By David Futrelle
Today, I’m taking time out from the regular manosphere horribleness to recommend something nice.
If you’re a Twitter user who’s gotten fed up with the platform and all the Nazis running rampant on it, or if you’ve stayed away from Twitter because of how nasty at is. you might want to check out Mastodon, a Twitteresque open-source social networking site that, at least at the moment, is way friendlier than Twitter, largely free of the nasty political sniping and trollery that’s ubiquitous on Twitter. It seems to be especially popular with leftish feminist types, making it essentially the anti-Gab, and there’s been something of a wave of defections to Mastodon in recent days.
Getting started on Mastodon is a little more confusing and cumbersome than opening an account on Twitter; among other things, you need to pick a server (or “instance”) to log onto, and it’s a bit harder to find people to follow at first, but I think it’s worth the effort.
I got on the platform yesterday and it’s been a nice respite from Twitter nastiness. If you’re a regular reader of this blog I think you’ll find it a congenial place. Sure, it boasts only a fraction of the number of users as there are on Twitter, but once you find some folks to follow it’s busy enough to keep you interested.
You can sign up here; don’t worry about picking an “instance” up front — just go with the one they give you. (You can change it later.) If you have friends on Twitter who are also on Mastodon this somewhat clunky but functional web app will round them up for you so you can follow them, which is a good way to start.
It won’t take you much time to get used to the new lingo — on Mastodon, tweets are replaced by “toots” and retweets have become “boosts.” One bit of advice: Don’t bother with the “federated timeline.” It moves way too fast to keep up with.
If you want to use Mastodon on your phone or tablet, there are several apps to choose from. The one I see recommended most often is Tusky, available on Android. (If any of you have other recommendations for the iPhone, or for Android apps you like better, post them in the comments.)
If you’re accessing Mastodon on the web, and you find the multi-columned Mastodon interface too busy and/or confusing (I definitely do), you can check out a handy web app called Pinafore, which replicates the minimal one-column Twitter web interface. It’s what I’ve been using.
I’m not going to give up Twitter (@DavidFutrelle ); it’s got a much bigger reach and it’s better at delivering news. It’s also better for yelling about Trump; most Mastodon users (even those who aren’t shy about trashing Trump on Twitter) seem more interested in jokes and socializing than in rehashing the political takes that are everywhere on Twitter. A lot of people compare Mastodon today with Twitter as it was before the Trump Era.
Anyway, you can find me on Mastodon at DavidFutrelle@mastodon.social.; if you’re looking for people to follow, check out my follow list there.