Lialina sees the Geocities aesthetic as being idiomatic to this Web 1.0 relationship, which joined the user to a new, exciting, naive, futuristic, and quite limited internet as a creative medium in and of itself; Web 2.0, on the other hand, erases that relationship by making the system transparent, the programmable workings of the internet—the internet as medium—a “native” thing to be “experienced” rather than explicitly interacted with.

And she argues that though Web 2.0 encourages the broader, ever more interconnected amateur web population to upload, share, record, and participate at increasing rates, it does so by ensuring the erasure of the personalized, Geocities-ugly “Welcome to my Home Page” aesthetic long hated by web designers and other members of the professional class. Users, in other words, must now operate within the hell of beautiful interfaces designed by experts. TL;DR: Website Eugenics.

"404 Page Not Found", Kate Wagner

on The Baffler.
The internet feeds on its own dying dreams
January 2019.

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