What Is The Dork Web?

People used to subscribe to mailing lists like NTK and B3ta to discover sites and content. Social media platforms displaced them, but these were closed gardens. Their recommendation algorithms convinced people that all the good content is in the closed gardens, and that nothing exists outside.

There exists a world outside of the walled gardens. A place where the wild things are. Where every day is cyberpunk, where hax are still for fun and you’re more than the number of likes your latest post received. This place is the dork web. It’s not quite the dark web, and by god is it geeky. Holy sh*t is it geeky. Want to give it a try? Here’s a sample of what to expect:

So What’s This About?

Every fortnight I send a newsletter with links to obscure tech subcultures, wacky cyberpunk hax and the best of other things I’ve seen online. There’s no algorithm, and I try to focus on communities that would otherwise rarely see the light of day.

Even numbered issues are themed. Odd numbered ones aren’t. If you like obscure geekery, weird machines and music and video from my bubble (which is probably not entirely like yours), then give it a go.

How Do I Use This? (Aka Jeez that’s a lot of links)

First add the email as a safe sender. Star or flag the email when it arrives so you can easily reach it later. Don’t go through all the links at once, that way lies madness. Have a skim, pick out the bits that interest you and leave it.

The next time you’re on the loo, commuting or feel like checking social media open up the mail and try a link you haven’t read even if it doesn’t look interesting. There’s enough links to last a couple of weeks. Keep at it. You’ll find you spend less time getting angry on the Internet and more time recapturing the joy of how the Internet was meant to be.

Hopefully you’ll enjoy The Dork Web. If you don’t, you can always unsubscribe. The walled gardens will still be there. The Dork Web cares not for your clicks, nor your attention to sell you ads. The Dork Web only cares for it’s readers.

Rights, Attribution and Syndication

I contact and attribute artists in each issue where there isn’t an otherwise permissive licence, or where otherwise practical. Sometimes I can’t find contact details, sometimes things are reposted by third-parties under permissive licences. Substack’s constraints mean sometimes things are lost in edit or moved to later issues. Mistakes happen, lets work them out. If you feel misrepresented or unrepresented, email me at thedorkweb at substack dot com.

Legally I own the words I write. You can use these words in almost any way you see fit, quoting and remixing sections for non-commercial purposes. Acknowledgement and a link back is appreciated but not essential for personal use.

If you run ads on your blog or if you want to use these words in an otherwise commercial context then contact me for approval before publishing. I’m in favour of syndication across most outlets but while I own the words I don’t own all the pictures. Create a draft, send it to me with some context, and we can talk about what fits in your publication. There are no fees where syndication has been approved.