Tech

Read this before switching from Twitter to Mastodon—A beginner’s guide

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Since Elon Musk has taken over, many Twitter users have left the service in quest of new online space —and switched to Mastodon, an alternative, drama-free site that has seen nearly 500,000 new signups.

On October 28, the wealthiest man in the world signed a contract to buy Twitter, and since then, Elon Musk has sparked mayhem. He dismissed Twitter’s CEO, pushed the employees to work 12-hour days and weekends, and laid off half of the company’s workforce. He dismissed Twitter’s CEO, pushed the employees to work 12-hour days and weekends, and laid off half of the company’s workforce. 

He dismissed Twitter’s CEO, pushed the employees to work 12-hour days and weekends, and laid off half of the company’s workforce. To acquire a blue verified checkmark, you must subscribe to the new Twitter Blue, which costs $7.99USD per month. However, tapping on someone’s blue tick will reveal whether they were verified for free or because they paid for it.

Therefore, it makes sense that so many people are hunting for Twitter substitutes. Mastodon is one of the popular platforms that people have been using instead. So how is it different from Twitter, and why are people moving to Mastodon?

Moving To Mastodon

What is Mastodon?

The first thing to understand is that Mastodon is a “federated” network, a collection of hundreds of social networks running on servers all over the world and connected via a platform called the “Fediverse” using standard Mastodon technology.

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You sign up for a specific server, which is managed by the person who set it up, typically volunteers who run it on their dime or who accept Patreon donations. They will have their guidelines and regulations regarding, for instance, who is allowed to participate and how severely the conversation will be regulated. 

You sign up for a specific server, managed by the person who set it up, typically volunteers who run it on their own dime or who accept Patreon donations. They will have their own guidelines and regulations regarding, for instance, who is allowed to participate and how severely the conversation will be regulated.

If you wish to establish the rules yourself, you can even launch your own server. Otherwise, there is a list of servers that concentrate on particular locales or interest areas. The “Mastodon covenant,” which guarantees “active moderation against racism, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia,” has been ratified by every server on that list.

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But regardless of which Mastodon server(s) you register for, you can easily follow users on other servers.

Why are People Moving to Mastodon?

But the primary distinction between Mastodon and Twitter is that the latter only consists of one domain. Instead, it is composed of tens of thousands of independently operated servers, or “instances,” each with its own set of guidelines and moderation practices. You can register for a specific server that is managed by the person who set it up, who is typically a volunteer. Oh, and since this is a volunteer-run system, your feed does not contain any paid posts.

Mastodon has over 4,600 servers across a range of categories, including activism, technology, and general. 

Moving To Mastodon

Among the servers are “techhub.social,” a gathering place for enthusiastic technologists, “pettingzoo.co,” a server “managed by some queer leaning gay males,” and “metalhead.club,” which specializes in metal music material and is hosted in German and powered entirely by renewable energy.

As of the time of writing, the platform has 1.3 million members, a 268% month-over-month rise, according to a sidebar on its website. However, a few problems have emerged due to the unexpected increase in consumers. Volunteer administrators are unable to keep up with the influx of new user requests and postings due to the overload of some of the busiest servers that feed users into the network.

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