Finding your way around the Fediverse

A beginner's map

So I've been inspired!

Yesterday my friend Alex posted this wonderful reply here to a new user that signed up on Kawen Space that describes some popular servers they are going to run into. You can read that post here. It has inspired me to write my own much longer guide/recommendations to all of the servers I am familiar with. This list will be in alphabetical order by instance name and contain only my own opinions. There will be a piece on Misskey and single-user instances at the bottom.

Before we begin, if you really are new to the fedi you should first take a look at this wiki of the fediverse's history created by Bob Mottram

For each entry I will recommend a few prolific users from the instance I recommend checking out. There is always more users I could mention on these servers but I simply can't list everybody. I'm sorry if you don't get included and feel left out. All comments made about people in this post are only my opinion. I follow most of the people I mention, but not all of them. So let's begin:

Anime Website

This is a well moderated instance with one of the more transparent blocking practices there is among Pleroma instances. Sometimes the admin says something spicy and is likely why other instances might block this one but this instance is well structured with fair rules. A new user would be happy here.

Who to follow: - This is the site admin. Frequently posts. Very cool person. Makes spicy posts. - Resident shitposter. - Also a shitposter.

BSD Dot Moe

This is a general purpose Pleroma server that moderates behavior, not speech. So you can talk shit but you can't be a shit. A good instance overall.

Who to follow: - The admin of the instance. - A shitposter, also fucking hilarious. - The man, the myth, the legend of edgeposting. Hasn't posted in a month but was known for side-splitting all caps rants that go further beyond anything a facebook boomer is capable of. These posts are not for the faint of heart and are riddled with nonsense and profanity, but it's honestly hilarious. If you've ever had a moment at a family gathering when a grandparent or great grandparent said some really raunchy shit at the dinner table that made everyone speechless, this user is basically that times 1000.

Cybre Space

Do not join this instance. This instance locks registrations behind a donation paywall. Occasionally they will open registrations for free but not often. They also block many instances. You are far better off self hosting your own instance than paying to be on this one. Also the public timeline is so slow on this instance these days it inspired one of its users to write this hilarious article

Who to follow:

literally nobody

Cybre Club

Not to be confused with Cybre Space. This server is closed to registrations but if you ask the admin nicely he might let you in. On the side the admin is working on their own ActivityPub implementation in rust called Kibou and that is really neat.

Who to follow: - Said admin from above.

Cawfee Club

This is a newcomer-friendly instance in the same vein as and It has a comfy theme and a competent admin. They don't block any other instances, enabling the users to decide for themselves what they don't want to see. They also can't spell cofe right.

Who to follow: - This is the admin of the instance. I'm friends with the admin but I don't really know any of his other users. Perhaps the next active user could be you?

IsCute Dot Moe

This is another general purpose instance with a small community of wholesome posters. Very friendly.

Who to follow: - The admin of the instance. Has a fine taste in cat girls. - Resident shitposter. With the occasional hot take. Quality poster

This is a recent instance but worth talking about. This is some influencer guy from Twitter that setup a mastodon server thinking it was like private twitter. Didn't know anything about federation and was surpised other people could see him and his fans posts. They are normies but ultimately harmless. Some of their posts are even, dare I say... funny.

Who to follow:

I guess the admin This instance opened like a day or two ago it's too early to highlight any standout posters. If twitter humor is your thing, you'll find it here. Maybe don't sign up here but don't shun these people. The Fedi is for everyone.


This is a well intentioned Mastodon instance that does not disclose its blocklist. It may not have one, but they never reply to my posts so I am assuming they do. If you don't join a naughty server they will probably federate with you just fine. If you like open source stuff, you might enjoy the users there. They do take donations but they thankfully do not lock signups behind a paywall. Signup at your own discretion.

Who to follow: - This is actually Kev Quirk. He's ok. - This is actually Mike Stone. I think I read an article or two that he's written. Or maybe that was another guy. He's ok either way

Free Speech Extremist

This is a very controversial instance but is ultimately harmless. I'd like to take this opportunity to explain something I've posted about on fedi before. This server is a prime example about how having a strong active user base will propel an instance into prosperity. FSE may not be the biggest instance on the fedi, but there are enough active users that if they broke federation tomorrow, or got blocked by literally everyone, then they would probably still have a good time talking amongst themselves (the opposite of The admin is a very good person who is committed to protecting all speech of his users. Even those which he disagrees with, and even the speech of dumb edgeposters who don't actually have an intelligent thought. This makes the public timeline of FSE a tornado of competing ideas, hardened by constant debate and re-evaluation. Some people might find such an environment too hostile to enjoy, but if you like debate and aren't afraid of mean words you will probably have a good time here regardless of what your personal politics are.

