Build them small and they will stay

This post was inspired by a essay by Darius Kazemi titled “How to run a small social network for your friends” which I highly encourage you read before you read this.

I will be talking about my own experience in being part of and creating online communities and a lot of Darius’ thoughts on the matter closely reflect how I have grown to think about online communities and their dynamics.

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The Hierarchy of Difficulty in Content Distribution on the Internet

I talked about this concept in a segment about Luminary in Episode 92 of Shades of Brown but I also wanted to get it written down as a blog post because I think it is worth sharing.

So the general summary of the idea is that there is this hierarchy of difficulty when it comes to distribution of various forms of content on the Internet.

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Read Receipts Considered Harmful

Let us envision a scenario:

  • You send an important message to someone, a message that requires a response.
  • Your chat application indicates that the recipient has ‘read’ the message.
  • The recipient does not respond after having ‘read’ the message.

Why did they not respond?

Were they perhaps distracted by something else before they could respond? Were they still thinking up a response? Did their phone lose connectivity? Was it something you said? Do they hate you now and never want to talk to you again?

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