What if you were your own Facebook? With the advanced tools that are available today it is just as easy to create a website that you designed as it is to post on one owned by a corporation. Most people can’t go a whole day without posting something on the web. But how often do we fulfil our own potential to shape not only content online, but the site that archives and presents it? Creating a website today is as easy as writing an email. Sure, social media like Twitter and Facebook let you share images, text and video but they own and organize the system that frames and delivers it, usually selling your content to advertisers for demographic research. When you create the whole platform, all of your content is under your control.
Gutenberg’s revolution reimagined
The potential the web offers is to give the power of the press to every individual. But instead of claiming ownership of the content they put out, most people are happy enough to let what they post drive targeted advertisements. There aren’t any big campaigns showing you how easy it is to create your own site because the one that profits from that is you. Despite the lack of hype, there are many tools you can use to quickly build your own custom website.
Content creation: the original vision
When the world wide web was introduced to the public by Tim Berners Lee on March 12 of 1989, his vision was for an open platform that would “allow everyone, everywhere to share information.” Tim Berners Lee’s first web browser incorporated the ability to both browse and edit online content. Despite all the commercialization of the Internet that has made it something far different than just a system for sharing scientific research, the ability to create and edit a website is easier now than it has ever been.
The quickstart guide
In a few short steps, you can easily create your own website or blog. Using a free content management system (CMS) like WordPress means that you get full control of format, content and archiving. If you are running a business, or if you just want to express yourself in a way that lets you curate and shape your own archives, this makes all the difference.
Editing has become extremely fluid. Flipping a few simple switches in WordPress allows you to post entries by sending an email. And you aren’t restricted to text either. Attach photo or even video clips to the email, and you can quickly and easily add to your website from your phone as easily as writing into a pocket notepad.
If you want to drive your social media presence instead of letting it drive you, you can pick from any of these tools to save time and make one post to your blog cascade across all of your social media profiles. Auto-posting those links means you get the social advantage of these networks while keeping all the content within your own space.
Tim Berners Lee’s number one recommendation for fixing the web is to bring information under the control of the user. When your blog is the central hub for your information online you are the one in the driver’s seat. No one is lining up to sell the free tools to you. Be happy to know that your knowledge and initiative in owning your individual means of expression can set your content apart from everything else.