Elon Musk bought twitter. I´m not sure if twitter is going to survive the upcoming weeks. Twitter was and is my primary social network. I own a thoroughly currated list of people and instituions I follow. I´ve been on twitter for a really long time (Januar 2009) and seen many ups and downs.

I´m not saying twitter is going to die (for now) but it´s definitelly going to change. Therefore I was looking for an alternatives to get my daily dose of news. Mastodon seems to be something worth to look at.


Mastodon is a free and open-source microblogging implementation with a similar (but not the same) featureset as twitter. Everybody may (self-)host her own instance. Each and every instance is able to speak with each and every other instance via a protocoll called Activitypub.


Mastodon is a part of the fediverse. It is a set of independent server instances which agreed to talk in a common way. There are different types of systems with different use cases. For example: Mastodon is like twitter, PeerTube is like youtube or Pixelfed is like Instagram. Here is a list of fediverse projects.

Which instances?

You need to choose a instance. There are different ways to do so. You could check a list of instances ( here ). This would be primary based on language, number of users and moderation criteria.

Another way would be to check if and where your current timeline resides. There´s a tool called debirdify.


  • Access the tool here
  • Authenticate with your twitter account (read and token only)
  • All followers / follows are listed with their instances used


You can use a graphical representation called Mapstodon to choose the instance which matches you best.

Transfering your timeline

There are a few services out there which allow you to get a list of your followers / follows. One of them is debirdify another one fedifinder.

In order to make it easier for these tools, you should be adding your mastodon handle (@user@host.tld) also to your twitter. You have different options, e.g.:

  • name
  • description
  • location
  • url field
  • pinned Tweet

You´ll get a CSV which you´ll be able to import into mastodon. Go to settings –> Import / Export.


If I could wish for something: Please dear people at tapbots build something like tweetbot (maybe tootbot). I´m more than happy to throw money into your direction.

The official mastodon app on iOS is also pretty good. I´m also testing a client called mast. So far, no idea what´ll be the winner.


For know I have a somewhat working backup. I´ll need to put in more work to periodically fetch all people I follow and update the list over on Mastodon. You can import the generated CSV in the settings of your Mastodon account. Ensure to use “merge” to not overwrite your current followings.