In light of the Cambridge Analytica data breach, I was thinking about a conversation that I had with a friend last year where she said, “Hey, remember when you had that website where we posted the most intimate details of our lives on it? Why did we do that?” I didn’t have a good answer to that question at the time, but it stuck with me. Why did we do that?
Perhaps it was a combination of a lot of different things. We were part of the last generation to have experienced life before and after The Internet was widely available. We had never had someone Google our names before interviewing us for a job. We were naive.
I once put my cell phone number on my website and the logic was:
- If one of my friends needed to reach me, they could find it easily.
- Surely a random person from the Internet wouldn’t actually call it.
It took about a week, but a random person from the Internet did indeed call my cell phone. It was a brief, uneventful conversation where I spent most of it stunned that they had actually called my bluff. I immediately removed my cell phone number from my website after I got off the phone.
In hindsight, that was a bad idea, but I still like the sentiment. I have a nostalgia for message forums on BBSes, for .plan files and the finger protocol, for mailing lists, for websites that were black text on grey backgrounds with beveled horizontal rules and no CSS. This isn’t going to be the website where I post the most intimate details of my life, but it’ll be that in sentiment.
This is a long way of saying that in spite of logic and common sense, I’m starting a new blog in 2018.
Thanks for reading.