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IndieWeb, the movement that seeks to remove users from the "walled gardens" that are the great online platforms



Dan Gillmor, author of 'We The Media' and promoter of the concept of 'citizen journalism', stated on his blog, 7 years ago, that we were "at risk of losing what has made the Internet the most important medium in history, a decentralized platform [...] where we do not need permission to communicate, create or innovate ".



According to Gillmor, who echoed calls by Tim Berners-Lee (creator of the WWW) in favor of the 're-decentralization' of the Web,




"When we use centralized services like social networking sites, useful and convenient as they are, we are handing over final control to third parties who benefit from our work, material that exists on their sites only as long as they allow it."




The events of recent weeks, in which big technology companies have come together to take offline various accounts and platforms linked to the American conservative movement, seem to make Gillmor's words prophetic.




"Behind all informational architecture there is a power structure" ('The power of the networks', David de Ugarte)




And, even many among those politically inclined to justify what happened with Parler or Trump's accounts, do not stop considering bad news the ease (both technological and legal) with which these companies have been able to marginalize from the networks to broad user groups.



But for a long time there has been a movement, as minority as it is indomitable, that seeks to return to the good old days of the Internet, after the dotcom bubble in 2002 and before the consolidation of Web 2.0 of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube in 2010, when the Internet revolved around blogs, IRC, and Wikipedia.







Where is the utopia of a decentralized Internet?





This movement, which Gillmor already mentioned in his article, is known as IndieWeb, born back then from hackathons called IndieWebCamps, in which techies met to share decentralization initiatives.



The intention of this movement was to shape a new web ecosystem characterized by the interaction between individual web domains, which would constitute in themselves our true digital identity (Why be known as the Twitter user @whatever when can you be loquesea.net?).



If you are interested, in this approach, the IndieWebifyMe website and the official IndieWeb plugin for Wordpress can help you when adapting your website to the three great principles of the movement:



"Your content is yours"



According to the IndieWeb philosophy, "when you post something on the WWW, it should belong to you, not a corporation"To illustrate the importance of this, IndieWeb.org maintains a list (updated and extensive) of online services whose closure has caused the loss of content published by its users.





IndieWeb

Examples of technologies and protocols used in the IndieWebCamps.



"You are better connected"



They look for personal websites that serve as a repository for everything we publish (although later we can republish it on other platforms)... but also of all the interactions we receive, in such a way that they even collect the responses and likes of our publications.



This idea is summarized in the principle known as 'POSSE', short for "Publish (on your) Own Site, Syndicate Elsewhere": publish on your own site, syndicate it everywhere (thanks to automated services like Bridgy). Thus, whoever wants to follow us through Facebook will be able to do so, as can also whoever opts for an old feed reader.



"You are in control"



"You can post whatever you want, in any format you want, without anyone supervising you. And share simple readable links like example.com/ideas: they are permanent and will always work ", explains the front page of the main website of the movement.