Because I like to do things by standards, I’ve been poking around with the current (sad) state of things in social media. @datagrok (whose tilde name I have forgotten) mentioned which looks pretty good (technically; content-wise it’s basically everybody who’s been booted from Twitter). That led me down a rabbithole which I’m going to document here more for my own future reference than because I think it will entertain my imaginary readers.


This is the standard that GnuSocial is based on, and it looks okay except that its migration onto W3C was left half-finished… in 2012.

Activity Streams

This is JSON, and looks somewhat promising (and more actively developed, FWIW).


This isn’t specific to social media, I just happened to find it before Activity Streams.

This looks something like what I’ve been trying to do, so definitely something to look into deeper. The implementation is all Ruby, so not really something I can contribute to directly (unless I decide to take up Ruby, which might not be a bad thing). But my specialty has always been interfacing things that aren’t supposed to work together, so maybe I can figure out how to tie it into non-compatible sites (or actively anti-compatible sites like Facebook).

Salmon Protocol

Inter-site commenting.


Another way to be discoverable. (Sadly, the problem is usually how to discover things in silos. Still, it’s something we should publish even if we can’t depend on it being there for consumption.)


On that note, FOAF is an older (but still currently maintained) standard for that.


The thing that led me to hunt down JSON API was that REST implies the need for generic clients to be able to discover everything in the API. For that to really work (beyond just basically spidering the site) you need a defined schema, which JSON-LD (Linked Data) is another stab at. So on the list it goes.


Good gravy. When everything is a “standard,” nothing is.