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Distributed Press Interviews

Template Agenda

  • Personal intros
  • Project intro
  • Interview questions (don't have to answer all of them!)
    1. Who do you, or does your organization serve?
    2. Can you describe your experience in publishing and with distributed web technologies?
    3. What are some challenges you're seeing in these spaces? Why do these challenges exist?
    4. What projects in these spaces (of content publishing or distributed/p2p technologies) are you particularly excited about?
    5. What sorts of hurdles do you see us facing as we continue to work on this project? What words of advice can you give us from your experience?
    6. What are the problems you face relating to the premise of this project?
    7. What part of this project seems interesting to you?
    8. Are there areas that you'd like context and clarifications?
    9. What are some of the features you like about the tools you use today? What are some that you'd like to see in the future?
    10. Do you have other questions for us?
    11. Do you think there are other groups we must talk to?
    12. Do you have other recommendations for us?
    13. Can we publish this interview notes publicly under CC BY-SA 4.0?

Session Notes

badpennie

Date: 24 Jan 2020
Attendees:

  • badpennie P

  • Mai M

  • Ben B

  • M:

    • Digital commons organizer and writer
    • Write about ISP cooperativism, building out People's Open
    • Radio powered disaster networks, open source!
    • Met ben at DWeb Camp
    • EFF for 5 years, trade/copy-right/fighting-TPP
    • Fighting for the digital commons!
  • P:

    • Artist
    • masters in human rights law
    • Internation justice, peace-building
    • Intersectional analysis
    • Research independently, understand security issues, women on the ground
    • Military industrial complexes, industry is militarized, state oppressions
    • Problems with online activism, also internet shutdowns
    • Not a tech background, researching military tech, resource extraction and disappearances, campaign against AI warfare, researching information entropy
    • Interested in ways to get offline independence (e.g. in Rural Colombia)
    • Wondering if HAM radio can be mesh nodes, if constant frequency switching can evade gvt. jammming
    • Activism orgs need better security practices
  • B: skipped, already knows both mai and badpennie

  • P: current communications with on-the-ground activists within org: email + Skype

  • B: experience trying to communicate with people on the ground and not being able to?

    • P: in South Sudan, had to crouch between several satellites to send a file, while in North Sudan some VPNs are blocked
  • B: is this a mix between poor infrastructure and political censorship?

    • P: yes. EG. Seeing people who are under the radar, and they are part of an underground shelter system. So people were after them for political reasons. badpennie had to be totally disconnected to be able to visit the shelter, but also be able to send a message that she's safe to people back home
    • Being able to keep people off the grid
  • M: generally mesh infra don't have great security, something that really needs to be developed

    • prevent people from seeing messages (e2e encryption) but also prevent tampering of messages (authenticity)
    • if you have many, if several goes down it can re-route, but it requires many nodes active
    • disaster.radio has no ability to keep messages secure, but very light-weight to deploy (solar panel), transmit over several miles and cheap per-node cost, doesn't require line-of-sight
  • B: people could be arrested for putting a node outside their house

    • LoRa uses low frequency band, whole set up is tiny
  • B: bring back to Distributed Press

    • M: (brief intro), want to bridge the infra + protocol
    • P: appreciate the process of building this project
    • P: personal issues I face... people ask "how can we follow your work?", but "you can't" because platforms like twitter doesn't let you publish while keeping a sense of anonymity and identity
      • There's some content that I want public and some private
      • Photo journalist, newspaper owns images, then sells to getty images, ended up in UK newspaper in anti-immigrant story (photo has nothing to do with it) -- photographer no longer own the image, cannot legally contest it even if they wanted to
      • Credit and copyright: In music there's tight copyright. (This is changing wiht on-line platforms like youtube so could be helpful to have signatures, some people write and perform but don't have creidt- ''hired gun'')
      • Want information sharing is decentralized but identity is centralized, can always come back to "me" (could be anon handle), and can decide how to share, automatically credits back to me whenever people use it
      • Medium... more eyeballs but also more grey noise
      • Want, this content goes to these smaller sites, a creative core outputs strategically to those sites for qualtiy impact which adds upp
      • Twitter, every content producer just wants (incentivized) to hit some lowest common denominator threshold (is there a quality entropy?), no regulation around resrearch or dissemination standards, information is blurred with coroborated opinion; diluted content for elevated ''personality''; it's emotive and source-lazy on all sides.
      • Something around protecting content and identity without exposing yourself
  • M: rise of AI and language processing, using to figure out who someone is even if people hide behind an online handle (e.g. style of writing, etc.)

