I’ve become disillusioned with the constant churn of websites-controlled-by-other-entities which I’m somehow compelled to participate in. They’ve developed a very effective value proposition for introverts like me who are otherwise likely to lose contact with friends over time, but I really tire of it being a constant cycle of replacing one proprietary system with another. I know I tend to use Google Plus more than the others, but there are people I know who I’ve never seen on there. And then there’s the offensive way in which some of the most successful of these insist on “real” names. Not that I’m bothered by “sticky” identities with reputation, nor do I even mind using my “real” name that much, but it is quite a break with the traditional internet culture I value.
I’m toying with the idea of setting up my own Diaspora “pod”. They’re one of the first things since email and Jabber that gets the model somewhat right — not in the control of a single entity[*], based on a loose federation of independent agents. Part of what bothers me about the proprietary services is that I start to feel that I’ve left pieces of myself cluttered all over — kind of the disconcerting feeling you might have when you’ve left physical possessions behind in the real world.
[*] Okay, you can argue that the DNS is subject to some autocratic control, and you’re even largely right, though there are some workable proposals for decentralizing that (Namecoin, etc.)