest of five. So whenever I think of something it's how can I make sure it's me, and Christopher and Rebecca, my siblings all can work together and [inaudible] all the time?

It's usually something I had to focus on it myself.

But it's not only me. It's how we work together and get these things done.

The easiest way to go about this is advocacy. We're advocating for a group of people to help share these ideas and notions.

There is more anthropological approaches to get things done.

It can be as simple as writing documentation that helps people understand what microformats are or giving more -- I want to say, adjacent tools and, like, templates for the things that we need.

That's -- this is not a linear slide show. Okay.

Which ties into understanding where people are, we can then start working on the kind of things that they run into.

So, sorry. I'm going to fix that.

So, that things to tend to trip people up.

This is something I've run into personally, I had to fix my search history. There is something called microdata, we don't necessarily use that. You can if you want, but it won't work on most peoples' sites here. This is one thing that comes up which is people feel like there's nothing they can pick up and work with.

There are solutions out there. It's just not what they're looking for, which is a chicken and egg situation.

We don't know what we can provide you with if you don't tell us. It's like, try this out so we can find some kind of middle ground.

There is always this notion -- and it's well-founded that the IndieWeb is tilted for people who like to look at 80 by 24 console screens which is not entirely true.

There's a lot of people out there who do art who do music who put content in a platform like micro.blog This is the magic slide.


Oh, so, showstopper -- I use showstopper here in quotations to highlight these are things that if they can't find immediately, they are like, this is not something I can use.

They don't have things that work for me.

Audience control is a very obscure way of saying I want to have content on the web that's meant for you, you and you but noone else can access. It's a very active topic in the IndieWeb right now terms of private posts and it's something that's -- there's no one-size-fits-all situations.

What might work for me, password-protected posts may not work for somebody else. Cause now you have to share this password so what does that actually mean in terms of security.

Are these together? Gosh. All right. That's fine.

Ephemeral identities. Basically Having the ability to kind of dispose information or how you present yourself in the world, given that we are associative with DNS, it's hard to disappear because we also archive everything.

That's fine.

There was a middle slide about how kind of things can be compartmentalized and we have to look into a Bento Box solution for things.

Not necessarily to give everybody what they need. We have to encourage that there are blocks people can use to build themselves. That ties into that idea of having not tightly-coupled solutions, but things that you can just click, click, click and just kind of get going.

So, you can RSVP to events like this or post from your site and keep moving from there. With this, these extensions can kind of encourage people to start building their own sites. The thing is, as kind of champions, we don't want to control how you do your stuff because then we're in no better way than Facebook or Twitter. They start to control how you interact with people.

What's going on? Okay.

So, this is the -- this slide's different.

That's fine. This is the part where we have to understand -- and we have actually a good understanding of the wiki documents things we notice people tend to get tripped on and where we go.

We have to understand where we can encourage people to keep pulling things and also, how can we kind of get out there

and say it's not as hard as it was five years ago.

It's got a lot better, it's a lot easier and there's ways we can get things done.

It's what we *can* do to pull people in. It's going to be hard.

It's not going to be easy.

Most good things that don't come easily.

They always come with a little strife, a little struggle.

That's where the third principle -- building for us We have to build for us, but also the person we're going to see in the room.

How can we ensure that whoever comes on after us can easily get something that inspires them to invite other people. We have lots of itches.

My wiki page, there's 14 specific things. I'm trying to send posts to my site to write to my newsletter so I can do it from one place vs 17. We have to -- I'm going to avoid saying "we" or rather "have to" We should encourage more people to take five things off their list and hammer at it.

It creates a record of how we go about things. How people can just think of something and kind of make it happen.

And this is something I struggle with myself.

We have to hear what people are saying what are the hardest things.

People will say anything.

But once we hear things that surface to the top, like I can't see your posts. I can't write to your site.

Kind of have to, like, hone on those ideas and see where we can go from there.

That's where I close.

See Also