It’s been ages since I last posted on my blog and I had been wanting to start again. What to talk about?
The Great Twitter to Mastodon Migration of 2022!
It’s not exactly a migration, it’s more like a mass exodus.
For anyone who’s not aware, Elon Musk completed his purchase of Twitter on October 27th, 2022. This was met by a lot of concerns from Twitter users. He likes to proclaim that he’s a “free speech absolutist” and if you think that means hate speech, anti-wokeness and anti-cancel culture then you are not wrong.
Note: “Wokeness” and “cancel culture” is not a thing. it never has been. Consequences, however are real.
In his first week he posted a nonsense conspiracy reply back to Hillary Clinton and subsequently deleted it. That was not bad but instead of apologizing for spreading that nonsense, he just kept mum. I’m glad he deleted it but, really how dumb do you have to be to go that way?
Then there was the matter of paying a monthly fee to get a “Blue Checkmark™”.
Putting aside the tone deaf “lords & peasants” nonsense, the idea is you pay and you get a blue checkmark seal of approval and other benefits.
It’s an awful idea. First, the existing blue checkmark was to let people know they were reading tweets from a verified person.
Do you follow Jeri Ryan? I do; she’s very cool.
The check mark is to let you know, that’s not a scammer pretending to be Jeri Ryan. Here’s her reply about the $8/month idea.
Verification has always been dodgy on Twitter. The rules changed, sometimes Twitter verified people and sometimes they did not.
The Blue Checkmark is not about spam or bots. It never has been. It’s about validating who that celebrity is.
Anyone who has had to deal with trolls and abusers know this is a bad idea. A scammer or phisher who pays for bulletproof hosting is not going to have a problem with $8/month if it helps them make their target dollars per month.
No one Begrudges Twitter Being Profitable
Twitter is (now) a private company. I don’t know if it has ever been profitable but Musk bought it for $44 billion and that was financed. Making money is a valid goal. This blue checkmark idea is just bad and no one should sign up for that.
Any website owner knows, advertising is king. No one likes ads. No one likes that a website shows me ad for that electronics I was browsing on Amazon. It is creepy. But it is an accepted way to make money on the Internet.
Elon Musk’s way of handling advertisers is typical Elon Musk.
That’s just a nonsense reply. Anyone who thinks it’s a “free speech in America” issue is not from this planet.
Just look at Ye’s troubles. Kanye West has lost major endorsements because he spews unapologetic anti-Semitic hate speech. Why would any brand want to be associated with that?
That’s always been the concern with Twitter being taken over my Elon Musk. Twitter has always been a hellscape when it comes to abuse. Sometimes they nailed it, other times they would routinely punish the wrong person and give the abuser a pass. With his treatment of hate speech/misinformation being “free speech” (it’s not) who wants to posting ads on that platform?
Mastodon is Federated and That’s a Good Thing
My first day really using Mastodon went like this.
- I posted some toots. They’re called “toots”.
- Someone replied at me “You smell Jewish” and their profile made it clear they were into “free speech”.
- I reported them, added a couple of their posts that used the N-word to the report and blocked them.
It’s the Internet and I expected abusers. With a federated model I was not sure my report would mean anything. I was wrong!
Somewhere an admin got that report. They looked at it and I am sure they said “Oh. Yeah. That’s bad.” and banned the user.
There was no “We received your report”, there was no “That user does not violate the TOS”, they just dealt with it. Cool.
I’ll maintain both my Twitter account and my Mastodon account for now. It’s not a big deal, I do that today with Facebook and Twitter. I can be found at this URL.
I’ll see how it goes. Mastodon is currently a little slow and sometimes times out on me. That’s OK! That means people are joining it and that’s a good problem to have.