Welcome, new users! Some frequently asked questions:

1. Why are,, etc silenced?

Due to the size of these instances, as well as the fact that registrations on them are completely open, content moderation becomes very difficult. Mastodon doesn't give us very many tools for talking to an instance when we only want to let some users in without moderating those instances by telephone line.

You can still follow and interact with users on these instances, but when they follow you, you'll get a follow request. This is the only major difference.

2. Why is instance X suspended entirely?

The upside of Mastodon is that anyone can make an instance, and the downside of Mastodon is that anyone can make an instance. There are tons of Mastodon instances for any topic you'd like, but there are also tons of instances for topics you wouldn't like (including, up to, and beyond literal neo-Nazism). Part of our job as an instance administrator is to avoid these instances interacting with us so you don't get awful content in your notifications, or on the federated timeline.

If you want to look at the list of all suspended instances, take a look at (it's long!)
Many of these instances don't have immediate reasons for defederation on them, because they were imported from the blocklist back in 2020 when this instance was first created.

3. Will you unsuspend X instance?

Not likely. If you want a larger corner of the fediverse without our (admittedly opinionated, but generally correct) moderation choices, you're free to join another instance.

4. Why is my application pending indefinitely?

There could be two reasons for this.
The first is that your application was bad: "leaving twitter", "why not?", "waiting until musk suspends me" aren't good reasons, and don't verify that you're not a spambot.
We also want to ensure that new users on meet our code of conduct, which some people in the PL community decidedly do not: no homophobia, no transphobia, et cetera.

The second is that we're slow at accepting account requests. We're getting about 25-75 applications a day, and we can only reasonably process about 15-25. This is because this instance is run by a bunch of busy students.

5. Can I get a custom emoji added to the instance?

Yes. DM an admin with a shortcode and a PNG.

6. Wow, this is very useful! Thanks so much!

me: You're welcome! That's not a question.

gigantic spider above me: dematerializes

Also, if your application is denied, *you can apply again with more information*.

Having an easily searchable username, an old Twitter profile, or a personal site are all very useful so we can figure out who you are and why you want to join.

@systemf re: 1. another minor, but noticeable difference is that it also hides replies from people on those instances unless unless i follow that person, which makes a lot of sense from a moderation perspective, but also leads to only seeing half of a conversation in some cases

Sign in to participate in the conversation

A Mastodon instance for programming language theorists and mathematicians. Or just anyone who wants to hang out.