Fleeing Twitter

2022-11-07 17:00

This post is absolute waffling, so proceed at your own boredom.

Hackernews is currently filled with posts about Mastadon and those fleeing twitter to Mastadon since twitter has been taken over by Mr. Musk. I'm not writing this with the hopes that I too will show up on Hackernews (this blog is currently offline as I'm writing it, so by the time this is published I'm sure this event will be somewhat forgotten and replaced by other news). Nonetheless, I felt it interesting to remark on the proliferation of posts about mastadon on hackernews.

Something to lose

I don't think I ever acquired more than 8 followers on twitter when I used it, and so I can't really relate to what might be a high-stakes change for people who use twitter heavily and have a lot of followers. I imagine there are people for whom their livelyhoods depends on it. So for me, I can't help but sit here and write a post with a tag #musings when other people are writing tweets-turned-to-toots that are tagged with #dafuqismastadon etc.

I'm not sure if I'm disconnected from the possibilities of social media; I just never could stick with it or believe in myself enough to use it thoroughly. Perhaps my ego couldn't stand having 8 followers. I'm not sure. None the less, I never had anything to lose, and so the current spotlight on mastadon merely has me going "huh".

Mastadon is great

But overall, I'm happy this is happening; I've seen it happen several times — every now and then something goes down (literally or metaphorically) on twitter, and people start migrating to mastadon. Mastadon doesn't track you. Mastadon is open source. Mastadon doesn't try and hook you into coming back beyond your own interest in the quality of the people you follow (and not the news in the sidebar, or promoted tweets, etc). The idea that the users collectively work to keep an instance going either by volunteering or donations makes my heart warm.

Social media is ... I donno

Big topic, but I donno if social media is good or bad for people. For me, I'd say I skew generally bad. But now I'm imagining Mastadon - my own little instance set up in a shaded little glen — with no loud neighbours, or bulletin boards put up on my property... well that doesn't sound so bad.

Well, funnily enough, I did run a fediverse instance for a time. Back around 2020, early 2021, I ran an instance of Pleroma. It wasn't too much trouble to setup. I would say the only trouble was me not really having much to say on it. There's technically no difference from Mastadon (except pleroma is less resouce-intensive to run). In the end, I'm not sure that micro-post-y-type-social-media-app are for me.

Maybe I'll give it a try again in the future. There are a lot of nice people online making cool stuff that I'd love to chat with. Maybe if I keep up these rambly posts I'll get used to putting things out there and will find that tooting my horn isn't so bad after all.