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The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet #3007317 09/09/19 06:32 PM
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Joe Muscara Offline OP
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A bit OT maybe, but this could be good news for places like this where people seek refuge from the crap that a lot of social media has become.

The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet

Quote
In response to the ads, the tracking, the trolling, the hype, and other predatory behaviors, we’re retreating to our dark forests of the internet, and away from the mainstream.

Podcasts are [an] example. There, meaning isn’t just expressed through language, but also through intonation and interaction. Podcasts are where a bad joke can still be followed by a self-aware and self-deprecating save. It’s a more forgiving space for communication than the internet at large.

Dark forests like newsletters and podcasts are growing areas of activity. As are other dark forests, like Slack channels, private Instagrams, invite-only message boards, text groups, Snapchat, WeChat, and on and on. This is where Facebook is pivoting with Groups (and trying to redefine what the word “privacy” means in the process).

These are all spaces where depressurized conversation is possible because of their non-indexed, non-optimized, and non-gamified environments. The cultures of those spaces have more in common with the physical world than the internet.


However,

Quote
The influence of Facebook, Twitter, and others is enormous and not going away. There’s a reason why Russian military focused on these platforms when they wanted to manipulate public opinion: they have a real impact. The meaning and tone of these platforms changes with who uses them.

Should a significant percentage of the population abandon these spaces, that will leave nearly as many eyeballs for those who are left to influence, and limit the influence of those who departed on the larger world they still live in.

If the dark forest isn’t dangerous already, these departures might ensure it will be.


The great thing about music is that there's always something to learn. The frustrating thing about music is that there's always something to learn!
Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007404 09/10/19 04:53 AM
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Anderton Offline
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People want nice, simple answers. Tubes good - not tubes, bad. Digital bad, analog good. Rap bad, rock good. Articles used to be about "10 ways to do something." Then they became "5 ways to do something." Now they're "3 ways to do something."

My other favorite: If I can't learn a program, it's the program's fault because it's not intuitive...not my fault because I haven't read the documentation. I can't imagine someone going into Guitar Center, buying a Strat, and coming back a week later saying "This guitar SUCKS, I don't sound like Jimi Hendrix at all." Yet somehow they think if it's a piece of software - even if it emulates a half-million dollar studio from 20 years ago - then it should be simple.

Last Friday, I posted 10 tips on how to use Studio One's Splitter module in the Presonus blog. Someone complained that I assumed people knew how the splitter worked. No...I assumed that if someone didn't know how the splitter worked, they'd click on "Help" and type "Splitter" into the search box.

What I like about these forums is that people discuss topics that can be relatively nuanced. Sure, we don't have as many eyeballs as Facebook. That's a good thing. In the early MusicPlayer.com days, my forum became infiltrated with a lot of political posts, so we created an off-topic political forum. It became the septic tank of Musicplayer.com...all the crap ended up floating down into it smile And then the rest of us went back to talking about music and gear.

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007421 09/10/19 11:14 AM
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Joe Muscara Offline OP
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I'm seeing a lot of movement into these "dark forests." There's a guy who is developing a social media platform called Micro.blog. You can pay a small fee to use their hosting or use it for free with your own. It's kinda like Twitter, but you own and control your content. It's best described this way, I think.
Quote
“Micro.blog is not an alternative silo: instead, it’s what you build when you believe that the web itself is the great social network.” — Brent Simmons
I mean, putting all your content on another site with everyone else is the opposite of what the web was designed to be, right?

Another option is Mastodon, but I've had issues like when they kicked Wil Wheaton out for something he stupidly did years ago without realizing it.

Facebook Groups are good, except when they aren't. I'm in some neighborhood groups and when they're unmoderated, they're full of posts by people plugging businesses and when something gets political (including HOA issues), things go OOC quickly.

It's bizarre. We used to think that people in chat rooms and bulletin boards were being jerks because they were anonymous. Now people use their real names and post $#!^^¥ stuff. idk


The great thing about music is that there's always something to learn. The frustrating thing about music is that there's always something to learn!
Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007440 09/10/19 03:32 PM
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When I found out that facebook was reading messages, reading posts, logging likes/dislikes, and sending fraud news to the voters who were "on the fence" and using that fraud to manipulate a US presidential election, I deleted my data and my account (I don't call it fake news as that minimizes the intent and the fraudulent action).

