Darnell (Seize The Day)

👨🏾‍🚀 Darnell.bio 🤳🏾 @darnell:shh.darnell.ooo 👨🏾‍💻 Darnell.tv

IFTTT (which stands for “If This, Then That”) is a service that allows you to connect various platforms, websites, social networks, smart devices with each other.

Awhile ago I emailed the IFTTT team to see if they can integrate Fediverse apps like Mastodon, Pixelfed, WriteFreely, Misskey, etcetera, within their service.

Here was their awesome response:

The majority of services you see on IFTTT are built and maintained by the brands themselves. More services are being added all the time but we would also encourage you to reach out to any services such as the ones you listed below that you're interested in directly and let them know they can build on the IFTTT Platform.

Any user with a Pro+ account can create their own IFTTT service, so we'd be happy to have those services on board.

I've also shared this suggestion with IFTTT's partnership team to recommend they reach out the services you listed as well!

Imagine updating your Mastodon profile picture every time you post a selfie to Pixelfed (with the hashtag selfie), or automatically sharing your WriteFreely posts to Misskey.

IFTTT can enable a greater automation between Fediverse platforms, making it easier for them to interact without requiring an in-depth understanding of the code between each platform.

I am going to reach out to these four Fediverse app creators below regarding IFTTT, plus link to their Patreon or Open Collective accounts (as we should always support the platforms we use).

I encourage anyone reading this to reach out to the creators of their favorite Fediverse apps about IFTTT integration as it would be really cool to see all of the Fediverse apps on IFTTT.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

I read an interesting post by @dangillmor@mastodon.social about progressive journalists whining about how Twitter is sending them less traffic nowadays.

While most of the journalists blamed Elon Musk for ending select Twitter features as the cause for traffic decline, these two paragraphs highlighted the real reason why traffic is dropping off right now.

Twitter referral traffic to a dozen major publishers’ websites declined, on average, by 12% in December 2022 compared to November 2022, according to an analysis by Similarweb, a data analytics company that monitors web traffic. Some publishers — such as The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, The New York Times, USA Today, the BBC and Yahoo — each saw referral traffic from Twitter fall between 10% and 18% month over month.

Only two publishers in the sample set — The New York Post and Fox News — saw their traffic increase while People’s website traffic declined by 46%. In most cases, changes were sharper than publishers saw between November and December 2021, when most publishers in the sample set saw traffic increase rather than decrease. (DigiDay, Note: Emphasis mine.)

For those of you unaware, both Fox News & the New York Post are conservative news outlets who both lean right, respectively.

Twitter has been purchased by @elonmusk@twitter.com who often caters towards the conspiracy conservative movement also known as the “alt-right.”

Progressive news outlets, politicians, activists, etcetera, should expect to see their influence dramatically decline on Twitter in 2023, while the opposite will be true for conservative news organizations, politicians, activists, etcetera.

While I expect Twitter’s overall influence will decline this year, I believe the site’s void will eventually be replaced by Instagram (which has become more “news worthy” as of late) as well as Youtube who has already mimicked most of Twitter’s features.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

So I have been spending more time exploring the wonderful world of MissKey by @syuilo@misskey.io & believe it or not I seriously considered using the service last year as my primary Fediverse account due to it’s numerous features (including quote posting).

Thanks to the efforts of @fruitriin@misskey.io we finally have an excellent MissKey app for iPhone, iPad & Android.

Note: The apps are in Japanese, but the developer has promised to add additional languages if the Fediverse displays interest in having the app in their localized language.

Both the MissKey software & the MissRirica apps are currently free, & while this makes them accessible for all, I do have this crazy fear that awesome software like these will disappear due to future financial constraints (this fear is due to an unrelated side affect of Google shutting down Google Reader years ago! Why Google, why‽).

Putting Food On The Fediverse Table

Currently the primary MissKey instance, MissKey.io is supported by the community via Patreon & advertising, although people can opt out the latter by subscribing to the MissKey $5 to $10 Patreon tiers.

However, I think the creator of MissKey should offer another Patreon tier, which would provide a stress free Managed Hosting service for those who desire to run MissKey upon their own domain (but who prefer not to handle the technical details).

This is what BookWyrm offers on Patreon (latter is currently at $40 per month), & MissKey could use the extra funds to help pay for server costs upon Misskey.io, put some extra food on the table & further the development of Misskey’s software.

For comparison I pay Masto Host to $34 per month to host my solo Mastodon account, which also includes Elastic Search (note: I originally started off on their $6 per month plan, but I ended up using Mastodon too much so I had to upgrade 😅).

