Someone called the dot social instance the bourgeoisie of mastodon, but I originally picked it precisely to avoid playing the elitism game of positioning with the right group, the right instance, etc.

Mastodon's federated structure looks a lot more like human social relations, which makes it more honest, but "lots of centers" isn't the same thing as "no centers" and community is still a deeply toxic dynamic, especially when given direct powers.

I see a future where mastodon's instances work very much like communities in the radical scene -- with runaway unaccountable scene patriarchs who maneuver into controlling the core infrastructure.

It's a mistake to think of "social capitalists" as accumulating only one universally fungible sort of social capital. Social capitalism can function in harsher ways in smaller communities.

I'm super skeptical about "crypto" solutionism in a lot of contexts. But the current inability to port one's followers between instances on mastodon(ie gnusocial) is a deep failing because it incentivizes the creation of groups (instances) with strong pressures to continue existing, and as a consequence immense power in the hands of a few (those able to seize control the instance itself).

If your account identity functioned as a token that you could transfer association between hosting providers (instances), then with a little network discovery elbow grease it would be possible to strip instances of perverse incentives to balkanization, organizationalism, and micronationalism.

@rechelon And this transportable identity would be healthy for the system over all, as one of the basic conveniences offered by the social media giants was that they vouchsafed a single identity for sundry fora. Without some such mechanism, many people will likely eschew renewing the old game of vetting an instance user as an imposter. Do you reckon OpenID is readily at hand to be shoehorned to this role?


@Shufei I am somewhat skeptical of the OpenID model specifically, to say nothing of whether it's ready for primetime, but I also haven't paid close attention so I don't feel positioned to lay out a public critique.

@rechelon Thanks for your reply. It seems like there is a double problem. Representation of identity and data migration. Maybe they could be implemented by prosthetic services, if those who do the ActivityPub slash Mastoromasocial dev don’t wish to provide a solution or solutions. Regarding verification, people here scoff at the blue check mark. But it serves a valid utility on Birdsite. Any notions how these issues might be speedily addressed, especially at the user level?

Sign in to participate in the conversation

Server run by the main developers of the project 🐘 It is not focused on any particular niche interest - everyone is welcome as long as you follow our code of conduct!