I remember meeting someone back at DEF CON 29 at one of the QueerCon meet-ups. They spent time talking to me about Mastodon and federated social networking. I found it incredibly cool, for sure, but by that time in my life, I had sworn off social media. As such, I resisted the urge to check out Mastodon.
Well, that changed in the Spring of 2022. My first account was on noc.social, and then I decided to migrate over to queer.party, where I stayed for several months. Unfortunately, everything was a lot slower back then. My feed was slow. There were only a few updates a day from all the people I followed. Sadly, it was kind of boring.
Mastodon Profile: https://netmonkey.xyz/@leopardboy
Suddenly, people started migrating from Twitter and everything changed forever. My interactions increased. I began to follow a lot more people, and they started following me. It got to the point where I needed to cull my timeline to something manageable because there was just too much stuff, but I was having a blast.
Then I got the bright idea that I should set up my own personal instance. There was nothing wrong with queer.party, but I wanted to explore how all of this federated software works. I immediately registered a domain and got an account over at masto.host.
Unfortunately, masto.host is a managed-hosting system. They’re a great hosting provider, to help me get my feet wet, but I’m a seasoned systems administrator and prefer to have full access to everything. As such, it made sense to migrate Mastodon over to Linode, and I’ve been there ever since.
I got a bug in me to check out more software. I love photography and have always wanted a personal instance similar to Flickr. I set up Pixelfed, which is more like Instagram than Flickr, unfortunately, but it worked and I had a good time running it. I also decided I wanted a place for long-form writing, so I set up a WriteFreely server.
Sadly, I decided to shut down the Pixelfed and WriteFreely instances. Pixelfed wasn’t being used much, so it made sense to stop wasting money on that instance. After all, I can always post photos here or on Mastodon. As for WriteFreely, I like WordPress (this site) better. I’ve used WordPress off and on for over a decade, and there is an ActivityPub plugin available that allows me to federate my posts.
Right now, I feel settled. I think I’m going to keep things this way for the foreseeable future.