an asethetic of creation without profit motive.



I was never one of those people who had a neocity, or a geosite or any of that web 2.0 (or was that 1.0?) wild west stuff. At the time that that was common being built up and spreading I was blissfully unaware. Or rather aware though I might have been I was unable to participate due to the lack of internet access. We didn't have regular internet access at home. When I was allowed on line it was for specific purposes and always monitored or rather directed by an adult. As if I was unable to do the navigating myself, for fear I would stumble headlong into some dark abyss. Well maybe that was fair, considering. By the time I had access regularly to the internet geosites or neocities or whatever were graveyards. Worse they were almost entirely lost. Even to someone who doesn't really have this nostalgia of digging through them at a young age, and participating in that culture... That loss is still horrible. I understand that some amount of the original pages were archived. Maybe even a majority. But the loss... This is a problem with how we determine value. If it doesn't generate revenue just discard it. Who cares about the cultural/historic/informational value. I have a hard time arguing it, because clearly there is some merit to this thinking. If people really cared they'd pay right? But they weren't given that choice really anyway. I tend to be partial to the concept that there is no such thing as information without value. I have to believe in some way or another everything that exists does so for a reason, so then all information is valuable. Not that all information is all valuable forever, and must be retained for eternity, or anything. But if there is no real cost to maintaining the information, as is the case in something like static webpages, seriously... Disk space may as well be limitless when what you are storing is plain text.... There is no reason to discard it. If youtube can store all those videos, I'm sure we can find the storage for geocities. Right? Well I guess this is all a solved issue, geocities neocites whatever was saved to some extent or another, and now we live in a world were there has been a neocities revival. Actively generated neocities. The aesthetic is back. And this time it's being done by a whole new generation of kids, as well as some of the older folk coming back for nostalgias sake. It's kind of incredible. There are so many things that could never have a huge forum, or large insta or somethings that are able to find and build these strange communities. Fashion is a huge thing. Idk what I am really getting at. Like obviously similar stuff could be done to much the same effect using wordpress. It's little more than a blog. Does pixel art with a prevalent use of gifs really make it something special? Is neocities more than just a set of pastel pixel art aesthetics? Well for one it is a community. Sort of. There are neocities whose sole purpose is to go around judging other sites, handing out rewards of this that or the other. Of course I have a problem with anything that creates a bubble up effect, feedback loop of the popular being more popular by virtue of popularity alone. But this is, I feel less of a problem on neocities, than other mediums. One thing that makes it nice compared to wordpress as well is the culture of sharing buttons. Every page has their own buttons, and they include the buttons of those sites they like for whatever reason. This makes exploring super fun because you can find yourself going from one neighborhood to another, shifting from gothic lolita fashion to doll modification, to PVC model making, to DIY electronics. And it all feels so natural because the hubs are all connected. The aesthetics too shift as the influences are more or less pronounced. None of this is particularly interesting or unique. I think anyone who has had the experience of browsing the site knows what I'm talking about. But I expect that not everyone who may read these words has experienced neocities. Nor will they potentially be able to. History being so want to repeat itself and all. I don't expect it to survive the collapse. I hope it does. The return (thanks to covid and so many people being indoors) to making personal sites of any and all description is in many ways a new web 2.0 The return of activity to neocities is one aspect of it. One manifestation. The casual dismissal of javascript is beautiful. The lack of any kind of appeal to advertising, marketing, etc. I don't know about back end stuff tho. I expect that there are architectural trackers build into it to track user behavior. To classify some cites by category/demographic etc. This world hates doing anything for free, but loves to pretend to make things free... .

incoming references