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Welcome to the QOTO instance

QOTO: Question Others to Teach Ourselves
No hate, No censorship. Be kind, be respectful
"I know you won't believe me, but the highest form of Human Excellence is to question oneself and others." - Socrates

A Mastodon instance for scholars in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and all yearning to learn.

A free speech space. No censorship
We federate with all servers: we don’t block any servers.

TL;DR: Be respectful, and don't harass other Fediverse users. Unpopular opinions are acceptable, explicit hate-speech is not. Respect others users right to disengage. CW nudity, and spoilers. You must be 16 years or older and a S.T.E.M. student or professional to join our server. Membership is a privilege, not a right.

We won’t censor unpopular ideas and statements and welcome people from across the political spectrum, but hate-based speech such as sexist, racist, or homophobic speech will not be tolerated, be kind to each other.

All discussions between mods are public, as we believe that transparency is the best way to show everyone how we put words into practice. Check them out on discourse, and jump in the conversation if you feel like.

Additional services:

Unique Features
  • Inline math Latex support - Use \ ( and \ ) for inline LaTeX, and \ [ and \ ] for display mode.
  • 65,535 character limit for toots (usually 500)
  • 65,535 character limit for profile bio (usually 160)
  • Full text searches - usually you can only search hashtags and usernames
  • Groups Support - Accounts which represent groups (such as those from Guppe) are now tagged with a group badge and are specially rendered so the messages relayed by a group appear to be originating from the user.
  • Dedicated Groups Server - The fediverses only moderated groups server open to the public.
  • Group Directory - Groups are federated in the group directory which, like the federated timeline, will list all groups followed by anyone on our server.
  • Markdown Posts - You now have the option to select markdown formatting when posting.
  • Circles - You can now create circles with followers in it. When you make a post you can select one or more circles to privately post to and only users of those circles can see your post.
  • Per-toot option allowing for local-only toots that wont federate with other servers
  • Local-only toot default - You can now optionally set all toots to be local-only and prevent all your posts from federating outside of the local server. Without this setting you can still select local-only on a per-toot basis.
  • Domain Subscriptions - Bring another instance's local timeline as a feed in Qoto, no need to have an account on another server again, just import their timeline here!
  • Favorite Domains - Our last release allowed us to add remote timeline as a feature where you could pull up the local timeline of a remote instance as its own column. Now you can also add domains to a favorite domain list which makes it easier to access and bring up the timelines by listing them directly in the navigation panel.
  • User Post Notification - Users now have a bell next to their name where the follow button is. This will send you a notification every time they makes a new post.
  • Keyword Subscriptions - Create custom timelines based off keywords not just hashtags, you can even use regex for advanced matching
  • Account Subscriptions - This allows you to follow a remote accounts public toots in your Home timeline without actually following them. NOTE: This will not circumvent a user's privacy settings. It only delivers the same notifications as following someone via existing RSS feeds would allow, that is, it brings the RSS feed of their public posts into your home timeline this features behaves the same as the default functionality on non-Mastodon instances such as Misskey, Friendica, and Pleroma.
  • Misskey compatible quoting of toots
  • Colored follow button - The follow button seen in the feed and in profiles (the one that can be optionally turned off in settings) will now be colored to indicate follower status. Gray if not followed, yellow if followed, blue if following, green if mutual follow
  • Bookmarking of toots
  • Support for WebP and HEIC media uploads
  • Optional instance ticker banners under usernames in the timelines that tell you what server a user is on and what software it is running (ie pleorma, mastodon, misskey, etc) at a glance.
  • Optionally display subscribe and follower buttons directly in your timeline feeds.
  • Remote Timeline Quickview - From any post or profile there is a link to bring up the remote timeline locally, right in QOTO without needing to open a new window.
  • Professionally hosted with nightly backups
  • light modern theme with full width columns (not fixed)
  • Several extra themes - including mastodon default and mastodon default with full width columns (not fixed)
  • Read/unread notifications - Unread notifications now have a subtle blue indicator. There is also a “mark all as red” button added.
  • Rich-text rendering - We now render rich-text from other servers, so servers which post in a formatting that includes things like bolding, quotes, headers, italics, underlines, etc, will render in the statuses.
  • Rich-text Stripping - The user option to partially or fully turn off the rendering of rich-text.
  • Registration Captcha - A captcha is now required to signup for a new account, reducing spam.
  • Quote feature opt-out - As introduced earlier you can quote a toot rather than just reboost it. This is an additional button on every toot. This can now be turned off in your settings and removes the button.
  • Bookmark feature opt-out - As with the quote feature we could previously bookmark posts. You can now turn off the bookmark button.
  • Follow button opt-out - As mentioned earlier our added feature allowing you to add a follow button, optionally colored, into the feed can now be turned off.
  • Subscribe button opt-out - As before the subscribe feature that lets you watch a users public toots without following them can now be optionally turned off.
  • Favorite Tags - Similar to favorite domains this allows you to create a list of your favorite tags and have them easily accessible in the navigation panel.

Message to New Members

Welcome to the QOTO Mastodon instance, its like twitter but better!

Please don't hesitate to Direct Message me ( @freemo@qoto.org ) or tag me in Toots (what we call tweets here) if you have any questions or even if you just want to chat.

