Facebook down gave people a glimp of a better world
“The news”. Think about that!
On October 4, 2021, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp were down for more than five hours. I’d bet that almost everybody on the planet with a smartphone noticed that, in one way or another.
I also bet that very few people realized that, in those same five hours, something glorious happened.
People read news!
Seriously! “For a whopping five-hours-plus, people read news,", says Niemanlab. As in “reading news by going straight to the websites of news outlets, without all the filtering, noise and profiling that is the hallmark of those platforms.
“At the peak of the outage net traffic to pages across the web was up by 38% compared to the same time the previous week”.
Facebook’s outage showed us a Web much more similar to what it would be in a sane world. One where people use RSS to get news directly, from every combination of sources they want, from media cartels to friends' blogs, without any centralized profiling and surveillance.