A strong local timeline is not to be confused with a large server. Even on major mastodon servers with thousands of active users you can still feel isolated. While on a server like FSE every post you make is an invitation to debate and discuss your ideas. This is why its a running joke that every post on FSE is a potential hellthread. As everyone on that server is interested in debate and discussion of their ideas so their popular threads grow exponentially when they do grow.

Who to follow: - this is the admin. I'm only going to mention him because there are so many active users on FSE I couldn't just pick a few. You either block FSE, watch FSE, or dive in to their hellthreads. If you aren't self hosting or joining specific servers FSE may be blocked for you so watch out for that if engaging with these people is what you are looking for (or not looking for).

Freeradical Zone

Pretty much the same thing as Liberdon, but liberal instead of libertarian. I know of a user that was banned from this server from posting things that are really out of line with the politics of the admin (assuming they weren't lying to me), but if you wanna be political on fedi, and you're liberal, this server might work out for you. It does not block very many servers, which is rare for Mastodon servers in general.

Who to follow: - The admin. Sometimes posts interesting stories from his travels. He doesn't reply to my posts anymore. I didn't think he was a bad guy or anything though.

Kawen Space: The Pillow Fort of Pleroma Instances

Yes the server really has that title on the top bar.

This is an instance run by (recently posting on a single user test instance that is home to many great users. I don't think I've ever had a bad time talking with anybody from this server. This is a top choice for someone new to the fedi that isn't an edgeposter. Karen is a great admin and a lot of people on the fedi look up to her. Karen is also a part time Pleroma contributor and recently took a job working on some ActivityPub software for Moodlenet. She's definitely one of my favorite posters on fedi.

Who to follow: - the admin, very cool person - one of the alt accounts for the Lain who is a major Pleroma contributor and founded the project - frequent poster, cool person - literally my wife. 100% amazing. Needs more fedifriends so she is encouraged to post more - cool person - cool person - cool person - cool person

Honestly if I could list every user without making this section too long I would. If someone from this instance comes across your timeline or notifications - check them out and consider following. This server is a goldmine of content.

LALL - LetsAllLoveLain

This instance is a moderated instance that does not participate in any instance blocks. So you have the vision of Shitposter Club with the moderation of the likes of Pleroma Site. This instance is run by two popular admins and It is also home to several great users. I am pretty sure the domain name is a reference to Lain the anime character, and not Lain the Pleroma guy, though everyone is a big fan of Lain.

Who to follow: - one of the admins - this is a followers only account for the other admin that seems to have gone off the rails and become the main account. Quality posts - used to be a single-user-instance person and came to LALL. Cool person - cool person - cool person - resident shitposter of LALL - also a shitposter - this is my followers only alt. I hope you like hot takes and baby pictures (my son is cute I promise)


This is a sort of black sheep of mastodon servers. This is a political server of the libertarian/ancap/anarchy/whatever variety. If you like that and want to talk about that, then maybe you'll like this server. They pop up in my feed every once in a while.

Who to follow:

I don't know anybody on this server, but I have to add this section to keep the feng shui of the post.

Mastodon Social

Mastodon Social is the flagship instance for the Mastodon project. The BDFL of Mastodon - once made the righteous decision to close registrations for this instance to encourage people to distribute themselves among the fediverse to strengthen federation. He did a 180 on this and has reopened registrations several times, and they are currently open today. Mastodon was covered by the mainstream media around 2017 and most of the journalists did not understand the concept of federation and would talk about Mastodon the software as Mastodon Social the website interchangeably. This has led to many people signing up on Mastodon Social as their first instance and getting a skewed view of the fediverse. Gargron publishes a table of instances Mastodon Social blocks however there is nothing in the software that exposes the blocks. So this table could be out of date or missing information. For a long time Gargron simply didn't publish any information about what instances are blocked, which is highly disrespectful of his users. Do not sign up on this instance. Also the terms of service for this instance enables them to spy on you, but to be honest they are probably not doing that.

Who to follow: - formerly a contributor to GNU Social and the BDFL of his own project Pixelfed, which is like Instagram federated over ActivityPub. - This is the maintainer for the app Fedilab which is my personal choice for mobile browsing.

