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Dark Forest Theory of the Internet

Last updated Feb 12, 2022 Edit Source

Related: Moving Castles, cozy software

Source: The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet by Yancey Strickler

Imagine a dark forest at night. It’s deathly quiet. Nothing moves. Nothing stirs. This could lead one to assume that the forest is devoid of life. But of course, it’s not. The dark forest is full of life. It’s quiet because night is when the predators come out. To survive, the animals stay silent.

It’s unsafe to reveal yourself to them in any authentic way. So we retreat into private spaces. We hide in the cozy web.

Ephemeral content is the content in the dark forest. Fireflies not lamps.

“These are all spaces where depressurized conversation is possible because of their non-indexed, non-optimized, and non-gamified environments.”

Creating digital mindfulness in communication and conversation?

Illustration from Maggie Appleton’s Cozy Web