Replied to thread by Abide the Twin Damnation ( the Twin Damnation ( (Cybrespace)

communities disappearing from self-hosted forums and even Livejournal to places like Tumblr and Twitter, and to a lesser extent Reddit, was a move from spaces we controlled to spaces designed to control us

of course, this happened for good reasons - accessibility first and foremost. it allowed many new communities to form, too. if we want to have control, we need to ensure access too.

phpBB is terrible but it does what it wants to do. same with Discourse, though some design decisions are... odd. mastodon, on the other hand, does _not_ do what it tries to do - build communities around microblogging

what we need is to build federated forum software with two-way syndication - accessible from the Fediverse, from Twitter, from Tumblr, even from IM platforms.

for example - these posts syndicate to Twitter, but comments don't syndicate back, which means I have to maintain a real presence there.

If you like, you could use to get comments and reactions back from Twitter with Webmention support for your site. I’ve outlined some of it for how I’m doing it on WordPress, but the idea is very adaptable for any website out there, and there’s a growing list of pre-existing code one could leverage.

(Hint: this also works for other common social platforms which Bridgy supports. As examples, I’ve got two-way communication set up between my site and Github and Mastodon just to name a few, so I don’t need to actively visit those sites on a regular basis. I pipe most of the content into a social reader like Monocle or Indigenous and reply directly from there.)

Webmention can be used as some of the community glue for things you’ve mentioned in your thread as well. As an example, I can post on my website and syndicate that content to (using Webmention) where others can discover it (perhaps by category) and interact with it using their own websites. If they have Webmention support as well we can have a site to site conversation that could potentially all be mirrored on which acts as a conversation and discovery hub.

This ecosystem is slowly growing and flourishing, but we still need work on making it all easier and more accessible as well as helping to guard against potential abuses and bad actors to make things safer for bigger public communities at scale. (I notice you’ve got a great site, that touches on and covers some of these topics like security and identity.)

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Chris Aldrich

I'm a biomedical and electrical engineer with interests in information theory, complexity, evolution, genetics, signal processing, IndieWeb, theoretical mathematics, and big history. I'm also a talent manager-producer-publisher in the entertainment industry with expertise in representation, distribution, finance, production, content delivery, and new media.

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