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Is planned obsolescence real?

CATEGORY / Trade AUTHOR / Tio DATE / 19/04/2015
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Author: Tio and Colin

Due largely to the economics education administered in schools, many people have become familiar with the concept of the Law of Supply and Demand.  This concept is heavily discussed in schools across the world and is often depicted as the lifeblood of the economy in a capitalistic monetary system.  It is said to be the backbone which holds up its very structure.  We are also taught that the health of the economy is dependent on consumer spending and that without it, the economy would stagnate.  Without consumer spending, the whole money system would fail; this would have disastrous effects on many areas of social life that make our lives convenient and comfortable.  However, this is only partially true.  Forget what you were told about economics in school.  ‘The Law of Supply and Demand’ does not exist - it’s a myth.  Allow me to explain.

When people buy products, the respective businesses and corporations experience an increase in sales and revenue.  This signals to them that their products are in demand.  The revenue generated from sales enables these businesses to pay their employees, who then spend that money on more goods and services provided to them by other businesses and corporations, and these establishments begin to create more goods and services in anticipation that customers will continue to buy (supply).  It’s a cyclical process.  However, in truth, demand is an illusion.  Think about it… factories do not produce goods in order to keep up with a real-time demand.

        When a person wants a car, auto manufacturers and dealerships do not assemble one for the customer made-to-order.  The cars are already made, despite there being a demand or not.  This holds true with every product on the market.  Toy factories do not wait to assemble children’s toys until a parent requests one, any more than cell phone companies wait for a customer to request a new cell phone to be made.  Therefore, what is referred to as "demand" is actually a model, based primarily on past sales trends, that predicts future sales without anticipating any unexpected socioeconomic changes that could potentially disrupt business.  If suddenly the people stopped buying a particular item, thousands upon thousands of products could find their way to a landfill.  This is because machines in most modern facilities are automated and are only designed to create a product and work continuously, not account for actual demand.  If demand were accurate, there would be no reason to discard perfectly good merchandise.  Everything would be accounted for (unless the product was defective).

The idea of working to eliminate waste is not really considered at all by corporations.  The money that will be made from selling products is the goal, while waste is only minimized out of fear of wasteful spending (reduction of profit).  Factors like environmental impact of waste handling, product necessity, or improvements and upgrades are not considered in evaluating the consequences of waste.  This is because corporations want to ensure constant revenue.  This means corporations have to find ways of persuading consumers to continue buying their products, which also increases the demand for their products.  This demand is artificially created in several ways: through planned obsolescence (products with short lifespans), by trying to manipulate public opinion through advertising (people who buy things are happy, beautiful, and fulfilled), by pulling at emotional strings or selling fear (fashion and beauty products), and by anyone else pushing hard to make a buck (Reebok’s Easy-Tone Shoe Line).  That is putting it as simply as I can.

One of the most common ways of ensuring that customers keep spending money is through planned obsolescence.  For those who are not familiar with this notion, planned obsolescence is the idea (or method) of purposely designing a product to wear down, break, lack compatibility with other devices, and/or become obsolete or out-of-fashion after a relatively short period of time.  In other words, if I make a smartphone, I will design it so it breaks down after—lets say—one year or so, which means that you’ll need to buy a new one from me every year.  This way, I can keep my business flowing by making and selling more smartphones.  I could also make the smartphone non-upgradeable, so that when a new camera comes out, you cannot replace your smartphone’s camera with the new one.  You will have to buy an entire new smartphone instead.

Another type of planned obsolescence is to make a product seem out of fashion.  For instance, I can advertise my new phone to look superior to the old one and make the old one look awful, even though there is little difference between their functionalities.

We are all familiar with seeing a new smartphone coming out every six months to a year, but is this all part of some shady plan to keep consumers buying products, or is it just a normal part of everyday business?

Let’s see.

I started to think about this when I realized how slow all my new computers had become after just one year of use.  It did not matter which operating system was installed, they just became slower and slower in a very short period of time.  

One time, I attempted to disassemble my HP laptop to clean it of the dust that accumulated  inside and often caused overheating.  I started the job, and soon I realized I needed two types of screwdrivers.  A minute later, that had increased to five different types of screwdrivers because the screws were all different types.  I ended up using no fewer than eight different screwdrivers to access the cooler.  Luckily for me, my father had all the screwdrivers in the world, even for screws that are not even invented yet :).  But I was shocked because there is no reason at all in my mind to have all these different screws for the same purpose.  I later asked my father (an engineer) if these various types of screws serve different functions, and he, just as surprised as myself, said that they don't.

