I’ve started a little experiment here on gregfalken.com, in an attempt to gain some independence from the Facebook and Twitter data silos. This work is inspired by the folks at IndieWebCamp.com, who are building tools that allow website owners to host their own data, while also sharing it on other social media networks. The goal, as stated on their website:
Your content is yours
When you post something on the web, it should belong to you, not a corporation. Too many companies have gone out of business and lost all of their users’ data. By joining the IndieWeb, your content stays yours and in your control.
You are better connected
Your articles and status messages can go to all services, not just one, allowing you to engage with everyone. Even replies and likes on other services can come back to your site so they’re all in one place.
You are in control
You can post anything you want, in any format you want, with no one monitoring you. In addition, you share simple readable links such as mywebsite.com/ideas. These links are permanent and will always work.
You’ll see that the top menu now has a “Notes” item. Posts in this category contain items that I would normally put on Facebook or Twitter. By posting them here, I can both maintain ownership of my content and better control what it looks like. I’m using the Social plugin by MailChimp, to publish these posts on Facebook and/or Twitter too.
Other IndieWeb enhancements to the site that aren’t visible include IndieAuth, Microformats, and Webmention (thanks to Andy Sylvester for the helpful Webmentions video). I’ll report more on these as I gain more experience with them.
I have kept the Notes posts separate from more fully formed posts like this one, by excluding them from the “Blog” page and the main RSS feed of the site. They also will not trigger an automatic email to people who have subscribed to my mailing list. They are meant to be an online collection of tidbits that I find of interest.
How my Notes posts appear on Twitter and Facebook is still something of a work in progress. If you see anything there that looks odd, please leave me a comment here. Speaking of comments, you can still leave them anonymously or you can sign in using your Twitter or Facebook account, thanks to the aforementioned Social plugin. Let me know how if you find this feature useful too.