So, there's this concept of "implicit feudalism" in online communities. Essentially, the vast majority of online communities - from old-school forums, to facebook groups, to large platforms like Twitter and Facebook themselves, even to fediverse instances - they're all run as dictatorships by default. It's built into the software - you'll have a top admin who has full, unconstrained power, they might delegate mods who have some limited powers, and anyone else has to listen to what these dictators and lords tell them. We talk about "federating" here in the fediverse, but each individual community - as far as I'm aware of - is a little dictatorship. A federation of dictatorships is not a free society, anymore than the UN, an international body composed of "liberal democracies" and authoritarian regimes is truly democratic. We need a way to start governing online communities through actual forms of democracy.



I'm glad to see this post strike a bit of a nerve. People have raised several points that I'd like to respond to, some of which are I think are important conversations that I have thoughts on but don't have all the answers to, others of which I'd like to push back on, and I also have some clarifying points I'd like to make. I don't have the bandwidth for all of that right now so I'll try to respond in the next day or two.

· · SubwayTooter · 1 · 0 · 5

@anomaly I once wrote an article about the idea of a democratic instance - about #ownCloud, not about Mastodon, though. Many concepts can be transferred, though:

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