Contemplations on Internet Communities

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Courgette
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Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Courgette »

I find myself thinking a lot about how the concept of online communities and what shapes they take, has changed over the years. Especially now being reintroduced to the forum.

There seems to be a evolution from interest-based communities hosted on dedicated websites, to either sub-reddits of those interests or ‘influencer’-centered communities. Both of which never felt like stimulating personal experiences to me the way even something like LL did.

There’s no question NG and LL had a huge part in the direction my life took professionally. I wouldn’t do what I do today without LL and similar forums where peers would critique my works and encourage to grow. And that the forum structure plays a huge role in the personal/social aspect, not being lost in a giant single feed of an enormous amount of near anonymous users.

Of course this could just be some ‘back-in-my-day’ bullshit and maybe Discords, Tumblrs and Subreddits offer the same experiences.

Curious to hear your thoughts on this.

edit: I also now decree threads here must have pompous titles

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TrashLock
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by TrashLock »

I've been thinking about this a lot the past couple of months, basically since corona lockdown started here in Switzerland. I had mostly given up on interacting with random strangers online and kind of re-discovered something I was really missing without realising it.

I think a lot of it just has to do with technology. With the general wide availability of broadband connections and especially mobile phones and always-on internet, the whole concept of posting something and waiting hours to get a reply seems to have faded out in favor of instant messaging.

For a long time I thought Discord was "good enough" for the LL and it probably was seeing how many people were in there. But threaded discussions have their use and this is pretty much what we all grew up on.

It also is quite interesting to see how we all basically kind of gave up on hosting or developing things ourselves and just went with the easy alternative of giving our data to a couple of companies: Discord, Facebook, Instagram...

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Courgette
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Courgette »

Yes, threaded discussions feel like a focussed way of interacting that is hard to get at more aggregated platforms.

Centralized online destinations vs self-hosted is an interesting distinction as well, the latter serving a very specific purpose instead a broad feed of stuff.
edit: these feel more like shouting into a void.

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TrashLock
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by TrashLock »

I actually kind of liked Sunshine's way of doing it where there were separate forums but the "feed" was a mix of all different forums. I might try to implement this someday over here, if this place doesn't die out within the next couple of days.

Maybe what we need is a little bit of both.

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Courgette
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Courgette »

They both have their merits, there’s reason these structures are the most prevalent I think.

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Samegame
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Samegame »

I would be happy with the LL if we just have a core group of people chatting and sharing all the cool things they are doing from time to time with others stopping by here and there to check in. I have been talking to so many of you folks and the stuff you're all doing with your life is super interesting.

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Mp3 Lock
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Mp3 Lock »

TrashLock wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:34 pm
I've been thinking about this a lot the past couple of months, basically since corona lockdown started here in Switzerland. I had mostly given up on interacting with random strangers online and kind of re-discovered something I was really missing without realising it
LL is weird when it comes to that, everyone here is technically a "stranger" yet most people here I've interacted with over literal decades during some of the most influential years of my life, its amazing how so many of the same people are still here after all these years.

pumpkin
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by pumpkin »

Mp3 Lock wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 8:54 pm
TrashLock wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:34 pm
I've been thinking about this a lot the past couple of months, basically since corona lockdown started here in Switzerland. I had mostly given up on interacting with random strangers online and kind of re-discovered something I was really missing without realising it
LL is weird when it comes to that, everyone here is technically a "stranger" yet most people here I've interacted with over literal decades during some of the most influential years of my life, its amazing how so many of the same people are still here after all these years.
I guess the reasoning behind that is the same why you are still here. As you've mentioned, the LL influenced all of us during a very impressionable time in our lives, that's not something you'd easily forget. And most of us had a great time, which we'd love to revisit.

Also, to the topic at hand, I believe that Facebook Groups basically replaced forums way more than a subreddit or discord channel. Mainly because it's "easy" to use. Most people go to Facebook anyways, so the group is right there.

I still prefer having a forum though, despite the fact that I don't have as much time as I used to. I remember back when I was like 13, I would spend hours on the forum, waiting for some new posts or threads to appear. Nowadays I probably don't even have the time to check out all the new threads made in a day, even if it's just a hand full of new posts lol.

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Courgette
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Courgette »

pumpkin wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 10:34 am

Also, to the topic at hand, I believe that Facebook Groups basically replaced forums way more than a subreddit or discord channel. Mainly because it's "easy" to use. Most people go to Facebook anyways, so the group is right there.

I still prefer having a forum though, despite the fact that I don't have as much time as I used to. I remember back when I was like 13, I would spend hours on the forum, waiting for some new posts or threads to appear. Nowadays I probably don't even have the time to check out all the new threads made in a day, even if it's just a hand full of new posts lol.
Personally I always found Facebook Groups to very quickly devolve into project-whoring pages with very little substance or genuine community.

I also have the feeling that having your identity on such a page directly tied with your IRL identity makes it more of a hurdle to put yourself out there for some weird reason. Maybe because every time you display ignorance or incompetence it is with your real face next to it, not some weird anonymous avatar.

But it could be because the topics I seek out attract those kinds of people (videography has very much become a clout-thing) , or maybe I just haven't taken the time to find a proper one.

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Mp3 Lock
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Re: Contemplations on Internet Communities

Post by Mp3 Lock »

Courgette wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 8:56 pm

Personally I always found Facebook Groups to very quickly devolve into project-whoring pages with very little substance or genuine community.
This was always the strength of groups like the locklegion, because everyone is a "lock" and a collective member of the same group, each of our efforts supports the greater progress of the group as a whole.

Throw in character cameos and whatnot, each users individual input helps progress the image and reputation of tens if not hundreds of individuals. Then you throw in collaborations and not only are 13 animators being showcased at once, but all the characters they cameo, and the entire locklegion concept itself.

Because of this, we all "profit" off each others efforts and it makes everyone genuinely supportive about each others efforts, even if it is purely a selfish desire. Now add in the unselfish aspect of actual community and people just enjoying watching members improve and get better and you have a very strong recipe for exponential growth, not only in member numbers but in member skill.

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