It's not obvious, but if you want to live forever you should start a newsletter.
Why? Because as this essay explains, media sets the agenda for society. And society doesn't think aging is a disease. That's why the entire medical establishment is only treating the downstream symptoms of aging, rather than aging itself. However, changing course requires a wholly new story, and we can't rely on legacy media corporations to provide it. We're going to need an entirely fresh cohort of people in the writers' room. That'll mean technological progressives from around the world, running a thousand individual newsletters, constantly pushing for technology in general and reversing aging in particular, writing like their lives depended on it. In other words, blog or die!
Amazingly, the technology to reverse aging may already exist, at least in part. There are enough different promising results to start pushing hard. The blocker now is society, it's policy, it's ideology, and most of all it's media infrastructure.
Specifically, if we can organize a few thousand anti-aging activists with their own newsletters, social media channels, and (literal) never-say-die attitude, we can start putting this on the agenda of the founders, funders, writers, and regulators around the world. We appear to have inspired one; with the task at the bottom of this post perhaps we can inspire ten more.
It'll be a big lift. We're talking about reversing a multi-generational slowdown in ambition and biomedical innovation, visualized in part by Eroom's law:
All of that means content creation: writing, yes, but also podcasts, videos, games, memes, movies, the works. Newsletters are a good place to start because they can be the conduit for everything else. And that newsletter should be at a domain you control, because over time we may need the full panoply of crypto-based censorship-resistant technologies to get around the informational blockades.
Why? Well, on biomedical matters in particular, third-party services have made themselves enforcers of an ever-shifting conventional wisdom:
There's no doubt that genuine breakthroughs on life extension will be subject to similar noise as the whole COVID situation, and we'll need both technological megaphones and microscopes to arrive at decentralized truth. Megaphones to make sure we can't be censored, and microscopes to make sure our facts are rigorously accurate.
With regards to uncensorable megaphones, in later tasks we may explore going full crypto, with decentralized domains, hosting, payments, and maybe even some fancier stuff. And with respect to unimpeachable microscopes, we're probably going to need to reinvent scientific communication of the raw data required to make the case for a technical proposition, via the ledger of record plus reproducible research or something like it (1, 2, 3, 4).
But step one is to start building your voice.
Sovereignty starts with a site
If you haven't already done so, go set up a newsletter at your own domain, one that allows you to get in touch with your readers via the original decentralized protocol (email!). Let’s call it a blog, but it’s really more than a blog - it’s your homestead on the internet.
Here are three we recommend:
- Ghost. Probably the best new blogging software out there, with v4.0 recently released. Because Ghost is open source, you can start with their hosted solution at ghost.org, and later self-host using something like cloudron.io. We wrote a detailed tutorial on registering a domain and setting up Ghost at your domain using their hosted offering.
- Substack with custom domain. Even though Substack is very much a centralized platform and does not currently have an open source offering, it (a) allows you to use your own domain and (b) allows you to export all your emails and content. So in a pinch, you can move from Substack to your own site, and there are even tutorials on how to do that.
- Wordpress. This is the oldie-but-goodie, a battle-tested piece of software that combines a hosted offering at wordpress.com and an open source version at wordpress.org. Here's how to get set up with a custom domain in Wordpress. You can then use one of their plugins to get started with a newsletter.
If you just want one recommendation, do this detailed tutorial for Ghost. Some of the screens will look a little different because Ghost 4.0 just came out.
✅ Task: Earn $100 in BTC
Set up a newsletter at your domain with content for technological progressives
Once you've set up your site, or if you already have one, submit the form below. You'll earn $100 in BTC if we think it's pretty good and if it has content that helps advance technological progress. That means it should have at least a few posts! Not necessarily just on aging, but on the kinds of things that technological progressives are interested in. For inspiration, check out these sites:
Submit a link to your site below and we'll pay prizes for the 10 best submissions. For extra credit, put up a post that updates the Ghost tutorial for version 4.0 and tell us you did in comments.
🏆 Winners: Best Newsletter
The following ten newsletters received $100 in Bitcoin for their coverage of technological progress. Go check them out!