I’m feeling a bit like a turncoat as I write this, but there’s no way around it: The Fediverse, as good as it might be in its idea, is no match for the established social networks. I really tried leaving Twitter for the better alternative, but Mastodon’s a wasteland in comparison. And I tell you why, because it’s nothing that is very widely shared on the web:
The main problem with Mastodon instances is that hashtags that you include in your posts don’t show up in search results of other users, unless they are on the same server or followers of yours. This doesn’t sound so bad at first, but it means that building a community out of nothing but common interests (those marked by using appropriate hashtags in your posts) is pretty much impossible.
I think it wouldn’t have taken me too long to get those few hundred followers that I have on Twitter, on any other platform that works similarly. But if no one can find my #soundtrack #filmmusic #composer posts, then how on earth could I ever build a community of fans and like-minded people?
So, as always the devil lies in the detail, and even if they tell you it doesn’t matter which server you’re on, it actually does. And unless you expect to find your community exclusively on the one server that you happen to be on, you can already forget the whole thing.
This doesn’t mean it can’t be fixed. But as of now, the fediverse is useless to me, and I’m returning to Muskverse, as much as it pains me.