Diary of a Media Priest

Daily observations and tips for anyone who wants to reach out and change the world.


What To Do When Your Favorite Social Media Platform Tumbles?

diary of a media priest Mar 05, 2024

I was startled this afternoon when I wanted to check Facebook. I was logged out, and my password didn't work anymore. Yikes. Had my account been hacked? I quickly tried to create a new password. But that didn't help either.

On Mastodon, the platform where I landed after leaving Twitter/X, I read that all services of Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp, and Threads, were down in large parts of the world.

At times like this, you realize again how dependent you have become on these big companies for your daily communication. Now I can manage without Facebook - I don't even have the app on my mobile devices anymore because it's so power-hungry - but I use Whatsapp for all sorts of things, from appointments with my running group to communication about my television work.

Sometimes these platforms seem like a Jenga tower: if you pull out one piece too many, the whole thing falls apart. And then many people and organizations can no longer reach their people or customers. Can't there be a better way?

Mastodon is a decentralized platform that is not owned by one party, like many other social media. It runs smoothly, even if one server has problems. That alone makes it important for businesses, institutions, journalists, and churches to have an account on Mastodon as well.

I understand that it is hard to leave a social medium where many of your contacts are still active. When Elon Musk took over Twitter, and I saw how he treated his employees, I soon decided with a heavy heart to look for another platform; that became Mastodon.

It took some getting used to, but soon I made many new friends and acquaintances there. Maybe there is more and more momentum for a decentralized alternative to Facebook and Instagram. And why not: even for WhatsApp.

In fact, the alternatives are already there, but sometimes something has to go terribly wrong before people really start moving... What do you think?

Fr. Roderick Vonhögen

P.S. You can still download my illustrated Hobbit-guide to Lent for free via this link: www.mediapriest.com/lent

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