catecumen: Ellen custom made by dhampir (Default)
First of all, thank you to [staff profile] denise for letting me in! I'm Ellen, and I'm an internet addict. I'm thrilled to have a chance to play with the cool kids for a little while. I can has shiny new toys! Shiny toys are shiny ... and so on, and so on.

I've been online since the days before there was a "World Wide Web," when people connected through dial-up bulletin-board services like GEnie, and the early days of CompuServe, and then AOL. I have tried pretty much every major service out on the web; I had several fan sites at GeoCities, and Tripod, and plenty of others. As a result of consolidations like Yahoo buying out GeoCities, I often ended up with multiple accounts at each service. I signed up for all the major instant messaging services as they came along, too, and I've lost track of how many "Windows Live" IDs I have now. I have a six-digit ICQ number, which tells you how long I've had ICQ, although I don't use it much. (Now I'm doing the Facebook and Twitter thing, like most of us.) I had a MySpace, deleted it, then reconsidered the deletion and made another. I've been on LiveJournal since 2001 although I didn't start using it heavily until 2004, and I was at the late not-so-GreatestJournal, and still maintain mostly inactive accounts at InsaneJournal and at Inksome (I was one of the first group of beta testers when it was still called Scribblit).

My husband and I went through a phase of maintaining our own servers for our domains/sites, until it got to the point where it was more trouble and expense for us than it was worth. So, like most of us who have been wandering around the web for as long as it has existed, CatEcumen the Ecumenical Cat - also known as the Crone of Elderfen, the Silicon Alley Cat, and a few others - has left a lot of pawprints in a lot of places. (The Internet Wayback Machine is a wonderful resource, isn't it?)

I even had the privilege of being mocked by the late lamented Bad Fanfiction Terror Squad. They kindly and correctly pointed out that my web pages looked like they had been coded by a twelve-year-old in 1996 (off on the age, but not far off at all on the year) and they gave me the additional nickname of "the Ellenic civilization."

Most of my fannish and religious sites have already gone, some deliberately taken down by me by choosing not to renew domain names, and some which were inadvertently "disappeared" by means of site shutdowns and/or my neglect. When I heard the news that Geocities is being discontinued, I noticed that Alternate Angel still exists even though most of the links are dead. It's good to have a chance to archive at least that little bit of my personal history on the web before that disappears too. You'll notice that it is at the Australian version of GeoCities. I'm not Australian; I just liked the fact that "AU" could also stand for "Alternate Universe."

[personal profile] damned_colonial posted here about the GeoCities shutdown, and about the A-Team, a/k/a Archive Team coming to the rescue. I'm really grateful that somebody is doing something to preserve all this material.

I hadn't thought of our past meanderings around the web in the sense of "history" so much, but even the most embarrassing and pathetic things that we all said when we were younger and more foolish ARE history. The cute little HTML tricks that we learned in the 90s, which were the shiny new toys of the day, ARE history. Yes, auto-starting MIDI files, pages that fade in and out of existence and huge slow-loading graphics on our home-made web pages are part of our history. (I hope that glittery "thanks for the add" graphics and auto-starting music on MySpace will soon become history, as well.)

To make an overly long post a little less overly long, because like most lawyers I can NEVER be "brief" - thank you to everyone who has done so much to create and to preserve online community over all these years, in so many different places around the web, including those who are in the process of creating this space right now, and thank you to everyone who is taking steps to make sure that all this history is not lost forever.


catecumen: Ellen custom made by dhampir (Default)

September 2012

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