    • M: P2P trust, also a way to expose a network
    • M: identity, a centralized identity, know somebody is somebody but not real identity
    • If content is authentic, but content was published to a particular platform without their consent
      • B: "I authorize that I intend to publish one nytimes.com" and sign this text (along with content); would there be a withdarwal / flagging procudre to link to IP law and public disclaimer? Instead of a paper printing a retraction- the signature forces the public statement independently?
  • ben brings up Internet reach is not inherently good for a community, when the Internet is dominated by monopolies

  • P: businesses are talking about the poor state of broadband...

    • Rolling out broadband all over the UK
    • "Financially free" internet isn't actually free
    • Worried about social engineering, where only ppl who have money can afford privacy (transit is free but you pay with your data)
    • Poor and disenfrancised are "forced" to be online
    • Census data becomes mis-represented, and affect data representation, e.g. "it's all the poor people doing this..." bc data reflects only the ppl who can't afford privacy, economic policies become biased
    • P: people become a data bot
      • Twitter, actual bots or human bots, which is more worrying either as data samples (data by ommission or invsibility which we have seen for centuries in the form of gender and minority biass- making data archivinfg newly important) or as online contributors; similar to emotive tweeting rather than info. quality. Eg. If it is compiled from existing sources, is it journalism? The standards in academia are much stricter and open to rigorous pier review. Anyone can write on twitter and link to a news site to give the appearance of being sourced.
    • P: like the way Distributed Press is described as a soil
    • P: Twitter - passive euphoria
    • P: but ppl may think -> with Twitter you can have a much wider influence
  • B: hurdles for Distributed Press?

    • P: convince ppl that when you think you're saying something to 5 million ppl, you're actually not
    • P: mediocre content gets a ton of praise; people want someone to corroborate what they are thinking or feeling in the moment, not to challenge or inform.
    • P: you loose something in the quality of what you say by changing your content, but ppl do it to convince other ppl to spread your content (Classic information entropy issue, vs error free channel capacity)
    • P: changing ppl's behaviour and convincing the actual "influence" beyond optics of X followers
    • P: human trust, "someone isn't who you thought they were", how to deal with, for activists? - if the ''circle'' can't be broken, just a link?
    • can the verrifiablity of the open source part be maintained in its intergrity, but not have it open to the mass public? (protocols / code etc.) and actually have an invited community to test and verify? is this a contradiction?
    • how to help individuals create their own ISPs and become nodes without high level expertise or exposure
    • P: need alternative publishing
    • P: security, how to ensure different handles don't "mix" or be traced back to "me"
    • P: how to handle exclusivity, "this article is exclusive to this place"
      • B: configurable, author chooses at time of publish
  • B: who should we talk to?

    • P: photo journalists, they are vulnerable to this
      • Credits, and once it's sold there isn't much you can do
    • P: artists, how to get your work out without using these platforms, if you tweet it does it mean it can be shared over and over
    • P: decentralized movie production (so ppl don't have to compete for same pool of funding, which influences public discourse) -- People's Republic of Movies
    • P: how do you bridge the gap between sharing content to increase visibility as an artist without dilluting ability to make money (single-use products)
  • P: easy p2p payment is really important

    • B: on your familiar platform
  • P: How can I help?

