I'd say I've happily "moved with the times" for most of the two decades(!) I've been online. I always found a way to inject personality into my websites through all the different trends and changing web standards, and social media has always been nothing more to me than a place to interact with friends, rather than a tool to monetise a hobby or engage in debate with trolls. I can't say I was completely unaffected by the commercialisation of the web, but I did find a way to exist within it without feeling alienated by it.
It wasn't until about 2015-2016 that I really started to feel the shift. All my personal blogging friends had either pivoted to blogging for commercial purposes or just dropped out of the blogging game altogether and focused entirely on social media. Although I continued to "have" a personal blog, I never felt inspired to maintain it, because no one was around to care anymore. The community was gone. I did attempt to also pivot (with sponsored content), but it just wasn't for me.
I originally attributed the mass personal blogging exodus to the fact that most of my blogging friends were in their late 20s by this point and they now had better things to do with their time. Adults don't have self-indulgent, narcissistic hobbies such as building and maintaining personal websites, duh! But nope, no one was building and maintaining personal websites anymore. At least not in a hobbyist capacity.
Because web design & development and blogging were two of the very few hobbies my neurodivergent ass has managed to stick with for over twenty years, I was bothered by this shift. I would constantly come up with little projects that I knew probably weren't going to take off just so I could make a website for them, because changing my blog's theme like I used to often do was, in my mind, a complete waste of time.
Although I am a bigger fan of Web 2.0: The Early Years than the average "old web" revivalist (who prefers Web 1.0), I am so glad I found a community of people who have made it their mission to bring the personal website back. A place to just be creative and to share yourself with whoever happens to come across your website without the pressure to sanitise yourself for social media or your brand. A place to connect with others on a deeper level.
I don't shy away from the "corporate web" as such. I still hope to make money from internet-related stuff and things, but that doesn't mean I can't also just exist as a person with a creative hobby and thoughts and opinions that I sometimes feel like writing out and sharing with anyone who may want to read them. I'm not going to compromise on who I am to meet arbitrary "rules" of the internet.
So here I am, a grown-ass adult, making the websites I want to make and filling them with content I want to fill them with just like I did when I was a kid. The purpose of DΛRNIELLE.me is to just indulge in my passion for design, development & writing for myself, and hopefully make some connections with like-minded people. Feel free to email me at hoidarnielle.me if you like what you've read.