First, I want to say thank you for making Lemmy and for running this instance!

But, this “promotion initiative” strikes me as questionable idea for two reasons:

  1. Having many instances hosted on the same infrastructure defeats a lot of the purpose of the federated model. If/when this infrastructure goes down for whatever reason, many instances will be affected.

  2. If I understand your offer correctly, you’re actually only offering free hosting for one year? So, after a year, if the admins aren’t able to provide their own infrastructure, will you stop running their instances? This seems like it will inevitably leave a lot of users with a very negative impression of lemmy, when all of their posts and comments evaporate in to thin air.

Maybe the overlap between the set of people who are capable of running their own server and the set of people who would use a service like this is larger than I’m imagining, but I’m quite certain there are a lot of people in the second set who are not in the first.

It seems to me that a better approach would be to focus on making it as easy as possible to deploy lemmy, to encourage more instances on diverse infrastructure. (I see you already already have Docker, Ansible, and AWS instructions; as an aside, I recommend replacing the AWS instructions with a note recommending that users boycott Amazon…)

@nutomic
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The time limit of one year is exactly because we dont want to host these instances forever, and centralize the project in that way. If the instances become popular and get many users, surely there will be someone willing to host them. If they are small and no one wants to host them, the content cant be that important. Besides, content will be mirrored on federated instances.

If you would like to improve the documentation, that would be very welcome, repo is here. However, i dont think its the right place to call for boycotts, or other political stuff like that.

@mario1312
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deleted by creator

@nutomic
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Many small Lemmy instances have already disappeared over time. You are free to archive existing instances, so that doesnt happen again. But in general, things disappear from the internet over time, whether you like it or not. Not even archive.org can prevent that.

Vegafjord eo
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I could donate to fund such an effort if that could ensure more people could get this offer.

@skariko
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Question: it is possible to “migrate” a community from an instance to another?

@nutomic
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Not in an automated way. You would have to tell them to subscribe to the new community, and unsubscribe from the old one.

@pingveno
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Possibly a future feature? The Internet’s history is, after all, littered with the refuse of failed communities. It would be sad for Lemmy to hasten that issue. It would also help communities graduate from attaching to another instance to being their own instance if there was a social split (e.g. moderation decisions) or they outgrew their host instance.

@skariko
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Also this is one of the most important feature (for me) on the fediverse. If an instance “goes bad” it’s good transfer all on other istance. By the way my question was in this topic because i already have 100followers on my community and this is one of the reason can’t open another istance if i can’t import all the followers.

@nutomic
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That is actually a very good point, i never thought about it in that way. The main question about this is probably how it should work from a UX perspective. One way would be to have a mod action which changes the subscription of all users to the new community. But there would be a risk that a hacker could target mod accounts, to redirect users to his own community/instance for malicious purposes. We could send a notification to users to inform them about the change. And the old community might have to be locked or deleted (permanently or reversible?)

cc @dessalines@lemmy.ml

@skariko
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Yes, on Mastodon there is an “export” and “import” settings for the followers (not for the post): https://docs.joinmastodon.org/user/moving/ and on the old istance remain just a placeholder that redirect on new profile/instances.

I’m glad the idea is of your interest :)

Dessalines
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The profile move section here for mastodon seems relevant.

We’d have to support a “move” activity that followers would receive, and it could overwrite their database with the new community url, and refollow.

This should probably be limited to the top mod.

All this is also predicated on that instance still being alive, and long enough for that move request to get federated everywhere.

This would be really difficult, and a ton of work, all just so people wouldn’t have to click the subscribe button for a community resurrected elsewhere. So I’m not sure its really worth it.

@skariko
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People are often lazy, especially if I convinced them to join the “xxx instead of reddit” site to follow me. It would definitely be counterproductive to tell them again “ah no now you have to follow me on yyy, not xxx anymore”.

Obviously it is right to consider the work to be done and the right priorities. Personally I love Lemmy, I would be a little sorry to be somehow linked to this instance “forever”, I think the idea of ​​decentralization and faithful universe is a little less.

just my thoughts :)

Dessalines
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My main thinking here, is that the main reason to migrate a community anyway, is because an instance goes down. But once that instance is down, its impossible to migrate it securely anyway… otherwise communities could be easily hijacked.

@skariko
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I understand doubts, especially if there is a lot of work to do I think it is right to ask as many questions as possible.