    • Happy to help / host nodes etc.
    • Love the magazine approach

SoapDog

Date: 29 Jan 2020
Attendees:

  • SoapDog S

  • Udit U

  • Ben B

  • Personal intros

    • U: based out of Toronto, knew Ben from Toronto Mesh, met at Civic Tech Toronto, where we talk about civic issues and how ppl in tech space can help with some problems, background in engineering, most recently Hypha Co-operative, distributed.press is one of the projects we want to pursue
    • S: 7 years ago been in Toronto, from Brazil but living in London, graduated from film school, all over the place, used to be very active in Mozilla, not so active these days, developer in web / desktop stuff, friend with Andre Staltz who intro'd to scuttlebutt, then ended up in SF for DWeb Summit 2018, got important patch merged into Firefox (whitelist of protocol names), involved in p2p since then, now more free time on p2p again, now works for a Hindu monastery in Hawaii
    • B: got into p2p stuff from the cjdns community. Met Aaron (who works at cryptpad) that's how Toronto Mesh started. Lots of interest in processes and community. Aaron introduced ben to ssb, and met folks in Toronto who are interested in digital activism. Channel the energy to real efforts. Less concerned about scalable and large impactful solutions. Interested in something that is personally sustainable
  • Project intro

    • B: started because we wanted a magazine for dweb ppl that's not blockchain adjacent. Not published on medium. Let's use the values that are present in the community
  • Interview questions (don't have to answer all of them!)

    • S: rooting for the project
    • S: there's a lot in there, hard to achieve the full vision
    • S: a small toy prototype could be used to experiment with stuff
    • S: the more time you spend before having something you can play with, it sucks your energy, so what is the subset of this that can be used to validate
      • B: +1
      • U: +1
    • S: IndieWeb, each syndication is a lot of work
    • S: distinction on tool usage to publish vs. tool to consume
    • U: toy prototype may require us to work on one main issue, what do you think is one of the biggest issues?
      • S: good and not too hard, authorship verification (sign with author creds)
      • S: build like lego, build little toys and connect them together
    • U: misinformation?
      • S: look at Brazil and UK
        • S: people publishing fake facts about politicians and journalists
        • S: everything in the article is fake, or story is true but everyone says it's fake
        • S: if you can say, this piece of content is authored by this person, it gives a path to accountability
      • B: editorial bias? too big to fail? re: accountability
        • S: signing chain will help only folks in the centre that are reasonable. we can't solve the fringe cases with technology
        • S: fact checking can't be decentralized. if anyone can fact check even those who are lying can fact check
        • B: thoughts on photo journalists take photos and publish it with metadata on blockchain?
          • S: what if someone steals a photo and put it on the blockchain and says it's theirs, which is the problem that youtube has with people uploading not their videos to the platform
          • U: this is why kodak's blockchain project makes sense, put it there from source with serial number of camera
    • S: the social problems (like tackling fake news) is not a technical problem
    • U: do you have related projects?
      • S: add-on focused on blogging, take patchfox and put all the blog APIs (e.g. wordpress, micropub, etc.)
      • S: it's a blogging client in the browser
      • S: reframe the browser as a tool for content production
        • U: have you seen the hypothesis project?
          • S: not the same, this is not only for annotation
        • B: beaker?
          • S: less infra to manage, focused on blogging, and doesn't let you do arbitrary webpages like beaker does
      • B: there has to be a way that allows authors to be authors, not devops ppl
        • S: exactly
      • B: if I want to publish same content to wordpress and microblog
        • S: wordpress REST API
        • B: how to solve layout between different platforms?
          • S: depends on blogging engine, no easy solution
      • B: medium is dominant. that's where all the attention is. alternative publishers will publish to x and medium, instead of just x. multiply effort per platform :(
        • S: idea: workflow can be defined
          • 5 line descriptions of where content can go. markup style
          • single click multiple endpoint publishing
          • met indieweb people @ redecentralized, webmentions (i.e. evolution of pingbacks, a source and destination) and microformats
        • S: Tantek -> https://twitter.com/t
          • "Reply on your blog and automatically posts to twitter, etc."
          • See tantek.com and brid.gy
          • See example from andregarzia.com
            <div class="hidden"><img src="/img/photos/go_library1sml.jpg" class="u-photo" />
              <a class="p-bridgy-mastodon-content" href="https://brid.gy/publish/mastodon">✨ A year with the #Microsoft #SurfaceGo. ✨</a>
              <a class="p-bridgy-twitter-content" href="https://brid.gy/publish/twitter">✨ A year with the #Microsoft #SurfaceGo. ✨</a>
            </div>
            