I believe if the MissKey creator offered a similar service, they would help cover the bandwidth & electricity costs of their main server while expanding MissKey’s influence upon the Fediverse & beyond (a win-win scenario).

MissKey’s Battlemaid MissRirica

So MissRirica is not the first MissKey app to grace the app stores of Apple & Google, but it is probably the best one to appear on both stores.

Created by Rin Nakashima, her apps bring the awesomeness of MissKey to the mobile world (on iPhone, iPad & Android) as well as outclass many (if not most) of the Fediverse apps, especially those built for Mastodon.

I have enjoyed MissRirica apps so much that I am supporting the developer via Patreon (note: if you use any of her apps, then you should too), in order to help further development of the apps, & to help them avoid the fate of several other MissKey apps (MissCat & SocialHub).

Although I advocate that MissRirica allow the initial downloads of the app to be free, I do think she should include some in-app purchases to enhance the experience.

A few in-app paid suggestions include (video shown below as an example):

  • Adding random animal ears, noses & whiskers (cats, rabbits, birds, fish, etcetera) to photo selfies taken within the app
  • Various color filters of pictures (note: avoid using Instagram filter names as they threatened to sue Pixelfed over this)
  • For selfie videos, accompany animated animal features (ears, noses, etcetera) with the corresponding sound of the animal when they talk (make it a optional premium feature)
  • Add a tip jar starting at $10 which will add someone’s name & MissKey handle to the MissRirica support page

Am I Down With MissKey‽

While I do have an account on MissKey at @darnell@misskey.io, I do intend on running a solo MissKey instance in the future (yes, I enjoy running solo instances because, why not‽).

I have already purchased a domain & I am talking to hosts about managed hosting options & so far @12vpx@social.12vpx.com is considering MissKey as an option (they already support Mastodon, Pixelfed & Pleroma.

I am hoping @joinmisskey@misskey.io also considers launching a managed hosting service, as it will allow non-technical normies (as well as some businesses) to enter the Fediverse via their own domain without having to mess with the technical details.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

There is no clear communication to what is going on right now, but @gruber@mastodon.social posted about third party Twitter apps being unceremoniously cut off from Twitter’s API (API means Application Programming Interface for you non-geeks out there).

Last night around 11pm ET, Tweetbot and Twitterrific stopped working, with authentication errors. They’re still down, as are other popular clients. Twitter has said nothing, either publicly or in communications to the affected developers, so your guess is as good as mine whether this is an unintended outage from Twitter’s skeleton crew staff or a strategic decision to pull the plug on third-party clients. Last night I’d have bet — a small amount — that it was an unintentional outage. Today I’d bet the other way, that this is the end. (Daring Fireball)

With Elon Musk declining to pay rent, shutting down critical servers, & even refusing to honor license agreements, Twitter cutting off API access in hindsight should not be a surprise (but to me it is a surprise!).

Creating apps dependent upon the Twitter API was a way many developers provided food on the table. But maybe they could replace some of the lost revenue by looking elsewhere.

Should Twitterverse Developers Embrace The Fediverse‽

It may not replace the money lost due to Elon Musk’s negligence, but maybe Twitterverse developers could create premium iPhone, iPad & Android apps for the Fediverse, as there is a great need for quality apps.

Obvious options include Mastodon, Pixelfed & MissKey (latter has great iPhone & iPad app now), but a few other suggestions include:

The Fediverse Party has a lengthy list of numerous Fediverse apps developers could create apps for.

Developers could also create apps for Matrix as the platform now boasts over 80 million users.

Discovered via:

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

So Medium has launched an official Mastodon instance/site at me.dm which thus far is invite only.

With so many Mastodon instances to choose from, we plan for me.dm to have a few important benefits out of the gate: reliable infrastructure and moderation, a short domain name to make sharing your username easier, better onboarding for new users, and an interesting local feed. (Medium Blog)

I signed up for the instance out of curiosity, however I was wondering if/when Medium itself would embrace ActivityPub.

@coachtony@me.dm (Medium’s CEO) provided a weird, diplomatic response across two posts. Both posts seemed to indicate that Medium would not embrace ActivityPub due to Medium writers treating the Fediverse as a broadcasting outpost...

Mastodon represents a short form corner of the fediverse. To participate in this corner via a medium-length tool would mean participation from people who are blindly syndicating at worst, and having a disconnected experience at best. It'd be disrespectful to the community here.

...as well as conflicting with Medium’s current and future goals.

Now, separately, there is an emerging fediverse of longer form content and that would be a reason for Medium to add ActivityPub. But that's a separate goal than what we are doing here.

