How do I shake up my bookmarks?
October 27, 2017 10:16 AM   Subscribe

I’m in a rut as to the web sites I regularly visit. Help me find better internets to read.

I reflexively go to Huffington Post for political news and a few other sites that I know aren’t contributing to happiness in my life (all Trump, all the time) or providing me important information. I gravitate towards liberal politics, history and off-the-wall fun sites (thank you everlasting blort). I avoid celebrity and entertainment.

I’m not just looking for web site suggestions, but a way to discover sites I may have an interest in.
posted by jabo to Computers & Internet (17 answers total) 68 users marked this as a favorite
I continue to love Dreamwidth, although it's slow. It's a Livejournal code fork blogging site; it's never hit the critical activity level to jump into the regulars' "online home," but it stays active enough to keep us coming back. Its most active comm is probably scans_daily, which leans strongly liberal and intersectional, while focusing on (obviously) comic books & comics news.

For entertainment and new ideas, I occasionally check out Kickstarter projects ending soon. I have acquired far too many weird dice over the last couple of years.

Zompist is a language-focused website with a strong conlang section; its Language Construction Kit is both entertaining and educational.

Extra Credits is a series about game design theory that's terrific if you play video games at all, even if you know nothing about design. They have a spinoff series: Extra History, that's also delightful. If you like those, you might look into Nostalgia Critic and Game Theorists.

Continuing the Youtubery, there's also the Liberal Redneck, which is political, and WTFIWWY (What the fuck is wrong with you?), which reacts to recent news events.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 11:08 AM on October 27, 2017 [4 favorites]

You can give Stumble Upon a try. I used it back in the day and it was a plugin for your browser. Click it, and it jumps to a random site. Keep clicking until you find something you like. I'm not quite sure exactly how it works now (I don't have a current login).
posted by hydra77 at 11:29 AM on October 27, 2017

Are you familiar with Feedly, the RSS feed reader? Even if you don't use it to stay on top of your daily feeds, they have a search function with hashtags and recommendations based on categories.
posted by Leontine at 11:36 AM on October 27, 2017 [5 favorites]

Like much of MeFi, I am a devoted reader of Atlas Obscura.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:37 AM on October 27, 2017 [9 favorites]

The New Yorker offers some fantastic writing and I recently decided to get a subscription for the magazine to support them.

I don't visit websites so much as I just use Twitter. It might be worth joining and following people who have similar interests or are journalists/authorities in the areas you are interested in. That's the best way for me to find articles and news I care about. When I can't be checking Twitter all day, I use Nuzzel to see what was shared most among the people I follow. For instance, I am also into liberal politics so I follow some journalists for left-leaning publications. I love soccer so I follow a ton of soccer journalists. You don't need to tweet yourself to use Twitter.
posted by AppleTurnover at 11:52 AM on October 27, 2017

I also recommend Feedly or a similar RSS reader. It lets you subscribe to a whole bunch of different blogs (BTW, The History Blog is the best history blog, in case you don't have that one yet) and other sources, plus you can categorize them and apply filters and stuff.

And, as you go along, Feedly will make suggestions of related sites that you can subscribe to, so you're likely to end up with too big a feed before long.

So I have a category for "Politics" that I just don't read on days I'm not up to it. Alternately, I could filter out 'Trump' and see if there was anything left.

I also have categories for long reads, culture, arts, technology, and things like that, and as I discover new sources, I can just add them to the appropriate categories and they'll show up in my feed. And of course, if I really am only up to reading about art or music or film (that one's been hairy of late, though), I can just read those sections and ignore the rest.

For kind of generic recommendations, I'd suggest Hilowbrow, Atlas Obscura, and to toss in a dark horse, Public Domain Review.
posted by ernielundquist at 11:57 AM on October 27, 2017 [1 favorite]

There's a Chrome extension called "Random Bookmark".
posted by humboldt32 at 12:00 PM on October 27, 2017 [1 favorite]

Lapham's Quarterly has a, well, quarterly selection of usually bizarre and erudite things.

