My thoughts and opinions on ActivityPub and the Fediverse are numerous, and I am already working on an article to share them with you. For this one, the plan is to explain my strategy to future-proof my online presence.**
If you don’t know what ActivityPub and the Fediverse are, please watch my recent video about this topic. But the most important information to understand is that one can follow and be followed, as well as engage, regardless of what social platform is being used.
Many services have been compatible with the ActivityPub protocol for a long time now, but I don’t think we can deny the fact that if large corporations adopt it, the chances of it becoming mainstream are higher. And based on the recent announcement by Flipboard and the tests being conducted by Threads, I’m pretty sure this is what’s happening right now.
Again, I suggest watching my recent video on the topic to understand the details and implications. For now, let us discuss the reasons behind my choice of Micro.blog and Mastodon.
I believe that Micro.blog is a link between the old Internet, before social media, where people used to write on websites and blogs, and the new Internet that is all about sharing everything.
At Micro.blog, you can make a website with static pages and and also have a blog. The cool thing about the blog is that it uses the ActivityPub protocol. This means that anyone using any ActivityPub service can read and engage with your posts.
But there’s more, or, should I say, less? If you read Manton Reece’s book about starting a Micro.blog, or follow him online, you’ll see that he is really into writing short posts. It is also evident in the company’s name and the blog feature on Micro.blog.
If one writes simple posts, such as tweets, they will be added to the timeline, like what happens on Twitter and other similar services. On the other hand, if a long-form text is created, that will become a blog post like this article you are reading. However, it will also be added to the timeline with a link to the article. And, once again, that timeline is compatible with ActivityPub.
All these means that someone, say, on Mastodon, can follow and engage with all the posts without ever being a Micro.blog user. You can use my blog to try it out. Just look for @email@example.com on your preferred Fediverse platform.
NOTE: There are already many great interviews with Manton Reece about Micro.blog out there, but I’m thrilled to share that he recently accepted an invitation to have a conversation about all this on my YouTube Channel.
But if Micro.blog is both services in one, why would I need Mastodon? Well, a year ago, I tried using it alone, but I had no success. I left because of a design decision. There are no likes or re-posts on the Micro.blog timeline. To explain why I care about it, let’s talk about Mastodon.
When I first heard about Micro.blog, I was already a Mastodon user, where I was building a new community after leaving Twitter. On doing so, I quickly learned how important likes and re-posts are. Because of them, I got to know so many nice people re-posted by someone I was following. The same thing happened the other way around. People re-posting me on Mastodon helped me get noticed by others.
Nevertheless, I fully understand Micro.blogs decision. The goal is to stimulate conversations, but, to be honest, I felt very isolated there. And at that particular moment, I did not have a significant number of people following me on Mastodon, and I still do not. Until these days, I keep discovering interesting people and communities through re-posts.
How is this future-proofing my online presence?
First of all, ActivityPub is a W3C protocol. Then, there’s the fact that major corporations are beginning to embrace it. But the most important reason is that ActivityPub-compatible social media allows you to move between different services and bring all of your followers with you. Let’s say that in the future, Micro.blog adds likes and re-posts and I decide I want to leave Mastodon. I’ll be able to easily do it, bringing with me all the followers, whom, by the way, I prefer to call community.
This is such a win-win situation. Whenever and wherever it pleases me, I am free to move, and I don’t have to ask anyone from my community to move to a different social media platform. Furthermore, if they also wish to move somewhere else, that’s fine. As long as it is compatible with the ActivityPub protocol, neither technology nor CEOs will prevent us from keeping in touch with each other.
My website has already been migrated to Micro.blog, and from now on, I’ll be blogging from here. But I will continue to post on Medium, which is, incidentally, also in the process of adopting the ActivityPub protocol.
Regarding micro-posting, I’ll be doing it on Mastodon. So, if one wishes to follow only my articles or only my micro-posts, they can do so. Or, they can also follow both. And the best part is that anyone can follow and interact with me using any ActivityPub-compatible service. This is absolutely remarkable!
Have you gained any valuable knowledge or had a pleasant reading experience and would like to give it back? Follow this blog from your preferred Fediverse service @firstname.lastname@example.org and/or Buy Me a Coffee.