Personally I think of at least two other reasons for changing the instance:

the first is a possible problem with the moderators / admin. For example in case they did questionable operations.

The second concerns me more personally: I opened a community here because there are no Italian instances. It took me a few months to convince people to sign up here, it would be ironic to tell them “no, now re-sign up somewhere else”.

Since in this thread we talked about how to invite people to subscribe and / or how to create more instances for me this is one of the reasons that pushes me not to try.

In the meantime, thanks for the discussion and listening

I think it’s ok to require the original instance to be online, an insecure migration should just be telling people to follow a different path imo. I think giving communities a low friction way to be nomadic would ease concerns about deciding between self hosting and using existing instances. Users could perhaps be presented with a popover to communicate the change and maybe have an archived link to the old community path. It would also be cool if you could initiate a migration using just backed up config secrets in a new instance.

@juh
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We, a hosting cooperative in Germany, mentioned Lemmy in a book about free software that we published two weeks before. It is in German and targets clubs, non-profits, foundations and cooperatives. It’s free to download. https://www.hostsharing.net/publikationen/vereinshandbuch/

I really like your idea of promoting Lemmy by providing a limited free hosting offer. It gives people the chance to find sustainable funding.

In the book mentioned above we recommended Lemmy as a forum solution. Many organisations like clubs are looking for something like discourse or flarum to replace a mailing list for discussions or a community help desk. If an organisation uses Lemmy for inhouse needs giving accounts to all members the instance is funded by the organisation – and thanks to federation the users can join communities elsewhere too.

This is the organisational approach to sustainable Lemmy instances.

If there is no organisation that pays the bills, I have to look for funding elsewhere, as users won’t pay. I have to pass the hat around. But this is not sustainable at all.

Or I could go the usual internet way using ads to fund the instance. Is there a function in Lemmy that could be used as an advertising tool? A broadcast message by the administrator that is published to all accounts. Can instance administrators pin messages in communities? Or can administrators promote messages so that they get higher ranks?

I think of a Lemmy instance for a hobby targeting a community of consumers and producers where the producers are willing to pay for advertised postings.

@nutomic
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Advertising isnt commonly used on the Fediverse, most instances are financed by donations, and that seems to work quite well. Its possible for adminsto put an advertising link/image in the sidebar, or to sticky an advertising post to the top of a community.

Vegafjord eo
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I am thinking about starting a lemmy instance for esperanto speakers or norwegians.

@Thann
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that’s really awesome!

what other ways are there to seduce users?

Also, I feel like it’s something people probably don’t wanna talk about, but a lot of Reddit’s appeal is in NSFW content - so a NSFW instance would also likely increase users.

@Matheo_bis
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Ah yes, as a wise person said:

Cyclohexane
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Content that is interesting to users yet hard to find elsewhere. Link it on Reddit and other places.

“you can find more info from this lemmy post”

When people see this often enough, they’ll try it out.

I feel like I good advertising campaign could do wonders. Reddit’s userbase was beginning to decline around a year ago (if I’m remembering correctly) and so they had this massive marketing campaign with a focus on how there’s a community for everything and, then, they had a massive increase in users.

@pingveno
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Reddit’s userbase was beginning to decline around a year ago

I don’t think that’s correct, since all the sources I found referred to growth in user numbers. At worst might be a softening of growth.

Regardless of the difference between declination and softening (keep in mind it’s difficult to show when people stop using a platform as most don’t delete their account), the mass advertising campaign of theirs definitely worked incredibly well

@rustoleum
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I feel lemmy just needs a general instance, for all people, no matter beliefs or nothing

@nutomic
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Something like that would definitely be an instance we would host, so do apply if you would like to run it. Though the instance would probably have to exclude politics, otherwise it will get too controversial.

@rustoleum
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The politics part is understandable, although would one have to know any coding language?

@nutomic
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No coding necessary at all.

@Evg
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I enjoy following Lemmy’s development. I will place an ad on several of my sites, maybe someone will be interested. We need to talk more so people know. A lot of people just don’t know about Lemmy.

@suspended
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Shared here.

@erdos4d
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Maybe not completely on-topic, but I wanted to ask what sort of resource requirements a Lemmy instance requires. I have a Kubernetes cluster I run for my business, so if it is not too heavy, I may be able to put an instance up with my excess resources. Thanks.

@nutomic
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Its really lightweight, 150 mb ram and quite low cpu usage with default docker install.

@erdos4d
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Thanks, I’ll look into getting one up then.

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