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hot take but i wager that a significant part of why FOSS isnt more widely used by the average person when it comes to things like social media has a lot to do with programmer culture.


Absolutely. It's chock-full of ego and toxic masculinity

There are too many in the community that view difficulty as a feature, being ableist/sexist gatekeepers.

@kit_darko @Laurelai

I agree that is a large problem with the projects.

They are mostly run by people who don't know how to market GNU social (even though, for the most part 99% of mastodon features are also supported by GNU social).

They also haven't bothered to update the GNU social design to be appealing.

Asking for help = good luck.

Mastodon and Pleroma both started as responses to the lack of leadership with Mastodon centered in specifically on replacing GNU social, while Pleroma wants to replace the entire stack.

Both projects try to be more approachable and actually provide helpful support: it is possible to join #pleroma on IRC and get an answer to a problem very quickly. It is a similar situation with Mastodon. If you try to get help with GNU social, you get to go post on a forum and it might get read in a week or two.

I can't speak for Diaspora, but from what I have seen they have an excellent community. The problem Diaspora has is more of a chicken and egg problem: people see Facebook as a platform to deposit all artifacts of their life, so they don't necessarily want to give it up in preference to the Diaspora platform.
@kit_darko @Laurelai


I do believe that the present situation of new software being available that actually has a good support story (Mastodon, Pleroma, Diaspora) and good community-building tooling (Mastodon, Diaspora), in combination with Facebook and Twitter's blatant disregard for user privacy (the Cambridge Analytica scandal for instance), has given us some potential to maybe get this fediverse thingy jumpstarted.

But it's not easy, it's going to be a lot of work. And there's a lot of things that still need to be built yet. We need to build a replacement to SoundCloud, a replacement to Instagram, a replacement to all of the proprietary silos.

Mastodon has shown the potential of what a polished frontend can bring us. I am hoping Pleroma will show the potential of having a generic backend for these services.

But it's going to be several more years before we can truly declare this thing a victory, in my opinion.
Kit Darko

@kaniini @Laurelai

Loving the positive outlook!

I do think it's worth noting that FOSS is not a monolith, and there are plenty of progressive and inclusive communities.

Especially with new projects, it's common to see codes of conduct being enforced, and the ejection of toxic users complaining about the status quo being challenged.

Those siloes are going to take a while. The biggest thing for me is replacing G Suite - your average user isn't going to know how to administer NextCloud

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