This got me thinking about other products.  I realized that old bicycles, such as the ones that my father has had since the 70’s, surpass the new 21th century bicycles that I had.  Though my father's bicycles were far older than mine, they require less maintenance than my "newer" bikes, which need repairs every few months after their first year of use.

Another example is with all the printers that I have had over the years.  I never understood why it often costs more to buy new ink cartridges than to buy a new printer with ink cartridges included.  Another issue is when one of the color cartridges became low on ink (but not entirely empty), it would prevent me from printing with any of the other colors…  That is either a very stupid design, or purposeful.  Additionally, some printer makers add a timer to their cartridges so they 'expire', even if there is still plenty of ink remaining. (source)

By the way, right now I am using an ASUS laptop (this model) in which I cannot access anything beyond the RAM and hard drive.  It is sealed completely.  So if I ever want to clean it from dust so it doesn't overheat, there is no way for me to do that or anything else except for exchanging RAM chips and hard drives.  Likewise, on my sister’s tablet, I had to resort to ‘non-official’ methods to manually upgrade its old, lagging Android operating system in order to make it compatible with the latest apps, because the company that made the tablet decided to make it non-upgradable.  

I first heard of the term “planned obsolescence” from Jacque Fresco in one of the Zeitgeist films, and I admit, it sounded a bit like a conspiracy theory to me.  I mean, is it really possible that this world is so awful that it creates products that break down on purpose for mere business profit?

Well, I did my own investigation and what I found was really surprising to me.

In 1924, when the American national automobile market began reaching saturation, the head of General Motors suggested to change the design of their cars each year in order to convince people to buy a new one every year.  This really sounds like a conspiracy theory, but it’s not.  The interesting part here is that this concept was borrowed from the bicycle industry, which was already using the same tactic.(source)

This idea turned out to be very profitable for GM, which surpassed every other automotive company on the market at the time.  Small companies could not keep up with this aggressive tactic, so they went bankrupt.  Henry Ford, a major name in car manufacturing at that time, did not agree with this practice.  He wanted to design simple and cost efficient cars.  But guess what?  General Motors surpassed Ford's sales in 1931 and became the dominant company in the industry thereafter.

That same year, another group of people, applying similar ideas of planned obsolescence, created light bulbs that were only designed to last 1000 hours.  They had nothing to lose or fear, I suppose, since they had not had any competition at all for the previous 20 years.  They were accused of holding back technological developments that could increase the lifespan of the light bulb.  What is amazing is that their association levied fines on their own member’s bulbs found to surpass the 1000-hour mark.  So if you tried to make a better light bulb, you were made to pay a fine.

The people behind this plan claimed that it was to optimize most bulbs, and that a longer lifetime could be obtained only at the expense of efficiency, since progressively more heat and less light is obtained as the lifespan is increased, resulting in wasted electricity.  Of course, some argued to the contrary. (source)

Ok, that may be true.  Maybe they really did need to limit light bulb life-spans in order to optimize their efficiency.  How should I know?  The main point here is to show that it is possible to intentionally design things to last only a certain amount of time before they break down.

In 1932, as a response to the first major depression, a type of crisis where the people’s invented game (the money game) doesn't work as planned, some proposed a plan that would have the government impose a legal obsolescence on consumer goods to stimulate and perpetuate consumption.

Brooks Stevens, "a major force in industrial design" (as New York Times describes him), later popularized this idea even more.  By his definition, planned obsolescence is "instilling in the buyer the desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary."

As Wikipedia states: “A common method of deliberately limiting a product's useful life is to use inferior materials in critical areas.” For instance, screws can be made with a soft metal that easily wears down, products that use batteries that cannot be easily replaced, or requiring batteries that are custom made and can only be replaced by a specific company (usually the original manufacturer).

