When the new generation of social networks first gained a foothold in the United States about ten years ago and shortly afterwards in the rest of the world, they were a welcome showcase for reaching people beyond the boundaries of the open Internet. So we built up small communities on Facebook, Twitter and later on Instagram, only to realize way too late what a hopeless dependency we were maneuvering ourselves into. Suddenly the networks were demanding money for us to reach our organically grown target groups, after we had been voluntarily and free of charge luring users to these same companies for many years before.
Today, we find ourselves in the strange situation that we have to deal with reaching only a fraction of those who have subscribed to our website in social media on Facebook, Twitter & Co, because we are not only systematically minimized and even censored there, but also have to live in constant fear that our channels will be blocked if we show even the slightest hint of a female nipple or are targeted by a small group of users who have been offended by one of our articles, and thanks to the automated reporting function are put in the digital pillory.
But that’s not even the real problem. If we were to stand behind the values these companies embody, we would continue to fight to increase our visibility in their channels, we would be happy to abide by their old-fashioned house rules, we would also feel comfortable convincing our readers that it’s a good idea to open accounts there to follow not only us, but also other interesting websites and individuals. But not only do we not stand behind the values of these corporations, no, we are downright disgusted by what they have become.
Because let’s be honest: Facebook, thanks to its agenda and riot-programmed algorithms, is nothing more than a breeding ground for the extreme fantasies of early retirees banned from society, Twitter has turned into a tunnel filled with hate and screams of politically motivated idiots, not least thanks to the presence of Donald Trump, and those who seek their happiness on Instagram are forever lost, merged in a painting altered over and over again thanks to Photoshop filters with other poor souls who have long since left reality behind.
That’s why we have decided to stop being an active part of these so-called social media networks from now on and to switch to an only automated approach on our broadcasting channels on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest and whatever else has accumulated over the past decade. We won’t answer questions there, won’t reply to comments, won’t counter critics – we won’t even read any of that. And we won’t follow anyone else. Instead we will simply share our articles – in a fully automated way.
There are probably enough social media managers out there who consider this step to be an absolute digital suicide, but we have seen all kinds of start-ups in recent years that have burned out entire editorial offices on these very channels, only to go down in smoke shortly afterwards. We’ve also disabled comments on AMY&PINK, but if you want to let us know your opinion, you can do so by sending us an electronic letter. And if you want to know more about why social media is bad for you in general, we recommend reading the book “Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World” by Cal Newport – it’ll blow your mind, in a good way.
Another and much better way to consume our articles, which we fully encourage you to do so, is either by visiting our website or by subscribing to our RSS feed. The latter works for example via websites like Feedly, Feedbin and Inoreader, apps like Reeder, NetNewsWire and Flym or the Feedreader Plugin from Feeder for Google Chrome, Firefox and Safari. There you can not only add AMY&PINK, but also all your other favorite blogs and online magazines and in some cases even Twitter accounts, YouTube channels and Instagram profiles. That way you won’t miss anything anymore and you won’t have to deal with any mysterious algorithms, preselections and bells.
With this step we want to restore our independence as an online magazine as well as make a small contribution to an open Internet. Because it can’t be that for some people the Internet isn’t just much more than Facebook, YouTube and Instagram – or in what kind of bubble they’re vegetating in. The Internet is big, colorful and exciting – and that’s exactly what we want to prove as well as live with AMY&PINK. We want to be a good example. Who knows, maybe in the near or distant future there will be a new generation of social networks, which share these seemingly outdated values, but until then, we enjoy our newly won freedom with a cool glass of gin and tonic.