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Sean M Puckett @photopuck

Remember folks, if you abandon Twitter, Facebook or Google, it's not a boycott, it's a STRIKE.

Because you're the [unpaid] workers that earn them billions of dollars in capital.

When you don't post, they don't get the benefit of your labour. And when you don't use, they lose money.

Social Media STRIKE days should be a thing.

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@photopuck So the irTerms of Use are basically a work contract? :P

@photopuck This worked for Wikipedia. People went on strike early in Wikipedia's history, and it was forced to be a non-profit when Wales intended for it to be a for-profit venture.

@abbenm @photopuck
Yes. I have a chapter in my book, Reverse Engineering Social Media, about it. Nate Tkacz has written about it. It involved the Spanish-language Wikipedia.

@photopuck @abbenm They explicitly referred to it as a strike. At the time, the address was -- as in commercial venture -- not, as it is today.

@robertwgehl @photopuck Woah, that is fascinating.

It was always peculiar to me that a self professed libertarian (an objectivist even!) had such a deeply altruistic perspective about how wikipedia ought to be run.

I guess I'll have to read your book to know the full story.

@abbenm @photopuck You're certainly welcome to buy the book, but I am pretty sure there are pirated copies online, wink wink nudge nudge.

The central person was named Edgar Enyedy, who led a strike when Larry Sanger hinted WP was going to start selling ad space. Enyedy and comrades took the entire Spanish language WP to another server. This was when WP was first going international, so it was vulnerable.

@Elizafox @photopuck @robertwgehl This definitely explains a lot about Wikia as "Actually by the wikipedia people, but for profit and shittier"

@photopuck That's not quite right. The profits made by large social media are based on viewership, not content creation. So in order to be effective, your "social media STRIKE days" should be defined by not logging in at all. Don't give them your traffic. Simply not posting new content isn't that harmful to them if you're still reading your feed.

@photopuck I'd argue that you *are* paid for your posts, personal data and attention span by being given free access to very convenient services.

@lertsenem @photopuck
*in exchange for access to convenient services

It's not free if you're paying for it.


@photopuck the trouble with this framing is that facebook is technically a double sided market. If you stop producing content as a normal reader, there's tons of news outlets and other places trying to make content to market their own products that will happily fill this gap.

This is like saying that you work for the mall by being a window shopper. I mean sure your foot traffic means that the Mall can charge more to the storefront for the space. But you don't work for them.

@photopuck the mall creates interesting spaces for you to come and play, maybe they have a ball pit, and perhaps they have a food court. Heck, some malls even have an entire amusement parks inside of them, complete with roller coasters. They provide seats and parking garages (even though they might charge a fee for parking). They also provide security guards to police Interlopers, higher maintenance and janitors to keep the place from being trashed.

But you aren't an employee. Your a mall rat.

@photopuck they're doing exactly the same thing that malls did. They take a space that was once communal, say a Market Square, and capture it in a way that they can charge rent to the market stalls. In the internet there is no physical space, there's only information and exchange, so they've just created walled gardens around that, and start charging rent to the market stalls.

@photopuck You go to the mall for the same reason your friends do, because that's where all your friends hang out. It's an advanced version of going to The Malt Shop with your friends to grab a soda. they create moat surrounding these spaces and make it hard for your friends to leave. For many that's all they know. It's nice here in the malls all climate controlled, policed, and relatively clean. But you don't work here you're just a mall rat. It's not your labor they want it's your attention.

@photopuck you do however boycott a mall. If the malls owners aren't hiring enough guards. if there's never any space in the parking garage. if the area is trashed. if the AC breaks. If you realize they are just rentseeking the commons. You boycott them.

@ultimape @photopuck I've been thinking about this same point lately as that social networks are really just owned and designed marketplaces (the malls in your discussion). The notion that one is not "paid" for using them is strangely off-point, as payment is merely compensation for someone's bearing of costs, and people are compensated (though maybe not enough) for the costs that they bear as a result of interacting with the marketplace (by way of being provided dope content).

@photopuck It's not a strike. You're not an employee, you're a product.