Todon.nl – Admin Reacts to Polite Inquiries.
Surprises on Fediverse always.
Like, this morning when I start visiting the various instances where I have accounts, friends, a presence.
I switch on my Pinafore client, which is really useful for someone like me. Easy to connect, one click instant switching.
Except, it shows 'Internet Request Failed – Showing offline content' when Todon.NL is the selected instance. A sign something is wrong, like the Net connection at our end being down, or even a remote server being offline for maintenance or other reason.
Sadly, this is not the case here, as @firstname.lastname@example.org has decided that I don't deserve to have the @email@example.com account which I had for 6 months at least — without any incidents, warnings, reported posts or anything else like it.
Yeah, first thought is what is happening?
Backgrounder — on the previous day, Friday, June 19 / 2020, I had gone in person to Todon.nl and written a DM to the local Admin, copied to @anarchiv, who is a nice local user I have chatted with over time; and a local Moderator, the reason for including him in this DM.
The nature of my visit and its inquiry? Inter instance Diplomacy.
Thanks to a mention by Casey the day before, I got the a link back to a page I had visited previously, but couldn't find in my records, Bookmarks, searched all over.
It's Opal Hart's Fediverse List, a simple and short list of her recommendations for good Fediverse instances.
I wanted that page to get her Pleroma instances recommendations — a project I am working on and is quite popular.
I knew my current main instance was listed as one of the Mastodon recommendations. And curiously, I looked at the bottom of her page. (recommended reading, btw!)
Quoting from the original :
the below table is not a list of instance recommendations; however, I include it because it explains why I do not currently recommend certain instances. I include contact information for these instance admins in case you wish for them to reconsider their policies. please do not use this contact information with the intent to harass these administrators; I believe it is much more productive to give constructive criticism so that these admins can improve their instances.
...which is quite logical, and valuable. A lot of annoying people are out in the Fediblock hashtags constantly tarring and feathering others, for no valid reasons; but some people listen to them, being less informed about the politics that simmers in Fedi daily.
And surprise !
Surprised to see Todon.nl, a supposedly Progressive and left wing instance (which I joined months ago, for that very reason, it's my own alignment too).
Todon.nl is a leftist and anti-authoritarian Mastodon server for progressives, socialists, anarchists, activists, environmentalists, vegans, anti-racists, anti-fascists, anti-capitalists, pirates, LGBTQIA+, human rights activists, etc.
So, Todon.nl is on the dishonourable list at Opal's page. Her motive?
Clearly explained, few short words.
todon.nl defederates arbitrarily
The link, copied above, reveal's Todon's extensive blocking of other instances. My text editor made short work of counting these :
- Silenced by Todon : 142 instances.
- Suspended by Todon : 66 instances.
“Anti-Authoritarian” — are you sure, mr Todon admin?
Diplomacy Called for, once again.
All of this is extensive, journalistic Backgrounder, I hope my readers will appreciate, or skim over to the juicier parts if desired.
What happened is, yesterday when I read Opal's page, and surprisingly found Todon listed there (along with some bad places, sure deserving mention), I followed the link, and scanned the long, freeking long Blocks list.
Herr Admin — an alphabetical sort would be a courtesy to readers, and it's quick work for any text editor. Why not? Danke schon!
Ok, he didn't bother sorting his list, but scanning visually I located one that matters.
You see — besides my calling for Writing, I am also a volunteer and community leader at one of the instances listed. This one, which does have its flaws, and for which I have gone on in previous Diplomacy missions of my own initiative.
Turns out this instance is “Silenced” by Todon. And I went to inquire, nicely as is my personal style. Class, above all.
My missive to Todon's administrators
Which was first written and sent from the “silenced” instance Moderator account; and never reached my own alt account at Todon.
So, I switched to a local DM instead.
Full Direct Message Text Follows :
And thanks to a pointer gently posted to a good reference page earlier today by @firstname.lastname@example.org , I realized this instance is also on the unwanted list for an instance I was surprised to find doing it.
Source is the 'dishonourable mentions' at Opal's page.
[ ** to clarify — Opal Hart, this pages author is not the one blocking, she indeed lists qoto in her mastodon recommended instances list ]
@anarchiv could we get some information about the reasons for this, please ?
That was sent in the morning June 19, 2020, 08:09 UTC
I returned at the end of the afternoon, after a productive day, to see if a response had been posted. It was, and two DMs awaited my attention.
That had been sent to me 3 hours earlier. It was followed by a second, an hour later :
I replied courteously to both messages, which contained different aspects, in a single DM. Unfortunately, I don't have it cached in my Pinafore client; I might have used the mastodon web client for responding.
And this morning, Saturday, I went to visit and read any replies.
To find my account arbitrarily Deleted.
Good Things could result
One being exposing the true authoritarian nature of the current person who took this decision.
My writing to them was polite and non-confrontational. Sadly, they took this path.
Fortunate in one aspect — for my FediReporter journalism, which is MORE important than ANY single instance.
In fact, I am distancing myself from the instance which caused this mission, as I perceive advantages to my independant reporting and Publishing by being elsewhere.
I have fought for and lost discussions about altering the local Terms of Service pages. Removing words that inflame reactions and cause Reputational Damage to what is otherwise a wonderful place to be in.
Moving to New Places
I enjoy being an active and opinionated member, as well as a community leader. But not if it will cause me personal, reputational damage. So I am moving. Already mentioned it publicly, in fact and have various new accounts I am active on.
To my friends and followers at my older account — You might have noticed the changes in my Blog footer, and the new place all my important Publishing is done.
New Home, Settling In
I wrote a detailed Blog page with my reasons for wanting a better instance, Technically, and in other aspects. Mastodon feels cramped, outdated, slow to improve and has a project development style which has irked many Fediverse people in the past.
At this point, my Muensterland.social account will become my main presence. I am not leaving the place where I have my main account, for now, or resigning from staff yet, either. But expect to see me less there.
You will see more of my original content, as I move it there.
Follow Blog via your Fediverse/Mastodon account :
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