Fuck Elon Musk. So, Mastodon. I'd created accounts back when it first got started in 2016, so I'm @[email protected]. The server feels a bit slow, so it may be useful to move to another server, and there is a migration path for users in that case.
The main thing is to find other people to follow. They are not all on the same server or instance, so it is a matter of tracking them down. At some point more automated following utilities should be available. Because of this mass exodus from Twitter (though it remains to be seen how much mass is exodusing), people are creating files of their colleagues and their Mastodon handles (@username@instance). This is true for whatever part of the fediverse one wants to join. Of course these can all be a private archive of thoughts and media, if desired. But federation is the main concept animating them all.
Mastodon (a better Twitter) and Pixelfed (a better Instagram) are two discussed here. See also: more of the Fediverse.
Instances to select from
There are quite a few instances of Mastodon and other Fediverse projects. The differences between them can be based on their various rules (posting requirements, which other instances are blocked), a given niche community (if any), and the stability (uptime) and speed (latency) of the instance, which version of the software is running, etc. Many instances have one or two users, and because of federation, can still talk with most other instances and users on them.
I had an old account on <mastodon.social> but I've since moved to <fosstodon.org> which is the tribe I prefer (that way the local timeline is helpful rather than massively scrolling, random and/or irrelevant).
For Pixelfed I've chosen <metapixl.com> due to its size (medium), uptime, and somewhat interesting local timeline.
Interestingly, Pixelfed acts as a client for Mastodon content that is published as images. I'm not sure if having two accounts is going to be efficient for me, but for sure my images are generally different from my regular toots.
Well, that didn't last long. I've moved my photos over to my Fosstodon instance. Pixelfed simply doesn't have the right development mentality (ignoring merge requests, while also ignoring the tasks to be performed).
Engagement on the Fediverse
For Mastodon, likes don't appear in timelines, so the boost is what one wants to do. There is no quote tweet, just simply engage with the tweet and/or boost it.