Pluralistic: Linkdump Minkchump (16 Dec 2023)

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Pluralistic: Pinkdrunk Linkdump (18 Nov 2023)

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  • Pinkdrunk Linkdump: Your semi-regular weekend declaration of link bankruptcy.
  • This day in history: 2003, 2008, 2013, 2018
  • Colophon: Recent publications, upcoming/recent appearances, current writing projects, current reading

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Pluralistic: Down in the (link)dumps (23 Sept 2023)

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Fool Me Twice We Don’t Get Fooled Again

There’s a crucial difference between federatable and federated.

A pair of fake screenshots, one from Threads, the other from Bluesky. The top one is from a verified account called “gwb1946” whose avatar is George W Bush’s flightsuit-clad crotch. The post reads, “There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you.” The second post is from an account whose handle is “Regimechange,” and whose userid is @missionaccomplished.failson. It reads “Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.”

“Are you on Bluesky?”

Friends, colleagues and strangers have emailed me to ask whether I’ve set up on the new, federatable social media incubated at Twitter and spun out, which many view as a viable Twitter successor.

“Are you on Threads?”

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How To Make the Least-Worst Mastodon Threads

(An opinionated guide) (for the perplexed).

The mastodon mascot tangled in a snarl of thread. Rotchko, AGPL, modified Apr 15 2023

Everyone Can Change Mastodon

Mastodon is great. I love it. I love that it’s based on an open protocol, ActivityPub, which is designed to prevent lock-in and thus enshittification.

Now, that doesn’t mean that I agree with every decision that went into Mastodon’s design, and that’s okay. Unlike, say, Twitter, if I don’t like Mastodon’s design, I can change it, by creating a new client or a server extension, or by convincing someone else to do so. Mastodon is an open, generative platform, built on software that is free-as-in-freedom —everyone can modify it.
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Of Course Mastodon Lost Users

Scalloped growth is not evidence of a platform in decline.

A chart showing a scalloped, upward-trending curve. The curve is lined with mastodon icons. The x-axis is labelled with an upside-down Twitter logo. The y-axis is labelled with a trio of person-shaped icons.


Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover plunged the service into chaos: between mass layoffs, sweeping policy changes, reinstatement of known harassers and more ads in feeds that themselves were stuffed full of cackhanded algorithmic suggestions that displaced the posts from people you followed, there was cause for genuine alarm.

Even before Musk, Twitter had dabbled with enshittification, but under his low-attention-span, clownish management, Twitter’s enshittification engine shifted into ludicrous mode.

The enshittification of Twitter drove a mass exodus. Some users — who’d failed to learn the lesson of trusting in the beneficence of a benevolent dictatorship — fled to walled gardens like Hive and Post.

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Pluralistic: What the fediverse (does/n't) solve (23 Dec 2022)

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Pluralistic: Better failure for social media (19 Dec 2022)

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