Stretch goal update: if we reach $80,000, I'll hire a community manager for Micro.blog to help build a safe community from the start. See this update on Kickstarter for details on the stretch goal and a new feature called Safe Replies.
Hi, my name is Manton Reece, and I’m writing a book called Indie Microblogging. I'm also launching a brand new platform for microblogs.
Do you remember how the web used to work? How the web was supposed to work?
In the earlier days of the web, we always published to our own web site. If you weren’t happy with your web host, or they went out of business, you could move your files and your domain name, and nothing would break.
Today, most writing instead goes into a small number of centralized social networking sites, where you can’t move your content, advertisements and fake news are everywhere, and if one of these sites fails, your content disappears from the internet. Too many sites have gone away and taken our posts and photos with them.
I want to encourage more independent writing. To do that, we need better tools that embrace microblogs and the advantages of the open web. We need to learn from the success and user experience of social networking, but applied to the full scope of the web.
I first set out to build a new service just for microblogs. It has a timeline experience like a social network, with replies and favorites, but it’s based on RSS, with the main posts pulled from independent sites.
If you don’t have a microblog yet, there’s a full publishing interface with Markdown support and a native iPhone app. I call it Micro.blog.
The second thing I’m doing is writing a book and I’d love your support for it on Kickstarter. This short book will make the case for microblogging and show you how to participate in the growing community of writers who own even their short-form writing.
Some of the topics:
- How to adapt blogging tools like WordPress and Tumblr to work with microblogs.
- The important role of cross-posting to Twitter, and the best tools out there.
- Tips for integrating your microblog into an existing full weblog.
- The architecture for microblogs, with a behind-the-scenes look at how I built Micro.blog.
- Overview of the latest IndieWebCamp and W3C proposals for indie microblogging, such as Webmention and Micropub.
- Plus my own personal stories on why it matters so much to preserve our content on the internet.
You’ll get the book itself and early access to Micro.blog so you can reserve your username. Whenever the Kickstarter project is successfully funded, I'll start sending out invites to backers.
I love real books, too, so I’m even doing a limited run of print copies of the book in addition to the standard e-book. There are also rewards with Micro.blog stickers and more.
Over the last couple years, I've posted dozens of articles to my blog about independent microblogging and the open web. Some of them have even inspired others to write more on their own site. I'll be going through all of these posts to take the best writing — as well as brand new essays and technical topics — to put together this book. I'm putting everything I have into it.
There's a growing community and movement around independent microblogging. With your support, we can take back the future of the web from closed platforms and silos, and leave our own mark on the web. Thank you.
Risks and challenges
Writing a book — even a short one like Indie Microblogging — is a lot of work. I'm going to minimize risk by basing several parts of the book on existing blog posts I've already written, expanded with new thoughts and guides. Most of the content will be brand new, though.
For the print edition of this book, I'll be using a print-on-demand partner so that I can deliver a fixed number of books without extra inventory overhead and cost.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)