Most of the communities are on one instance i.e .ml. Should we spin up more instances and start spreading communities either by location, interests, etc? Maybe, I am wrong but do mod/s who run the communities understand the idea of “decentralized social networks” or this is just to get few brownie points to start the community and increase the traffic? Please correct me if I am wrong.

No offence, just an observation.

Dessalines
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Its very natural for fediverse projects to have a few of the starting instances dominate, at least at the beginning. Its not necessarily that hosting requirements are heavy, its just that beta software under rapid development needs frequent updates.

This is the instance run by us devs, and we can’t do more than encourage people to start their own instances, and for others to federate with them. There are no ads on lemmy, so we don’t gain anything by having more users. More traffic on this instance is actually detrimental to us, because it gives us more moderation work, whereas we’d prefer to do development.

Maybe you could recruit others to be moderators

Maybe it wouldn’t be a bad idea to find a few other instances, and promote them and/or some of their communities on your project site? It might be a good small step towards helping people discover other places to sign up or connect with.

An instance picker is good, but I was more talking about highlighting a handful of good ones with decent reputation and maybe a few unique communities that belong to each one.

poVoq
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I think as a start a nice blog-post by you would work ;)

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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After Holidays, will try to spin something :))

I feel like the best way to get this off the ground is to really put up as much new content as possible. I’ve been slacking recently by not being on in a while, but I really need to make the effort in contributing.

With more contribution comes more people.

I think this is on point. IIRC this was a major problem with reddit in the early days, admins had to post a lot of content.

that’s generally how you get a community rolling. yogthos feels like he’s been almost the sole contributor for a while.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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You are correct, if we keep the bots away.

Gritty
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I often see the talk about expansion but I don’t think even this server has hit its limit of channel overcrowding. I see it more of cells dividing, one instance splitting off when enough folks decide they can make their own “colony”. Otherwise, it’ll be like a few instances I’ve seen around - 3 folks posting on every sub.

Ultimately people want to be a part of a community, but only one that’s not too small that its boring or too large that you’re lost in the mix and folks are annoying. This instance seems to have that mix right now, and as it expands I hope folks break off in large groups to expand the community.

mtumishi
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Don’t forget the whole idea of federation is that an instance with 10 members is not limited to those members only on content sources. I like it when more instances interlink and therefore reduce the centralization risks while keeping network benefits.

Gritty
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Good point

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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Yes, I am aware. At end of the day reducing the centralization is our end result.

(“hope”)

I think having more instances would be great, especially now that it’s possible to federate across them. A big question is how to ensure that instances are spun up in a sustainable fashion. One common problem I see with Mastodon instances is that they’re often short lived. This can cause more harm than good since people create accounts and get invested in the community, and then it disappears when the person running the server no longer has the time or the will to keep doing it.

It might be good to create some sort of an organization that would allow people to pool effort needed for operating the servers. So, if somebody needs help with administration or they want to pass it on to somebody else then it’s easy for people to connect. This could even be a community on the main instance.

@zksmk@lemmy.ml
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There are benefits to each community being local and server specific (moderation, culture, community), but there are also benefits to the idea of a single community being spread over multiple instances (decentralisation, resilience, activity/reach). There are reasons why few people want to start a or post content to a community on a random server, and most people opt for the biggest one. There’s relatively few people as it is already and creating duplicates, fragmentation and inevitable manual content replication doesn’t seem like the way to go about things.

This is why I like the idea of a potential future feature where on top of /c/acommunity we would also get a /t/atopic that aggregates all the communities with the same name from all the instances into one place/feed. This would NEED to be optional and the community mods would have to have an optin/optout feature for their community being included in the /t/topic feed. I think that would make both sides happy.

As it is, I don’t see having active communities on other instances likely, unfortunately. Individual accounts can work just fine from other instances, and the content gets auto replicated, but the parent hub is still in one place.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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You mean, if both a and b communities agreed ie both have these feature enabled they can share a topic/s among them?

If both lemmy.ml/c/linux and lemmygrad.ml/c/linux agreed, you could go to /t/linux on either site and see all the content of both in one place.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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Got it, very good idea.

Oh, this is how I assumed it worked today

Yeah, you can visit lemmy.ml/c/startrek@lemmygrad.ml just fine from here on lemmy.ml, but it’s a fully separate community to lemmy.ml/c/startrek and you can’t view them at the same time on one page.

