More disturbingly bad pop psychology misdiagnosis of the "social media" problem ...

> "The mainstream social internet is so big; everyone is connected to everyone, over a billion on Facebook alone. The consequences of connection — fake news, radicalization, massive targeted harassment campaigns, algorithmically-generated psychological torment, inane bullshit — were not part of what we were sold."

I agree all these things are bad, but they're not new, and they're definitely not "consequences of connection", but the consequences of corporate-owned media, ad-based revenue model, and political bitterness caused by rising inequality. We migrated to the net in the 90s because the same perfect storm had hopelessly warped TV, and we naively thought the net might be different.

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All the pearl-clutching and hand-wringing over weird YT kids videos makes we wonder if any of these people ever saw kids TV? I well remember the terrifyingly weird psy-op tactics advertisers used to prime kids to use "pester power", both in the "programs" themselves (remember Transformers and Masters of the Universe toys and their "TV shows") as well as in the ad breaks between them.

The good news is, it's still much cheaper and easier to set up a webserver or any other kind of internet server for ourselves, individually or as a community, than it has ever been to set up a micro-radio ("pirate radio") or micro-TV ("pirate TV") broadcast. I helped set up some micro-radio stations in early 2000s, so I'm speaking from experience here. Plus, servers can do a much greater range of things, and any webserver has much greater potential reach than local radio or TV (cool as they are)

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Imagine a federated platform like that replace for distributing podcasts. It would have all the benefits of pirate radio (or ); diverse voices, a plurality of sources, decentralized production and consumption, plus all the benefits of iTunes; any podcaster can potentially heard by anyone in a global audience, and without the downsides of a platform controlled by a single gatekeeper like Apple corporation.

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@strypey Agree with everything you say, including YT vs cartoons, but in order to get away from the corporate profit syndrome that drives most of what's bad on social media, the fediverse needs to rethink the "just create your own instance" model. Most people don't have the knowledge/resources/time to do that. They are willing to pay - via Patreon, for example - to support those who do, but we run the risk of missing the opportunity to make meaningful change.


re: federated platform for podcasts...

while I'm not aware of an existing one, potentially funkwhale can serve this function...

@strypey Don't most people use RSS for podcasts?

(I don't know, I just know I listen to podcasts without using iTunes)

@artsyhonker iTunes uses rss to deliver podcasts, doesn't it? And #peertube will have rss support too. I think the point it to use the rss from anything but big corporations. @strypey

@switch @artsyhonker yes, "podcasting" began as Apple-speak for 'delivering audio blogs by ' before it became a generic buzzphrase ;P But like YT does for video, iTunes does more than just delivery, it's also a place to discover new content and new creators. We've had tube site stacks for years (, etc), but is a game changer because is allows federated search across multiple independent tube sites via .

@strypey @switch @artsyhonker ehhhh theres more to the history of the term #podcast then your letting on. There is a certain person over here on the #fediverse that is best suited to tell that story: @adam

@wakest @switch @artsyhonker @adam from what I remember the "pod" in "podcasting" refers to the iPod. Prior to that taking over as the generic term, I remember people talking about "audio-blogging".

@strypey @adam @artsyhonker @switch @wakest

> The word was originally suggested by Ben Hammersley as a portmanteau of "iPod" (a brand of media player) and "broadcast".

Links to

> But what to call it? Audioblogging? Podcasting? GuerillaMedia?

So, apparently a journalist from The Guardian coined and/or popularized it.

I don't like the term either and prefer to simply call them audio feeds.

@notclacke @adam @artsyhonker @switch @wakest I would object more if they were called "iPodcasts", and if most people hadn't already forgotten the origin of the term ;) "Audio feeds" is fine amongst us geeks (who know what a "feed" is in a digital context) but I can't see it overtaking "podcasting" on the inside at this point in the race.

@strypey @wakest @switch @artsyhonker @adam Yeah, nah. And "web radio" seems to apply only to things that actually air and then is also put on the web. So it's hard to find a good term that people might actually accept.

What annoys me ten times more than "podcast" for an audio feed/log/whatever, is "podcast" for a podcast episode! People do this for "blog" as well. "Look at this blog we wrote last Wednesday.", "Listen to this podcast, it's an interview with XYZ.".

@notclacke I'm on the same page about episodes/podcast. But just to play the devil's advocate, is the expression "we just did a broadcast" used in a radio setting or not really?
@strypey @wakest @artsyhonker @adam

@notclacke There's also something that bothers me, the websites that name their audio releases a podcast when there IS NO EFFING FEED AVAILABLE. If there isn't a feed for me to catch the thing with a client, IT IS NOT A PODCAST. @strypey @wakest @artsyhonker @adam

@switch @adam @artsyhonker @wakest @strypey Oh yeah, this is just cringe. A podcast is an audio feed by another name. Just some website with pages with audio player widgets is not.

