Walled Gardens And The Open Web

A recent Mastodon post by Didier Malanfant lamented the death of the open web thanks to walled gardens such as Discord (which was called out specifically).

I do concur with the statement, but after thinking about it a bit more, I wondered just how long our open web records last. A forum can disappear into the aether once the host no longer exists. Unless there was a concerted effort to preserve this information, for information that is worth preserving, the “open web” can be lost as well. We have the Wayback Machine, but it doesn’t always get everything.

That said, walled gardens make this worse. Facebook is even worse than Discord for any kind of systemic archiving, and many of these walled gardens have terms of service forbidding that kind of thing. For the record I love using Discord, but as I see even some open source projects move there I wonder just how transient our collective knowledge truly is.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *