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📢 Calling all Sunbeams! 📢

If you have a federating account on sunbeam.city and you've been here a month or more, this is relevant to you.

We, the co-operative, have just passed a proposal (2019-07-22) to allow our Mastodon users to join the co-op free of charge. Previously, we required a small monthly donation before allowing participation.

This means you may now create an account on loomio.sunbeam.city if you wish, so as to be able to join in with discussions, have your say in how the co-op operates, and contribute to deciding what we do and what services we provide. You may do all of this without donating any money, if you so choose.

It would be great to see some fresh faces, as more recently we've become stretched a little thin and discussions on Loomio are fairly infrequent. There are also plenty of small tasks that a newcomer could take on if they feel able to support the co-op.

@puffinus_puffinus
I am new to Mastodon. Is the sunbeam city also like Mastodon and Twitter?

Sorry if I sound like a noob. I am trying to learn about fediverse and how it works?

@pinankin_writes Hi! Welcome to the fediverse. Mastodon is not what you appear to think it is. Mastodon is software, not the instance you are using.

sunbeam.city is a server that runs federating software. It is an 'instance', a federating server, just like mastodon.social. The software both instances run is called Mastodon. So, sunbeam.city is the server from which the server mastodon.social retrieved my posts, and in terms of software, is almost identical to mastodon.social.

The fediverse is the name given to all the instances, the servers with running federating software.

Sunbeam City is similar to Twitter and mastodon.social, except (as you saw from my post) we run as a co-operative, which means the users get to decide what we do and how we do it. If the members decide to add a new service to our range, for instance, then we can go and do it --- because we're a co-operative, we're the ones in charge.

@pinankin_writes

Let me know if you have other questions or if my explanations aren't clear --- I'm happy to help :)

@puffinus_puffinus

Also what is the difference between local and federated timeline?

@pinankin_writes
"Home" is toots and boosts by people you follow.

"Local" is toots from people on the same instance as you. So, anyone that created an account on the instance mastodon.social (and that posts from there) will show up on the local timeline*.

"Federated" is everything that your instance can see of the current federating instances*.

*toots won't show on these timelines if the toot visibility is set to something other than "global". There are a few other settings, for instance the DM / private setting.

@pinankin_writes
Bear in mind however, the "Federated" timeline is not showing all globally visible posts from all instances, but rather, all globally visible posts from users that mastodon.social federates with, on instances that mastodon.social federates with.

It's a little complicated.

@pinankin_writes If I post a globally visible toot, it will show up in your federated timeline if someone on your instance follows me. The toot will also show up in your Home timeline is you follow me. It will never show up in the Local timeline, because my account is on sunbeam.city, not mastodon.social.

@puffinus_puffinus

So, mastodon.social that appears as my user name suffix is an instance or server. But it is only one of many like sunbeam city. All these many servers together form fediverse.

How these servers or instances which exist in the fediverse different from each other?
Are there particular instances for particular interests run by different people?

Are there big companies also running such instances?

Who builds these instances?Can I shift from 1instance 2other?

@pinankin_writes
> So, mastodon.social that appears as my user name suffix is an instance or server. But it is only one of many like sunbeam city. All these many servers together form fediverse.
That is entirely correct.

> How these servers or instances which exist in the fediverse different from each other?
Simple things like the colour scheme might be different, or bigger things like they use different software entirely. For instance, PeerTube is a video sharing platform, but it federates. My account on peertube.social federates, so you can follow it from your mastodon.social account. The software they use is different, but they both communicate with ActivityPub so it's like they speak the same language.

> Are there particular instances for particular interests run by different people?
Yes. Look at joinmastodon.org/ under the section titled "Sign up" to select from a range of topical instances.

@pinankin_writes
> Are there big companies also running such instances?
Some companies run instances. They are blocked by many other instances, because the fediverse does not want business and capitalism to be a part of what we are.

> Who builds these instances?
Anyone with the time to maintain a website and moderate spam / bad accounts. Anyone can do it. You could do it, for yourself only, and still be a part of the fediverse. Many people do just that. The software is written by collaborators around the world and can be seen here github.com/tootsuite/mastodon

> Can I shift from 1instance 2other?
Until recently your account could not be transferred from one instance to another. The Mastodon release version 3 adds this functionality. Version 3 is the latest release, and not all instances have updated to this yet. For instance, Sunbeam City is still using v2.9.2

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Sunbeam City 🌻

Sunbeam City is a Libertarian Socialist solarpunk instance. It is ran democratically by a cooperative of like-minded individuals.