Picture_7 For the past week or so I've been playing with Vox, the new platform from SixApart. Here's where I'd mention how long I've been writing online, but it's irrelevant, and also I don't want you tracking down the story about when I accidentally drank my own sperm accidentally I said accidentally, okay? Geez.

But back to the point: a long time ago I used to write online to a ton (like 30) of faceless, nameless people who used to laugh and possibly email me about how funny they thought it was. I was just goofing off, I wasn't too concerned about offending anyone if I could make something funny.

But then some of these people became friends and it was WAY more fun to interact and relate with them in Real Life® and in email, AIM, and working on projects together—plus who wants to shake the hand of a known masturbator? Not I. So I toned it down a bit. Things were good.

Then in a repeat of something like the great AOL influx, a lot more people started discovering weblogs. For a small percentage who didn't understand it, a weblog post was a challenge to say something mean or a veiled request for marital advice. Lots of controls were developed to stifle the negative comments, a lot of people just turned the feedback loop off because so much of it was spam or hurtful. That early feeling of freedom and openness died for almost everyone but the thickest skinned.

A lot of my friends from those days disappeared back into the woodwork.

[Incidentally this reminds me that I even have one comment I wrote once, years ago, that I completely regret. It was totally pointless and stupid and I seriously think about it a lot. There are a few others that make me cringe, but that one really makes me feel bad. Especially when I see the person I annoyed at events, around San Francisco, or for 3 uncomfortable floors in an elevator (gulp). I usually console myself with the fact that he's now a millionaire. Jerk.]

My friends pointed me to LiveJournal's friend/family controls and I tried out, but I must have some sort of LiveJournal blind spot because every time I looked at the interface I thought, "Why do you hate me?" It's a fine service, and obviously tons of (goth/emo) people like to (cut/take photos of themselves) use it. But it wasn't for me and MySpace is just not an option because of all the child molesters and Rupert Murdoch. Flickr has been allowing me to share a bit of my life with friends in a more spontaneous way, and I appreciate the control I have over who can see what, but it's not exactly the same thing as writing.

Vox is a return to that early time I don't think most people had a chance to experience. The commercialization of blogs has, I think, skewed people's perception of what they can be. To many, if you're not doing 50,000 unique visitors a day you should just throw in the towel, you're a failure. If your funny story about shopping at the Apple store can't be Digg'd or Boingboing'd then what good is it?

Someone once gave me some good advice on how to write a blog post, they said, "Write it like you're writing an email to your friend." That became hard to do when it turned out lots of non-friends were intercepting our correspondence. Vox gives me the chance to write to my friends (and family!) again and I can't wait for you all to join me.

Ugh Update: I did get invites, but it turns out they aren't the sort of invites that let you publish. So me inviting you in with one is pretty much like saying, "Look but don't touch." I did get two real ones, and they're gone already.



so where's the invite? ;p




I can't help but think Vox is a solution in search of a problem. Blogs work great (although I think 6Apart should spent more time beefing up LG) and social networks are well established. Where does Vox come in? I can't help but feel it's a stab at "blogs are cool, social networking is cool, so let's combine them" feeling without nailing down a specific purpose for existence. I mean it's almost like "Vox: Free Typepad + Myspace-ish".


Back when I was a heavy Tribe.net user, I definetly appreciated the community tie in to the blog I had there. The site was already a place where were congregating so it made it easy for others to see what everyone else was writing. It was easier than using an RSS reader, and obviously more social than having a seperate website that you had to tell other people about. I hoping VOX turns out to be something like that.

(Also, I would totally love an invite, if such things are avaliable)


It's unfortunate that an influx of newbies will drive out those that made the medium what it is in the first place. But I have no worries, I think there will be another medium, another playground where first adopters will find each other again.


um. but if everyone joins you it's just a new boat/same crews, right?


This is pretty exciting. I have a blog, but don't post all that much anymore because I don't want to put too much stuff out there in public. This could be great. Damn invite system, now I just want it more ;)

(and ds: nope. you get to control who sees what, it seems)


I've been waiting to start a blog because there wasn't a service like Vox...it seems to perfectly address my needs, anyway. I would love an invite if they're going around!

David Ely

Looks like a cool service. I'd love to get my LiveJournal crew moved over to Vox, which seems to do much better what we basically use LJ for.

Also, is this where invite trolls sign up?

your hot emo & goth rox


I think that social networking blogs are perhaps what everyone wanted from trackbacks, a way to interconnect between sites more seemlessly and create a mini-community.

Trackbacks were perhaps better in that they were decentralized, but frankly they were a pain to use and somewhat limited in application.

Vox sounds really cool and very exciting in many ways... I can't wait to check it out.


Can you help me get on Vox? =( I dont know anyone on there and I would like to go there.


I would love an invite, assuming you have one to spare.


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before this i wrote links for 2006-05-31 after this i wrote links for 2006-06-01


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