“Planned obsolescence is sometimes achieved by placing a heat-sensitive component adjacent to a component that is expected to get hot.  A common example is LCD screens with heat-sensitive electrolytic capacitors placed next to power components that may warm up to 100 °C or hotter; this heat greatly reduces the lifespan of the electrolytic capacitor.  Often, the goal of these designs is to make the cost of repairs comparable to the replacement cost, or to prevent any form of servicing of the product at all.  In 2012, Toshiba was criticized for issuing cease-and-desist letters to the owner of a website that hosted its copyrighted repair manuals, to the detriment of the independent and home repair market.“ (source)

Did you know that Intel works on the production of the next generation of PC chips before it has even begun to market the last one it created? It is like they somehow know that people will buy the next one, too :). (source)

If you want to change your iPhone’s battery, you need a special screwdriver, because the battery is encased into the phone.  More than that, it’ll cost you around $79, just $20 short of the typical subsidized price for a new iPhone 5C.  Another thing that iPhone users complain about is that upgrading to a newer operating system on older iPhones makes them slower, and it is extremely difficult to revert back to the older, better-functioning software.  That is, it is better to buy the new iPhone if you want to upgrade. (source)

Of course I cannot tell for sure whether or not Apple is really engaging in “planned obsolescence”, but their product designs and actions arouse suspicion when you know they can be made better.

When a person purchases a computer, the buyer expects their investment to last for a few years, at least this was the case over the last decade or so.  But recently computer companies have stepped up their quotas and sales.  These days, computers need to be replaced at a far more rapid rate than in past years.  We are told that this is because the speed of innovation or technology is increasing so rapidly.  But again, this is only partially true.  Many programmers purposely make computer software which can only be run on certain operating systems.  Therefore, the consumer has no choice but to go out to the store and buy a brand-new computer, despite the fact that their old computer works just fine.  Computers are expensive and the annoyance of planned obsolescence turns out to be quite a financial disaster when a person wishes to upgrade their computer, but ends up having to purchase a brand-new one.

         If you have any experience with computers at all, you’re likely familiar with software updates.  Recently, I had to purchased a new Apple MacBook Pro.  I previously had the original MacBook, but in wishing to incorporate new programs into my old computer, such as Dragon Dictate, I was hit with the realization that my computer was far too outdated to support it.  Over the five years since I had purchased it, the Apple operating system had gone through “Snow Leopard” and “Tiger” versions, and had recently introduced “Lion”.  The programs I required were only available on the new Lion operating system.  However, because the operating system on my old laptop was non-upgradable, I had no choice but to purchase a whole new computer, even though there was absolutely nothing wrong with my old MacBook to begin with; it still runs fine to this day.  So the question is, why did Apple Computers need to upgrade through multiple operating systems? Why not simply continue to upgrade Snow Leopard and eliminate the need for all the excess waste resulting from outdated software, hardware, and even entire computers? The answer is again simple.  Apple Computers needs to constantly generate revenue to outdo their competitors.  This is a very smart business plan for corporations, but it is also extremely wasteful and unnecessarily complex, and is something that we can move past now due to what could be achieved with our present level of technology.

Of course it is sometimes hard, if not impossible, to tell when a company deliberately does something like this for profit.  I showed you some companies that are highly suspected of using planned obsolescence but don't admit it, but some other companies may be more open about the topic.  

Whatever the case may be, there is no doubt that this strategy can be very profitable for business and even harmful if not adopted, as one Canadian company learned firsthand.  The company built an armed vehicle for the Canadian army 14 years ago, and they did a pretty good job.  So good, in fact, that when they unveiled a more recent and improved model to the military, with the hopes of selling the new vehicles for a $2.1 billion contract, the Canadian army said 'we don't need them.  The old ones are quite good.' 🙂

That company lost 2.1 billion dollars because its’ products were too well-made.  So, it’s important to understand that, in today’s monetary system, a business can go bankrupt if they produce great products that do not need maintenance or replacement for many years.

The thing is, this idea of planned obsolescence cannot be properly defined because you cannot know the actual intent of companies.  They can adopt this strategy, while at the same time not admitting it.  How can you say to Apple that they are using this tactic when they use special screws for their cases, when they can say: “Well, that’s our design”?

At first I thought it might be just an idea with no real basis in reality, but now there is no doubt in my mind that planned obsolescence is just a marketing strategy that some, perhaps many, adopt.

When I look around, I see lots of cars and many new ones for sale, and I wonder what is so new about the new ones.  The same thing goes for computers, smartphones, and many other products.