I don't care if it was for the candidate wanted to vote for or the one I didn't want to vote for, using fraud to manipulate a "democratic" election (or anything else for that matter) is against my own ethical behavior. These are not my values, and by letting FB profit from my personal information to finance such data studies and fraud perpetration would make me a person who is actually aiding and abetting what I consider a vile, treasonous act. I would not have any self pride left if I continued to participate in FB.

So despite what disadvantage it might make to booking my duo http://www.s-cats.com The Sophisticats, I just cannot participate in that platform.

Sometimes I just gotta take the high road.

The specific forums I participate in like this one are OK, but there will be no FB, Twitter, Pinterest or any other social media of the kind as long as those kind of shenanigans are going on. It's not worth the price. (Hey! I got to use shenanigans, a word I haven't thought of in years!)

The government isn't going to police the Internet, and it's probably a good thing they don't. Therefore it is up to us to police the internet, and boycotting the 'bad guys' is the only defense we have at our disposal.

Insights and incites by Notes


Bob "Notes" Norton
Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com
Style and Fake disks for Band-in-a-Box
The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<
Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007471 09/10/19 06:05 PM
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I feel like we share too much, on social media. I know our parents always told us “You need to share”, but I feel we have taking that too far. Facebook’s news feed bugged me. The part that says “What’s on your Mind?” Gives people free range. If I wanted your opinion, I’d ask you for it? Funny, how Facebook started out as a place for college students Like Zuckerberg, to find girls, then it was mainly for kids and adolescents, and then the Adults came in, and took over, and then Facebook went public, and it exploded, to where everyone has a Facebook page. Not just people, but business’s as well. That’s also, why a lot of kids and teenagers moved to Twitter, and Snap Chat. Although some, still have Instagram!


That was a good article.


I have nothing to say, and I am saying it, and that is poetry as I need it!
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Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007479 09/10/19 07:00 PM
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Stephen Fortner Offline
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Love this article, and I love our own dark forest here at MPN. Though I spend some time on FB — mainly crafting bad puns as some of you may know — I'm finding it more and more innervating. Of course, it's designed to keep one mindlessly scrolling to see what comes up next. I've found this almost puts me into a trance-like state, but an odd sort of one where if I see something that makes me angry, I'm more likely to dash off what I think is a clever screed and hit "send." That's not how I want to be. One can do a lot of scrolling here as well, but the process is more proactive. You search for topics that look interesting, click on them, and look for information that's relevant to your own situation or problem. Or, you get even more proactive and create a new topic yourself. Neurologically, I'm in a totally different brain-state here than I am in the endlessly scrolling or pull-to-refresh world of social media. Whatever brain-state Facebook and Twitter put us in has proven to make us intolerant and quicker to anger — but mainly when we're in that environment.


"I'm just a confused musician who got sidetracked into this damned word business..." -Hunter S. Thompson

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Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007480 09/10/19 07:05 PM
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Stephen Fortner Offline
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Addendum: Or maybe it's that the people here are intelligent and respectful and the moderators are quick to shut down abusive behavior. 4chan, 8chan, and to a lesser degree Reddit, all use a bulletin board format, and in those forests, everything you touch is toxic. (Kind of like when the space hippies thought they'd found the planet Eden in that Star Trek episode. We found out Spock can jam, though!)


"I'm just a confused musician who got sidetracked into this damned word business..." -Hunter S. Thompson

Stephen Fortner
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Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Anderton] #3007543 09/11/19 03:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Anderton
People want nice, simple answers. Tubes good - not tubes, bad. Digital bad, analog good. Rap bad, rock good. Articles used to be about "10 ways to do something." Then they became "5 ways to do something." Now they're "3 ways to do something."


Except the click-bait sites. In that case, it's 50 ways to do something, and they put ONE per page with lots of ads, and you have to click through to the next page with lots more ads to see the next one. You're a glutton for punishment if you actually click through all 50 pages. Usually once I get to the first page and see what I've been suckered into, I just close the page.


Dan

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.
Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007562 09/11/19 10:15 AM
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Haven't got a lot to add except to say I'm damn glad this little forest is still here thu

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007605 09/11/19 03:27 PM
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The problem with groups on FB is they are a poor archive (other than the files section). The search tool is useless.

I stopped reading any politics or news on FB. Tired of sorting truth from fake. I enjoy satire like theonion and babylonbee.

