Reclaiming our Socials!

Reclaiming our Socials!

We recently had the opportunity to lead a pre-conference workshop for the SUNY Digital Learning Conference. It was a great opportunity to discuss the work we've been doing around here to build our social presence and communication platforms on top of open-source tools. We were especially interested in leading discussion around the risks of relying on proprietary platforms, while also encouraging folks to critically examine what could the most beneficial changes they could make. More than once, this very blog and newsletter came up because, of course, everything comes back to the blog!

We started with some introduction and stage setting, then talked about what tools and platforms we were using a few years ago. We then did some Visitors & Residents mapping to visualize it and asked participants to do their own mapping. After some more discussion, we talked about the new tools we and led a pre-mortem on what to consider when adopting a new communication tool or participating in a new social media space! Thanks to the Open Co-op for the pre-mortem idea and inspiration there!

Here are our slides and abstract from the workshop!


Given the fall from grace we’ve seen various social media platforms experience recently— from Twitter’s transition to X, to Substack’s implosion— now is the time to think critically about how to be informed, and autonomous, digital citizens. We’re seeing more and more social media users finding themselves immersed in platforms they’ve spent many hours cultivating community and content on, only to feel the rug pulled out from under them when that platform does or supports something that doesn’t align with those users’ values. At Reclaim Hosting, we’ve always been more comfortable working in spaces that are as open as possible so that we have as much control over our content and communications as possible. Our socials, however, were always stuck with the big-box providers. With the rise of the fediverse, we’re taking our autonomy back. Join us as we discuss the Reclaim Hosting team’s transition to Mastodon, a self-hostable, decentralized social networking platform, and Ghost, an open source blogging platform. We’ll discuss our perspectives on the current state of social media affairs, walk participants through our open setup, and demonstrate how to reclaim your socials!


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