Although Medium will probably not embrace ActivityPub, it would be great if they could setup an auto posting to Mastodon feature, similar to what they have with Twitter.

So for now the only blogging platforms embracing the Fediverse are:

Tumblr is also promising to enter the Fediverse (Tumblr would become a dominate player if they did join), but I am having doubts we will see Tumblr entering anytime soon.

Note: I do have an account on Medium which is Darnell.Africa, which I am semi-active upon.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

So one of the Fediverse platforms I kept looking at is MissKey which is a fancier, flashier microblogging service who was created in Japan 🇯🇵.

The app called “MissRirica” was created by @fruitriin@misskey.io & is actually a really well designed iOS / iPadOS app. After creating an Access Token (that way the app never has your password), I was able to login & begin posting.

Unfortunately due to Apple’s auto correct blunders, searching for Misskey apps usually brings up Mickey Mouse instead, so you have to click on the tiny link underneath the search bar to locate this app (or search for “MissRirica” instead).

Overall this app by Rin Nakashima is really good & if you have the extra funds, be sure to support Nakashima on Patreon in order to help keep development of this app alive (such as additional features & additional language support).

Update: Added iTunes link.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

This will sound crazy as YouTube is known for video content creation, but I am seeing many people posting polls, pictures, texts posts (with links) on YouTube now.

This at first was annoying me, but now I think it’s because people are seeking a reliable alternative to Twitter, & YouTube has (for better or worse) copied most of Twitter’s features now (polls, pictures, text posts with links, etcetera), including the user handle. (note: I am @Darnell on Youtube for what it is worth)

YouTube’s already dominates virtually every demographic compared to Twitter (latter barely dominates in the 25 to 34 year old range).

I still hope Mastodon will replace Twitter (it’s as superior product!), but I can easily see Google positioning YouTube to fill the pending void.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

After years of operating in the shadows by escorting Instagram refugees away from the metaverse, it appears that @pixelfed@pixelfed.social caught the attention of Facebook over...filters‽

Someone who works at Meta reached out and advised me to rename the filters asap. Imagine being sued over css 😅 #pixelfed (Daniel Supernault)

Going to prepend each filter name with i. Mark my words, Mark, I'm not going away. #pixelfed (Daniel Supernault)

Instagram is trying to intimidate us with threats of legal action. Help us bring awareness to our project by sharing this post, and consider donating if possible. We're not giving up. #fediverse (Pixelfed)

@DansUp@mastodon.social (Pixelfed’s founder) has complied by altering the filter names & the various iChanges can be seen on GitHub.

Was altering the names the right thing to do‽ Legally, yes. It’s unclear whether those filter names are trademarked by Instagram (after all, the words “face & book” are somehow trademarked to Facebook).

I would not be surprised if Instagram takes another legal shot at Pixelfed later on by attempting to stall the pending Pixelfed App from reaching Apple’s App Store & Google’s Play store, respectively.

But then again, Instagram may belay attacking Pixelfed to avoid repeating the mistake of Elon Musk.

Update: I forgot to mention I discovered this story thanks to @atomicpoet@mastodon.social on Mastodon!

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

If there is one thing that has perplexed me about the Fediverse overall it is this: why has Mastodon enjoyed tremendous success (at least amongst geeks & reporters) while most of the Fediverse Familia is still more or less viewed as an afterthought‽

Mastodon software is not as nimble as MissKey or Pleroma, it eschews easy quote posting that is embraced by the Fediverse at large & the platform is named after an extinct hairy animal that is not exactly cute nor cuddly.

So how did Mastodon eclipse it’s ActivityPub siblings, gain public notoriety & earn the ire of King Muskrat himself‽ I believe the answer lies in Mastodon’s three pronged approach at meeting people where they are.

If You Host It, They Will Come

Most Fediverse platforms have a reason to exist, as well as a passionate fan base of folks. Unfortunately most Fediverse platforms are too technical for the average person, who lacks the time or expertise to setup a server (aka instance) that features their preferred platform of choice.

Mastodon has been blessed as there are a plethora of companies willing to host & handle the technical details behind the scenes, & pacify any raging that may result from the fury “elephant” going feral (aka the crazy cache buildup!).

However, @Gargron@mastodon.social (the Mastodon Magistrate himself) is not leaving it to chance that other companies will continue to host Mastodon out of the goodness of their open source hearts, as he has plans to offer managed hosting in the future.