All of the people that I know use their smartphones for simple internet services like facebook, email, and some other basic functions, not for resource-hungry games or apps, yet many usually buy the latest models.  Why are they replacing perfectly good smartphones every time a new one is released?

I used to have the coolest phones in the town.  When the new and cool Nokia NGage came out, I was the first one to have it.  Until 2007 or so, I was obsessed with mobile phones - until I realized that they are all basically the same.  After that, I stopped upgrading my phone everytime a new one came out.  The reason I had bought so many was because of the social context: mostly advertising.

Think about fashion.  Clothes are basically all the same.  No new feature to any new cloths.  They are purely aesthetic bags with legs and arms, yet people constantly change clothes because of subjective, fashion-driven motives.

If you produce laptops and make their power plugs different every 5 years or so, but maintain the same voltage and functionality, then your actions are inhumane because someone who has an older laptop may not be able to find a replacement power cable, rendering such old models completely unusable.

What is even more scary is the huge waste of resources.  Changing fashion and gadgets because they are not “cool” anymore, or purposely designed to fail, produces so much waste.

So all in all, it is true that we live in a world run by primitive monkeys for their own personal profit who use many psychological strategies to make you buy their products: “It’s too ugly; you need a more beautiful one”, “It’s not fashionable”, “It’s not that good”, and so on.  But all of this is the fault of the game the monkeys play in the concrete jungle - the money game which rewards you for such actions and even punishes you when you don’t follow them.

Think about it.  There are so many products in the world, like cars in showrooms, smartphones, tablets and pc’s in stores, batteries, furniture, and so on.  Companies have to find ways to sell these products or else they will not make a profit, or even go bankrupt.  Of course they will all try to make you buy them using many various tactics.  This monetary system could not work if suddenly products were made so well that people won’t buy new ones for years.  That’s the sad truth and this is why he game that we play now is no longer sustainable.

Recommended Documentary: “The Light Bulb Conspiracy

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Tio
My parents are using TROM-Jaro for the past half year or so. And Linux (Ubuntu or other flavors) for the past 3-4 years or more. They simply need a stable operating system and a way for them to access the Internet without "trading" as much. In truth my first motivation to make a custom Linux OS was to do it for my parents because I wanted them to have a "ready to use" OS that blocks ads and trackers and it is simple enough for them to use. In fact I tested TROM-Jaro with them first, because if they can use it, most people can. They are not at all computer savvy and probably most people are like that, so we need an operating system that ca be used by anyone. They know very well how to keep the system updated now, and because TROM-Jaro has automatic backups before every update then it is easy for me to fix their computers in case an update breaks the system, which never happened so far.

I also installed TROM-Jaro on a half a laptop (that had no screen anymore) and I connected it with a TV so now they have a "smart TV" to watch online whatever they want to watch. I paired that with a cheap Bluetooth remote controller that worked out of the box and so now they have 3 devices with TROM-Jaro.

So, it is super useful that TROM-Jaro is set up for people who don't know much about computers because I make sure my parents don't see ads or are tracked online, have automatic backups and the interface is so easy to use that they can find whatever they need by pressing or clicking one button (the Dash).

The laptops have between 2 and 4 GB of RAM and a simple integrated Intel graphics card, and the TV has 1.6GB of RAM. TROM-Jaro works well on all of them out of the box. Chat image
Tio
Thank you Savadey for the 100 AUD via Paypal and the message "keep up the good work " - Awesome! Lately more and more financial support for TROM which is fantastic! Thank you so much people https://www.tromsite.com/donate/
Tio
Here's a video I edited for Sasha for her campaign :) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABbNeEmhMh0 - watch it! it is cool. very. interesting. talks about us too. also a footage with her, me and aaron somewhere there...
Tio
Sasha needs some help to finish a Trade-Free Book about her journey. https://www.gofundme.com/f/big-world-small-sasha-the-book - she will post the book as Trade-Free on her website in digital format.

Sasha has been a great help for TROM for the past 2 years. She helped TROM financially (quite a lot), with proofreading or by spreading the word about TROM and Trade-Free on her blogs, social networks, and she even created a TROM Discussions Youtube stream for a while where she was discussing TROM subjects with new-to-the-project people. Her website, https://www.bigworldsmallsasha.com/ is labelled as Trade-Free.

