Deciding the internet doesn’t need a public log of everything I posted all the way back to high school

A friend recently batch-locked a bunch of their older posts — not inspired by any specific bit of harassment, just a general feeling of being Too Exposed On The Internet — and it got me itching to do the same.

I mean, good grief, I’ve had a WordPress blog since 2008, and a Dreamwidth journal since 2009 — which includes crossposted entries from Livejournal dating all the way back to 2003.

There’s not any specific bit of Youthful Miscreance, either, that I’m afraid some bad actor will dig out and then blow up on Twitter…but I’m not gonna sit down and comb through it all to double-check, you know?

WordPress makes it pretty easy to select large batches of posts and mass-edit the settings. (“Friends only” isn’t an option here, just Public or Private.) There’s probably a paid way to make it even easier, but the free way served me well enough.

I set everything pre-2020 (slightly over a thousand updates) to Private, then batch-unlocked stuff from certain categories. Mostly all those music recs posts I did, and the Burns & Allen transcripts I want to keep available as a resource for other fans. A couple of reaction posts to different books/TV. A couple of cat posts.

Dreamwidth lets you mass-access-change all the posts in a certain date range…if you have a paid account. They’re also doing their December end-of-year sale. So I figured it was the right time to pick one up.

I set every post before 2020 (also just over a thousand — mostly crossposted between there and WP, but not all) to Access List Only. Unlocking sub-selections of posts is a more tedious process there, so I only did it for the few that I definitely want to keep available for total strangers — that is, every older post in the “Yuletide” tag, and, again, a few cute posts in the “cats” tag.

Anything else I said, in any of those posts, that’s still important and valuable for people to read in the 2020’s…I’ll just have to say it again in the 2020’s.

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