          • See indiewebify.me guide to indiewebify your blog
        • S: adding indieweb features to dweb ecosystems has the potential to kill medium
          • S: microformats are classes on html, adding sementic value, can be reused on SSB for example
          • S: but SSB content is markdown and indieweb is html
          • S: microformats attach meanings to html nodes (e.g. like a business card)
    • S: patchfox changes the markdown renderer to handle IPFS and Dat links
      • B: can we do [business card](microformat://stuff)?
        • S: issue is it breaks if the consumption target can't support/render it
        • S: business card
          • S: this works only if you have a client or you are connected to Internet
        • S: the format you store the data doesn't need to be the format you are sending the data out
          • e.g. store it in a very rich way in the little app, oh we're sending to SSB, let's generate markdown for it
          • rich (richer than .md) editor, e.g. from this point to this point it's bold, not just adding astreiks, may have revision history, from that generate markdown
    • S: grantfortheweb -> web monetization API -> https://www.grantfortheweb.org
      • coil + moz, exactly right fit for our type of project
    • S: npm:
      • ssb-webify, cli to generate a static generated site and publish to scuttlebutt as a site message
        • patchwork / patchbay cannot display this
        • online ssb-viewer can display this
      • S: know of a tool that publishes to both ipfs and dat
    • B: what is interesting to you?
      • S: it's simple, medium is simple, all out things are too hard
      • S: MAKE IT EASY! otherwise ppl use medium, make it at least as easy as medium
      • S: most excited about next gen of tools that allow ppl who are primarily content producers to produce content in a decentralized way
        • S: have you used popcorntime? that's easier than netflix, you need to be popcorn time friendly
      • S: the future is not patchwork and patchbay, the future is beaker
        • Issue is patchwork relies on developer to add support to render a certain type of content
        • We don't know how to make authorship easy (beaker, ppl still need to type html and js), is there a way to make usable?
        • We know that html works, have stuff rendered in html and publish that
        • Offline first and js don't play well together, corner cases
          • e.g. ssb markdown parser will not let you use image tags
          • webarchive, way to capture a whole website, can be digitally signed
      • S: if you restrict to normal web for prototype, then it's easier to progress
      • S: SSB is good for memory but not for readers, bc onboarding sucks, but onboarding on Dat and Beaker is fantastic
      • S: don't just list stuff in the problem space
      • B: who else to talk to?
        • Kevin Marks: @y5IKqxebeSX/4mnvKnUGC/t65M2nlGdV/GIABR+lEHk=.ed25519
        • Blaine: @OF30xmIi8yCA6nLuu8UtCxy+LAzRJ3yzH/s6Ia6ejGs=.ed25519
        • Tantek: twitter.com/t

Emmi Bevensee

Date: 5 Feb 2020
Attendees:

  • Emmi Bevensee E

  • Quinn Dougherty (mostly listen mode) Q

  • Mai M

  • Ben B

  • Personal intros

    • Q:
    • E:
      • Emmi came up with the idea for SMAT
      • Moz funding to work on it until July
      • Data science ML / political organizing / hate group & disinfo research
    • M:
      • Met Ben thru DWeb Summit/Camp
      • Writer & organizer of digital commons, post-capitalist solidarity economy, sudomesh, non-profit, cooperative, community network, disaster radio, open public library
    • B:
      • Background in mobile app and library development
      • Interest in mesh networks integrated with p2p/dweb software
      • Our Networks and DWeb Camp organizing
      • Distributed Press formed from discussion at DWeb Camp, started researching this space with Mai and Udit
  • Ben introduces Distributed Press, and particularly interested to discuss with Emmi:

    • Limitations of algorithmic censorship
    • Risks with irrepressable media
    • Threats in independent media
    • White nationalists in the p2p space
  • E: Open Web Fellow (Moz)

    • Anti-defamation league (ADL), focus on hate group research
  • E: We need to make a transition to distributed/decentralized publishing

    • We need a healthy ecosystem for testing for how to deal with these problems
    • The problems are more "human-shaped" - works closer to how trust works within human networks, instead of how we trust oligarchs to oversee/moderate content and how it's shared within networks
    • B: Distributed tech like SSB vs. IPFS?
      • E: Content are on IPFS forever, can take off from main gateway, but still on IPFS
    • E: A lot of people are doing a lot of incomplete solutions
    • E: Dweb is risky, but potential outweighs the risks, and it's undeniably the future
    • E: Developers interested in the web but not care about social context, vs. activists with technophobia
      • B: Why isn't there greater adoption of distributed tech in activist circles?
        • E: Not sufficiently developed to be adopted widely. For example, I'm loyal to SSB but it's slow and buggy! It's a matter of time for these tools to become more accessible.
        • E: Also the use cases aren't always there...
  • B: In your own activism work do you see a use case for dweb tech?

    • E: luandro's work in meshnets is interesting
    • E: e2e encrypted ephermeral comms is interesting
    • E: Activists generally want to get off centralized platforms bc they always get censored
      • M: But surveillance is also possible in dweb tech
        • E: SSB quite leaky except for private msgs
  • M: Basic trust in the ppl you're talking to

    • B: "Globalness" of the internet is the problem? I want to share to many ppl but not to those ppl. Granularity?
      • E: That is what I meant by more "human shaped", trust is already hard...
    • E: Trustless systems have a use case too, such as anonymous transactions
    • E: Both trustful and trustless systems have use cases
  • M: Limitations in current platforms that prevent ppl from being "safe"?

    • E: Tension between reaching the largest audience vs. spreading only to trusted people
    • E: Twitter is best system to spread propaganda
      • B: I feel Twitter is so good for that because the cost to acquire a lot of attention is unreasonably low (e.g. buy a bunch of bots to push a message into many people's timeline)
    • "Higher trust distribution networks"
    • B: SSB type networks are good for nazis to organize, but not good for them to do propaganda
      • They can stay hidden uncensored in their own islands, but those messages do not capture outside people's attention
    • E: SSB, can migrate identities to a different client, has useful implications
  • E: Social media right now is a combination of in-house team managing moderation algo + mechanical turk team in global south

    • It's just offloading the problem to marginalized ppl
    • What would it mean to distribute the responsibility to normal users, everyone needs to see nazi videos in order to protect our community
    • This is what humans alrdy do in irl communities, we protect our friends
    • M: reddit has upvotes and downvotes, rely on community to curate, they don't have centralized content moderators
  • M: Is it okay that a tool is meant to publish to only a small community?

    • E: "Building small" - https://runyourown.social
    • E: Reddit has universal rules (e.g. can't break the law), but small communities can make their own rules within subs (non-global)
    • E: Skeptical of hard borders in small communities
  • B: What do you think about Distributed Press?

    • E: Understanding you guys are still investigating options, what exactly you're doing...
      • As a point and click publish to many small communities? It's a good idea!
    • M: What should be prioritized?
      • E: Abilities to build communities in your interface
      • E: Practical use case, anonymous publish
      • E: Also need to publish to the centralized web
  • B: One problem with using distributed tech today... I need to know the platform will still be there tomorrow

    • e.g. I know IPFS will be there next year, but can't say the same about some other projects
    • E: General funding issue with the space, need to build sustainability
  • M: Payment problem for content writers?

    • E: Yea, friend wants to take p2p payment for content
    • E: Reputation systems... central & rank, endless ways to measure, they help with onboarding
  • B: Questions or how Distributed Press could be useful to you?

