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I would love for this to work, but "like X but open" is not enough. What you need is "better than X and open". I wish I knew how to do "better", but unfortunately, I don't.

Status.net was 'better than Twitter and open' for a while; as I understand it, Status.net was grouping together threads of replies, and handling @mentions in the body of a message (as opposed to only at the beginning) long before Twitter did those things.

Of course, they were kind of obvious additions and Twitter does them too now. Status.net also had a very handy, very slick XMPP interface, perfect for those of us who don't like to play "where's the setting" on a website. Unfortunately that got taken down with the upgrade to Status.net 1.0, and hasn't yet returned.

There are many other StatusNet sites out there that support the XMPP interface. Or you can start your own.

I personally run https://freesocial.org/ which is based on the StatusNet software.

Fortunately, Twitter is making this really easy for us-- we just need to continue to have the features that Twitter shuts down ;)

If "like Twitter but open" was enough, Laconica/StatusNet would have won already.

I don't see the user experience of those platforms being on a par with Twitter. Yet.

I don't see the user experience on Twitter being on a par with neither StatusNet nor any of the third-party clients out there.

Third-party clients have, however, not implemented StatusNet support despite the fact SN has a Twitter-compatible API. _That_ is something I don't understand why.

Technically it's much more than Twitter - it's a way to subscribe to activities in realtime (Activity Streams + Pubsubhubbub), a way to easily do so for users on a website (WebFinger) and a way to notify people of others activities which they are being part of (Salmon).

The activity can be small status messages like Twitter - but can also be anything else, like photos, check-ins, whatever. So in that way it's much more like a distributed Facebook than a distributed Twitter - but right now the existing clients out there don't really show that very clearly.

A fair point. Much of the advantages are for developers, not the wider userbase.

Giving developers an environment they can play with and build great products around is the best way of achieving success.

Let's not forget that Twitter would have never been that successful without its developer community. If you can attract developers to rstat.us, then you will probably attract more users over time.

But that developer community is a given if you are making a competitive or alternative service to something like Twitter. It's a prerequisite, not a bonus. I would argue you're still not giving the users enough of a bone.

How about adding context (e.g. similar to wordpress's category tags). People can then filter the streams they subscribe to. For example were YouTube to post an OStatus message when a new video were uploaded I could subscribe to GeekAndSundry@youtube.com's messages, then filter that subscription so that only those posts with categories TableTop and TheFlog came through, without seeing posts tagged DarkStarComics. Equally, if a user posts about their two hobbies, say Technology and Cycling, I could filter to only see their Technology posts, reducing a lot of the clutter in my feed.

Like twitter or facebook but open, decentralized, and unarchivable would be nice. Something along the lines of Off The Record (not google talk's) where users could disavow messages from their account manually or automatically after x number of days. It seems like twitter is useful for asynchronous communication with a very short shelf life, as opposed to IM (synchronous) or RSS (hopefully a longer shelf-life), which would lend itself to that sort of privacy model.

Disclaimer: I have no idea if this can be implemented.

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