We were in front of the screen, in my office. Just trying to fix something; I can’t remember exactly. Internet site stuff, anyway. At one point the colleague tells me something like open Chrome, let’s see… and I say no, I don’t have Chrome, I use Vivaldi instead to which she, in return, ah well, but then!
How to say, then you are going to look for troubles! And here I would like to plead. Because the colleague’s exclamation is largely the result of misinformation. If you meant that that particular site should be viewed with Chrome and not with a browser that you don’t trust (because you still don’t know it), well you’re probably wrong. At lest in this situation. Chrome and Vivaldi are built around the same core, which as we know is Chromium . Therefore, the rendering of the various sites does not present substantial differences. In other words, what looks good with Chrome looks good with Vivaldi. And viceversa.
What’s to be said is that Vivaldi has a lot more that Chrome doesn’t have. Really many . Furthermore, using it, you take a break from the giants of Big Tech, and stop giving Google all your history (I already give it my mails, my travels… in short, they have enough of my stuff, I would say). What’s more, Vivaldi really doesn’t really track you . Which isn’t a bad idea at all: it’s not a matter of so much that I don’t do anything wrong, it’s a matter of whether tracking for commercial purposes really reduces your identity and mortifies it by projecting it into the reductive scheme of what I can sell you .
I am very comfortable with Vivaldi. I would like to say it with an analogy. It’s like going from the sanitized offices of a multinational corporation – thousands of employees, neon lights and all the rest – to a small rural business, where you still matter, you’re not just one in the crowd. You still have a face, a personality. Where you can intervene by requesting changes and submitting ideas, where the team is active and proactive and offers you several ways to participate. Where you can really go feel yourself as part of a community .
Among the latest interesting moves by Vivaldi team in this direction is having set up a Mastodon instance (which I subscribed to, yes) but there is also a free blogging platform(which I decided to use for my English blog, the one you’re actually reading now).
Broadly speaking, there are many reasons to use a different browser. Also, to safeguard the plurality of approaches on the Internet, where we risk surrendering to the presence of very few subjects – managed by more or less eccentric billionaires – losing the exquisite variety and that flavor of experimentation which was characteristic of the Internet in its onepointzero version.
I then set up the Ecosia search engine inside Vivaldi. In the words of economist Lea Cassar , “it is clear that social enterprises like Ecosia, a search engine like any other but which devotes 80% of its profit to planting trees, are genuinely interested in the environment.”
Because we can count more, we can protect our specificities, we can avoid – peacefully and nonviolently – that the only variable at stake is that of profit. We can think and follow new paths that lead us to better landscapes and gradually free us from surveillance capitalism .
In short, we can contribute, even with small things (such as taking the time to choose a different browser from the two or three that everyone uses), to prepare for a less obvious, more interesting future. I would try.
Images of the big city and the rural environment have been generated using IA via NightCafè.