Will the IndieWeb Ever Become Mainstream?

Jeremy Sarber recently asked a question in response to my AMA; whether I think the IndieWeb will ever become mainstream. Here’s my answer…

This is an interesting question, thanks for asking it, Jeremy. I do have some history with the IndieWeb, and some opinions, so let’s dive in.

The short answer to the question is a resounding no, and it all boils down to the fact that the IndieWeb is really complicated to implement, so it will only ever appeal to developers.

How can it be fixed?

I’m not sure it can to be honest. When I removed the IndieWeb from this site I was able to delete 7 plugins, all of which have a different function in the IndieWeb ecosystem.

There’s just so much to add in terms of markup, post types and front-end work to display it all, the whole thing gets messy, quick.

What we would need is a service that supports the IndieWeb out of the box. Micro.blog comes close, but when I tried it, it felt convoluted and disjointed to use.

I think the convoluted nature of Micro.blog is because it’s integrated with the IndieWeb, so that makes it inherently more complicated to use.

Overall I think the IndieWeb is a great idea on the surface, but it has been poorly implemented.

Unless something drastic changes with the fundamental makeup of the IndieWeb, I don’t think it will ever gain anything close to mass adoption. Maybe if WordPress picked it up and rolled into the system by default, then it would have a chance; but short of that, I don’t see it happening.

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