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I'm going to keep using Zapier for my link blog

The way my link blog works is like this:

I save an article, website, or book I thought was interesting to a database in Notion using the web clipper, together with a description and a high-level category. (These are Technology, Society, Democracy, and so on.) I also have a checkbox that designates whether the link is something I’d consider business-friendly.

Zapier watches for new links. When it finds one, it publishes it to my website using the micropub protocol. (My website then tries to send a webmention to that site to let it know I’ve linked to them.)

Then, it publishes the link to my Mastodon profile using the top-level category as a hashtag. If the link is to a book, it also adds the bookstodon hashtag.

Following that, it publishes to all my other social networks via Buffer, without the hashtag. (The exception is my Bluesky profile, which I had to write some custom API code for). If the business-friendly box was checked, that includes publishing to my LinkedIn profile.

If I’m feeling particularly motivated, I’ll copy and paste the link to my Threads profile, but because there’s no API, it’s a fully manual process. Which means I usually don’t.

Very occasionally, Zapier will pick up a link before the Notion entry has fully saved, which means that links post without a description or a category. Then I either shrug my shoulders and accept that I have some weird posts on my timeline, or I go back and edit or repost each and every one.

Because of this bug, I’ve thought about writing my own code to do all of the above on my server. It would work the exact way I want it to be. It would be cheaper, too: I pay for Zapier every month, and the cost adds up.

But while I could do this, and the up-front cost would certainly be lower, what if something goes wrong? Let’s say LinkedIn changes the way their API works. If I wrote the connection myself, I would need to keep my code up to date every time this happened — and, in turn, stay on top of codebase changes for every single social media platform I used.

And the truth is: I’m tired, friends. I want to be really careful about the amount of code I set myself up to maintain. It might seem like a simple script now, but over time I build up more and more simple scripts and, cumulatively, I end up buried in code.

As I get older, I find myself optimizing that cost more and more. I’d much rather pay something up-front that saves me a ton of time and cognitive overhead, because both of these things are at such an enormous premium for me.

I could also just not post to those social media accounts, or do it fully-manually, but there’s something really satisfying about publishing once and syndicating everywhere I’m connected to people. I could save my links straight to something like Buffer, but I also like having my categorized database of everything I’ve shared. And Notion makes it easy to save links across my devices (I’m sometimes on my phone, sometimes on my laptop, sometimes on my desktop).

So I’m keeping Zapier, at least for now. I like keeping my links, and I like sharing them. And, more than anything else, I like not having to maintain the code that does it.

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