Anyone else thinking what I'm thinking? If is like a protocol, why am I tied to a domain name I don't control?

To put it another way, with email servers I can have my own domain name & choose to self host OR use something like Google or Microsoft as my servers.

I have not looked at the code to try and understand it better but that's the one thing I'm really not liking about having to choose a server at the moment.

** It feels like having an aol or gmail or yahoo email address to me. **

And since I run businesses that have to make money I don't quite have time at the moment to self host even just for myself (but I am considering it. Thanksgiving week looks slow...)

@hilarybaumann Feel free to host your own instance, there are services online that's specialized in giving you an easy Mastodon hosting experience. Just ask around. :)

The only advantage of an existing active server is the community with its local timeline activity.

@trinsec part of my point still holds. It still feels kinda like having an email address. The handle is the "problem."

If you've ever set up g suite (google apps ... google Workspace ... whatever they are calling it at any given point) as the mx server for a domain's email you get the best of both worlds. The handle or domain name that's yours no matter what and the ecosystem of gmail with google drive and everything that comes with it.

All of the bits that come with gmail but if I leave google I'm not SOL about how people can contact me.

I actually literally did this with a domain name last February. I didn't want to pay (and they hadn't announced that they would let legacy personal accounts stay for free yet) so I ditched google for that domain name and went self hosted with that email account. It no longer has google drive etc with it but I didn't have to tell people that I had a change of email or anything to still get messages.

So maybe I didn't quite explain it to that level in my last post but that's sort of what I'm getting at.

A server / community shuts down and your handle, the way people contact you, is just gone and you get no say in the matter.

@hilarybaumann That's always been the case. I get what you're aiming at. For your own domain you usually have to do a bit more effort. In this case it'd be hosting an instance yourself.

But, like I said, there are services which can make your life easier. There are paid services specialized in hosting mastodon instances for you, and you just apply your own domain to it. :)

For most people it doesn't really matter to have their own domain, so long it's convenient for them. I've lost access to servers before and I just moved on to another one. People'll know me anyway, don't care too much about post history.

But you have all the freedom to do so. :)

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