Need Twitter options not owned by Elon Musk? Think about these

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Twitter has been a little bit of a multitude since billionaire Tesla CEO Elon Musk took the helm, reducing the corporate’s workforce in half, upending the platform’s verification systemsparring with users over jokes and acknowledging that “ dumb things ” may occur as he reshapes one of many world’s most high-profile data ecosystems.

On Thursday, amid an exodus of senior executives chargeable for information privateness, cybersecurity and complying with laws, he warned the corporate’s remaining workers that Twitter might not survive if it may’t discover a method to usher in not less than half its income from subscriptions.

Whereas it’s not clear if the drama is inflicting many customers to depart — in truth, having a front-row seat to the chaos might show entertaining to some — lesser-known websites Mastodon and even Tumblr are rising as new (or renewed) options. Right here’s a have a look at a few of them.

(Oh, and in case you are leaving Twitter and need to protect your tweet historical past, you possibly can obtain it by going to your profile settings and clicking on “your account” then “obtain an archive of your information.”)


Sharing a reputation with an extinct mammal resembling an elephant, Mastodon has emerged as a frontrunner amongst these interested in life past the blue chicken. It shares some similarities with Twitter, however there are some huge variations — and never simply that its model of tweets are formally referred to as “toots.”

Mastodon is a decentralized social community. Which means it’s not owned by a single firm or billionaire. Slightly, it’s made up of a community of servers, every run independently however in a position to join so folks on completely different servers can talk. There aren’t any adverts as Mastodon is funded by donations, grants and different means.

Mastodon’s feed is chronological, in contrast to Fb, Instagram, TikTok or Twitter, which all use algorithms to get folks to spend as a lot time on a web site as potential.

It may be a tad formidable to strive to enroll to Mastodon. As a result of every server is run individually, you will have to first choose one you need to be a part of, then undergo the steps to create an account and agree with the server’s guidelines. There are basic and interest- and location-based ones, however in the long run it gained’t actually matter. When you’re in, the feed is harking back to Twitter. You possibly can write (as much as 500 characters), submit photographs or movies, and observe accounts in addition to see a basic public feed.

“We current a imaginative and prescient of social media that can’t be purchased and owned by any billionaire, and try to create a extra resilient world platform with out revenue incentives,” Mastodon’s web site says.

Presently, the location has greater than 1 million customers, practically half of whom signed up after Musk took over Twitter on Oct. 27, in keeping with founder Eugen Rochko.

Another choice, Counter Social, additionally runs an ad-free, chronological social platform that’s funded by customers. To stop international affect operations, Counter Social says it blocks entry to Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, Pakistan and Syria. It boasts of providing one-click translation into over 80 languages. It has over 63 million month-to-month customers, in keeping with its web site.


Remember Clubhouse, again after we have been all beneath lockdown and couldn’t discuss in individual? It’s the buzzy audio-only app that acquired considerably overshadowed by copycat Twitter Areas, which additionally lets folks discuss to one another (suppose convention name, podcast or “audio chat”) about matters of curiosity.

When you be a part of, Clubhouse enables you to begin or hear into conversations on a bunch of matters, from tech to professional sports activities, parenting, Black literature and so forth. There aren’t any posts, photographs or movies — solely folks’s profile footage and their voices. Conversations will be intimate, like a cellphone name, or may embrace 1000’s of individuals listening to a chat by boldface names, like a convention or stage interview.


For longer reads, newsletters, and basic data absorption, these websites are maybe closest to the weblog period of the early 2000s. You possibly can learn each with out signing up or paying, however some writers, creators and podcasters create premium content material for paying subscribers.


Tumblr, which was all however left for dead, seems to be having fun with considerably of a resurgence. The phrases/photographs/artwork/video web site is understood for its devoted fan base and has been residence to offended posts from celebrities like Taylor Swift. It angered many customers in 2018 when it banned porn and “grownup content material,” which made up an enormous a part of its extremely visible and meme-friendly on-line presence and led to a big drop in its person base.

Onboarding is straightforward, and for individuals who miss the early years of social media, there’s a decidedly retro, comforting really feel to the location.

T2 or TBD?

Gabor Cselle, a veteran of Google who labored at Twitter from 2014 to 2016, is set to create a greater Twitter. For now, he’s calling it T2 and says the Net area title he bought for it — — price $7.16. T2, which can or might not be its closing title, is at present accepting signups for its waitlist, however the web site is clearly not but functioning.

“I believe Twitter at all times had an issue in determining what to do and how you can determine on what to do. And that was at all times type of behind my thoughts,” Cselle advised The Related Press. “On Monday, I made a decision to only go for it. I didn’t see anybody else actually doing it.”

Twitter-style textual content and TikTok-style movies are one thought. Cselle says for this to work, the textual content actually needs to be “amped up” so it’s not drowned out by the movies.

“My guess is that it’s going to be simpler and extra environment friendly to construct a greater Twitter or public sq. now than repair the legacy issues at Twitter,” Cselle added.

Cselle, after all, isn’t the one one leaping to the chance. Challenge Mushroom, as an illustration, plans a “secure place on the web — a community-led open-source residence for creators in search of justice on an overheating planet” and says it has acquired 25,000 early signups to its yet-to-launch platform.

“My sense is that issues are going to additional fragment into extra ideological platforms and a few will die after which we’ll see some new consolidation emerge over the subsequent couple of years,” stated Jennifer Stromer-Galley, a professor at Syracuse College who research social media.


One in every of Twitter’s most dear options has been the way in which it permits folks to search out data inside seconds. Was that simply an earthquake? Twitter will let you know. Or not less than it did.

Whereas there is no such thing as a excellent substitute for Twitter, staying updated with native, nationwide and worldwide information is simpler than ever. Apple and Google each provide information providers that mixture articles from a broad vary of publication (Apple provides a premium subscription service that will get you entry to extra articles, whereas Google reveals free tales first.) There’s additionally Flipboard, which works type of like a private journal curated to your pursuits.

In fact, subscribing to particular person publications (or downloading a free information app such because the AP’s AP Information) can be an choice.

Sure, you might need to pay for a few of them and no, you gained’t get a blue test mark together with your subscription.

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