And that sucks because there are no real public spaces on the internet. Here in reality, I can fuck off to a park and hug a tree and sit on a bench and do stuff without ads, without anyone trying to track me, and without having to pay a dime. There was a time within my memory when people tried to make websites feel like semipublic places.
It’s not just that accounts are required on so many web sites. It’s also the ads and the tracking that you have to block. It’s the literacy in privacy that is needed to fend off the inevitable cookie prompts. It’s the algorithms taking control over what we see online. It’s the countless requests for a “good review” whenever you buy anything. It’s distinguishing the lies and the self-serving bullshit from the good stuff. The web now is so user-hostile.