Mastodon is going to remain not-for-profit, Rochko said, but it’s looking at what he describes as a split model, “like Mozilla’s, where the nonprofit will continue working on the core product, which will remain open source, nonprofit and so on, and we might start a for-profit side business for software as a service, first to provide hosting for Mastodon’s for those who desire that.” (Techcrunch)

Fediverse creators should mimic what Mastodon is doing & offer the option of managed hosting to people, companies & governments desiring to operate an instance underneath their own domain.

The extra funds can be used to hire full time developers, designers, moderators (upon the platforms official instances) to improve the platform & various apps later on, making the Fediverse platform more accepting to the masses.

Keep Both iDevices Open

Whether you love Apple or loathe Apple, there is no denying their influence upon the app stores as whole.

While Apple does represent the epitome of corporate control (proprietary software, hostile to handlers fixing iDevices, sole authority upon the App Store, etcetera), Fediverse creators would be wise to create iPhone and iPad apps for their creations.

For better or worse Apple iDevices dominate the corporate world, rule the entertainment arena, lord over the sports lands & are preferred by the political elites as well.

Although many politicians & celebrities rail against big tech companies, most will refuse to switch away from toxic, centralized social services unless their is an alternative upon iPhone & iPad.

Mastodon has positioned themselves as a clear alternative to the toxic norm by creating an iPhone & iPad app.

Note: For those wondering why an iPad app should be created, many in the sports arena as well as politicians use them obsessively, so creating an iPad app would be wise.

Ghosts In The App Machine‽

Truth be told many developers view Android users like ghosts—their existence is acknowledged but they are viewed as having little influence over the material (or rather digital) world.

Although Android significant market share when compared to the total sum of iDevices (iPhone, iPad, iPod, Apple Watch, etcetera), Android continues to be treated as a second rate platform.

While not as flashy as their iRival, Fediverse creators should consider creating Android apps for Android phones and to F-Droid as well too, as that is where most of the mobile world resides.

Mastodon has created a polished Android app for Google Play as well as for F-Droid, & developers would be keen to adopt a similar strategy if they desire to challenge their toxic rivals for the hearts & minds of humanity.

What About Third Party Apps & Instances‽

Although third party apps & instances should obviously be encouraged, creating official apps as well as an official instance is important as it will reduce confusion for new comers seeking to escape the toxic social networks.

The goal here is to help guide new comers, leaders, celebrities, elites, regular folks away from centralized systems & help people become accustomed to decentralized systems.

This will not be easy & it will take years, but humanity in the long term would benefit from a world where the Socialverse is connected to everyone, without being massively controlled by anyone.

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)

So while I was surfing the sewers of twitter looking for Fediverse accounts to follow (usually Pixelfed or Mastodon), I came across an interesting post by @xeophin@twitter.com (Kasparov Manz) who argues in favor of maintaining multiple accounts.

I can be @xeophin@vis.social in my role as a practitioner of data visualisation. I can be @xeo@nzz.ch in my role as a graphic designer for the NZZ (a Swiss newspaper – this instance doesn’t exist yet, but I hope it will one day). And maybe I could make a third account on a Swiss instance to muse about Swiss politics in Swiss German.

Not only does it give your followers an indication in what capacity you’re posting, it also allows them to filter based on these capacities. You don’t know Swiss German? Then don’t follow me on the Swiss instance. You’re mostly interested in the news? Then only follow my @NZZ.ch account. (Xeophin on Notion)

I highly recommend reading the rest of the post by @xeophin@vis.social as his idea is actually far more popular outside of the Fediverse than within it.

For example, you can semi-actively find me at:

Update: removed to handles as WriteFreely does not recognize them yet.

Due to the limited interoperability between most social networks, many (if not most) people manage multiple accounts across different services.

The beauty of the Fediverse is that you can sign up for one account & follow many other accounts regardless of the platform (as long as they speak ActivityPub.

While this inherently negates the need for another Fediverse account, folks should seriously consider creating multiple accounts in order to avoid having their signal silenced by toxic social networks, authoritarian governments or warring feuds between massive instances.

Having additional Federated instances can also be critical if your primary instance is attacked by nefarious forces attempting to silence your signal.

Folks should also consider opening a secondary, tertiary, etcetera, accounts upon different platforms.

For example:

While each of these sites have different functions, if one of them falls I can communicate & respond to the Fediverse using the other accounts.

Note: I purposely did not include my WordPress (via plugin) or Micro.Blog accounts, as neither is fully or properly federated (at least not yet).

👨🏾‍💻 by Darnell Clayton 🔛 @darnell@darnell.day

🕺🏾 Follow my adventures upon: 👉🏾 @darnell@one.darnell.one 🐘 (Mastodon) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.app 📸 (Pixelfed) 👉🏾 @darnell@darnell.moe 🦁 (Misskey)