Owning your Platforms - Why and The Good Parts
Platforms is a fairly wide term. I will stick to the example of my website in this post.
My beef with taking your content and putting it on platforms controlled by huge companies is that the content becomes theirs and not yours. They own it. They can run ads in between your blog posts, put a paywall against your readers, or sometimes the platform gets shut down. You can say they give you a share in their revenue, but, how much are they profitting from your content? You literally have no control in your hands.
That's why I like to build my own solutions, tailored to my needs.
This website is exactly that. To be honest, I wasn't even an average developer before building this site. I learnt ReactJS with a goal of building this site. What you are looking at is 6 years in the making.
What I like the most - customisability.
If I want a feature, I can spend some time writing code and add that gets added. Not always true (See: [[What I dont like about owning your platforms]]).
For example, yesterday I was thinking it would be nice to show the time it takes to read for these memos. Today we have it!
If I was on Substack, that thought would have just remained a thought.
This is just one example. I've added so many changes incrementally over time to make this website what it is now.
The side effect of all this is you learn a lot. You learn new technologies, frameworks, about analytics, hosting, deployment, and whole lot.