Switching Instances

I started out on mastodon.social](https://mastodon.social) back in 2018 and sometime after that, deleted my account. I re-created it in March, 2022 when the drama with Elon and Twitter started. When I quit Twitter late in the fall, I decided to move to a smaller instance for a variety of reasons.

That instance was indieweb.social and I opted for that instance because I liked the community there which seemed aligned with my thoughts on the open web. The local feed was one of the best parts of being on that instance for first little while. It was not exclusively about open/indieweb topics, but it sure leaned that way.

But as the instance grew, the indieweb part seemed to fade quite a bit. And I wasn’t helping either. My posts tended to be more about running than indieweb stuff which left me wondering if I belonged there. The value of the local feed was diminishing a bit for me and I started considering a move either to a new instance or back to mastodon.social.

I thought about going to mstdn.ca (the “Canadian” instance) and also about going to the corporate instance my employer runs. But the more I thought about it, the more sense it made to head to mastodon.social.

Earlier today I made the switch back with the migration tool and redirect feature that Mastodon offers. It all worked pretty nicely, although I had to manually recreate some filters. My old profile on indieweb.social is redirecting and I set it to delete posts over 6 months old so by the summer it’ll be blank and I can probably just delete it.

The news that mastodon.lol was being shut down in three months was the thing that pushed me to make the move today. I didn’t want to be worried that the folks at indieweb.social would one day decide they no longer wanted to host an instance. It’s the same reason I wouldn’t use the instance that the company I work for set up. I’m not convinced it’ll be there for the long haul.

Is that a downside to the fediverse? Yep. But, given what’s happening to Twitter these days (and what happened to MySpace and Google+, etc.), that’s not a concern unique to the fediverse. It’s a downside to relying on others to host your content online.

I gave a small bit of thought to either paying masto.host for the smallest instance or running my own, on my own domain. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that I could probably count less on myself to run the instance than I could on Mastodon to keep mastodon.social running for the next few years.

James Koole @jameskoole