moxie seems to believe there are only two options for how services can be hosted: self-hosting or commercial hosting.

completely ignoring community hosting.

that reinforces my feel that community hosting is one of the biggest advantages of fedi.

(he is absolutely right that #web3 is crap, of course)

@rysiek it is not community hosting that I am most concerned about, when it comes to fedi.

It is grassroots-community-based open standard specs and the evolution thereof.

Here Moxie has a point. After AS/AP became W3C recommendations, there's been very little in terms of follow-up. Interop mostly involves looking in foreign codebases and trying to find a good expertised dev to explain the undocumented details.

And with every new app + custom choices, the interop landscape becomes more complex

Although it's a fair point that a protocol tends to ossify around a lowest-common denominator system that is stagnant, this doesn't prevent individual clients from advancing.

Also, clients can support new protocols as they arise.

The most important point is still that this avoids getting trapped by a monopoly. ISTM that any technical agility that closed silos might provide has to be weighed against that social benefit.

@humanetech @rysiek

I ran out of characters to include examples, which illustrates the criticism, I suppose. But there are Fediverse clients with longer limits (I assume, because I see longer posts).

And I was going to mention both the wide range of email clients from minimal to sophisticated management tools.

And on the point of stacking protocols, email clients that also read news, rss feeds, etc.

(Supporting that protocols are not necessarily a serious impediment to innovation)

@TerryHancock @humanetech @rysiek It's absolutely easier to change protocols in a monopoly; there's no need to come to consensus with any other groups. Consensus is hard.
Still, further to Terry's point, I do agree that open protocols with a wider ecosystem are _better_

@meejah @TerryHancock @humanetech @rysiek Right, evolving a protocol is a social problem, and writing code was traditionally easier than to break into the ivory tower of standardisation processes. I think it's (in part) a matter of making standardisation bodies + processes more accessible to a bigger audience. Once the friction between protocol design and implementation decreases, I think federated systems have a chance.

The early success of the internet and the rfc system was, in my opinion, down to making protocols and standards a low barrier and fast turnaround process. It enabled IETF to run circles around ITU and ISO.
@meejah @TerryHancock @humanetech @rysiek

@maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek

Yes, you are all right. And a grassroots community slowly evolving the ecosystem with their app-specific additions is where we are now.

But if there's no coordination to the the substrate on which this is built, then I fear a Web2 trend of convergence around the most popular apps will be the result.

We see that with Mastodon and seeing other apps with "I just copy/paste the Mastodon API" and "Add in these masto msg props to interoperate".

@humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek This is something I'm very concerned with. It's complicated to do this "right", I suppose, but the last years have shown me quite clearly that a) someone has to start trying, and b) a lot of folk want it to happen. Moxie would be in a good position to start, but instead claims it's too hard. I find that sad.

A few people do try.

@jens @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek

Just read response to Moxie by André Staltz of #SSB / #Manyverse:

Think when it comes to #Fediverse then the #SocialHub community made a good start, but to take it further there's need for dedicated people to keep the innovation processes going and towards #interoperability and #interconnectivity

Forging something that rises beyond apps and into #SocialFabric formation. Something where everyone can find their place.

@humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek My background of course colours my perception on this, but I'm convinced a lot of folk wouldn't mind running their own servers if they just didn't know (aka P2P), and a lot of other people wouldn't mind running servers for communities that just provide storage/relay capabilities, with no hosting of software in any web sense.

@jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek Remotely using a computer (maintaining a server), dealing with DNS, and the monthly cost of it to a degree is definitely a high barrier to entry for many people.

ISP-provided personal URLs + a "self-hosting" router that had simple/secure install setups for server apps would probably open up home networking a lot.


Maintaining a server is not for everyone, but there are projects like @yunohost and @freedomboxfndn which makes it nearly as easy as installing a distro for intermediate-level users.

Somewhere I read that their next phase is to create hardware for sale that just plug and play and it works, just like WiFi routers.

@jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek

Example: I have one VPS running that provides (now via yunohost) mail, nextcloud and some other services to my family. This makes 1 server for 23 persons. 1 out of 23 person need some IT skills.
The architecture could scale up to 200 persons before we would need extra stuff like load balancers etc.

@edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek

@ashwinvis @edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @rysiek

I see the 'community hosting' model is that you get this service from a local or virtual trusted community, whether commercial or not, on whatever business or service model your community favors, rather than from a global corporation that sees you as nothing but raw material, gives you no choices, and makes money off of you how they see fit. That's a valuable difference.

@caliandroid @ashwinvis @edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @rysiek

I'd estimate the cost is something like $100/month in services, plus one half-time job (maybe just quarter time) to support a 25 users, up to a bit more for 200. Maybe $1500/month total, or 25@$60/mo to 200@$7.50/mo -- paid, volunteer, or subsidized.

Plenty of ways to support that level of cost, whether passing the hat, taxation, charging fees, advertising, or business 'goodwill'.


I pay ~15€ per month all-in.
After having set up everything and with heavy automation, I spend maybe one hour per month for the private cloud service - no moderation needed.

I had once a huge bulletin board (~ 20 years ago) with 10k active users. I've spent at least one hour per day and had a team of 30 moderators. Everyone spent at least one hour per day on the board.

@ashwinvis @edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @rysiek

I was running it on a Raspberry Pi 3B+ at my home. Thankfulky our ISP does not block any ports. The monetary costs were therefore negligible. Performance and reliability left more to be desired though.

@TerryHancock @edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @rysiek

My issue with this line of thinking is that IT skills aren't uniformly dispersed geographically, and not all of them want to do sys admin on the side. To really spread out of a localized technical bubble there needs to be low cost, turn-key options that e.g. a casual knitting circle can set up without needing a friend or family member to maintain.

@ashwinvis @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek

@edd Luckily, the solution to this could easily be the same. One thing p2p systems tend to do, precisely because they were usually packed within consumer applications, is set themselves up easily. @caliandroid @ashwinvis @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @TerryHancock @rysiek


In terms of labor/overhead costs, it's similar to providing free wi-fi. And probably supportable for similar reasons.

And, by far, the biggest cost is moderation & administration time, rather than hardware/service costs. Similar to the demands of running a private forum, but more valuable, because it's more connected.

@ashwinvis @edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @rysiek

You're right but I would say the labor costs are my hobby that I donate with pleisure (and maybe some kind of selfcare because I just love to setup tec, corrupt it and reconfigure it even better than before ;-)

@ashwinvis @edd @yunohost @freedomboxfndn @jens @humanetech @maswan @eaon @meejah @rysiek

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