People Like Looking At Old Things

Film (analogue) photographs do very well on Instagram. I think it’s partly because people enjoy the feeling of nostalgia the get from looking at them.

There’s always talk of the ‘soul’ of film – the colours, or something, that gives the photos something special.

Photos of vintage things also do well, whether taken with a digital or film camera. A photo of the vintage Canon AE-1 that I took on film is one of the most successful I’ve ever posted on Instagram. Successful in terms of likes and engagement.

I’m not sure “nostalgia” is the correct word for everyone. For people 30 years old and up, yes, maybe. They’re old enough to remember the film-only days. All their childhood photos were taken on film.

For people under that age though, especially the 15-25 demographic that are really into their film photography, I’m not quite sure what it is. Could it be the joy of discovering a more tangible form of photography in the digital age? Is it a retrospective fashion fad? Is it simply the Instagram effect? Who knows.

The phenomenon isn’t lost on retailers. There are stores now that specialise in vintage stuff. Not actual vintage-vintage, but faux vintage. They build cameras to resemble cameras of the past – but with none of the craftsmanship or longevity. They’ve created an entire industry from this stuff – faux vintage cameras, vinyl players, books, clothes and shoes.

You can even see its influence in the design aesthetics of the Fuji and Olympus mirrorless cameras. The Fujifilm X100 series became a runaway success due to the vintage film rangefinder era aesthetics.

Having said that, I find that a lot of the youth having dabbled in the faux stuff for a while become dissatisfied and seek out the real vintage stuff. There are countless stories of people that started off using one of those Fuji cameras, but went on to buy a vintage Canon, Olympus or Yashica film camera.

I get a number of them contacting me privately on Instagram with questions that I’m always very pleased to answer if I can.

Testing Scheduling

Today is Thursday the 20th. You are reading this “tomorrow” on Friday the 21st of June, a.k.a. “today”. So basically from your point of view, I “was” writing this “yesterday”. How’s that to kick off your Solstice?

You guessed it! This is yet another Steem Blockchain test. In this one, I am testing the scheduling function on WordPress. Every WordPress site has the function that allows posting at a future time/date. In essence, I could write a week’s worth of posts and schedule one to post each day of the week.

As you read this, if indeed you’re reading this on the 21st, I am most probably attending the London Steemians Meetup in Kensington, organised by the awesome @redrica. This would normally mean I’d not be able to post anything through the day, so what a perfect time to test this function!

I have also gotten a suggestion from the SteemPress team about how to fix my banner that fails to propagate to Steem. It has been suggested that I change the Markdown format to HTML and see what happens.

Scheduling already exists in some of the dapps on the blockchain, I must mention. eSteem definitely has it, so even if you don’t have a WordPress site like me, you could use eSteem to achieve the same thing.

I am fairly confident that this will work as intended. I am slightly less confident about the banner, however, but I guess we shall find out tomorrow. Or “today”.

The Future Of Monetisation Is Here

This is yet another Steem Blockchain related post. In this post I’m going to be testing to see if by using the “palnet” tag here on a WordPress site, the post is propagated all the way to the Palnet.io Steem Blockchain condenser.

Palnet.io is a new (at the point of writing this) Steem based dapp that employs its own token, PAL, to reward content. Palnet.io is, however, plugged into the Steem Blockchain much like other Steem dapps, and any content created using that condenser is available to other Steem condensers.

The reverse is not necessarily true though. In order for a post to appear on Palnet.io, the “palnet” tag must be included in the post. It needs not be the first one, it just needs to be one of the allowed five.

The test is thus quite a simple one – I will be using said “palnet” tag. We already know that posts propagate relatively well to the Steem Blockchain with the included tags. I am expecting this to happen seamlessly.

In which case, consider a time when multiple blockchains implement this technology. I imagine having several blockchains able to reward posts, and having your content propagated to their dapp simply by the use of a tag and a WordPress plugin. The same post made on a WordPress website has the possibility of being automatically published across multiple locations, each with its own monetary incentives.

In the old/present paradigm, most monetised websites are relying on advertising programs such as Adsense or affiliate marketing. Under this system, the most valuable thing is traffic. The higher traffic to your website, the better chance of earnings. In the tokenised future, the potential is limitless. In that world, community would supersede traffic as the desired thing.

That future has arrived, even if only at its infancy. We’ve had it on the Steem Blockchain for 3 years. Soon enough, the rest of the world will start paying attention.