Longreads publishes original journalism as well as collecting some of the best longform journalism from around the net.
posted by tofu_crouton at 12:07 PM on October 27, 2017 [6 favorites]

The popular page on Pinboard.

Allmyfaves - most categories on the front page contain the same links. But there is a Weekly section and lots of other tabs to explore.
Popurls (now owned
Hvper (made by Thomas Marban who created Popurls)

You don't need to join these sites to use the pages, but you can and usually that lets you customize them even more.
posted by soelo at 12:09 PM on October 27, 2017 [2 favorites]

Here's an inverse suggestion: cut the sites that don't bring you joy out of your life. Tools like LeechBlock or StayFocusd let you set configurable time limits and will get you out of the repetitive habit of opening a new tab to revisit the site you just left...

(Also: Kottke is a site that I have consistently enjoyed for more than a decade...)
posted by space_lab at 1:29 PM on October 27, 2017 [4 favorites]

old school: Bifurcated Rivets
posted by j_curiouser at 1:51 PM on October 27, 2017 [1 favorite]

facebook is deservedly reviled, but. I have liked Times of London, London Review of Books, Indian Times, Irish Times, The Scotsman, Chicago Trib., WaPo, NYT, etc. There's a page that posts art - Way to Blue - that is wonderful, and also Art Institute of Chicago, Metropolitan Museum NY, MFA Boston, other museums, etc., Harpers, Atlantic, lefty mags and a couple conservative mags to see what they're up to. Whatever fb uses for algorithms are sucky, the interface is wretched and induces swearing, and I often have to go like stuff to bring stuff back in to my feed, but it's lively and interesting.

This is colossal is worth visiting, Guardian, Buzzfeed, Lifehacker, Jezebel, and our own into disuse) are all on my bookmarks bar.

This is a regular question on Ask.Me, and always interesting. thanks.
posted by theora55 at 3:12 PM on October 27, 2017 [2 favorites]

I've been a reader of TYWKIWDBI ("Tai-Wiki-Widbee") (or Things You Wouldn't Know If We Didn't Blog Intermittently) almost from the first post, and it is always one of the first links I restore on a new computer. The owner, Minnesotastan, scares me every now and again by threatening to retire from blogging, and he does takes blogcations from time to time, but I find it worthwhile to keep checking back.

He describes his blog as "an eclectic mix of trivialities, ephemera, curiosities, and exotica with a smattering of current events, social commentary, science, history, English language and literature, videos, and humor. We try to be the cyberequivalent of a Victorian cabinet of curiosities." I find it smart, interesting and a good antidote to really bad days. Unlike many blogs, the archives are just as interesting as the new stuff.
posted by faineant at 7:40 PM on October 27, 2017 [1 favorite]

Hyperallergic if you enjoy art, culture, and the political components of those.

Super old school and still great: Coudal Partners' Fresh Signals.

The Bitter Southerner for nonfiction about the contemporary American South.
posted by Miko at 8:44 AM on October 28, 2017

I've been browsing Arts & Letters Daily, well, daily for almost ten years now. Even if the literary/humanities bent of it is not your cup of tea, it's still a wonderfully curated discovery tool for publications that make their material freely available online.
posted by desultory_banyan at 11:05 AM on October 28, 2017

For a quick political overview, I check Raw Story, which aggregates stories from sites such as Newsweek, Alternet, Al Jazeera, and others, plus original reporting on the liberal side.

nthing The Bitter Southerner but it's only once a week (Tue.)
posted by MovableBookLady at 11:35 AM on October 28, 2017

Hacker news, metafilter, somethingawful and reddit - between these four I find tons of content, more than I know what to do with.
posted by amitai at 1:31 PM on November 1, 2017

« Older Ford Transit   |   Best practices for modest smartphone security? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.