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We need to nationalise Google, Facebook and Amazon. Here’s why, Nick Srnicek, The Guardian, Sept 03, 2017

This post has been making the rounds recently, and it was no doubt calculated to generate the negative response it's receiving. And let me jump on board and agree that nationalizing social media is a dumb idea. We would never generate the value for the money we'd spend. But. There is an argument for noncommercial alternatives to Facebook and Twitter, an analogue to public mail delivery or public broadcasting. The sort of model I would envision would be a public service ... [Direct Link]

Mastodon is big in Japan. The reason why is… uncomfortable, Ethan Zuckerman, Aug 22, 2017

This criticism of Mastodon - which, full disclosure, I use regularly - is odd. Here it is: "Japanese users had been looking for a Twitter-like platform where they could share lolicon writing and imagery for some time." For those unfamiliar with lolicon (as I was", it "includes animated cartoons and 2D drawings of young men and women in a way that is undeniably sexualized." As Zuckerman says, "some advocates for distributed publishing will be disappointed that ... [Direct Link]

NodeBB Powered by Intuz, AWS Marketplace, Aug 17, 2017

This comes from a post in Mastodon. Sandstorm is "an open source, community-driven project aiming to enable self-hosting of cloud services and to make it possible for open source web apps to compete with today’s cloud services." It's like a personal cloud. I'm not sure how long it will last, but it's there now. NodeBB is an mobile-first open source (GitHub) discussion forum system written for Node. The Mastodon post refers to a Sandstorm port of NodeBB. I'm not ... [Direct Link]

A $99 'subscription' will be the beginning of the end for Twitter, Pete Pachal, Mashable, Jul 30, 2017

It's the option no Twitter user anywhere asked for: pay $99 a month and Twitter will promote your tweets to readers who never asked for them. "Now imagine if the top of your feed was mostly tweets from so-called influencers, with a bunch of tweets from brands thrown in for good measure," writes Pete Pachal. "It's hard to imagine a change to Twitter better designed to make me leave the service for good." Of curse, there's always Mastodon. [Direct Link]

Scholar.Social: A Mastodon Network For Teachers, Aaron B. Smith, CC BY, Jun 02, 2017

This post introduces, a Mastodon server for teachers and educators. " is not JUST for teachers, but anyone involved in academics. The tag line they use is  'The Mastodon profile that you’re not embarrassed to put on the last slide of a presentation at a conference.'" [Direct Link]

The rise and rise of Mastodon, Eugen Rochko, Medoum, Apr 26, 2017

The developer of Mastodon, Eugen Rochko, offers this update following an exciting month that found the distributed social network software suddenly discovered and (it seems) accepted by people around the world. How accepted? "At the time of writing, the Mastodon network includes more than 486,767 users spread out among more than a 1,212 instances." Now we have to expect that a certain number of users are just test users, but his Patreon support also went from $700 to $3000 a month ... [Direct Link]

What I wish I knew before joining Mastodon, Qina Liu, Medium, Apr 13, 2017

I've been on Mastodon for a while and have written about it previously, but if you're just looking at it now the first instance,, is now closed to new users. But the idea is that Mastodon is distributed so there are other instances you can join. When you do, you can find me at [Direct Link]

Experimenting with alternative social networks, D’Arcy Norman, D’Arcy Norman Dot Net, Dec 04, 2016

As readers know, I dropped out of Facebook at the end of the summer. It felt lonely but it was a good move - the people who were missing my posts on Facebook came back, and viewership on went from the 25K per month it had averaged to more like 40K per month. That's a big difference compared to the single-digit reads I was getting on Facebook. Anyhow, D'Arcy Norman is also looking at alternatives, having dropped off both Facebook and Twitter. He lists four services he's ... [Direct Link]

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Last Updated: Oct 23, 2017 05:49 a.m.