The arrival of Threads is shaking up the rest of the social networks. Elon Musk is aware that Meta’s new microblogging app is a serious competitor to Twitter, which remains mired in change and feasibility issues. And he has taken a few hours to react: threatened to sue Mark Zuckerberg’s company for appropriating trade secrets and intellectual property of the company for the development of its own platform.
As the two giants butt heads, Mastodon is pleased that Threads plans to join ActivityPub, the same open, decentralized protocol it uses and is a web standard. In his opinion, that is “a clear victory” for his cause in favor of decentralized social networks.
¿Model to follow?
A “victory” of decentralized social networks
Francesc Bracero / Own
Mastodon uses open source software and works in a decentralized way through the ActivityPub protocol, which makes it possible to work with independent servers managed by the users themselves. This means that users have less dependence on big technology companies, which in turn manage the main social networks.
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Furthermore, this decentralized protocol allows users to migrate their accounts and followers to other compatible apps, and not lose all their activity or history.
In this sense, after the launch of the new Meta application, the CEO of Mastodon, Eugen Rochko, has detailed some questions regarding how the presence of Threads can affect other decentralized social networks of the type, such as Mastodon itself.
First, Rochko celebrates what he calls “a clear victory” for his cause, which advocates a movement to get social media decentralized.
As they have remarked in an entry on their blog, “the biggest obstacle” for users who change platforms when they “become exploitative” is “social graphic blocking.” In other words, every time they change platforms they lose their entire community and have to start from scratch, something that does not happen with the decentralized protocol.
For this reason, the CEO of Mastodon assures that the fact that large platforms use this protocol, as is the case of Meta with the launch of Threads, “is not only a validation of the movement towards decentralized social networks, but a way forward to get people stuck on these platforms to switch to better providers.”
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Rochko hopes that Meta will end up adapting the ActivityPub protocol, as he is proposing. And he wants Mastodon and Threads “to be interoperable”. This is, from a technical point of view, that users can follow each other from different social networks and exchange messages.
However, it highlights some differences. For example, that the decisions that Threads make will be independent. That means that the only people who will be able to set rules and moderate your Mastodon server will still be the moderators of said server.