What do you share with who? Web 2.0 is slowly being locked down.

I often go through phases of using different social networks to update different people in what’s going on and chat to friends and colleagues. Each of my main networks (twitter, facebook, instagram, Flickr, Google+) is used by different groups of people in different ways, and it’s partly this that gets me active on one and neglecting the others for a short time. This gives a patchy view of what’s happening and I have to remember that person x didn’t see photo Y because I only posted it on website Z.

Social media icons from http://dryicons.com/free-icons/preview/socialize-icons-set/

The way to get around this is to connect everything to everything – when I post to Instagram it gets published on Facebook, tweeted on twitter, uploaded to flickr – but a part of me is uncomfortable automating things to that extent.

But the big networks are slowly making their walls higher, the most recent example is Twitter closing their connection to LinkedIn. Social networking sites started as big open playgrounds where everything was shared freely, now that they need to finally make some money from their ventures the walls are going up as they realise a completely open web isn’t very profitable – buy-outs happen on a daily bases and exclusive alliances are made. These services are still free to use (or rather you are the product) and as a result these walls are being raised to reduce your activity elsewhere and increase the value you give to the site.

So I’ve decided to try and blog here more, either larger posts like this or simpler quick photos or  “this looks nice” stuff. I’ve kept this going for over 5 years now and should make the most of it. I think there’s a long way to go before the big social sites contract to such an extent that there is full rebellion against them, but many web users now don’t remember the old dark days of compuserve and AOL…

This post as been inspired by Brendan Cooper’s post “The old web is dying and I’m not sure I like the look of the new one“.



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I am Tom Steel, I live in Sussex and work in digital services in London.
Reading this blog and looking at my photos on Flickr will probably tell you more than a few words here could.

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