Five Years of Fosstodon Questions

05 Aug 2022 | ~3 minute read

Brandon, incidentally one of the oldest members on Fosstodon, asked a few questions in response to my post on Five Years of Fosstodon. So I thought I’d answer them here.

The answers to these questions will take up way more than the 500 characters allowed by Mastodon, and as regular readers will know, I really dislike threads. So it made sense for me to post the answers here.

Ok, let’s get on with it…

1. Is there a point where, with enough recurring funds, you guys would be interested in being a little more prescriptive with the way donations are made? eg: These funds are being donated with a request that XYZ feature be implemented in ABC software.

Personally, I would never dream of adding conditions to a donations. I think it’s far more useful to the project receiving the donation to get it with no strings attached so they can use it how they see fit.

We’ve never made such a request to a project, and I don’t think we ever will.

2. What are the plans for the future of Fosstodon? Branching out to host an instance of Pixelfed?

We’ve actually discussed this a number of times as a team and each time we’ve landed on it’s not broke, so we won’t fix it.

By adding things like a Pixelfed instance, it would only dilute our members between services. Plus, there’s nothing to stop people posting their cool pictures on Fosstodon.

I actually have a Pixelfed account, but have never used it. I suppose I’m just an old curmudgeon who doesn’t really post pictures. If I can’t get into it, I think I’d really struggle to host an instance.

So the future is more of the same. Focus on the Mastodon instance and continue to grow our amazing community. If anyone has any ideas though, I’m all ears.

3. What are some things that have happened in your lives that couldn’t have happened if Fosstodon hadn’t been around?

Honestly, I can’t think of anything in terms of my real day-to-day personal life. But that’s because I tend to keep my personal life and online life separate.

Having said that, there are a number of people I’ve met through Fosstodon (and Mastodon) that I now consider friends. Obviously I wouldn’t have met those people if it weren’t for Fosstodon.

4. Has your presences in Fosstodon changed the way you look at things in and around the FOSS community?

It’s actually given me more faith in the community. It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of some part of the Linux community, but generally speaking, the vast majority of my interactions on Fosstodon and Mastodon have been positive.

5. If you two were starting Fosstodon today, what would be something you would do differently?

Honestly, not a lot. We made the decision early on to have managed hosting, which has worked out great. Mike and I working together prevents the “hit by a bus” scenario and we have a great group of people helping out.

Mike and I are old farts, so I suppose we’ve learned form our mistakes in other projects/ventures. I don’t want to toot my own horn (see what I did there), but I think Mike and I got it pretty darn right first time.

Thanks for the questions, Brandon. If anyone has others, feel free to add to the thread on Fosstodon, or use the reply by email button below.

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