Mastodon is a new social network that’s trying to be kinder, gentler version of Twitter. Let’s check out why it may just succeed.
On October 6, 2016, the source code to Mastodon was released, which focused on a microblogging site that would be free from centralized control. However, it wasn’t until a piece by Sarah Jeong for Vice in April 2017, that the general public learned of Mastodon.
A rush of people wanting to leave the toxic landscape of Twitter overwhelmed the servers, but it’s a testament to people’s want for change. As such, the “official” Mastodon server (or Instance, as they are called) mastodon.social is no longer accepting new users. There are however, hundreds (probably thousands by the time you read this) of alternative Instances to choose from. Looking at a list of Mastodon Instances shows us that people want a social network that isn’t overrun by trolls and nazis peddling fake news. Even though each Instance can set up its own rules, the founding “charter” prohibits racism, sexism, discrimination, xenophia, and more.
The most fascinating aspect of Mastodon is that each Instance can choose to “federate” with other Instances. That is, you’ll be able to follow and chat with users of mstdn.jp even though you created your account on mastodon.xyz. There is the Local Timeline (view the content [known as Toots] of those in your own Instance), and the Federated Timeline (view the Toots of just about everyone using any Instance).
Mastodon feels new and exciting, but with enough of the familiar that you don’t get lost.
Check out this how to use Mastodon.social video and get started Tooting.