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Alternatives to Twitter / X for birders (3 Viewers)

kb57

Well-known member
Europe
I've been using Twitter for a number of years now - for birding info / photos, sport and politics - but like many since its takeover by a megalomaniac billionaire, am starting to look at alternatives - especially if they start charging.
I tried to download Hive Social app the other day, but couldn't get past glitches with the sign-up process (the obligatory birthdate screen had an immovable keyboard popup which obscured the 'next' button!) so I guess that isn't going to work.
I doubt I'll abandon Twitter quite yet because it is still good for birding accounts, news from conservation organisations etc., but have any other social media apps attracted significant birding / conservation accounts yet?
 
There are several wannabe Twitter replacements, Threads, Mastodon, Blue-sky. All are now orders of magnitude below what Twitter is.

The best way is to look at the accounts you follow on Twitter that give you the best information and see if they have a presence on the other platforms. I have found basically zero, so far!
 
10 happy years without any kind of 'social media' account, yet with excellent communication via email and pretty rounded information supply via fora and respectable news outlets. YMMV
 
I've signed up for Mastodon on the .scot community. There are a few of the people that I follow on Twitter that are on there and the wider Mastodon network. I found it pretty straightforward to sign up to, once I decided which one to join. I'm not likely to leave Twitter yet either, but I wouldn't want to pay for it in its current state.
 
I did not realize twitter had value to birders?! I've always avoided it, wanting to lower my politics stress level...
Can someone give me an example of someone they follow so I can see what sort of content they post?
 
The useful thing about Twitter is that you can just look at the posts of people you follow. If you just follow nice birdy people then you can just see nice birdy things. Twitter is my goto source of local bird news if I am visiting a new area. One of the main thing that puts me off Threads is that you have to look at a "For You" timeline full of "recommendations".
 
I give in. How does one do that?
I just search to {area} and birding/bird club/ornithological society and one can often find a local who is putting out what's been seen where information. It's not the birdline sort of "this species seen in this tree 10 minutes ago" but it can help narrow down choices. The old school local bird forums seem to have died out. There are comparable Facebook groups but they are usually monopolised by photographers showing off their latest wood pigeon shot.
 
Having started the post to look for alternatives to Twitter, I find myself agreeing with its defenders...
..just today, I saw some great footage of a woodpigeon's ill-advised visit to a peregrine nest (@Avetarda), viewed a post on illegal hunting activity in Malta (@BirdLife_Malta), viewed several different photos of a Blackburnian Warbler in Shetland (e.g. @DougiePreston) and a monarch butterfly in Cornwall (@Myp1Mike)...for which a map is available with place names in Cornish...(@YesCornwall)...and read a thread on diversity of mass twitches (@WMGVs)
 
Having started the post to look for alternatives to Twitter, I find myself agreeing with its defenders...
..just today, I saw some great footage of a woodpigeon's ill-advised visit to a peregrine nest (@Avetarda), viewed a post on illegal hunting activity in Malta (@BirdLife_Malta), viewed several different photos of a Blackburnian Warbler in Shetland (e.g. @DougiePreston) and a monarch butterfly in Cornwall (@Myp1Mike)...for which a map is available with place names in Cornish...(@YesCornwall)...and read a thread on diversity of mass twitches (@WMGVs)

That's the tragedy imho... we have little choice other than to opt out of the digital universe.
 

That's the tragedy imho... we have little choice other than to opt out of the digital universe.
Thought-provoking article, although it's made me worry about what was I previously regarded as one of the positives of visiting Japan - 'Hackers have shown that they can access everything from a smart toilet in Japan to a self-driving car in the US. The more automated our lives become, the easier it will be for those who wish us harm to interfere with our lives.' :oops:

Seriously though, it makes some good points - but there are other choices which still allow us to enjoy the benefits of borderless digital communication, which was more or less what provoked my OP - can / should we as birders be migrating (excuse pun) to a more benign digital social media platform in terms of ownership and ethos?
 
Thought-provoking article, although it's made me worry about what was I previously regarded as one of the positives of visiting Japan - 'Hackers have shown that they can access everything from a smart toilet in Japan to a self-driving car in the US. The more automated our lives become, the easier it will be for those who wish us harm to interfere with our lives.' :oops:

Seriously though, it makes some good points - but there are other choices which still allow us to enjoy the benefits of borderless digital communication, which was more or less what provoked my OP - can / should we as birders be migrating (excuse pun) to a more benign digital social media platform in terms of ownership and ethos?
Yes. But I think that's the scary reality - we have less and less choices. And ultimately, it's an act of trust since even a service which proclaims to respect privacy etc. is at the mercy of their cloud servers and the whole entangled digital realm.
 
My 'X' feed is almost entirely birds, bugs, botany with science and some art. But that was achieved by diligently blocking every account in my time line that wasn't mainly those subjects. If I could access it somehow I would not be surprised if my block list exceeded 20,000 accounts.
You must block to train the algorithms to give you what you want.
But I am now doubting that they aren't just giving you what people have paid for you to see.
On a more jolly note 'The future is bright the future is Surveillance':eek::ROFLMAO:
 
When you go into X, there are two tabs that seem to be hiding in plain sight. "For you" and "following".
"For you" has all the algorithms kicking in, "Following", should just show you what you have opted into. So anything unsavoury that you see on the "following" view is all down to our own choices.

My "following" feed is just news, a few adverts and wildlife. Probably as good as I can get it.
 
Speaking of 'Unsavoury' you should see what literally 'Pops Up' under the guise of free speech on Mastodon:eek:
With Mastodon, the content is only as good as who is managing your home Server.
For the server I'm signed up on, the list of other servers banned from our space is massive. All are servers with spam, porn, hate speech, trolls.
The raw unfiltered Mastodon must be pretty awful.

I'm finding Reddit and our very own birdforum most useful lately.
 
I don't find that with Mastodon, the only posts I see are from people I follow. Is there some "For You" type thing I have somehow switched off?
You can see the feed of who you follow, there is a local server feed of everything on your server, and a wider feed of everything posted anywhere on Mastodon by friends of friends I think.

In fact, I've just switched to the app "tooot", and I have the choice of:
Home feed: Everyone I'm following.
Local: everything on my local Server,
Federated: an unfiltered view of everything on mastodon, except banned servers, and
Explore: which has trending subjects; Plus I can add other Servers, such as birdon.social, for a look at what is being posted on that instance.
 
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