reclaiming ephemeral media

Following Boone's lead, I'm going to be working to reclaim as much of my online activity as possible. I set up a separate WordPress site to handle ephemeral media that are usually posted to Twitter, so that things like the Twitpic licensing brouhaha don't apply. Because it's just a blog, it can handle anything - entire galleries of images, audio, video, or any combination. I can also geotag posts, and add plugins to enable timeline and calendar views.

As far as Reclaiming goes, this was one of the simplest things to do. But the process wasn't simple at all. It took me about half an hour to get going, from setting up a new subdomain, to installing WordPress (I need to migrate my sites to Multisite, but that's for another time) and adding a MySQL database for it. Tweaking WordPress settings. Installing Twitter Tools plugin to autobroadcast new posts to my Twitter account (good god is Twitter cumbersome to configure stuff for - auth tokens, secret keys, etc... insanity). Then, realizing I'd forgotten to set the timezone of the new media blog, then adjusting that, and realizing that adjustment threw a wrench into the Twitter autoposting system (hopefully only until the 6-hour delta is caught up).

This is not something that 99.99% of people will do. But, those 99.99% of people need to be able to Reclaim their stuff (including low-value ephemeral media otherwise dumped to Twitpic/YFrog/etc...) This is why services like that are so successful, and why third party hosting is so tempting. It's several orders of magnitude easier to just use a third party service, rather than rolling up your sleeves and hosting stuff yourself. And that leaves out any social layer (which was implemented via Twitter autoposting here, but that may not be appropriate for other services - and I'm not comfortable with Twitter being even more entrenched as the social glue platform).

One more item for a magical Reclaim server appliance...

Update: I just realized that one of the photos I used to test, posted from the iOS WordPress app, wound up going to my main blog rather than my ephemeral media blog. Totally operator error - I selected the wrong blog as destination - but points out how things get more complicated when doing stuff yourself...

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Last updated: December 04, 2023