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If you where to try and explain the Fediverse to someone, how would you explain it with it's different instances? As well as explain why it is better in some ways for the future of the Internet?

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Submitted ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago by [email protected] to [email protected]

https://kbin.run/m/[email protected]/t/142216

If you where to try and explain the Fediverse to someone, how would you explain it with it's different instances? As well as explain why it is better in some ways for the future of the Internet?

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  • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

    Firstly, your 'instance' is just like your email server. It doesn't matter if it's @yahoo.com or @google.com, I can still email you and you can respond. Some people even have their own servers.

    Next, imagine if Facebook, Instagram and Twitter users could all follow each other's posts. The posts are already pretty much the same but we just add @Facebook or @Twitter to the end. You could log in to one, but see posts from the others. The only difference is the layout and design of the interface, like the difference between 'Gmail' and 'Outlook'.

    You can also move between servers easily if you want. Sick of @Facebook? Move to @Instagram without losing followers.

    • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

      Imagine you have a big board on your front lawn where people can come to write stuff and respond to others on the board. This board is an instance.

      Your neighbor has their own board, which they have “federated” with yours. Messages from your board can show up on their board, and people there can write on those messages same as ones native to that board.

      You can federate with them so their stuff shows on your board, or defederate if you don’t like the people there.

      Anyone with the ability to make a board can have one federated with other boards to make a really big web of boards, but to a person looking at your lawn’s board it feels like one big one.

      • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

        It’s a gargantuan group of forums that you can access through your home forum. Your home forum admins act like admins on your home forum but have no power elsewhere.

        Or “It’s like Reddit, but with longer URLs and a slightly different user culture.”

        • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

          For the lay person:

          It's like if you could see Twitter threads and Reddit posts on your Facebook in a single feed, and choose between them which set of rules, interfaces, and styles you prefer. Since everything shares content, it is easier for new sites to open which helps keep the user experience competitive.

          • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

            I know it's more complex, just if you are trying to explain what the Fediverse is to someone who's older

            "Remember Usenet?"

            "Just like that, but anyone can run a server and start their own newsgroups"

            • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

              "It's just like Twitter/Reddit/Instagram. Just sign up, you'll can figure out the few differences later".

              • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

                You know how you can send an email from Gmail to someone with a yahoo.com address and it just works? It’s like that but for social media.

                • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

                  Also works for describing blocking of users and domains!

                  • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

                    Seriously, though? Everybody goes to the email analogy. The email analogy really doesn't work.

                    Not only does it raise more questions than it answers, but it is also not a way people conceptualize social media and it generates the false assumption that the posts themselves exist as the component units of the entire thing as opposed to being tied to the format of the instance.

                    The thing is you don't even need to bring up interoperability for somebody curious about a specific federated app. In practice, most of the experience doesn't require wrapping your head around that part and somebody can explain the details the first time you get a weirdly formatted posts in your streams.

                    • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

                      Yeah I thought about that method but it seems to just make it more complex

                      • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

                        Especially when trying to explain that Mastodon and Lemmy can't talk together but you can still follow / subscribe to people

                  • [email protected] ⁨7⁩ ⁨months⁩ ago

                    You know how you can send an email from Gmail to someone with a yahoo.com address and it just works? It’s like that but for social media.