Oh, the irony. Or ivory. Whatever.

All my toots gone

Mathew Lowry
3 min readNov 17, 2023


I was on the wrong Mastodon instance. Are you?

Long story short: I’ve lost everything — posts, follows, followers, the lot. This was confirmed yesterday, exactly a year since I helpfully posted this:

I have to give a wry chuckle at my last, hope-filled paragraph:

As for me, I’m giving my current server a few months to see if and how it evolves, and am sending a few dollars to support its sister instance, which is buckling. You should consider doing the same. Free speech ain’t free.

Because the 30 euros I contributed was clearly not enough — two days ago I noticed the server was offline, and yesterday the admin confirmed that he’d shut it down because donations were insufficient and he could no longer afford to pay the server costs from his own pocket. Fair enough.

He also tells me I should have received warnings, but “mastodon
admin coms tools did not work at all sadly”, that I should have received warnings from the server’s opencollective account (I don’t see any) and that I should have watched the “modteam” tag, which I had never heard of.

Social infrastructure needs as a basic minimum to deliver content.

But if it’s my fault for not paying attention it’s because months ago I’d concluded that Mastodon wasn’t fit for purpose. I only returned this week to find that the Israel-Hamas issue had turned Mastodon into Twix:

Missing links, toots and civility.

I don’t know what the future is, but this ain’t it. Social infrastructure needs to deliver content as a basic minimum. And running that infrastructure takes time, money and professionalism.

A better business model is required to escape surveillance capitalism. I published some ideas in January, but updates are long overdue:

So, what’s next? Join another Mastodon instance and risk the same thing happening again. Or maybe Bluesky? Hmm, maybe not …

My first post on Bluesky: my first follower is called “Satan”…
Think I should use BlueSky? Then click to follow me there (https://bsky.app/profile/mathewlowry.bsky.social).

For now I’ve renamed my Twitter account from @mathew@campaign.openworlds.info to mathew’s still here ;(.

16/12/2023 update: