Over the December-January holidays, I set up and opened my own Mastodon instance, Cathode Church. It’s for trans users, particularly those who make stuff, whether that’s art, code, objects, or ideas. So far it only has around a dozen users, but I don’t think growth is some big important feat.
When I started looking into it, I knew the most important thing would be keeping users safe and happy through careful moderation. “Free speech” has become a bad thing on the internet, at least the way libertarian white boys use the word. It’s good that I had the foresight to set in place good expectations and protocols about blocking (‘suspending’) other unsavoury instances, because only a few weeks after I opened the server, countless chuds began lurching into the fediverse from Twitter after Trump was banned. I’m glad though that I haven’t had any issues so far, things seem to be going well. It has been fun and rewarding to set up the software and infrastructure to run the server, and do my best to make the most robust setup I can: media in OpenStack object storage (proxied by nginx for forward-ownership) daily backups, remote monitoring, careful privacy-first decisions, and so on.
Come find me at @firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to chat or join! Assholes not allowed.