Pathfinders Podcast explores weird online communal gardens

A new episode of the Pathfinders Podcast is now available wherever you get your podcasts. In the latest episode, we dance with the question: How do we nurture weird online communal gardens where we can play together?

In this lunation cycle, we wanted to step off the AI hype train and turn our attention to online communal gardens. The online spaces that were supposed to make it easier for us to connect and collaborate, but are now being overgrown by AI-generated content and trampled upon by bots, which makes it increasingly harder to plant the seeds of collaboration we need to explore paths to better tech futures together. 

We begin unpacking our guiding question by exploring the connection between weirdness and playfulness as prerequisites for learning. We embrace the background playfulness of our kids and cats as we wonder why existing online communities feel increasingly exhausting. We examine business models and myths that reward and worship scale above all else, and incentivise weirdness that provokes reaction instead of weirdness that inspires wonder. 

In the second part of our conversation, we turn our attention to conditions we might need to nurture for weird online communal gardens to emerge, both as stewards and as participants. We wonder whether the answer lies in switching from machine-scale attention marketplaces to (human) body-scale gardens that better support smaller groups, playing together, and embracing physical constraints and friction.

You can find the full episode notes on Substack.

About the podcast

Pathfinders Podcast is a podcast for wondering wanderers, eager to explore paths to better tech futures, together. Each podcast episode is a meandering exploration inspired by the seeds planted in our Pathfinders Newmoonsletter at the beginning of the lunation cycle, and the paths illuminated during our Full Moon Gathering.

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