@notclacke @switch @adam @artsyhonker @wakest noobs don't know about "RSS" and "feeds" and language drift happens. "podcast" now just means 'any kind of audio show you can listen to online'.

@strypey noobs don't know jack shit about anything. Are we going to throw away the dictionary for this reason? ;) :p @notclacke @adam @artsyhonker @wakest

@switch @notclacke @adam @artsyhonker @wakest dictionaries don't dictate what words mean, they just document common usage. Much as it might pain us,"google" is now listed as an English verb in the dictionary. That's why is a thing, and why it's entries are so intriguing

@strypey that sounds right. It mustn't stop us from using words in the way they were intended to, though, don't you think? @notclacke @adam @artsyhonker @wakest

@switch @notclacke @adam @artsyhonker @wakest when was the last time you heard someone say they were "feeling gay" to tell you how happy they were, or use gay as a noun to describe someone as an "excellent person, noble lady, gallant knight"?

@switch @notclacke @adam @wakest @strypey Hey, I tend toward descriptivism myself, but can you un-@ me please? thanks.

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@strypey Ha, you got me there. But I'll keep using podcast in the way I prefer anyway. :p @notclacke @adam @wakest

@switch @notclacke @adam @wakest fair enough :) Sometimes words fork and exactly the same word, with exactly the same spelling, can come to have two very different but equally legitimate meanings. eg "Library" can mean a building full of books, or a package of code.

@strypey It would miss one extremely popular feature for creators, accurate analytics.

@moonman not necessarily. There are plenty of analytics packages ( etc) that could be built in or integrated using plug-ins.

@moonman also, I believe is building in the ability to do accurate view counts and some replacement for 'likes' across a federated platform, which could be re-used for a podcasting platform

@strypey @moonman Not sure how a federated platform really could accurately count views, as any of the nodes could be lying. As far as I can see, it works require some Bitcoin like leger of each view to be verifiable. That would be prohibitive though, as views are much more voluminous than transactions in BTC.

@Blort @moonman the same way
> Not sure how a federated platform really could accurately count views

the same way any other network of trackers do?

@strypey @moonman

Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems like a different problem to me. I mean, if you want to confirm another node has a bit of a file, all them to send it over and confirm the hash, sure.

If you ask how many views they've served for a video, how to confirm when they tell it's 10,000? This is more like asking #BitTorrent how many times a file has ever been downloaded by everyone, than how many seeders there are or similar. Does BitTorrent show that?

@Blort @moonman my understanding is that a tracker can identify leachers who never seed, and give them lower priority on downloads than users who do seed. I'm not sure how the tech works though, and it could be I'm totally wrong. Some discussion here:

@strypey @moonman

So what's interesting about looking at that link is that it confirms

@strypey @moonman

What's interesting about that link is that it confirms nodes can lie, but that they suggest nodes can compare how much has been uploaded to what the other side says has been uploaded to try and catch faking. I still think this could be spoofed by telling each node that you uploaded a ton to other nodes and then incrementing by the actual amount uploaded by the real amount as each node can only check it's own figures. I'm no expert though.

@strypey @moonman

What is nice, is that by #PeerTube using #BitTorrent, it benefits from the no-doubt large amount of work already done there to prevent spoofing. It just seems though that there would be a bit less of a financial incentive for people to bother spoofing seed/leech ratios than view counts. If PeerTube really took off, I suspect that it would encourage the spoofers to get more determined and force new anti spoofing measures to be introduced.

@Blort @moonman given that I don't think intends to build in monetization, leaving that to third parties like , etc, I think view counts will only matter on PT about as much as they do on vanilla BitTorrent. Who really pays attention to view counts anyway (I don't even look at them unless I have a specific reason). Totally agree that working with mature protocol is good, as there's a large base of existing protocol implementers who can help solve spoofing issues.

@strypey @moonman

Regardless of what #PeerTube code, view count, demographics and engagement will always be important to full time content creators. They're the most important factors to sponsors and advertisers who, like it or not, pay for the vast majority of content creation today.

I'd love to see socially minded alternatives (eg Liberapay) baked in, but sadly there's ample evidence that these alone aren't competitive to fund large scale content creation.

@strypey @moonman

Yes, we can say "screw advertisers and sponsors. Let's keep the PeerTube's platform pure and away from that stuff", however without them, PeerTube loses most of the funding for content creators, and thus most of the content, viewers and social impact. It's essentially saying we'd rather give most potential cultural influence to #YouTube rather than accept #advertising. Satisfying, but ineffective. It's the niche Puritan dilemma.