She is also now part of our small "TROM family" - I (Tio), Aaron and her share a flat that we transformed into our small TROM office (will post videos and photos about this in the following months), and we help each other financially to be able to keep working on these projects. So, any help for Sasha is also a help for TROM ;) - she needs financial help to be able to focus on finishing her book (she already wrote some 70%) - needless to say in the book she talks about TROM too ;).

What is important about what she does is that she reaches new people (people interested in travelling around the world and having this different kind of lifestyle) - these people we could not (or rarely) reach with our projects. Now such people get to also know about TROM.

Big World, Small Sasha!
Tio
Here is a review of TROM-Jaro by Alexio :) - https://www.facebook.com/tromproject/posts/2619863141403328?__tn__=K-R (it is too big to post the entire text on our live) Chat image
Tio
Keep in mind that Manjaro is one of the most well known and used Linux distributions. If they said they may incorporate some of our good ideas into their official Gnome edition, then that's big :)
Tio
We are getting more attention for our TROM-Jaro from Manjaro's community which is fantastic - see here https://forum.manjaro.org/t/trom-jaro-a-trade-free-manjaro-build/93739 - One recent message was very encouraging, comming from a member of the Manjaro's Team: "This distro makes me happy. It's cool that Manjaro has a daughter distro, with clear vision, ethics and style. I'm hoping to borrow some of your good ideas to gnome edition. :) " - He also said he can help with some stuff, which is truly amazing. Imagine if this trade-free idea catches on in the open source community. It could be a fantastic way to make people aware of what creates most of our issues in the society, not only in the open source. Let's see where this leads, but so far this idea with "trade as the source of most problems" and focusing on trade-free goods and services as a "cure" for it, seems to catch on little by little.
Tio
Did a bunch of work for tromsite.com - improved some stuff, fixed some bugs. this site is made of so many many many parts, yet the way it is built it seems like one. is almost like we took cats, dogs and elephants, and created one single creature but you could not tell that this monster is made out of other animals :))
Tio
Ah, and when you download them you download them in multiple video formats + their respective subtitles. We'll work to incorporate any other video we have on tromsite through the Internet Archive.
Tio
Another super cool thing thanks to the trade-free Internet Archive: on the videos page you can now download any series you want form p2p https://www.tromsite.com/videos/ - and everytime we add new content to any of the video series we make, the download links gets updated automatically. Much less work for us! :)
Tio
Now you can get TROM-Jaro iso from both our server and bittorrent https://www.tromjaro.com/install/ - both should work all the time. We use the Internet Archive as the torrent source since they also provide a seedbox so it guarantees peers. We got 631 vies on the manjaro forum for our tromjaro post. And a bunch of people got interested in-it. That's awesome! I hope to find more time to add more apps to tromjaro.com.
Tio
Working on the Fort-Profit Entertainment book by Dima! :)
Tio
So these days we had a TROM-Cast, like we usually do, but this time we discuss about our new trade-free.org project. It got the attention of some people, and new ones participated for the cast challenging the idea. To make it super-mega short, I “created” this path now for “social change” via “trade as the source of most problems”, and some think is not a good idea. I’ll keep it all extremely brief since I already wrote thousand of pages on the topic. Here's the blog I wrote https://www.tiotrom.com/2019/07/why-trade-and-not-scarcity/
Tio
Thank you Jennifer for the 100 Euros donation. Wow! And for the message "Thank you for all that you do! ". :) - https://www.tromsite.com/donate/
Tio
I sent 20 or so emails to several people in the Linux community about tromjaro. Let's see if any pays attention to it.
Sasha
Tio and I have been working very hard on my new site for the last 2 months and now it is finally done! Check it out: https://www.bigworldsmallsasha.com/

It’s a trade-free travel blog that details how you can travel around the world with little money, but the main idea is actually to entice people with travel stories in order to introduce them to the important topics that we discuss here in TROM. So the point is to reach new people :)

These two pages (and a lot of my blogs) include links to TROM material: https://www.bigworldsmallsasha.com/traveltips/ [link src="http://www.bigworldsmallsasha.com/lifestyle/

The"] website was designed by Tio – I can’t thank him enough for the enormous amount of effort he put into my site. Tio is by far the kindest and most genuinely extensional person that I know. And also- genius! :D and very creative. All the photos of my stuff, Polaroid theme and basically everything else on my site was his idea :). And we spent many hours/days/weeks customizing it to make it look like it does now.