If you are new to Mastodon you may want to check out this official getting started guide: https://docs.joinmastodon.org/

We are a free speech, no censorship zone. Feel free to talk about whatever you want, say whatever you want, as long as it is legal and you engage respectfully you won’t ever get banned from the server. With that said we do have a few rules: No spam, and no using multiple accounts to circumvent personal bans, and a few others.

This server isnt a typical mastodon server either. I have personally modified the code on this server to give it several unique features you won't find on other servers.

If you are new to Mastodon here is some useful info.

Basically Mastodon is a decentralized service similar to twitter. That means anyone can run a server (like QOTO) that people can sign up with and use just like twitter. The unique part is how the servers talk to each other.

If you want to tag someone on the same server as you then you can just do @user however if you want to specify someone on a different server you can do @user@server. If someone follows you or mentions you on any server on the internet you'll get notified right here. So my full tag is @freemo@qoto.org.

So now a bit about the timelines, there are three (unlike twitter there is just one): Home, Local, Federated.

The Home timeline is just like what you'd expect on twitter, that is, everyone you are following.

The local timeline is any post made by anyone on your local server.

The federated timeline is what is cool. It combines the timeline of everyone on the server into one. This way you can see the posts of everyone that is followed by anyone on the server (assuming the post is public). So this timeline is a close representation of everyone on the internet who has Mastodon (though not really). Moreover we have a bot here that goes around and federates with everyone it can find, so our Federated Feed is rather robust covering thousands of instances.

Only other thing that is unique is listed vs unlisted posts. You have normal privacy settings like on twitter but you also can set a post to be listed or unlisted. If it is listed it acts just as i described. If it is unlisted then it acts just as a normal tweet would but it doesn't show up on local or federated timelines anywhere.

Also this goes without saying, but don't be racist, sexist, hateful, and don't harass people. It's a pretty shitty thing to do, don't be shitty!

The following is the list of QOTO administrators/moderators.
  • @freemo@qoto.org
  • @arteteco@qoto.org
  • @design_RG@qoto.org
Note: The account @QOTO@qoto.org listed as the administrator is NOT an actively monitored account. It was selected so as not to show favoritism among our moderator group, we are a democracy and even our administrators and moderators are held to the same high standards of decency as the rest of the community.

***We will never advertise on QOTO or sell your information to third-parties***

Rules

What will get you banned:
  • Anything illegal.
  • Intentionally creating a QOTO account to circumvent people blocking you.
  • Explicit hate-based racism, sexism, and other hateful speech, but generally unpopular opinions voiced respectfully will be fine.
  • Being a bot (unless you post unlisted and do not auto-follow)
  • Any account setup solely to advertise a product or service
  • NSFW without a content warning
  • Spoilers without a content warning
  • Blocking of moderators is prohibited since it interferes with their ability to moderate content. However if you do not wish a moderator to comment on your posts outside of official moderator communication such a request will be honored.

What won't get you banned:
  • Hurting someone's feelings
  • Anything that can be solved by a personal block
  • Cursing
  • Lewd jokes
  • A bot where all posts are unlisted

We are all adults here, act like it. Despite our belief in freedom of expression (free speech) we want to create a space where people are respectful to each other. Don't disrespect people; if they disrespect you then block them and move on. If we get a report on one of our users then an administrator will reach out to the parties involved and try to mediate a peaceful resolution. We will talk it through like mature adults. Lets remember there is a person at the other end of the screen, if we can be mature in real life we can do it here too.

Federating: Silencing & Blocking


We do not silence or block other Fediverse instances based on agenda, politics, or opinions held by their staff or users. We only require servers we federate with to follow one simple rule: respect a user's right to disengage. Offending servers will only be silenced, not blocks, blocks will be reserved for technical assaults only such as DDoS attacks.

Some examples:
  • If, for any reason, a user requests another user to not tag them, this request will be respected without exception.
  • If a user is blocked and it is clear the user who was blocked that this was directed at that user. Then creating additional accounts specifically to circumvent this block would be disallowed. If the user was unaware of the block then they wouldn't be accountable however.
  • Unsolicited advertising must be opt-in only. This means commercial advertisements which directly tag individual users without permission from that user, especially when done in bulk, will not be allowed.

We understand that moderators will not always catch 100% of offenses above. If a server does not appear to be compliant with the above federation policy we will first reach out to the moderators of the server. If those moderators actively take action to handle those cases as they are reported then we will continue to federate. It will only be cases where moderators are made aware of the above cases, and fail to act, that will result in defederation.

Similarly if we receive anonymous reports on **any** incident of any kind from a foreign server directed at one of our own users, or we hear word of any moderation from a foreign server, we will always reach out to the admins of the other server, usually CC'ed from a non-QOTO account. However if any moderator or admin for any reason would not like to be contacted we will respect any such request as well.

We currently do not block any servers in the fediverse. We currently only silence the following servers in the fediverse, spinster.xyz and ussr.win

Moderated servers

Mastodon generally allows you to view content from and interact with users from any other server in the fediverse. These are the exceptions that have been made on this particular server.

Silenced servers

Posts from these servers will be hidden in public timelines and conversations, and no notifications will be generated from their users interactions, unless you are following them:

Server Reason
spinster.xyz Harassment from users en masse, moderators were made aware and take no action against harassment.
ussr.win Harassment from owner including ban evasion through use of multiple accounts.