Where do the digerati go when their bandwidth is low?
June 1, 2020 2:17 PM   Subscribe

Sometimes I spend several days at places with dialup-quality internet. No Netflix? Fine. But I feel cut off from news (24-hr talking heads on satellite TV are no substitute) and relevant (and sometimes frivolous) discussion. I basically live off of MeFi and https://text.npr.org . Where else can I go?
posted by Monochrome to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Hacker News
posted by sacrifix at 2:32 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]

Some parts of Reddit are quiet and well moderated. /r/TrueReddit is a good stating place.

Then maybe look for smaller low-traffic subreddits specific to your hobbies or interests. If you are near a larger city then a city or region-specific forum is a good choice too (but will probably be a bit noisier and lower in usefulness)
posted by JoeZydeco at 3:47 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]

There's a text only CNN.
posted by sammyo at 5:32 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]

BBC on shortwave radio.
posted by zippy at 6:33 PM on June 1

If you find the non-toxic parts of Reddit, it works well enough on low bandwidth, especially if you open a sub's front page and open anything of interest in a background tab. By the point you get to the bottom of the main page, the first couple tabs will have loaded and by the time you read and interact in them, the rest will have loaded as well.

Usenet can still be useful on dialup if you can find a still active community that's of interest to you.
posted by Candleman at 8:10 PM on June 1 [2 favorites]

Strange Horizons.
posted by brainwane at 8:23 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]

This is left field, but it may be prudent to do the backup reading for the news - consider those handful of days time to crash course the backup material. I keep being given book recommendations about race in America (I'm in Australia) and it would be a blessing to have time away from the constant demands of online news to actually get into them. That way, when you return, your part of the discussion doesn't need to be frivolous. It'll still be there and your part of the discussion will be better for the time away from the bleeding edge of the news cycle.
posted by Jilder at 9:15 PM on June 1 [2 favorites]

Seconding Jilder. One of the major issues of the 24 hour news cycle is that depth and nuance fall by the wayside. Use your time in low-bandwith spaces to read books (that you download during times of good Internet) on topics and themes that will help you understand the background of what's being reported on now.
posted by Tamanna at 5:39 AM on June 2

To further JLider and Tamanna's points, I like to save longform journalism to Pocket to read on flights and other places where wifi is unavailable.
posted by Brittanie at 12:04 PM on June 2 [2 favorites]

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