A new onboarding experience on Mastodon

Eugen Rochko

CEO / Founder

Today we’re making signing up on Mastodon easier than ever before. We understand that deciding which Mastodon service provider to kick off your experience with can be confusing. We know this is a completely new concept for many people, since traditionally the platform and the service provider are one and the same. This choice is what makes Mastodon different from existing social networks, but it also presents a unique onboarding challenge. To make this step easier, we now have a default sign-up option that works with a server we operate. If you wish to leave or join a different server, you can do so at any time.

Decentralization is a big part of Mastodon’s DNA and is at the forefront of our mission. You may be asking, how a default server option furthers decentralization. We believe it’s important for Mastodon to be good as a product on its own merits, and not just because of its ideology. If we only attract people who already care about decentralization, our ability to make decentralization mainstream becomes that much harder. Making the onboarding process as easy as possible helps new users get past the sign-up process and more quickly engage with others. This gives us a far better chance of showcasing what decentralized social networks have to offer instead of having that person bounce and never hearing from them again. We’ve made strides in upgrading our infrastructure and growing our moderation capabilities to hopefully provide a great first experience to everyone who joins. Of course, if you know what server you want to join, you can still go through advanced server selection from the beginning.

Mastodon has grown so much over the past 6 months even despite some of the perceived onboarding challenges. Our platform has become home to diverse discussions, perspectives, and voices, including artists, writers, journalists, and political organizations. We just surpassed a billion posts per month which validates the very real and engaged conversations happening across Mastodon and the wider Fediverse.

And our work continues. We’re always listening to the community and we’re excited to bring you some of the most requested features, such as quote posts, improved content and profile search, and groups. We’re also continuously working on improving content and profile discovery, onboarding, and of course our extensive set of moderation tools, as well as removing friction from decentralized features. Keep a lookout for these updates soon.

We’re grateful that you’re a part of this community and to be working with you to build Mastodon into a place where you will always have the power to choose your social media experience.