That's it! There's really nobody else on this awful instance worth following.

Mastodon Technology

This is yet another Mastodon megaserver with way too many users to forge meaningful discourse locally. They block a lot of instances, including my home Shitposter Club, but there are several official accounts here that might be worth a follow even if you can't respond to them. Maybe don't sign up here.

Who to follow: - This is the official account for FDroid, which is the best appstore on android - This is the official account for the KDE project. The only correct desktop environment for Linux.

I'm sure there's more but they are all "official" accounts for orgs and stuff like the two above.

Mastodon XYZ

Do not join this instance. This is a general purpose instance similar to Mastodon Social that only balloon'd to the size that it is because it was set up during one of the times where Mastodon Social was closed to registrations. I used to have an account on this server. The admin is frequently absent and the local timeline is dead. It may have many active users, but if you sign up there don't expect them to hold any meaningful conversations with you.

Who to follow:

Everyone worth following on this instance has already left.

No More Shame

To be honest this server has more alt accounts than anything. It's a good server though and would make a fine home for a new user to the fedi. I actually have two bots running on this server. The bible quote in the sidebar is a joke. Also reports a high number of users on this instance but they are all hongepii - a notorious bot herder that makes accounts everywhere that has open registrations and no captcha.

Who to follow: - The admin. Pro sarcasmposter and ironyposter. - Cool person. Sometimes gets political. Not sure if this account is the alt or if the account is the alt but I enjoy this person's posts a lot. - An image bot I made for the Xeno franchise. Has more images than all my other bots.


This might be the the best Mastodon server that exists. The admin posts in French and English and the server is one of the earlier Mastodon servers that has stood the test of time. It's a shame so many Mastodon servers block them, they don't have a good reason to do so. A bunch of servers actually blocked Niu after a troll cropped a screenshot of a post the admin made to make it sound like they supported the alt-right, when they actually don't. Concerning any Mastodon instance dumb enough to block Niu - it's their loss.

Who to follow: - Very cool person. Posts on a variety of subjects. - Fine taste in cute shit. - Cool person. - Also has a fine taste in cute shit. - fucking hilarious. - quality posts. - used to have a self hosted instance, moved to this one. Quality poster. - token eboy.

There is so many more I couldn't possibly list them all.

No Agenda Social

This is a Mastodon instance run by the the No Agenda podcast. This is a popular sponsor-less podcast that runs entirely on donations by the fans. They are blocked in a lot of places because they are known to talk shit about the American right-wing and the American left-wing politics and some people don't like that. If you are a fan of the show, you'll fit right in. They appear to handle account sign up off-site and I have no idea what you have to do to create yourself an invite. If you listen to their show, you probably already know better than me.

This instance does not disclose its blocklist publically, but most likely they have this information elsewhere and I just don't know where it is. That or they only suspend/silence individual users as that's what their about/more page makes it sound like.

Who to follow: - This is the Adam Curry. From MTV. He is the host of the show.

This instance is closed to registrations. This is a Mastodon megaserver with over 11,000 users. Their rules are laid out more clearly than Mastodon Social however they block a lot of servers and most of them under the blanket reasoning of "allowing hate speech" which isn't actually true of some of the instances they list. They probably didn't put very much thought into their blocklist and their blocklist is also most likely larger than they have published, which is disrespectful to their users. Never join a server that doesn't publish a blocklist and commit to keeping it updated.

Who to follow:

literally nobody

Lili's Instance - Pikachu Rocks

This instance is closed to registrations so I will keep this short. This instance is run by Lili ( and has all of the positive qualities I've described in the section about, just with fewer users. One of my bots is on this instance as well - and that's cool

Who to follow: - The admin. Also one of my first fedifriends. If she didn't respond to my posts (along with Azu) back in my days I probably would have given up on the fedi before moving to SPC. One of my favorite posters. Plays a LOT of Fire Emblem. - The token french boy. Brightens up every thread he's in. - my first image bot. You will like this.

Playvicious Social

This Mastodon instance is closed to registrations but the admin has a patreon. Looking at the admins recent posts you can contact them for an invite for free so there is no paywall, just some manual vetting, which is fine. The admin is known for posting hot takes and responding with hostility/being a jerk but judging by what is written in their bio and on their patreon page I would probably get along with this person IRL. However all the instances I'm on are blocked and the hostility in the admins posts are at odds with his self description between his bio and patreon. Maybe he's more chill offline? I don't really know much about this instance but you're bound to see it in your timeline eventually. Hence why I am mentioning it here.

