Social Media Is For Suckers
Friday May 19, 2023
Social Media Sucks
All social media sites are bad. Period. They are engineered to make you anxious and waste your time. I know this, you know this, everyone knows this. Yet we continue to use Facebook and Instagram because there’s no other way to stay “up to date”.
Except… there is.
Really Simple Syndication
Before sites like Reddit and Facebook came along and built their walled garden, there was a technology called RSS. RSS is really simple. My blog has an RSS Feed. You can copy that link into your RSS reader (more about that below) and whenever I update my blog, it shows up in your feed. It’s just like a Facebook or Instagram feed except:
- No “friends”. Outside of the garden, friends are real people that you interact with, NOT a number on a screen.
- No likes or comments. Likes are basically an anti-social slot machine. Most comments are functionally identical to likes. Instead of clicking “like” they clicked a few extra buttons to say “nice” or “cool”. Neither of these are human interactions and it should be self evident that allowing them in your life is mental poison. Interaction is still possible, it just means sending an email (a non-superficial human interaction).
- No shills. I only follow about 100 people on Instagram which means I run out of content I want to see pretty quick. That doesn’t stop Instagram from filling my feed with thousands of hours of completely inane popcorn content to passively consume. In RSS land I see the content that I want, from people that I care about, and then I close my computer because I’m done. No ads, no spam, no tiktoks, no “news”, just peace.
In order to read RSS feeds you need a feed reader. Here’s some options.
- Mac or PC: Feeder (You can use the browser extension with no account)
- Linux: Akregator (I use this)
- Android: Feeder (I used this when I had a phone)
- iOS: Feedly
Adding feeds is pretty simple. If you see a little rss icon, just copy the link and put it into your feed reader. If you don’t see a link, their platform (blogspot for example) may still automatically generate one that you can find by trying something like ’example.biz/rss’. Other common names are “feed”, “rss.xml” or “index.xml”. If you use twitter, you can follow twitter feeds with Nitter (this may be broken). No account needed and more importantly, none of the distractions of twitter.
Once again, you can follow my RSS if you haven’t already.
And here’s some blogs that I follow and you should too:
- James Gurney | RSS
- Art Contrarian | RSS
- Pete the Street | RSS
- Tad Retz | RSS
- Luke Smith | RSS
- Jacob Smith | RSS
There’s also a cool thing caled a “webring”. It’s an old fashioned way for independent site owners to share their content. These two are pretty cool:
And these are some indie-web search engines: