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Before the internet was widely available, virtually ALL of "online" was volunteer run (BBSes).

Commerce is not necessary for online community, and as far as I can tell it has only ever been a detriment.

@lawremipsum before the internet was widely available, I wasn't online due to lack of availability

@earthtopus "what did people do before they could be extremely online??"

"Watched something like YouTube, but they had no control over what played next."

"Like Autoplay all the time?? HOW AWFUL"

@lawremipsum there were remotes that Just Worked, though, so that's something the past has on us

@lawremipsum anyway, pining for the halcyon days when only motivated volunteers had access to online is sure taking me back to the mid-90s

@earthtopus @lawremipsum I don't miss getting 1 million AOL cds in my cereal as a "prize" tho

@britvulcan @lawremipsum yes, it's a good thing no one in computing is wasting resources like that anymore </s>

@earthtopus @lawremipsum I'm just saying there were better cd prizes. Like the Cap'n crunch video game.

@britvulcan @lawremipsum I grew up in an Apple household, so what CD prize would have worked?

@earthtopus @lawremipsum no idea lol. I grew up with shareware game floppies and way too much solitaire.

@britvulcan @lawremipsum I've got most of the childhood 3.5"s I cared about salvaged from dad's estate; even he may not have kept the 5.25"s or we decided to pitch them. There's a USB 3.5" drive somewhere upstairs too

@lawremipsum also fewer channels = less FOMO. And even when we did get basic cable, the remotes that Just Worked let you change channels with insanely low latency

@lawremipsum remember when it didn't take multiple seconds to change a channel?

@lawremipsum

When will Mastodon be upgraded so we can play Tradewars?

@apLundell if there was a thing I would learn to program for, it would 100% be to add door games.

@apLundell @lawremipsum Hmmm... I wonder if it would be possible to write a TW clone that uses ActivityPub...

@lawremipsum

now I'm wondering how commercial dial-up compared to BBSen by ... I don't know, some reasonable metric.

Like, there was The Source, CompuServe, GEnie.

I used GEnie & BBSen in parallel, for the short time after I got a modem but before I figured out, eg, how to make SLIP connections.

@deejoe @lawremipsum Usually, lots and lots of databases. Encyclopedias. Finance. Very simple search agents to run analyses for you.

Oh, and newswires. AOL used to have a direct feed from the AP.

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MSP Social.net

A community centered on the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota, and their surrounding region.

An alternative to social networks that connected people in the region that have either died away or driven people off with unethical or anti-social policies.

MSP Social is a noncommercial community service, hosted and administered by @lawremipsum. Users should not feel obligated to contribute financially to the project. But contributions to defray server costs and/or for possible future expansion are welcome at Patreon, Liberapay or via PayPal to lawremipsum at gmail.

We financially support local community-oriented organizations. Currently, we support WedgeLive and Neighbors for More Neighbors. Future support of community-oriented organizations will be determined by accountholders, donors and the admin, and is likely to be focused on groups that advance the values of the donors and encourage underrepresented voices in community and urban planning spheres.

Recurring contributors: @hfrazey, @brennen@mastodon.social, @Jennybellium, @densetsu, @iangreenleaf, @britvulcan, @joeld, @yeahno, @paulference, @billmk, @brandon, @benjotron, and anonymous.

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