One or two accounts regularly posting things that don't interest you is manageable, but the more you add, the easier it is to lose the signal in the noise. With no algorithm working to keep you addicted, it's easy to let your Home timeline get overrun. Follow freely, but also be ready to unfollow for basic quality of life reasons. The Federated timeline can be overwhelming, but your Home timeline shouldn't be. You have to tend it like a garden, and a little pruning goes a long way. #feditips

Mastodon provides several tools for managing your timeline.

You can add notes to any profile. Why did you follow them? Are they a repeat offender? Remind yourself.

You can disable boosts on a per-user basis. Maybe you want to see a user's posts, but not everything that interests them.

You can temporarily mute an account while they get something out of their system.

You filter out posts with specific words, hashtags or phrases.

And when all else fails: block, unfollow, or mute indefinitely.

What else? Maybe you ONLY want to see posts by people you've chosen to follow. You can disable boosts in your Home timeline.

Maybe you follow several very chatty people, and their conversations tend to crowd out other things you'd prefer to see. You can turn off replies in Home, so that only the start of each thread is displayed.

(You can also make the Local and Federated timelines show only posts containing media.)

Mastodon gets regular waves of new signups, and unfortunately a lot of great users bounce off almost immediately. For some, the reason is that their timelines quickly descend into chaos. Part of the reason is that Mastodon gives users a ton of ways to customize their experience, but generally doesn't make assumptions about which you'll want to use. (The mobile app is more opinionated in that regard.) So if you feel lost or overwhelmed, check out those tools, and feel free to ask for help.


@lrhodes This is such a lovely little thread with such perfect bits of well thought out advice in it. Thank you so much for sharing it. I think it will help many people. I resonate deeply with the importance of tending the follows like a garden. 🌱

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