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The Manifesto of

A page describing my thoughts on the modern internet, how I made my own space on the web, and why I like having control.

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Part 1: The Modern Web

If you think about it, the average person's internet activity really isn't adventurous. The average person most likely visits a social media platform or two, clicks on articles linked to in social media posts, and maybe goes to their TV station's website to check up on local news. With how popular smartphones are, the only websites a person might visit is the webpage for an article they saw on a social media post. Throw in some extra pages for Google searching, although most people probably read the summary generated by Google and move on. Most people probably visit four or five websites that aren't Social Media platforms, and I'll admit that most of my activity on the internet is the same as well. Thanks to how centralized the internet is nowadays, the days of people going to dozens of websites per day is over.

As a result of this, just about every website looks the same. Tumblr's new(ish) interface, which was heavily criticized when it was rolled out, is an example of this. Twitter looks a lot like Tumblr, which looks a lot like Facebook, which looks a lot like YouTube, which looks a lot like every other social media platform. The same goes for read-only webpages. Flat designs, desaturated colors, an off-white background. Nothing that stands out, nothing that will make you remember the page.

Sure, that flat look is pretty unoffensive. However, something that is offensive is page load requests. I recently took a visit to Wall Street Journal's webpage, opened the network connections tab, and was shocked at what I saw.

A screenshot of the Network inspector tool in Firefox. Requests for content are shown, and Firefox reports 33.40MB as being requested, with 10.94MB as being transfered. The page load finished in 15 seconds.

Yes, you're seeing that right. Wall Street Journal, a newspaper site, wants to load 33 Megabytes of content. I'm pretty sure the picture of your food you took this morning is only hogging up about 1 Megabyte on your phone. Naturally, over a third of it is blocked by uBlock Origin or by Firefox, which means that a lot of it was ads or trackers.

That's another good point to bring up. Everyone on the internet wants to know what you're doing so they can sell that information. Privacy concerns aside, have you ever taken a second to think about that? Companies are gathering your browsing habits, and using that information to sell you more crap. Plus, the data tracking industry itself is a pretty shady one, although I'm sure you expected that.

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