This page is written for sunny.garden users. The information still applies to many other servers but the links go to sunny.garden, and not your local server if you are using a different one.
I signed up. Now what?
Compared to the bigger social networks, Mastodon can feel quiet at first, especially on a smaller server like sunny.garden. This might be a good or bad thing depending on what you were expecting.
Since Mastodon isn’t going to throw a bunch of ads, topics, posts, and follow recommendations at you all the time, it pays to explore a little on your own. Generally you’re only going to see what you specifically choose to see.
If you’re looking for people to follow, check out…
- the Profile Directory
- the Local Timeline
- the Explore Page
- the #introduction tag or other hashtags that you interest you
- follow a curator like @FediFollows@social.growyourown.services or @Curator@mastodon.art for recommendations
How to follow somebody on another server
Because Mastodon isn’t a single service operated by one company, sometimes there is an extra step required to follow somebody on a remote server.
Clicking Follow while browsing a user on a different server may provide you with a link to copy and paste. Back on sunny.garden, paste it into the search bar and hit Enter. You can then follow them from the results list, or click through to view their profile locally.
You can use this method for any user you know the address of
@email@example.com, and it works for links as well
Tell your friends
When you tell your friends or followers to follow you on Mastodon, you need to provide your full address @firstname.lastname@example.org.
Just like when you tell somebody your email address, you need to include the
@hotmail.com part. Because there are many different servers, just the username isn’t enough.
If you want to make it really easy for them, you can also use a link format, which will work on Twitter, in emails, eg. https://sunny.garden/@brook
Help other people find and follow you…
If you’d like new followers to find and follow your account, it will help a lot if you…
- Set your profile Avatar picture, and add a Header image if you’re feeling fancy
- Fill in something about yourself – or what you might be posting – in your Bio
- Post an introduction using the #introduction tag, it’s a good idea to set your bio and avatar first, so the first time people see your account it doesn’t look “empty”.
- Explore your account settings to control things like whether your profile is listed in the directory
Allow your posts to trend
If you’ve got a project you’d like to promote, you’ll probably want to make sure that your posts are eligible to trend on the Explore page.
Log in with the Web client, and click Preferences > Profile, or click the [Edit Profile] button on your own profile.
Enable Suggest account to others [Recommended], which will: Allow your account to be discovered by strangers through recommendations, trends and other features
There are various useful actions under the […] icon on both posts and profiles:
If you don’t want to miss somebody’s posts, click the bell icon to get a notification when they post:
You can customize how the web interface looks in your Preferences. Try the Light theme, or the Advanced Web Interface (similar to Tweetdeck):
sunny.garden is a primarily English server. It’s ok to post in other languages sometimes, but be sure to change the language of your post so that people who can read it can find it, and people who can’t can filter it out if they want to.
A Complete Guide
Fedi.Tips has tons of tips, and probably answers any question you could have about Mastodon or the wider Fediverse (including what that is!).