CHEF-KOCH
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Decentralization will never work for the mass because there are simple reasons for that. This is what I call the Nitter effect. We have the same there, millions of people using and starving those free services to death, but no one or only 20 people self-host their own.

People do not self-host because

  • It requires more effort and time that you need to spend to initial setup everything, instead of joining existence instances.
  • Most are not experts and just updating the software is often not enough, which possible leads into more vulnerabilities and data leaks and breaches. We have that more and more.
  • People do not know how to do it because the platform that wants to expand do not provide any guides on how to really do it.
  • Maintenance is a bish, that is one of the reasons other platforms went down e.g. Ruqqus.
  • Why should people start their own no-name server when there are already bigger ones. Like trying to compete against Twitter, Google and Co. it is not possible…

If you want to expand, you need to provide the following

  • Dead simple instructions, step-by-step on how to self-host and maintain your own instance, and I really mean step-by-step. Docs are not enough, you need to provide pictures because the average user does not read anything anymore.
  • You need to make people aware that you need several people, not just one guy that maintains it. Maintenance will suck up your life, and people are not willingly to do that alone for nothing in return. You also require mods etc.
  • You need to advertise and describe why it would be interesting or important to start your own community, server etc.
@zksmk@lemmy.ml
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I’m sure some people don’t enjoy hearing about this regarding the potential distant future of a successful mainstream fediverse, but if someone puts ads on their instance, that’s all incentive they need to maintain it. I mean, yeah, sure, it’s ads, but it’s decentralised, and therefore better in some ways. It’s that, or freemium features, pick your poison. IF the fediverse is to succeed as a non-niche platform, and not run by hobbyists. Which of course nobody said needs to be true.

And we don’t have to speculate about all this, mass federated platforms already exist, they’re called email.

I would rather see people be asked to contribute towarsa costs or the instances run by community organizations.

Dessalines
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I will continue to try to make our install docs as simple as possible, and am open to suggestions on how to make that easier.

The ansible install right now is extremely easy to do, you can set up a server within a few minutes.

Keeping trolls and bad behavior in check. Other platforms have failed in this area.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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Quality over quantity.

Maybe we would need marketing campaign and make it appeal to the general audience to have fast expansion. But I am not sure we are ready at the moment.

It’s really hard to get people actually sign up and stay on it because it’s always a bit of a vicious cycle. People are hesitant to switch because there isn’t much content, then they keep using old platform. Take example with Signal. Feature wise, it is on par with WhatsApp. But when I try to convince people to use it, they always go back to WhatsApp because they already have all their contacts and conversation.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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Was on the same boat, took a year to convince wife start using signal. She still uses WhatsApp, saying she has a good content there.

I’m new, just got tired of the ever increasing homogeneity on Reddit. Feels so artificial now. This communities small which is a good thing for maintaining that human feeling maybe? lol. Maybe that sense of community divorced from mass adoption and corporate interest is a good value to uphold. Idk that’s just how I feel rn as I take my morning shit. Glad to be here guys!

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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I am newb as well. I heard about it before " decentrilized concept", but was to busy in my own world, like most of us. Got tired of mainstream along with pandemic drove me to other side.

This is awesome concept, need to do some homework.

Ravn
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I think it would be good to decentralise communities so that the same community can be hosted on several servers. It sort of sucks to have a community die because a server goes away.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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Do you know, if it is possible to have same community on multiple instances? and not just a same name. Or, we end up having two communities with same name and different content eventually?

Well I joined Lemmy a couple years ago, so that kind of just explains why I am on lemmy.ml

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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Good discussion and valid points everyone. I am actually very surprised, people here are actually for a reason :)))

Imo, lemmy the software has a few glitches that make federation work less well than it should. Getting those fixed will help.

Sounds like a single issue which will soon be fixed, if it hasn’t been fixed already.

@starfish@lemmy.ml
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I am sure it will happen, maybe devs need a bit more time and support. We always see few glitches in the beginning

Colorish
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Imho we should make something original. I’m not talking about functions or things like that, but more about quality content and stuff. I created this account from like 10 mins cuz i really liked the fediverse concept already and when I discovered that there was a whole site like that I immediately subscribed, but rn it’s just a cool and depopulated copy of reddit.

Also we should get rid of incremental counters (like lemmy.ml/post/120548).

@Mordor@lemmy.ml
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