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Theme fund: NGI0 Discovery
Start: 2020-04
End: 2022-10


Indieweb mobile clients

Indigenous is a collection of native, web and desktop applications which allows you to engage with the Internet as you do on social media sites, but posts it all on your website. Use the built-in reader to read and respond to posts across the internet. Indigenous doesn't track or store any of your information, instead you choose a service you trust or host it yourself. Posts are collected on your website or service which supports W3C Microsub, writing posts uses the W3C Micropub specification. Popular services that support both are Wordpress, and Drupal, with more coming soon.

Why does this actually matter to end users?

Social media are important for many people to stay in touch, but they also influence the way we act ourselves. Their persistent presence in our lives creates a lot of pressure to be someone else then we are. This is not a coincidence: the developers have designed the software to keep us 'engaged' at any cost. If we sleep less well because of a message we got just before we went to sleep, that is fair game. We may wake up with a hundred messages we "missed", which creates a lot of stress. But it keeps us engaged, and keeps the advertising cash flowing.

Another problematic issue to address is monoculture. Social networks do not allow to cross the boundary of their service in an easy way, leading to social lock in and a "winner takes all" scenario. This limits choice, but also exposes users to legal dangers. Confidential discussions through "private" messages for instance turn out to be not so private, such as the case where a United States got the social network Twitter to hand over the personal communication from European human rights activists and a member of the Icelandic parliament over a severe human rights violation by the USA military. The European Court of Human Rights would certainly not have allowed this, but it happened outside of our jurisdiction - even if all the actors never left Europe.

What if you could set your own rules for what content you see, who you can share it with and where you post your daily stories, pictures of your dog, or critical think pieces? One of the most independent places you can have on the internet, is your own website. You own the domain, you determine how your content can be analyzed and scraped, you determine what software you use to share your views with the world.

The global IndieWeb movement supports independent personal websites and helps users easily post, share and connect with open standards and protocols. This project develops an app that lets users post and share as they would on social media sites, but instead of giving away their personal data and content to an ad-based company, post everything through their own site and see what their friends are doing on their website.

Run by eps and kaas

Logo NLnet: abstract logo of four people seen from above Logo NGI Zero: letterlogo shaped like a tag

This project was funded through the NGI0 Discovery Fund, a fund established by NLnet with financial support from the European Commission's Next Generation Internet programme, under the aegis of DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology under grant agreement No 825322.