Friday, May 31, 2019 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Gab Will Become a Mastodon Fork

Gab (Hacker News):

Progress on our new codebase is going well. For those who don’t know, our plan is to fork existing open source software, Mastodon, which is based on the ActivityPub social networking protocol.


You’ll be able to log into and use dozens of existing mobile apps that exist on both App Stores with your Gab account and use Gab through these apps.


Moving to the ActivityPub protocol as our base allows us to get into mobile App Stores without even having to submit and get approval of our own apps, whether Apple and Google like it or not.

App Review’s previous stated rationale for rejecting the Gab app was that the service didn’t do a good enough job of moderating the user-generated content. Gab claimed that they try their best to do this but that Apple’s requirements are impossible to meet. Clearly, Twitter and other social networks don’t always meet them, either. But Twitter is too-big-to-reject, and Gab has a reputation for offensive content, attracting a community of users that were banned or had their posts deleted from Twitter.

This new move is interesting because Mastodon is federated, and as far as I can tell, each sub-community has its own rules. Some of them are probably already less moderated than Gab was, yet they haven’t attracted similar attention, and so the various apps were in no danger of being banned.

I wonder how Apple and Google will respond. I could see them not caring, so long as accessing the Gab content requires typing in a server address. I could also see them requiring apps to actively block that address.



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