@Blort @moonman online advertising is a zombie business model. Ads, like phone books and TV guides, existed to solve problems the web solves better. Which is why platforms that try it eventually end up turning to fulltime datafarming (see:

@strypey @moonman @blort Online advertising exists because (1) advertisers want to sell product, (2) advertising networks want to sell ads, (3) sites that host ads want to generate some revenue without selling any products or services of their own.

The problem is that almost no one clicks on an ad and buys a product or service. So advertisers and ad networks tried getting more aggressive (pop-ups, pop-unders, slide-overs, interstitials, flashing, moving, speaking), but sites found that those tactics drive people away from their sites, reducing ad revenue.

The switch to personalized data collection and exploitation is because advertising failed to meet expectations.

@lnxw48a1 @moonman @Blort
> The problem is that almost no one clicks on an ad and buys a product or service.

Yes, but underlying that is the problem that websites accepted pay-per-click models that newspapers, radio, and TV never had to. If they had just kept their powder dry, and waited until the web was obviously getting more eyeballs that those three combined, a) they could have insisted on pay-per-display and b) better business models for funding websites may have got out ahead of ads

@lnxw48a1 @moonman @Blort also 1) advertisers could have been sold their own websites, instead of patches of space on other people's pages, 2) ad networks could have pivoted to selling website services (and many now have), 3) websites could have insisted on pay-per-display, or sold commercial website services as a side hussle, and probably made more money that way without creating

@strypey @moonman

That said, these days advertisers are more interested in minutes of attention and engagement than pure viewcount, but verifying minutes watched is essentially the same challenge technically as viewcount.

@Blort @moonman citation please? I haven't see any solid numbers, but an informal survey of the YT creators I have watched, who make anything resembling a living, suggests they do it via Patreon and other micro-patronage platforms, not via YT ads, which I've heard pay appallingly little to creators.

@moonman @strypey I couldn't put words to my spontaneous reaction when I read this a week ago, but this is pretty much it:
@notclacke @strypey some people are creators and not just people, so it's useful to know which posts get the most attention. It's real feedback, as opposed to what people _say_ they like.

@moonman @notclacke maybe, but only if you get much more information than which posts got attention. It's also important to know *why* they got attention. Because people appreciated your nuanced arguments and references? Because they're trying to dogpile you for views they disagree with? Because they thought it was so bad it was unintentionally funny ()?

@notclacke @strypey I don't actually consider it inherently antisocial, either.
@moonman @notclacke No, of course not. Marketers take it to extremes, of course, but we all prioritize our communications based on where they have the most impact for the amount of time and effort available.

@notclacke @moonman it's anti-social to want one's statements about taking action on climate change to have a greater impact? I think we are missing some larger context to this comment by @mmn

@strypey @mmn @moonman I don't think there's any need to mystify it or exaggerate it. I think it's pretty clear that force multipliers allow those with resources to overpower those without them.

Like almost any weapon, it can be used for good. I still find disarmament attractive and equalizing.

And I think PR is less social than shitposting, perhaps even anti-social, depending on how it's done.
@strypey If the purpose of your statement regarding action on climate change is to reach as many people - or target the "right audience" - it is not social communication. It's propaganda. Regardless of whether you think the content of your preaching is something everyone "just has to know!". I don't think it's beneficial to promote and support this kind of behaviour.

Unless of course y'all think it's a good idea to have a battle of "who thinks they can reach the most", in which case you've reinvented all the social issues over on Facepoop.

cc: @moonman @notclacke

@mmn @moonman @notclacke
> it is not social communication. It's propaganda.

Sure, but you seem to think that's always bad. I think that like any tool or technology, the moral status of a broadcast depends entirely on what you intend to achieve with it, or if you want to take a consequentialist position, what results it has in practice.

@mmn @moonman @notclacke why put anything on the web, ever, if you're not trying to reach an audience outside your existing social circles?

@strypey There's a difference between just trying to reach outside one's social circles and doing analysis of other peoples' behaviour (from which you adapt your communication strategies to maximise profit/outreach).

The !fediverse is open by design so users themselves can find, subscribe etc. interesting content. Sharing whatever content one finds is done via links of trust.
@strypey Statistics and "followers" and "views" etc... Come on. That's pretty shallow, isn't it? I wouldn't want to communicate with someone who just wants to have a discussion to get their ranking up.
@strypey One of the biggest problems the fediverse has is discoverability. And podcasts have always been federated. Creators host their own podcasts on their site. The centralization came later to solve the discoverability problem.
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