“It is the ability for information to be useful both now and in the future that counts. And it is our emotions that tell what is valuable for our survival and well-being.”
— Abbey Smith Rumsey, When We Are No More
“[The social web has] now narrowed the possibilites of the web for an entire generation of users who don’t realize how much more innovative and meaningful their experience could be.”
— Anil Dash
The Museum of the Lost Web is a living archive of the small online communities that shaped the development of so many of today’s internet users.
Chatrooms, forums, message boards and comment sections pervade the memories of millennials who grew up making friends, sharing art, and gaining new interests in the 90s and 00s on the nascent internet.
Before the dawn of the social web, people with shared interests or backgrounds would create and populate customized, bespoke spaces to connect with others. From BBS to Geocities to Yahoo Groups, thousands of individualized communities sprang into existence like flames, and were often extinguished just as fast by the never-slowing march of progress. Formats and standards died and were replaced, and people moved from site to site, often leaving their former online “homes” to fall into digital disrepair.
The Museum of the Lost Web aims to catalogue and preserve the treasured memories of the lost unknown, the defunct and the decayed of the web.
The Museum encourages those of the first generation of digital natives to tell their own stories, and preserve their own digital histories.
Enjoy exploring the Museum!