1.This website took me about 20 minutes to build

This isn't a brag about my coding skills or anything. It's really very simple to build this, but we tend to expect more than a website. A single page, minimally styled site with no images isn't what a hiring manager thinks about when they read "HTML/CSS" listed in the skills section of a resume. But if we set those expectations aside, this is still a website, one that performs the task of bringing this text to you.

In it's essence, this isn't that much different than a Facebook post. But I don't need to create a Facebook profile, agree to their terms and conditions and my content isn't stored in computers owned by Facebook but on a server that I have control over.

Control and agency sound great, but is it worth the effort of building a site and finding a way to host it why go through the effort if this isn't that different? Why not just reach out to people through social media?

Because this is an act of rebellion against infrastructures that currently control our communication on the web. Not only Facebook, Twitter, Google and their byproducts exploit our mental health for profit, not only they turn us into datasets and profit off of even the most personal aspects of our lives, but also they have shown in multiple cases that their pursuit of profit is detrimental to political discourse, to the point of possibly swaying elections.

A lot of activists begrudgingly use Facebook and Twitter because they are among the most accessible modes of publishing. But even though a website of one's own can be disadvantaged in terms of outreach compared to a Facebook page, it tells the audience that it's possible to exist outside Facebook. This project was born out of the struggles of political activism on social networks, but it is dedicated to anyone who is fed up with monopolization of online spaces. The act of building websites, chat rooms, servers, social networks that don't rely on corporations is political.

It's also an act of care. To build a chat room for your friends, to build a website where people who believe in a cause can voice their opinions, to build a one pager for your short story means you put the effort in to make something just for yourself, your friends, your comrades. You can tailor these online spaces to their specific needs, that's something Facebook or Twitter are neither capable of nor interested in doing.

This project is a collection of small websites/publications that explore ways we can gain control over our online existence. And don't worry, not all of them are as plain as this one. I would even say a lot of them are really fun :)

Let's Go