An Introduction to the Early Web Aesthetics of Geocities

All screencaptures from One Terabyte of Kilobyte Age
All screencaptures from One Terabyte of Kilobyte Age

You might know Olia Lialina and Dragan Espenschied as internet artists, or more specifically, as internet archaeologists. The duo have made a practice of plumbing the depths of internet culture, dusting off old memes and spelunking in old corners of the web. The obscure nature of their work makes their Tumblr, “One Terabyte of Kilobyte Age” (and their blog of the same name), all the more welcome.

The Tumblr, which seems to post extremely often, near the site’s posting limit, collects screenshots from various homepages the duo have found in the Geocities Torrent, a 652-gigabyte file cache of outdated Geocities pages, which Yahoo took offline in 2009. It’s a treasure trove of outdated aesthetics, web design tropes, and apologies for not posting more or not having the site cleaned up.

Some of my recent favorites are below.






There’s certainly something creepy about trawling through the depth of Geocities, even if it comes in the accessible form a screenshot Tumblr. Is this what Tumblr itself might one day become, a coral reef tentatively explored by the denizens of whatever the dominant social network of the future is?

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