I am exceptionally happy to report we are now hosting an instance of at Barrir.ca.

What is Mastodon?

It is similar to Twitter, except in the ways it is not.

If that is not helpful enough to you: if you like Twitter, you might like it, especially if you want to see messages really related only to the things you search for (except people: you cannot search for people, the software simply can’t.)

So how is it different?

Biggest difference is decentralization – everyone joins up to the site they want to, not all at one central url. Your messages do not go everywhere, either; each instance only pulls in messages from other sites they ‘know’ and with which they are willing to share. Each site is a ‘node’ in a larger network, and that network interacts with all the different kinds of sites using the WebSub protocols, allowing sharing of updates from many kinds of media sites including photo galleries, blogs, microblogs, audio streaming, and video sites, and probably more, which make up the ‘Fediverse’.

You only get messages from people you follow, and people who send direct messages to you. You can look at various streams, too, like all messages on the local site, or the stream of all messages from all known parts of the Fediverse. And you can search all these messages for hash tags, which is often the best way to find new conversations and individuals.

Because of the decentralized nature of the system, you are not tied to any one website. If you want, you can move, and there are even tools to just automagically bring your followers / follows to a new domain, or to download your posts and media to your own computer. This is all part of the important little difference about who owns what is shared on social media: the creator does, not the website.

I don’t speak French, and your site is in French.

I am working on that. It should be available in both French and English, but somehow I cannot get it to detect the browser’s default language. You can set the user interface language to English after you create an account, but that does not help if you cannot figure out how to create an account.

So you want us all to join Mastodon?

No. If you were really interested, you would already be using Mastodon and this would just be an interesting option as a place to use as your Mastodon home.

There is no point in joining a website/service you do not use.

But, if you are on Mastodon, I can be contacted at @amgine@barrir.ca.