I need to get something off my chest. Buckle up folks.

I'm deeply concerned about the future of the #fediverse and open social protocols. NOT because of the recent Twitter news, but quite the opposite.

The way so many poo-poo'd and decried those efforts was heartbreaking. It shows a severe blind spot in the "libre" community.

Listen, if you don't understand why Twitter, why iOS, why Microsoft (back in the day), etc. is popular, you just don't get this fight.

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UI/UX will win with users EVERY DAMN TIME. The only way free protocols can get any mainstream traction is if the UI/UX is *as good if not better* than proprietary alternatives.

People will use Twitter, IG, Facebook, etc. for the rest of time…if the UX is way better. Period. End of discussion.

That's why Twitter's foray into open protocols is SO IMPORTANT. If they can bring their UX knowhow into the discussion, that's a GOOD THING. This can't just be libre-geek-hacker world forevermore.

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@jared

I am sorry... but have you seen the UI/UX of Twitter recently?

It's atrocious, slow, confusing as all heck, a complete disaster

Mastodon was confusing for me at first, but honestly, the lack of constant attention grabber is a sweet relief.

Not saying that there is no room for improvement: there is a lot of room for improvement, but I am honestly not sure at all if Twitter is the best company to turn to for a better Mastodon UI.

@ParadeGrotesque In a straight up two-up comparison between Twitter.com and Mastodon in a browser, I would agree Mastodon is quite respectable and Twitter does have some issues.

But I'm talking more holistically…the process of signing up, finding content you care about, staying engaged with the right kind of notifications, feeling included in important conversations, etc.

Also Mastodon-compatible mobile apps (at least on iOS) are a mixed bag, at best.

@jared @ParadeGrotesque I disagree with this from the pov of a user who is signing up for the first time. The first thing Mastodon asks you to do is "pick an instance".

Forcing a choice on something they don't yet understand is the worse way to onboard users.

And sadly it's inherent to the design of federated services.

Centralized services have a huge advantage here: user gets to make no choices. No instance to choose, no mobile apps to compare.

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@teleclimber

You have a point. I think it's more minor than how you present it, but, as you remarked, it's the nature of the game with a federated service.

Perhaps a web site introducing Mastodon and allowing you to pick and choose an instance based on your interests would be useful in that case? Does a web site like that already exist? 🤓

@jared

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