I hope you enjoy it :)
Tio
I fixed trade-free.org for mobiles ;)
Tio
Cody: "I use trom-jaro to easily edit videos and maintain multiple systems that help decentralize some of the tools and videos TROM creates! I also use it to host the TROM-Cast weekly and thanks to it's lack of tracking / data harvesting, my computers resources can be freed to do what I WANT =]" Chat image
Tio
Organized TRM Riot a lot since we fuckin' grow :D - we need a room for video, one for tromjaro, one for webdev, and so forth. I love it! Also, Alexio joined the team :) - he organized TROM stuff so neatly and awesome that we need to use his powers! hehe
Tio
David Panart just became a $15 patron! - thank you so much! :) - monthly donations help a lot! https://www.tromsite.com/donate/
Tio
The brilliant Roma is working on something super cool so that anyone can translate the trade-free.org website in a bit. The general idea is this: people have access to a public file on gitlab that contains the english text and all of the links on the page. And they simply translate that. Then trade-free.org can call that page everytime people add the lang after the url, like say trade-free.org/es triggers the ES (spanish) translation. Of course, anyone can use that file + the HTML5 version of the website to host it anywhere. Roma is like Ziad it seems. Two brilliant people who are helping TROM in ways I could not do! :)
Tio
We moved our videos to The Internet Archive :) - a trade-free alternative to youtube which is an abundant service that is based on trades :) - we love the Internet Archive. You can see our new and improved videos page here https://www.tromsite.com/videos/ - now it is way easier to access all of our videos. Unfortunately we don't now why the subtitles are not working right now....we contacted IA...we'll see. We want to also move every other video there. Next step would be to stream via p2p and not even rely on IA. But for now this is the first major step to move away from Youtube and Vimeo ;)
Aaron
TROM-Jaro is my tool to create trade-free things. I use it to translate TROM materials into german, such as videos and audiobooks with the video-editor kdenlive + audacity and books with the partially trade-free app Master PDF Editor. I communicate with humans via Signal, Riot and Thunderbird and I work on my personal website + browse the web with Firefox. All trade-free. Plus I decentralize our materials with easy-to-use apps like webtorrent and the beaker browser. All in all I love tromjaro as it is fast, easy to use and it simply works. The fact that it works on my macbook is even another big plus-point. www.tromjaro.com Chat image
Tio
We'll skip tromcast today. I am too tired :D - will do one next week for sure. I'm working on other stuff too, so I'll be busy these days, especially today
Tio
Thank you Roma for the 86 Euros donation :) and the awesome message:

"Trade-free. org is great from both sides: as an idea and the site itself is amazingly crafted! Kudos to all who was involved. Appreciating all you hard work to release it! A real pleasure to be a part of such dedicated Team! Love all"
Tio
We will start to make these kind of posts about TROM-Jaro :) - from Gia:

"I use TROM-Jaro as my daily drive to browse the internet without being tracked by scripts (at least not as much), without seeing ads, and such. Less trades. I use it to translate TROM materials, read books, watch documentaries, or for digital drawing. https://www.tromjaro.com/" Chat image
Tio
Here are some websites labeled as trade-free by Alexio www.creativitate.cf www.energetica.cf www.echipamente.cf www.instalatii.cf - we need to make this idea spread and have other websites labeled as such.

Alexio's message:

"Some of the reasons to propose these websites as Trade-Free are:

- I am sharing/adapting on these webpages the trade-free content from the TROM projects;

- it is all about open education - http://is.jrc.ec.europa.eu/pages/EAP/OEREU.html ;

