In response to Joe Biden and the White House enabling ActivityPub federation via Threads, a number of people asked: “Why didn’t the White House just self-host their own Mastodon server?”

Here’s some very basic musings on what it would take for that to happen. and what some of the hurdles are. Don’t consider it a definitive answer, but a jumping-off point.

  • Snot Flickerman
    203 months ago

    Truth Social is modeled heavily after Twitter; users are able to make posts (“Truths”, similar to tweets) and share other users’ posts (“ReTruths”, similar to retweets). The Truth Social platform uses a custom version of the free and open-source social network hosting software Mastodon as its backend, which omits several features, including polls and post visibility options.

    The platform uses the Soapbox frontend instead of Mastodon’s native frontend. TMTG has advertised for developers with skills in using Elixir, the programming language used to build Pleroma.

    On October 21, 2021, the Software Freedom Conservancy group stated they suspected Truth Social had violated Mastodon’s AGPLv3 license by not offering its source code to all users. The Mastodon developers then formally requested that Truth Social comply with the terms of the software license, with Truth Social publishing its source code as a ZIP file on the website on November 12, 2021. On February 22, 2022, the source code download was moved to the website’s legal section. A mirror of the source code is available at GitHub, where it was uploaded by uninvolved individuals.