Boris Mann’s Personal Blog

Jul 2020

Discord and the Cozy Web

Tom Critchlow writes ‘Setting up a Discord Room for my Blog’, calling it a “cozy chat space”, for me a direct call back to this:

the cozyweb works on the (human) protocol of everybody cutting-and-pasting bits of text, images, URLs, and screenshots across live streams — Venkatesh Rao, Extended Internet Universe, May 2019

I have introduced/explained Discord to several friends with kids who use it extensively for gaming and hanging out with friends.

I’ve used Discord for several years now, as many of the global tech communities I’m part of use it. I’d say that there is definitely an increase of adoption by open source projects.

I tweeted about why Discord:

[Discord has much better] permissions [than Slack]! It's default open, with members, roles, channels being able to have permissions.

Plus, of course, mod powers like Kick and Ban.

Slack is swipe card entry only, Discord is a public festival with various members only sections, VIP rooms, and an operations center.

Our usage for public, group, and company-only chat at Fission has gone well, all in one server.

I have a longer post in draft about how we pair it with Discourse forums.

Discord being free means…something else is the product. Mostly it’s stickers right now.

Matrix is my exit plan.

Mozilla selected Matrix as the chat protocol / platform to move to, away from IRC. It is an open protocol as well as being open source, meaning many clients and servers can be built and interoperate.

New Vector, the main company behind Matrix development recently announced that Automattic, makers of WordPress, made a strategic investment.

All these things make it clear that Matrix has momentum, and it’s important that there be an open — and secure! — option for chat.

At the same time, because chat is ephemeral, I consider it less important that such a platform be open: the feeling and UX rank much more highly in importance.

You can join the Fission server or try out my AllTheBest.Recipes server if you’d like to experiment.

Prompted by Ton commenting on Tom’s post.