- the content on these websites is available under CC Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International. "
Tio
I had to fix some stuff for trade-free.org - so now is 100% downloadable. Before it wasn't. Now even the font we use is downloadable. Also Roma added it to gitlab https://gitlab.com/tromsite/trade-free/trade-free.org - need to be updated with today's updates ;)
Aaron
We released the trade-free website in german: https://www.handelsfrei.org/ - very exciting :)
Tio
We are super close to move to Internet Archive, except the documentary for now. Rafa helps with migrating the subtitles ;) - I have also prepared a text document to explain how one can translate trade-free.org into their own language - I can't manage that myself....too much stuff to manage. So people have to take that as their responsibility and translate and host that page. I'll give them the tools. I may take 1-2 days of work, but is not super complicated. Still need to refine everything then will post on trade-free.org.
Aaron
The video + audiobook "valuable without a value" is now available in german on tromsite.com/de
Tio
We are super close to move all of our videos (except the documentary for now) to Internet Archive. Almost all are already uploaded there and I made a new video page for tromsite that is much much better. We will have better control now over the videos. This year we will give up Vimeo, moving away from trade-based services. We walk the talk boys! :)
Tio
Finally posted about TROM-Jaro on Manjaro forum https://forum.manjaro.org/t/trom-jaro-a-trade-free-manjaro-build/93739 and I will send info about it to others too - distrowatch and some youtubers.
Tio
Now musikwave.com, videoneat.com, tromsite.com, tromjaro.com and tiotrom.com are all labaled (at the bottom of each page) as Trade-Free :) - if you have a project that creates trade-free stuff then you can label it as such and link to https://www.trade-free.org/ - so we can start something interesting and useful. ;)
Tio
Big thanks to the "invisible" (or not so visible) people who support TROM on Liberapay https://liberapay.com/TROM/ and Patreon https://www.patreon.com/trom for the past years. Without them we could not have paid for servers, tools, and time to build TROM and its baby projects. So, thank you so much!
Tio
added trade-free to https://www.tiotrom.com/ and tromjaro.com too - tomorrow i'll add to musikwave and videoneat ;) + make a text to promote tromjaro!
Tio
added trade-free to tromsite.com and removed the links to any other external "thing" like fb or youtube and so forth, because tromsite is tromsite and i dont want to redirect people to these trade-based places :) - purism! hehe
Tio
Join tromcast here https://meet.jit.si/tromcasttradefree - password: tromtrade
Tio
fixed some stuff with tormjaro.com - kinda ready for promoting on manjaro forums and so forth! i am working to add "This is a Trade-Free Project" on all websites: musikwave, tromsite, tiotrom, videoneat, everywhere I can! :)
Tio
Next few days are dedicated to add a trade-free sign on all of my/our websites, linking to trade-free.org. Also fix some bugs with some websites + then I'll create a long post promoting tromjaro.com on open source forums/websites. Tomorrow TROM-Cast about trade-free.org and we'll also talk about TVP.
Tio
And thank you Willy for your monthly 10 Euros Paypal donation! ;)
Tio
Thank you anonymous donor for the 100 Euros donation! https://www.tromsite.com/donate/ :D
Tio
I wanted to post the bellow message on FB too but they won't let me: it is against their "community standards" they say. That's why I don't give much of a fuck about FB. Like we want to share our originally made videos on their platform and they won't let us....fuck them. Not all magnets are "illegal", you stupid!
Tio
And btw, the videos on trade-free.org are streamed from peer-to-peer. They are on no server! :) - they are on people's computers. If you want to help us, seed those videos:

The main video's magnet link is: magnet:?xt=urn:btih:bbe36cb6ba5d6afeb50421a2509a969786710e8e&dn=Trade-Free.mp4&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Fexplodie.org%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.coppersurfer.tk%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.empire-js.us%3A1337&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.leechers-paradise.org%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.opentrackr.org%3A1337&tr=wss%3A%2F%2Ftracker.btorrent.xyz&tr=wss%3A%2F%2Ftracker.fastcast.nz&tr=wss%3A%2F%2Ftracker.openwebtorrent.com

And the logo making video is: magnet:?xt=urn:btih:d66bf00649e889e261782c3a5098f68b68d35a00&dn=Trade-Free+Logo+Making.mp4&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Fexplodie.org%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.coppersurfer.tk%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.empire-js.us%3A1337&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.leechers-paradise.org%3A6969&tr=udp%3A%2F%2Ftracker.opentrackr.org%3A1337&tr=wss%3A%2F%2Ftracker.btorrent.xyz&tr=wss%3A%2F%2Ftracker.fastcast.nz&tr=wss%3A%2F%2Ftracker.openwebtorrent.com

