Mastodon wants to replace Twitter without looking like Twitter
Mastodon refuses to take investment from venture capitalists. To dethrone giant Twitter, the social network plans to stick with its decentralized approach… while launching a new project.
After Elon Musk took the reigns at the top of Twitter, Mastodon gained popularity again. Taking advantage of the billionaire’s controversial decisions, the decentralized platform registered more than 2.5 million new users last month.
The success of the platform attracted the attention of investors. according to our colleagues from Financial TimesMastodon creator Eugen Rochko accepted more than five investment proposals From venture capital firms located in Silicon Valley.
These investors wanted to inject ” hundreds of thousands of dollars in the social network », explains Rochko, who has pitched himself as one of the main alternatives to Elon Musk’s Twitter. In exchange for the funds, the investors wanted to buy shares in “Mastodon” company.
Mastodon refuses to be controlled by shareholders
The German developer rejected all offers. Adhering to the ideals of Eugen Rochko, Mastodon’s non-commercial status ” untouchable”. He wants the social network to stay regardless of potential shareholders. For the programmer, it’s also one of the assets that attracts netizens frustrated by Elon Musk’s takeover.
“Mastodon isn’t going to become everything you hate about Twitter. It could be sold to a controversial billionaire, shut down, bankrupt, etc. This is the paradigm difference between platforms”Eugen Rochko says.
Unlike Twitter, Mastodon is open source and decentralized. The platform consists of a set of servers managed directly by Internet users. Mastodon operates several of these servers, including the most popular mastodon.social server. The latter has 881,000 users, including 210,000 active users. Faced with server success, Mastodon was forced to close registration a few days ago.
The social network does not make money from advertising or the personal information of its members. Currently, Eugen Rochko is awarded mainly at his expense patreon account, has more than 8,500 donors. Thanks to a crowdfunding site, the developer is currently receiving more than $30,000 per month. Elon Musk Was Making Just $7,000 Before Taking Over Twitter, Rochko Explains TechCrunch.
The computer expert who is the sole shareholder of Mastodon earned an average monthly salary of 2,400 euros last year. After the success of the social network, Rochko’s monthly income reached 2900 euros. The remaining money goes directly to the company. In particular, considering the increase in the number of users, he bought several computer servers. Based on this increase in revenue, Mastodon also plansexpand full-time team. Currently, it consists of Rochko and five part-time freelancers.
Also read: Twitter creator launches BlueSky Social, a Twitter alternative
A hybrid approach
Although he is very attached to the Mastodon’s independence, Rochko plans to opt for a hybrid model in the near future. He compares the approach to Mozilla, where “ the nonprofit will continue to work on the core product, which will remain open source.”when a commercial enterprise is starting up continuous server hosting. He explains that he tried to talk to some venture capitalists about this hosting idea, but they were more interested in Mastodon than in the hosting proposal.
“Venture capital will not help us. We will never release them into the main product. So, yeah, we’ll probably have to go with an angel investor or just do some crowdfunding.”Rochko continues.
By shielding Mastodon from venture capital, the developer aims to dethrone Twitter. Rochko, who is very opposed to the actions of Elon Musk, does not hide that he wants to replace the social network and all centralized platforms such as Facebook or Instagram. Lucid says he is aware of this ” long road » Introducing Mastodon to the general public.