The users of this server are also not afraid to put the assoles of in their place, and for that they have my respect. Even if we will probably never talk to each other.

Who to follow: - This is the admin I mentioned above. Beware of the hot takes.

I don't know anybody else from this server. I don't actually follow this person as again they block a lot of other servers for undisclosed reasons.

Pleroma Site

This is a Pleroma instance run by who is a major contributor to the Pleroma project. I personally enjoy Kaniini's posts but there is a sizable group of Pleroma users that don't. I won't go into detail on the motivations behind the haters because most of it is either bullshit or shit that's already been apologized for. Point is most of the threads Kaniini gets into can get spicy for one reason or another.

Comments on the admin aside, Pleroma Site is a great example of what a Pleroma instance should be. While Pleroma servers expose who they are blocking, muting, etc via their Nodeinfo (which is easily seen on this instance keeps notes on who it blocks and why on a seperate webpage on the site. Each block has a rationale, which is cool. This is a general use instance with very fair moderation rules. I had an alt account on here for about a year with no troubles.

Who to follow: - the admin - frequent poster, nice person. - this guy sounds like he might be a bot, but he's real. He writes a lot of short articles and posts about tech. Long time user of defunkt GNU Social site, which shut down last year. If he's too spammy you can follow which is also him. Or don't.


This server is locked to registrations right now. It's run by Lain who is a founding member of the Pleroma project and is currently a major contributor. It makes sense registrations would be locked here as people might flock here as though it were a flagship instance (similar to mastodon social). While Lain maintains this server, he has multiple accounts on other servers so you may not see him here all of the time. This is a general purpose server with relaxed rules. The users here are pretty chill.

Who to follow: - the man(?) himself - obsessed with catgirls (who isn't these days?) - long time user. Wholesome

Shitposter Club

Shitposter Club is my current (and likely final) home instance. This is where you can find my main account This instance has a deep lore as it was once a GNU Social instance that was established a very long time ago. This lore predates my arrival to the fediverse in 2017 and is only partially covered in Bob's wiki I linked at the top of this post so I will refer you an article written by a longtime SPC user, Robek: What is GNU social and is Mastodon Social a "Twitter Clone"

tl;dr - there were multiple twitter exoduses around 2014 and 2015 that drove people to the fedi, which were a diverse bunch and at odds with the techo-hippie-socialist types that exclusively used GNU Social before their arrival. Rather than freaking out, these kind hippies taught the newcomers how to set up their own instances, so they would not take up space on the existing ones and they could then just block the new instances if desired. SPC is one such server that was established in this era.

Other than that SPC eventually left GNU Social behind and migrated to Pleroma (the only GNU Social server to successfully do this) which has been a big boon for shitposting as we can use modern mobile apps with the site now. SPC is an instance that does not block any other instance (but does try to clean up its TWKN a little bit with some timeline removals) and typically does not moderate the speech of its users. You can say some spicy shit, but to get moderated off the server you have to actually be a shit. This causes the occasional edgeposter to join us and spout some crazy nonsense but they usually get bored with the lack of a response from the fedi and from the admin and leave just as fast as they arrived. This is a very chill server and I strongly recommend it.

Who to follow: - that's me! - this is the admin. His name may be an edgy meme but he is wholesome, down to earth, and strong voice of reason within the fedi. Everyone can learn from this man. - this is Robek's account. Who wrote the article I linked above - Whyfi is a contributor on Robek's website and a really cool person. Talks about all manner of things, including video games which is surprisingly scarce on the fedi in general - Seasoned shitposter - Really chill dude. Will actually talks about guns - the guy who runs SPC movie night, where we get jump in a streaming app and watch youtube and movies together - Champion of AoE2 night. Cool dude. - Actually talks about video games. Cool dude.

Shpposter Club

This is an instance created by Shp, who is a long time member of Shitposter Club. He is a major Pleroma contributor who is brave enough to work on the front end. Makes sense he'd want his own instance to mess with. Despite its original purpose he has opened registrations. It is a comfy server for comfyposters. I have a public alt here for when SPC is down too.

Who to follow: - shp. - mostly cuteposting, cofeposting, and chill. - that's me!


