things I hate about the internet

In light of my otherwise fried state of mind, I would like to present a list of things that I dislike. Because I'm snarky like that.

  • HTML emails. I've yet to send or receive an email that really requires rich text formatting provided by HTML emails. While multi-part emails (which send multiple copies of the same email in rich and plain text) are a good thing, it's a huge pain in the ass to get an email (particularly a long email) three times, just for the pleasure.
  • Sites that recreate twitter without adding any useful features or discussion. It's as if the dimwitted internet people said "holy shit, if we give people 140 characters to say banal things on our site maybe we'll get traffic like twitter," except this isn't how the internet has ever worked (or worked well.)

Facebook is coming out with "usernames," I've gotten an invitation to microblog on niche-social networking site, and everyone seems hard set on reimplementing this whole "status" thing a la twitter in the beginning, without any thought of interpretation (a la laconica) or doing something cool like jaiku-style threads, let alone the next big thing.

  • Malformed emails. Dudes. Sending a plain text email is really simple, there's no excuse for it to look like your cat took a nap on the tab key. I'm not chiding anyone for neglecting to test every email "blast" they send (because I'd be that lazy) but I am chiding folks for not testing it once. Writing a text file and sending it isn't that hard.
  • Reimplementation of email. I really hate getting facebook messages, and direct messages on [microblogging service], and each and every other fucking social networking site. Just send me email. Real email. It works, I have a good process for dealing with it, and I don't have to screw around with anything. Thanks.
  • The Twitter Fail Whale. Dudes. There was a while about a year ago, when a bunch of geeks were sitting around and thinking, "you know this twitter technology is going to be really cool, and there are a lot of possibilities here," and there were, and I suppose there still are, but the truth is that I see the fail whale several times every day, and most of the cool things that I wanted to see in twitter two years ago and then a year ago (real xmpp support, track, federation, custom filtered feeds (a la LJ-style friends' filters),) still haven't materialized. I think the addition of OAuth is a great thing, but it's a baby step.
  • The continued prevalence of IRC. Dudes discover jabber/xmpp. Thanks. A while back, I had a lot of nostalgia for IRC, and its true that IRC has a lot of history and is a standard to be reckoned with, but jabber is so much more elegant, secure, and provides features (persistence, logging, independence, etc) without having net-splits and complicated ad hoc registration schemes.

That's all for now. What do you hate about the internet?

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