2018-04-13 Social Media Goals

More Mastodon thoughts...

Initial tests with automatic anti-lurker measures: of my 513 followers 289 haven’t mentioned me in the last 12 weeks (same number if considering all the mentions, ever). That would be a strangely big list of people to block, if that was my strategy to block bots and spyware. But isn’t interaction what I’m here for? I feel like radio blocking listeners who never call in. Or should I feel like hanging up the phone when the other side never says a word? That’s creepy, too.

The social sniffer is what I’m concerned about. I guess I just want to make that harder. Then again, sniffers can just slurp the public timeline and get all the data, right... 😭

On Google+ and Facebook, I blocked all the accounts that looked like spammers and leeches to me. They had to have something, anything on their profile to indicate that they were interested in communicating with me, or a common interest. Just a signal. Anything.

I guess one other thing I could try is unfollow anybody who isn’t following me? I realize that such a mass unfollow and blocking tool is not for everybody but I keep wondering what kind of social media I’d actually want to see and I keep thinking I want to connect with people, and have conversations. If we’re not having conversations, perhaps we should just read each other’s blogs. Or perhaps I’m demonstrating to myself how conflicted I am about the entire notion of social media.

I just imagine sitting in a room full of people. I sometimes say a thing. Some people wink. Some people wave. Some people say something back. And some just sit there and listen. They’re eyes looking at me, at the people reacting, back at me. They never blink. It’s creepy as hell. What are they doing in the same room as I am. I want to invite them into the conversation but I don’t need them just sitting there, listening in.

Clearly some people have something to say to a lot of followers. They act like multiplicators. They can have a beneficial effect, like teachers. People learn by following them. Or they can be influencers, adsters, fakesters, propagandists, sniffers, marketeers, profilers, secret service, all sorts of unsavoury jobs. But if you follow somebody like you follow a blogger, clearly an intentional one-way communication, then that’s cool. But I think that’s not what I want.

Maybe I want a slow moving, asynchronous chat room.

I’ll think about this some more, for sure. I think writing the code and looking at what it would actually do, seeing those ratios, perhaps that’ll help me make up my mind. What is it that I want from Mastodon?



I think the shear amount of stuff that one can read is so big, that it’s really difficult to stop for a moment and talk back, instead of moving to your next favourite corner of the Internet. As for me, I often don’t know what to say!

I like Twitter for the ease of interaction. I like blogs for solid bodies of communication, with links, history, pictures... I don’t love G+, but all the interesting folks are there!

– Enzo 2018-04-17 16:17 UTC

Yeah, the big exodus from Blogs to G+ still hurts! 😅

– Alex Schroeder 2018-04-18 13:56 UTC

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