This is an instance that was also set up during the early twitter exoduses that brought diverse opinions into the fedi. Said exoduses and a brief history of GNU Social can be read here. When compared to Shitposter Club, GNU/Smug is a lot more edgy. The admin frequently edgeposts ironic memes and is not afraid to call out anybody that doesn't like it. Also similar to SPC GNU/Smug switched from GNU Social to Pleroma but they did not do a migration, the admin simply deleted the old GNU Social instance outright. This has caused some former users to become disgruntled and stir up drama, but in general nobody cares. I don't often recommend a new user start out on this instance until they have a chance to observe it from another one, but there are some great users on this instance you don't want to miss out on.

Who to follow: - this is one of the first friends I made on the fediverse. If he didn't take the time to respond to me back when I was on (before moving to SPC) I probably would have just given up on the fedi. Wholesome poster. Likes anime and posts cute things sometimes. - wholesome poster - a bot that posts Hyperdimension Neptunia pictures every 20 minutes. Was the primary inspiration for all of the bots I created:,, and - another wholesome poster - this is the admin of the instance - hot takes and shenanigans

Social Librem One

Don't sign up on this instance. The people running it are openwashing jerks that have forked a bunch of free software and started charging people for it. They didn't disclose what the forks were or where the source code was until enough people dunked on them. They also messed with their instance so you can't see TWKN because they thought that was confusing (which is something Gab intends to do if/when they come to the fedi). They even disabled the reporting feature.

Who to follow: - For dunking purposes only - Love him or hate him this really is the Bryan Lunduke. We share the same birthday I guess.

Stereophonic Space

This is an instance with some strange customizations. It appears to have been made to share large audio files. However the UI was also changed to remove things like the subject field (known as content warning in Mastodon). Also the admin is adamant that NSFW posts should not be tagged. That is just the kind of server this is. This server doesn't work for me in fedilab and I have no idea why.

Who to follow: - The admin of this instance. - High octane lewdposter. Posts very lewd untagged NSFW posts. Excellent taste. Follow at your own risk. - Interesting person. Posts on a variety of topics.

Shigusegubu Club

This instance is closed to registrations. It is a pretty chill place with some really cool users. It doesn't block any other servers so if you create an account elsewhere you can rest assured the people here can interract with you.

Who to follow: - The admin. Also a Pleroma contributor. Has excellent taste in video games. - Cool person. - Cool person. Very popular. - Cool person. Following may result in opening the floodgates to the lewdposters to your timeline. Some of which run small or single user instances I did not mention in this post. - Resident shitposter.

Witches Live

Do not sign up on this instance. This instance blocks several servers but doesn't publish a list. I'm sure there is a list probably on github somewhere the admin has posted but none of this information is on the sign up form, so you would have to sign up and ask and hope you don't get banned for asking. Most of the users on this server are the type of people who harass and bully other people who they have judged to be undesirable people (if they don't have evidence they'll just make it up) and so they try to claim moral high ground while doing so. They also will not respond to sarcasm or irony and will take any joke you try to make as a statement of your genuine opinion. They block so many instances they will probably never find you, so you don't need to worry about them much.

Who to follow:

literally nobody

We Love Lain

I'm also pretty sure the domain name is a reference to that one anime, and not the Pleroma guy. Either way this server has some cool people on it.

Who to follow: - the admin. - cool person, occasional shitposter. - likes Gundam so naturally only has correct opinions. - cool person.

Single User Instances, and Misskey

I'm not actually going to list single user instances but instead explain what they are. One of the perks of the Pleroma project is that it takes very few resources to run. This makes it ideal for "self hosting" where you are the admin of your own server and also its only user. While you do surrender the public timeline (as it will only contain you) it does give you complete power over your federation. Some people on these kinds of instances are malicious - and as their own admin can create multiple accounts to get through your blocks to harass you. The solution is to just block their instance at your user level, or have your admin do it for the whole instance. Nobody wants to put up with that. Most single user instances are not malicious, so don't worry when you come across one. You just have to judge them case-by-case.

As for Misskey this is an ActivityPub implementation that is written and maintained by non English speakers. This attracts a majority non English speaking audience. The software is really cool and occasionally you'll see English speaking users join these Misskey instances but you should treat them as though they are single user instances as you will likely not see anyone else from those instances. So I won't be listing any instances as their own sections in this blog post.

So you made it to the end

Thank you for reading my blog post!