Use WebTorrent to seed them, else it won't work. It is simple and you'll help us! Thanks!
Tio
thank you thank you thank you to all who have helped with this site: the idea, the suggestions, the everything!
Tio
https://www.trade-free.org/ is DONE! Check it :D - we will improve on it but this is basically it. We will add translations and we will create a trade-free directory soon :P - sooo so happy is finally here!
Tio
Yeah a bit more work on trade-free.org....but we are getting there....i dont want to get to stressed out by the work I have to do...VN also has some bugs that I need to fix. After we release TF website I need to manage my time better and have some more leisure time for myself and be less stressed out with this work. I am too passionate so is hard for me to not stress out cause I am excited and I want to fix and release!
Tio
Fixed some tromjaro.com stuff and need to fix some tromsite.com stuff....like plugins update that break parts of the website and you only notice after a few weeks....annoying
Tio
We are getting close to release trade-free.org. Is kinda done....maybe today will release. That website will for sure improve in time and we will do a documentary about "trade" that will be posted on the site. But we need to get it out there. We need to link to it. We need to talk about it ;)
Flingafu
I made a video on how to setup your own trade-free WIFI network! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3dY7LmqwPs
Tio
Participate here https://meet.jit.si/tromcastvolunteer and pass is tromcastv
Tio
TROM-Cast about volunteering in 1 and a half hour https://youtu.be/xNNoNvmVMwE
Tio
New FAQ Submitted: Are some people born with genes or biology which makes them to have more chances to become smart in some certain things in life? - answer here https://www.tromsite.com/faq/
Tio
Ok so VideoNeat has some weird bugs that I had to force-solve...i have no idea why those bugs....is the theme apparently...anyways. Is back! We worked today a lot on trade-free.org. Ziad is such a great help. Great guy! Main thing I need to add to trade-free is the text (which is kinda done) and implement translations (which can be difficult). Also, seen we will have double the storage and power for our server where we store all of our websites. I'll let you know. Super excited!
Tio
For the past many hours I'm trying to fix some videoneat design weird bugs...dont know wtf happened there but some pages are broken...
Tio
Patreon: "MayBritt just edited their pledge from $30 to $50." - Thank you so so much for your ongoing support! https://www.tromsite.com/donate/
Seb
New TROM Poem out (made this one 3 years ago, crazy that it's been this long) - 'The Ugliness of Beauty': https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCG60mUXDirFbCT4SaumWpyA
Tio
Ok, so, I tested some video-decentralization options.

1. So, the ideal solution would be using webtorrent + amara in a popup. Meaning, videos to be streamed from our computers (p2p) and if we can to embed them with the amara player so all subtitles are added automatically. If possible to do that in a popup would be fantastic - click and play. Webtorrent streaming is working (we tested) - though there are some downsides...but manageable. This streaming option is the perfect one since we won't need any streaming service/hosting. We have 80GB of video files already and we are growing every week in size, so no hosting plan is enough for us in the long run. The problem is how to add it in a popup and deal with the subtitles....this is super problematic. As soon as we make trade-free.org work perfectly well with this technology we could implement to tromsite.com. Also, to videoneat.com (likely) - imagine people being able to click and play any torrent file from videoneat!!! That would be my dream!

2. Another solution is to use the video files directly (like mp4 or webm) from either our server or the internet archive servers. From our server is safer cause we have 100% control over them, but that would mean upgrading our server and will costs some money and these people are super charlatans - they say "oh you can upgrade to $40 a month for double the space and power"....however they don't mention that it means ONLY if you accept a 3 year "contact" with them for the plan....else costs a lot more....also am not sure how well the server will handle video streaming. Then we have to integrate to amara if possible....

3. Directly using the Internet Archive's player. Their player is not that great but is the easiest solution right now tho we will have to add the subtitles manually to it. It is the best vimeo replacement for sure.

Damn is a lot of work and is not that easy.... :( - and I have so much stuff to work on...
Tio
So today I got really pissed off at that plugin giving me the middle finger and I looked more and more into decentralizing trom videos. for now we will upload all trom materials to the internet archive and i will probably replace all videos on tromsite with those. Already did for the trailer on the homepage https://www.tromsite.com/ - it streams from the internet archive. Let's see if the url is persistent. I will do that first then try to stream from p2p. So far I love the IA.
Tio
aaand is back! we'll look into internet archive and the like for now...we'll see...so many things to do ....