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: nursers] #3007733 09/12/19 09:08 AM
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cool

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007741 09/12/19 12:55 PM
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Thanks for the link. I enjoy these sorts of pieces. I subscribe to The Best of Journalism to get more of them.

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: nursers] #3007817 09/12/19 08:14 PM
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Anderton Offline
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Originally Posted by nursers
Haven't got a lot to add except to say I'm damn glad this little forest is still here thu


You and me both smile

A while ago, it was fashionable to say "forums are dead" because they lacked immediacy. But ultimately, that's what has turned out to be their strength. When the Sonar forum shut down after the Gibson Thang, BandLab started a new Cakewalk forum from scratch and it has over 18,000 posts. Forums that deal with anything long-term, including support, are doing fine. It's the ones that were "here's what I had for breakfast" that went away. Good riddance.

This thread is a great example. I was out of the loop for a few days due to major computer maintenance issues. I come back, and the thread is still here, with interesting comments. Many times in "the vintage SSS," threads from a year or more ago would surface because someone found it in a search, it was still relevant, and then it had another life. I don't think that kind of thing happens on Facebook.

We're just getting (re)started here but already, the signs are positive.

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: The Real MC] #3007872 09/13/19 02:22 AM
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Originally Posted by The Real MC
... I enjoy satire like theonion and babylonbee.
If you haven't seen it, also check out Waterford Whisper News. It's from Ireland but has some funny stuff about Brexit, among other things.

Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3007885 09/13/19 06:27 AM
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I don't know about the dark forest, but we had an excellent German restaurant called Black Forest that shut down years ago. A place called Alibi opened in its place and when I was still married, my wife and I decided to check it out. People kept looking at us, staring even, and we couldn't figure out why. Food and service were good. Finally, my wife noted that we were the only guy-girl couple in the place. About a week later, I overheard my transvestite neighbor's on the deck talking to some folks about meeting at alibi's. Never went back, mainly just because I think we made THEM uncomfortable being there.


Dan

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.
Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Anderton] #3008154 09/15/19 11:28 PM
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"Immediacy" is exactly why I threw my social media doings into the trash. It was mostly a mass of people presenting themselves UNFILTERED. Sign on: Sam Kinison screaming in your face without inhaling. Sign off: Blissful silence. KC is an oasis as rare as working Con Brios.


Bill Champlin: "I'd like to run the last 20 years of my life through auto-correct." David Foster: "Yeah and quantize it to the nearest three commandments."

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Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3008281 09/16/19 04:46 PM
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Dr Mike Metlay Offline
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As someone whose use of (and moderation of) Internet communications channels predates the World Wide Web by about a decade, I find this "dark forests" thing very interesting. Not news to anyone here, least of call Craig or Dr. Steve, but this is nothing new at all.

People are rediscovering what the Internet was like before the Web made it super-easy for anyone to get on and say anything. In a sense it was largely moderated by who had access to it: academics, military personnel, corporations with a heavy interest in computing, and a few very intrepid individuals stepping away from BBS into the larger world when they could. USENET newsgroups and privately-hosted and rigidly-controlled academic mailing lists had their share of unruly behavior, but in most cases were largely self-moderating. We didn't know how good we had it.

Anyone here remember antiorp? A mythical individual who was probably a composite of several people around the world, who deliberately trolled newsgroups and mailing lists with long gibberish posts and some truly annoying nuisanceware (browser windows that would open outside yours and multiply... that sort of thing), who complained loudly about having their freedom of speech censored. An early and painful lesson about drawing lines in the sand and punching anyone who stepped over them, in the name of simply making sure that a forum didn't dissolve into noise.

USENET was completely destroyed by spambots in a matter of months, rendering its years of vital archived information useless. A carpet bombing of what had been the best resource for (among other things) electronic musicians in the world.

Social media was still years away, but I'd already seen the damage by the time I started working at the magazine in 1996. In a very early conversation, I overheard our earnest young Production Manager complaining about how civilized nations rationalized their barging in and paving over indigenous populations with no regard for their culture or rights, all in the name of getting what they wanted.

I asked her what online service she used, and she replied, "AOL. What's that got to do with anything?"

She got very offended when I started laughing loudly.

mike


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Re: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet [Re: Joe Muscara] #3008348 09/16/19 10:41 PM
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