    • E: Ideas about publishing my paper onto the dweb
    • E: Keep me updated about the project

Dawn Walker

Date: 5 Feb 2020
Attendees:

  • Dawn Walker DC
  • Udit

Udit chatted with DC about Distributed Press on Feb 5th 2020. Here is a transcription of key ideas we talked about:

  • Lots of prior art to draw from, particularly those taking a journalistic lens (i.e. in a "changing newsroom" context)
  • Projects in adjacent spaces
    • Decentralized Broadcast or db "is a peer-to-peer broadcasting service, owned and funded by its listeners, DJ’s, and producers."
    • Arso focused on preservation
  • What should we focus on?
    • DC's take: find ways to support people's livelihoods
    • Also it's important to avoid lock-in, reach people where they are
      • eg. Indieweb serves to glue existing tools and spaces together; modifying by integrating;
      • ❤️ Lucy Suchman's "Located accountabilities in technology" principles paper
    • Allow republishing onto multiple platforms
    • Substack is an interesting example of a subscription model, meeting people in their inbox
  • Journal examples to draw inspiration from:
    • First Monday is a peer reviewed journal on the internet
    • Catalyst is a journal of feminism and technoscience. From their website: "access will remain an on-going project, a reflexive, collaborative, and distributed effort in digital and disability design."
    • Logic is a larger and more mainstream publication
    • DC suggests talking to individuals from these journals, has some contacts
  • Lots of writing about the dweb, and a lot of it is narrow and researcher heavy, or ecosystem and product-specific
    • E.g. IPFS weekly, Dat newsletter, and SSB weekly
    • If we are publishing content, think about what more can we say about the dweb that hasn't been said before? Aesthetics (e.g. solar punk)? New and experimental content and media?

Maria Bustillos

Date: 3 Mar 2020
Attendees:

  • Maria Bustillos P
  • Mai M
  • Ben B

Pending review

Jack Jamieson

Date: 16 Mar 2020
Attendees:

  • Jack Jamieson J

  • Udit U

  • Ben B

  • Personal intros

    • U: toronto mesh, community projects, met dawn and ben thru civic tech toronto
    • J: phd student at University of Toronto, same office as dc, incorporate values into designing large network systems, got very interested in indieweb bc they are building individual website approach, rather than the social network, etc. focus on autonomy... that are served by decentralization rather than decentralization as an end, dissertation by ethnographic
    • B: interested in community networks:
      • form connectivity without going through intermediaries
      • solidarity aspect: bringing technology to the "human level"
      • increasingly less attracted to projects where goal is internet connectivity, more focus on "the internet that we want"
  • U: early stage in project, convo with ppl in popula, dat, etc.

    • news and opinion public space
    • governance, ownership and control, credibility, fact checking, decline of independent media, payment to authors
    • instead of one web, how can we empower connectivity across emerging ecosystems
    • haven't spoken to folks with indieweb experience
  • U: thoughts on publishing on the indieweb right now

    • J: may not be the best rep of everyone's opinion
    • interested in publishing, from personally don't post that much
    • why I go interested... was the idea of independent websites, using simple html not entirely new ecosystems, felt accessible, reminded me of why I got excited about the internet in the first place, geocities, mom's small biz when in highschool
    • "get your own domain name, put whatever you want on there as your website" feel strongly about
    • indieweb is based on a familiar, well-established set of technologies
  • U: what is the status of indieweb now, uptake, etc.

    • J: viewed from outside as "for geeks", need technical expertise
    • number of users, perhaps thousands, hard to measure (tool found 3000 domains) + some hosted services like micro.blog and withknown.com (commercial ambitions)
      • micro.blog (twitter alternative): hosted at $5 a month, can syndicate to it
      • withknown.com: more full feature blogging service, maybe defunct as a service, but software still used (e.g. university settings)
        • part of the challenge was the paid service / free open source dual goals not always in sync
    • U: it's kind of in between, not for developers and not super easy for everyone...?
      • J: developer focused community, not a platform but built a set of standards and practices, led to something like micro.blog
      • feels like micro.blog is slow burn but more sustainable
  • U: syndication, talk about a bit?

