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A community dedicated to fediverse news and discussion.
Fediverse is a portmanteau of “federation” and “universe”. It is a common, informal name for a federation of social network servers whose main purpose is microblogging, the sharing of short, public messages.
Getting started on Fediverse;
Exactly this. Eugen is damn late with his announcement to address the needs of potential users and finally get Mastodon out of that musty nerd bubble.
People are criticizing him like hell for implementing features that have been in the Fediverse (Pleroma, Friendica, etc.) for ages - and are missing from Mastodon, scaring the hell out of a lot of people only to turn it into a secluded island. I’m really tired of seeing Mastodon like an idealistic island in development that, on the other hand, sabotages the needs of social networking users in the 21st century wherever it can.
Not interested in Bluesky at all, but it’s about time Mastodon became usable for the regular Soccer mom without fifty browser-extensions.
@koncertejo Some people are already working on making Fediverse compatible with Bluesky. So if we can interact with them from here, then I dont care what people prefer.
So far, it seems, there’s a curious absence of commentary on what I feel is the core of the article: the fediverse’s UX problems.
I suspect the consensus answer here will be the chaos and complexity are the point and that anything more would probably entail antithetical centralisation (??).
But still, I think it’s worth considering what could be done about hard and broad UX issues and the trade offs against any goals the fediverse might have
I don’t understand the bluesky hype. If it ever is properly federated, I’ll try it out, but until then it’s just one of these new hip social media sites that appear every few months.
@sexy_peach @koncertejo And that’s the rub, right? #Bluesky is supposed to be #federated but it only federates with itself and it will only federate in the future with entities that use its proprietary protocol (i.e. its vassal states). So, how is this anything but just another walled garden beholden to corporate interests? I do like the idea of nomadic identity, but it doesn’t mean anything until/unless Bluesky starts talking to other services.
No in theory they plan to be federated properly through the AT protocol I believe. It’s not compatible with the fediverse, but that’s not necessary to be federated.
At the moment though they only have one server and that one doesn’t even federate with the AT protocol yet. So at the moment it’s just a twitter clone, without any special features.
I don’t know if I think that they should talk to other services, I think that if they truly built a very user friendly twitter alternative that is spread out on many servers that are connected and independently run, that would be a huge goal. But I don’t at all believe they’ll even manage that.
That’s why I love the fediverse, we have that going already and even more :)
Jack Dorsey, that’s it
That’s a good argument against Bluesky
I think the hype is driven by people that just want Twitter without Elon and realized the Fediverse is not that. I know that by saying so I somewhat sound like the people that the article is criticizing, but I think people that want Twitter without Elon are missing a big part of the picture, i.e that Twitter was and is bleeding money fast, so “their” Twitter was going to die one way or the other.
To build a sustainable platform you need to invest in it. People in the Fediverse have done so, but are painfully aware that it is a careful balance and that it can’t work with millions of Twitter users switching over expecting a gratis platform with no strings attached.
And this failure to understand these basic dynamics will probably drive them into the hands of yet another venture capital funded fly-trap and the circle will begin anew.
@poVoq @sexy_peach I think a fediverse can house both types.
those who dont want to pay to have an account on a server (which obviouslly costs money to host), then some instances can show ads on their webinterfaces and fund their costs that way. people who dont care about ads can join such instance and have their free account.
those who dont like ads can either donate or pay for their account or join a free server without ads (if available) or host their own server.
IMHO you can’t fund a service with meagre normal banner advertisement revenue anymore.
Someone wishing to fund a Fediverse service would have to write a deep data-mining system that displays personalized and targeted advertisement to their users and get sufficient investment to survive until they have a large enough user-base and scale for their data-mining to turn a profit.
Not impossible, I guess, but given the invasive nature of said data-mining they would probably be defederated quite quickly (if found out) as in a federated network you can’t cleanly separate whom’s data gets mined.
I really hate advertising but I guess you’re right. Let’s hope that a culture emerges of enough people donating so ads aren’t needed.
@sexy_peach yeah that would be the best scenario :-)
Yes I 100% agree!
Good post. On the other hand, IMHO (as a non-Fedi-expert I should say), I think the Fediverse does not absolutely need to appeal to everyone. A lot of people are happy with Twitter, and a lot of people are happy with Facebook. Evolving Mastodon into a clone of Twitter is perhaps missing the point of building a different platform in the first place. Not to say there’s no place for new ideas or criticism of course…
To add after reading the post again: A centralized social media site with a professional content moderation team is, of course, always going to provide a better experience to new users. I don’t think a decentralized platform will ever be able to compete, by design. “Full text search” and “quote posts” are not going to help when someone accidentally joins a poorly moderated instance.
I agree. I hate Twitter but really enjoy Mastodon, because of the people and content it draws (at least what I see).
I want the Fediverse to walk a fine line between providing a platform that interests a niche group without gatekeeping and which sustains enough interest to sustain itself.
I completely agree. The goal for the Fediverse is to be sustainable. There’s no point worrying that it’s not growing as fast as commercial networks, or that it doesn’t have the same mainstream penetration, or whatever it is people worry about. The only thing that really matters is that there are enough people to develop platforms and enough users to produce interesting content. This is already the case today, and things will only be getting better going forward as the Fediverse grows.
Maybe Bluesky will get more popular than the entire Fediverse and attract a huge number of users, and maybe it won’t. However, I can guarantee that the Fediverse will be around long after everyone forgot what Bluesky was.
I respectfully disagree with some of your points. The benefit of a Twitter clone that is federated (or more precisely, a Twitter clone that supports activityPub) is that the users of said Twitter clone can see content from and interact with users who aren’t on said clone, but another platform that supports activityPub. And conversely, I can see content from said Twitter clone without necessarily having to be on it, as long as I use some activityPub platform that fits my taste.
This provides a lot more choices. I can choose a platform with the best user experience for my taste, without any regard to privacy and moderation. That would be completely fine. Conversely, another person may choose to search for an instance based on their specific moderation, topics, privacy, or other preferences. Another person may even self host their own instance. All of those can interact with each other, and that is what makes it nice.
Sure. I’m a big fan of federation. However, I switched to Mastodon (the ActivityPub application) because I liked its style better than Twitter. Turning Mastodon into Twitter to attract a larger audience and placate the complainers isn’t necessarily what everyone wants. Just my personal view on this. But it honestly doesn’t bother me that much.
The signup/moderation issue feels somewhat similar. Yeah, it would be way more Twitter-like if signup defaulted to Mastodon.social and that mega-instance hired a content moderation team to rival a professional social media site. But that’s not quite what I think is currently good about Mastodon and Fedi…
On that part, I do agree with you. I do not like mastodon just because I’m not a huge fan of the micro-blogging-focused user experience, but I do agree that there’s value in a platform not imitating Twitter but having some of the UX. Likewise, I think that there is value in another platform that would attract Twitter users. I think it could just be a separate mastodon instance that is modified to fit said user base.