A month on micro

About a month ago, I migrated my mastodon account over to this blog (via micro.blog’s built-in support for ActivityPub). How’s that going?

Mostly good. I like that I’ve got a full-fledged personal website here, that is fully customizable and could theoretically run anywhere. Behind the scenes, it’s just hugo.

I appreciate how micro.blog is trying to differentiate itself from traditional social media, creating a space that doesn’t reward popularity or sensationalism. There are no trending topics, follower counts, likes, or retweets to chase– just people writing and the things they write.

Of course, much of this is “good like eating your vegetables” and not “good like eating a cheeseburger”. All those little dopamine hits that make things like Twitter, Facebook, and Mastodon addictive and un-calm are also what make them fun.

I think discovery is worse here. The emoji thing is cute but I don’t think it works well in practice. For example, m.b wants šŸ–‹ļø to signify “pens and ink”, but sometimes it doesn’t. It’d also be nice to not have a hard-coded set of topics. Really, I just want hashtags, and I want to be able to follow hashtags. Like Mastodon. I can see how “trending topics” is a feature to avoid, but it’s perfectly possible to have hashtags without elevating trends.

One thing I have found useful is the book covers page. If you see someone posting about a book you like or that sounds interesting to you, that’s probably a good person to follow.

Ross Karchner @rossk