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I'm just gonna put it out there: if you decide to run a federated social media server of any kind, strongly consider keeping it invite only and capping its size from the beginning. If your server has fewer than 100 active people on it and you have some level of trust or shared values, then moderation is a single person task that you as the admin can handle. At least in my experience.

I'm considering writing a "how to run a nice little community in the fediverse" guide with some best practices.

Administering a fediverse server requires both technical ability and emotional maturity. But the latter is never covered in the documentation.

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@darius why should it be? The person who wrote it doesn’t have it or see the need.

@fluffy You'll note I'm careful to say fediverse server, because it applies that broadly (and the documentation is lacking that broadly).

@darius I mean this is why for now I’m targeting my own federated shit to self-hosting rather than having any sort of “community” thing. Because no way do I want to be in a position of maintaining a community.

It’s a shitty solution to the problem but it’s what I’m comfortable with for my needs.

@darius but Publ also scratches an entirely different set of itches than ActivityPub stuff.

@fluffy Yeah! Self hosting specific fediverse software is something we need more of. I used to host a Masto server just for me and at some point I was like "this is like driving the Space Shuttle to the grocery store every day"

@darius yeah. I just wish ActivityPub weren’t so annoying to do right. I keep going back and forth as to whether I want to build it into Publ or not but I’m sort of leaning towards wanting to at this point (if only because people keep believing the myth that atom/rss is dead and insufficient).

@fluffy btw I've been incredibly impressed with the work you've put in on publ. I might want to give it a go at some point. I only wish I knew python so I could contribute to the backend

@darius thanks! You should be able to at least play with it without any python knowledge, and a lot of what I want to add in the future is more frontendy in terms of building a nice posting interface.

@darius Decentralised community management is sort of trial by fire for us. I suspect it will be like a nature thing — poor community managers will collapse their communities, good ones will cultivate bigger ones. But good god, IRL community management is a very poorly cultivated skill, and I haven't even seen community managers by profession do it well necessarily, either. It's nebulous.

@matilde I think sometimes poor community management just results in the community metastasizing. It ends up looking good by shitty standards (our engagement is growing!) but it is just a big tumor

@darius I’d be interested in reading this if you do!

@darius this! I host my own xmpp server, but it also has accounts for a group of friends (most of whom would be capable to host their own) and a few family members (who wouldn't).

Then one LUG I'm part of has a friendica instance for its members; here I'm not doing any maintenance, but it has been my main social home for years.

(I still don't have anything like that for mastodon, because as a software it's a huge beast and I'm not sure I'll still need it now that friendica has support for AP)

@darius Both servers have < 20 users who know each other in person, and AFAIK moderation load is pretty non-existing.

@darius you also have to have the social hygiene to know people who aren’t pieces of shit, and that’s a insurmountable for a lot of folks.

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Hometown is adapted from Mastodon, a decentralized social network with no ads, no corporate surveillance, and ethical design.