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Social networks

How to run a small social network site for your friends is a neat guide.

It's hard to appreciate just how bad it is to centralize the common people's town square where anyone can voice their opinion is. Right now, the most popular options for such a place are all governed by a set of rules that can be changed on a whim by few people only, sometimes only one. More often, what's written in the rules is not being followed too and there is no way to argument against your account being deleted or shadow banned by the network.

One other thing such centralization of authority brings, is that social networks can start start collaborating with oppressive governments in the name of 'free speech'.

The only way you can have a social network that works for everyone is for it to be decentralized. Something akin to Mastodon where each instance has its own rules and pays for its own compute. You can federate with any server you like and can't be blocked out of a service with all the history deleted just on a whim.

Decentralization has big challenges to solve before it can compete with likes of Twitter. Compute has to be paid off by users using the network. UX should abstract the notion of servers and federation so the experience is like on Twitter, create account, start creating posts. On Mastodon, you have to first choose a server and most just choose the official server for obvious reasons.

I am personally trying to make Mastodon work whilst still staying on Twitter as that's where the conversation is still happening.

Farcaster & Bluesky seem promising too.

Whatever the new social network is, it has to be open source and be a protocol with a viable plan for moderating and customizing your experience on the network.

All valuable data posted on any of the networks is ultimately transferred and linked in my knowledge base.

Starting social networks is hard. I liked steps Gas app took too reach virality.

Notes