So, of late, I’ve been playing around with Mastodon. I’ve stood up an instance a couple of times now. What has kept me from having it up on a semi-permanent basis has been that it is a drive hog; it will gobble up space, literally like a hog in a trough. The concept of it is a bit like Twitter, in fact its interface is extraordinarily similar. But, all of the data is in your control (as much as it can be on the Internet), and no ads–unless you choose to host ads, I suppose.
The instance has been mastodon.aether.us. I’ve taken it down, yet again. This time around, I played with the notion of using Google Drive as a file repository via a tool called rclone. The idea seemed to be pretty sound, at first. What I didn’t anticipate was that Mastodon, thankfully, makes very liberal use of hard links to save on space. Unfortunately, at this point, it looks like rclone doesn’t support hard links, at least in the way I need it to.
Ultimately, I think a Mastodon presence will be contingent upon complete self-hosting–my own hardware, where I’m not having to add space to my VPS copiously (and expensively).
I could go on mstdn.social or other instances out there, but that kind of defeats the purpose of keeping what I can in my control. I really do like self-hosting what I can, but there’s only so much I can do on a VPS without paying through the nose.
In the meantime, there’s always WordPress. Since that’s not federated, the way Mastodon is, it accumulates data at a fraction of the same rate. It’s good to play, though, and standing up my own social network has been an interesting experience. Maybe if we ever finally ever get fiber Gb Internet, or maybe even Starlink.