Cory Doctorow hasn’t joined Bluesky or Threads, and is sticking with Mastodon, because Bluesky and Threads aren’t federated and Mastodon is. Bluesky and Threads have captive user bases, while Mastodon users are free to leave.

Cory Doctorow:Fool Me Twice We Don’t Get Fooled Again: There’s a crucial difference between federatable and federated.

Cory is also on Tumblr, which isn’t federated either, and he doesn’t talk about why he’s there. I suspect his reasons are the same as mine for being on both Tumblr and Facebook: I’ve been on Facebook and Tumblr for years, and made connections on those platforms. I don’t want to just walk away from that.

Indeed, 80% of my social media conversations are on Facebook. If I could only stay on one social media platform, it would be the Facebook blue app. I wish that were not the case.

(Cory isn’t on Facebook. Smart man, Cory.)

And Cory leaves off my primary reason for focusing on ActivityPub-enabled platforms, specifically and Mastodon: They have legs. They’ll be around. I invested a lot of time and energy in Google+, only to watch all of that vanish. I don’t want to repeat that mistake.

Mastodon was announced in 2016. The ActivityPub standard launched in 2018. Those technologies have legs. The Lindy Effect suggests they’ll be around for several more years at least.

Bluesky has been around only a few months, and it’s still in closed beta. Threads have been around only a few weeks, and it’s still in alpha. Maybe they’ll be around a long time. Maybe they’ll be fly-by-night. I don’t see any reason to rush onto those platforms. There is no early adopter benefit to social media. If those platforms are a big deal in a year or two or five, I can think then about whether to jump on.

Yes, Bluesky, Threads and Tumblr all say they will federate. Bluesky has its own protocol for that, and Threads and Tumblr say they’ll adopt ActivityPub. Let’s talk again if those things actually happen.

I already spend too much time staring at screens. I’m reluctant to invest much time in Bluesky and Threads.