Ben is a lifelong Nintendo fan who likes to build websites, and make video games. He buys way too much Lego.
For many Facebook has lost a lot of it’s allure over the last couple of years. With all the reports of the social giant being used by advertisers to manipulate people, and spread fake news, many are leaving the site.
With Twitter being the platform of choice for online harassment, and Instagram being largely for the selfie obsessed, where should we go?
This article on Vice suggests we should start running our own websites again.
I like the idea of there being a resurgence of the personal website. I made my first website more than 20 years ago hosted on Geocities (or was it Hotbot? or Tripod? I used them all at different times).
My site was a portfolio of my (probably embarrassing) Photoshop art, but I have artist friends who still post art on Twitter & Facebook. Wouldn’t they be better off posting it on a personal website that they control? I guess the problem is gaining an audience, but there’s no reason you can’t post links to your site on these same social networks.
I still update my personal website. I’ve had the same domain for over 17 years now, but many people have never had their own site. This feels like a prime opportunity for a platform like WordPress (or Wix/ Weebly/ Whatever) to promote themselves.
I haven’t thought about this a great deal, but I think there would be a space here for freelancers to put together cheap packages for new customers. Offering hosting, WordPress setup, a theme, and regular maintenance. With a flexible theme you wouldn’t even need to do much customisation, and more technical people could write a script that does most of the work for them (I don’t know how to do this but it must be possible).
You could even use Facebook to advertise the service to potential customers…
This story first appeared in MasterWP, a weekly newsletter for WordPress professionals.