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Discussion on: Social Lifespan of Posts

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Sam Osborn

A possible suggestion:
A DEV.to post is not an un-referenced chunk of content. Rather, the conceit of a dev.to post is that it is really a join table entry, connecting a person with an idea that they had.

For example, there are well established UX models for single-entry canonical records: wikis, editorialized blogs, etc. Yet dev.to is none of these. In fact, I think you could you extend this argument into all social media: what matters is less the content specifically, and more the dialectic between a person with the content they made. While a wiki is anonymizing, dev.to is certainly not, much of the activity here is performant. We are interested in performances of knowing and idea-having and so we are compelled to re-write an article not because we have forgotten the original, but because we want to join ourselves to having-had-that-idea. Obviously imperfect, and increasingly routine.

This isn't all a bad thing, it certainly enables conversation and dialogue in a way that is designed out of wikis. The cost however, is profound performance, ersatz content, and diverse people and corporations using the platform to advertise their own agendas. As with all social media, the content is often less content-in-itself and instead a performance of content generation connected to the author's better or worse constructed cult of personality.