    • J: publish on own site, sync everywhere
    • automated tools to syndicate (e.g. github, twitter), but also can do manually
    • brid.gy is a most popular tool
      • can backfeed (auto go out to twitter and responses on twitter comes back and can respond by posting a comment on own website)
      • two ways to interact with the fediverse
        • (e.g. fed.bridgy) turn your node into a fediverse hub
        • sync to mastadon
      • structuring data in a consistent way is a challenge
      • U: ssb and dat?
        • J: maybe can have a dat site on indieweb
        • ssb is not so focused on publishing to publicly posting, not aware of good bridges to ssb
      • U: payment models?
        • J: doesn't come up very much, payment model requires some kind of encryption whereas indieweb is mostly web based, there may be potential? not very knowledgable about this
      • U: what are indieweb ppl talking about indieweb right now
        • J: writing dissertation, deliberately not looking at updates!
        • syndication to major sites (e.g. facebook) got a lot harder since 2018 (cambridge analytica) when they tightened api
        • a ton of work went into syndicating facebook before
        • a lot of emphasis on readers in past few years
        • building syndication tools and publishing tools, now focus on reader (e.g. microsub) having your own social timeline
      • J: microsub
        • separate out backend and frontend (many projects are modular in the ecosystem)
        • server: track what feeds you're subscribing to (e.g. websub, polling) the feed can be in any format (e.g. rss, atom, microformats)
          • webmentions: send from one website to another, w3c spec
            • 2 pcs of info: source and target
            • likes, etc. (on it's own, just the mention, not too much info)
            • used with microformats
          • semantic web css markup
            • e.g. this is the author
          • check the source website to ensure this is a real mention, parse the microformat to render
            • B: can we do static site gen?
              • J: there are, receiving a webmention are outsourced to third party (e.g. webmention.io)
              • html to define webmention endpoint, when you receive it delivers to that URL (e.g. can be a third party service)
              • also authentication services are often farmed out to third parties
            • B: do things break all the time?
              • J: mostly things work very smoothly
              • use wordpress, back then sometimes a new plugin breaks things but things been improved for a long time and are stable and reliable now (small standards help!)
                • U: how are these standards evolved?
                  • J: irc bridged to slack and stuff, standards drafted in wiki, etc. large standards at w3c (e.g. webmention, micropub, etc.)
                  • microformat preceded the indieweb
            • J: rather than subscribe to rss, can subscribe to an h-feed, which is a html page with microformats in it (don't have to duplicate the browser version vs. what some other readers see)
              • in theory, less maintaince... in practice, can work well if using a system designed for that but using a wordpress (format designed in theme) there are some edge cases
              • B: challenge with syndication: hard to define common language?
                • How do we determine what the right formats are? Markdown? HTML?
                • J: lot of merit in using html. no need to build api because the webpage is where everything is anyway. writing parsers is simple too
              • B: cross formats? format of authorship vs. storage vs. distribution
                • J: already done in static stat gen, md becomes html
                • B: e.g. ssb clients renders md based content, html will make everyone write a web browser
                  • J: html is much more rich, so syndicating in md or tweet, things will be lost
                  • but indieweb, ppl can have their own website as the original (e.g. so tweets make sense)
  • J: misinformation is top of mind recently

  • personal opinion is to not reach a billion people but take a more decentralized approach to moderation

  • echos bens sentiments that empowering small communities > getting everyone on the same central network

  • indieweb good at looking at walled garden issues, censorship isn't an issue because people tend to group together based on values/interests

  • w3c standards enables interoperability and prevents censorship from a technical standpoint

  • near moderation in ssb is really exciting

  • in progress indieweb tool called "vouch"

    • extention to webmentions, vouching on behalf of others
  • unlock-protocol

    • werd.io from indieweb was involved
  • syndication: bridgy (very well written and documented source)

  • recommend building something small and growing over time

  • recommend talking to indieweb folks (active and very friendly community) https://chat.indieweb.org