Introducing Age of Transformation on Ghost

You can now make that two collapse-related blogs/newsletters on the open source, non-profit publishing platform Ghost

If you're thinking about starting up a new blog/newsletter but don't think there's too much to consider besides "what platform are most other people currently using?", well, there's a reason why the saying goes "there's a sucker born every minute".

There's a lot to unpack there, far too much for the purposes of this quick little post. Nonetheless, it's fair to say that investigative journalist Nafeez Ahmed had in fact given the notion of publication platforms a bit of thought when in June of 2019 he put out the feelers on LinkedIn, looking for some assistance in migrating his then-publications to WordPress.

It's true that similar to the publishing platforms Medium, Substack, beehiiv and others,'s parent company, Automattic, has in fact also taken funding from various venture capitalist firms (to the tune of several hundred million dollars, no less). That this can be an issue is due to the fact that, by nature, external funders inherently expect a return on their investments, and at some point may resort to leaning on the platform's founders/maintainers in order to implement various measures (which can prove disruptive to the reading experience or even antithetical to publishing itself) in order to achieve those returns. However, and unlike the other mentioned platforms, it can at least be said that the WordPress platform itself is released as open source software and so bestows upon users the capacity to own their content as well as to fully control it (within the strictures of the Internet itself, of course).

That being said, and to go along with the technical debt that WordPress has accrued since its emergence in 2003, the fact that WordPress is used by nearly half of all websites on the Internet and so must cater to all their various whims (via the requirement of a plugin architecture) has led to it become bloated, unwieldy, convoluted, all too vulnerable to security risks, and – simply put – a pain in the ass to use.

So although there was no way in hell that yours truly was about to offer assistance with getting set up on WordPress, it just so happened that yours truly was already very well versed with – and was already utilising – the publishing platform Ghost. Founded by WordPress' former deputy head of UI, Ghost not only has the benefit of being open source software like WordPress, but unlike all the aforementioned platforms it's run by a non-profit that hasn't taken a cent from venture capitalists. By design it therefore can't be sold to a Google or a Facebook – or even a Space Karen – and nor can its principles and/or architectural design be hijacked by the whims of venture capitalists out for little else but to make a (sometimes quick) buck. Moreover, and unlike WordPress, Ghost has been created specifically to do one thing – and one thing only – really, really well. Publishing.

Ghost: The Creator Economy Platform
The world’s most popular modern publishing platform for creating a new media platform. Used by Apple, SkyNews, Buffer, Kickstarter, and thousands more.

So after several stops and starts (SARS-CoV-2 has certainly made the past few years rather "fun"), as well as the retirement of the sites mentioned in that screenshot above, supposing you haven't seen it yet then please do take a look at Nafeez's new publication – on Ghost – Age of Transformation.

Age of Transformation
Systems thinking for the global phase-shift

Although the majority of the site's design and construction (but not the artwork) was done by yours truly, it can't go without saying that without the assistance of friend and colleague in all things Ghost, Vikas Potluri (whose assistance has meant the application of his wide breadth of knowledge with Ghost itself, JavaScript in general, server maintenance, etc.), that little to none of this would have been possible. In fact, so instrumental has Vikas been that earlier this year he single-handedly put together the brand new integration for Ghost, Discourse on Ghost.

Discourse on Ghost
Add Ghost-based SSO to Discourse

With this new integration available on not only Age of Transformation (AoT) but From Filmers to Farmers (FF2F) as well, what this means is that no longer are readers required to create separate accounts in order to leave comments (via the forum software used for commenting purposes, Discourse), because by signing up to AoT or FF2F (on Ghost) an account for commenting is automatically created over on the associated "forum" as well.

Having explained all that, it could be said then that stages one and two have now been completed and that stage three has just begun, all of which contributes to the plausibility of a stage four. "What are all those stages?", you might be asking.

Well, let's say that stage one was the (inadvertent) creation of FF2F's hand-coded site, stage two was FF2F's migration to Ghost, and stage three has only just begun via the launch of AoT on Ghost (and the quasi migration of INSURGE intelligence to Ghost as well, since all its posts have been migrated over for archival purposes). If you're catching the drift, yes, stage three isn't completed just yet, what with there being plenty of other collapse-related blogs/newsletters (and even SARS-CoV-2-related blogs/newsletters) that could be migrated over from WordPress, Blogger, Substack, Medium, Patreon, etc., to Ghost.

In fact, if you know of a collapse/pandemecine blog/newsletter that you'd particularly like to see on Ghost and for it to receive the "AoT package" (pro bono migration from WordPress, Blogger, Substack, Medium, Patreon, etc., to Ghost and Discourse, plus design/creation of a custom theme), then have them reach out via yours truly's "Ghost Experts" page.

Allan Stromfeldt Christensen
Open source technology for fiercely independent publishers. Use Ghost to run a modern publication where you own the platform & control your content

In terms of the fourth stage, well, that'll be kept under wraps for now, although if you're astute enough you might be able to put a few things together in order to discern what that might be.

Otherwise, with the launch of AoT now out of the way and a few other loose ends having been tied up, it's now time to once again give FF2F a bit of a jump-start. So look out in the coming weeks and months for several long-form posts, ranging from pieces on how the film industry's diversity measures are inadvertently leading to the destruction of non-anthropocentric diversity, on the impending American civil war, on a certain collapse writer's piss-poor takes on masking (as the pandemecine sets in), an overview of the first 50 years of the Limits to Growth and what its next 50 years might portend, on the fate of skyscrapers, if time permits a post about Substack and why many of its users might end up falling under the rubric of "a sucker born every minute", and, when finishing it off is warranted, a (Dr. Pooper Papers) piece about virtue signalling with one's asshole.

While Woolworths was (quite obviously) already full of crap, it looks like they've recently decided to make it official

And, once much of that is out of the way, some posts on the upcoming H5N1 pandemic (coming to you live, September 2024!).

A former filmmaker, now jawboning on the collapse of industrial civili­s­a­tion and the renewal of culture. .