Introducing AltPlatform & our manifesto for the Open Web

Here at AltPlatform, we love to help people learn about technologies.

What does the term “Boundless Web” signify? Our focus is to delve into open source initiatives (like this blog powered by and embrace open standards, such as RSS. The essence of “open” for us is a Web without confines, a space where exploration transcends proprietary enclosures like Facebook and Twitter. In these spaces, your data isn’t really yours, your news feeds are managed by others, and strict regulations govern your online behavior.

This vision led us to create a new blog instead of opting for a Facebook Page or a Medium account. We envision this as a collaborative blog space, aiming to craft engaging, insightful articles that extensively link to various sources. We aspire to maintain a comprehensive archive of our writings, which platforms like Facebook or Medium don’t support. We’re enthusiastic about disseminating our content across the Web through RSS, and we might even bring back the concept of trackbacks.

A key ambition for our initiative is to rekindle the spirit of innovation and community that was prominent on the Web around ten years ago. Reflecting on 2006-07, the era of ‘Web 2.0’ was thriving. Emerging “social software” like Flickr, YouTube, and Facebook were revolutionizing how we contributed to the Web. It was an era marked by creative freedom, where sharing photos and videos became effortless, and platforms like Facebook and Twitter, starting in 2007, were enabling new forms of digital expression. These platforms, while commercial in nature, significantly enhanced the Web’s vibrancy and interactivity. It seemed to be a mutually beneficial scenario: businesses flourished, and users gained a new medium for creativity and connection.

Why is the Boundless Web essential today?

Regrettably, the past decade has seen a decline in this open, experimental ethos. The internet landscape is now dominated by Walled Gardens, under the control of a handful of corporations: Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft. The New York Times aptly named them “the frightful five”. The dominance of the Web by a mere five companies is alarming and runs counter to Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s original vision for the Web, which he envisioned as a universally accessible platform fostering information sharing and collaboration without geographical or cultural barriers.

The cultural impact of these Walled Gardens is also troubling. Many have expressed dissatisfaction with Twitter’s stagnation in innovation and Facebook’s subtle manipulations, such as inadequate archival and search functions. Moreover, today’s social media landscape tends to promote individualism over collective action. This shift in focus might partly explain why movements like Occupy struggled to convey a unified, impactful message.

However, our goal isn’t to oppose these established platforms. We appreciate Facebook for keeping us connected with family and non-tech-savvy friends, and Twitter for its everyday interactions. Recognizing that these platforms are internet hotspots, we accept their role in the digital ecosystem.

Our approach

At our core, we aim to explore and promote alternative Web technologies that foster collaboration and social interaction beyond what the Big Five offer. For instance, consider the potential of an open version of Twitter, unrestricted and more vibrant than its current closed, corporate version.

The Boundless Web also holds promise in emerging sectors like blockchain, VR/AR, and AI. These possibilities were highlighted in the intro.

Our approach involves experimenting with and advocating for novel, open web technologies. Through discovery, discussion, and support, we might just uncover the next big digital phenomenon, much like Twitter’s rise in 2007.

Who are we addressing? Our content is crafted for entrepreneurs, developers, and early adopters eager to explore alternatives to the conventional Walled Gardens.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *