The Pluspocalypse draws nigh. What are we to do? Well, for my part at least, this is where the wind has been blowing.
In terms of social media, activity seems to be congealing around three platforms: Twitter, Discord, and Reddit. I occasionally check Mewe, mostly for the vibrant Necrotic Gnome community. I have updated my About page here with links to other online game-relevant presences, guises, and manifestations. I plan to keep this up to date. All have drawbacks, but the value of social platforms comes from critical mass of users and activity rather than features.
In terms of experience, Twitter seems to be closest to Google Plus, based on my experience over the past month or so—despite lacking any features approximating Google Plus collections, which is a substantial shortcoming. Two tricks helped Twitter work better for me: 1) turn off retweets from people that you want to keep following but that have interests aligning only partially with your own and 2) add people to an “inbox” list to use as your primary view. You can keep the membership of lists private to avoid hurting any feelings. I find the default Twitter feed algorithm unpleasant, but there are clients which present chronological feeds. I use Twitterific on iOS which is okay so far. I post pseudo-privately to Twitter, just like I did on Google Plus. Bonus: on Twitter, you get to see my Zelda: Breath of the Wild screen shots.
Discord has been building social momentum, especially following the social reconfigurations of last week. I have been checking in on Chris’s OSR Discord server most regularly. A highly balkanized set of smaller Discord servers also now exist, based around personalities, publishers, and particular games—Melsonia, Swordfish Islands, Hydra Collective, and Mothership, for example. I am unsure if there are direct links to any of those, but if you are interested, join the OSR server and ask around. Luka’s Stratometaship (WTF blog) and Ben’s Questing Beast (Questing Blog) Discords exist for patrons. This collection is far from comprehensive. There is less substantive discussion on Discord compared to Google Plus, but it does provide a way to keep up to date—perhaps too much up to date—with what everyone else is doing. Discord shares with Google Plus proximity to actual gaming, as it has feature supporting voice and video conferencing, and I see many people coordinating active games. Just keep in mind that Discord is the afterparty cocaine of social media. You end up wondering where the evening went with so little to show for it.
Reddit r/osr is okay and has lots of activity, but also—as with all of Reddit—has the downsides of moderated forums. The r/artpunk sub has potential but is small.
I am expanding the scope of this blog, though only ever so slightly. Observant readers may have noticed some recent additions to the list of blog post categories, including Bibliophilia, Moving Pictures, and Words. Bibliophilia and Moving Pictures should be self-explanatory. Words is for discussion of relevant non-game texts, such as novels, histories, and so forth. I have posted this sort of content here before, though unsystematically and infrequently. An example for Bibliophilia is a past review of Inventory v.1 (an illustrated chapbook of often wondrous gear by Sam Bosma). An example for Moving Pictures is a past review of Jupiter Ascending. I will continue to only cover media relevant in some way to tabletop roleplaying games, but there may be slightly more posts in this vein. It seems likely that scene blog content in general will increase. The tools I use in this area, apart from this blog itself, are Feedly for central feed management and Reeder for mobile feed reading (it can use Feedly as feed source). Jacob H. writes good things about Inoreader.
Friendly reminder: you may wish to download your past Google Plus activity using Google Takeout. Though you may never actually do anything with it, a few years down the line you may remember that some conversation you hosted had some useful insights. For me, it makes the most sense to take an archive of only the Plus-related data (which are Google+ +1s on websites, Google+ Circles, Google+ Communities, and Google+ Stream). I think this will only preserve content that you posted or managed, and so your comments on the posts of others will likely be absent.
Do you mind strangers following you on Twitter? I ask because your profile is currently locked.
Two notes on some of the social media mentioned:
On the desktop version of Twitter, you uncheck the “show me the best tweets first” box to view your timeline in chronological order. Very rarely (as in, once or twice a year) it’ll reset to the default setting. My Twitter app has done this a bit more frequently.
I can vouch for Inoreader. I’ve never been a G+ user, so I resorted to Inoreader to keep up-to-date with the blogosphere and it’s served me incredibly well on this regard, although mostly on the desktop front.
Yeah by all means. I will add most anyone interested in gaming. I keep it pseudo-private because I am wary of public search engine indexing of ephemeral social media content and that sort of thing.
Any experience with Pluspora?
Not really. Mastodon etc seems reads as a bit too tech nerd in terms of platform design to me but I should probably give it a proper go at some point.
The main downside of Inoreader is that they just changed their free account so that it maxes out at 150 blogs. Feedly does not seem to have that problem.
It is unfortunate that Inoreader seems to have decided crippling the free version is a way to build customer base. I imagine there will always be more flexible, free alternatives.