How I populate my Mastodon feed

A week ago I joined Mastodon and soon faced a common hurdle: following enough interesting users to populate my feed.

It's not as easy as it seems as Mastodon has no algorithmic recommendations and doesn't support full-text search of toots. Although Mastodon instances come with a profile directory, this coarse filter lumps together mostly random profiles loosely tied by a generic match with the topics and themes an instance is about.

How did I get started?

I seeded my feed by browsing the results of hashtag searches for topics I'm interested in. This produced a handful of people to follow.

Next, for a finer grained filter, I browsed several more profiles from a number of sources:

When I came across a promising toot from these sources, I reviewed the author's profile for consistent posts with similar quality or themes. I discarded the profiles who toot only occasionally content matching my criteria and followed the others.

Now I'm following a dozen users. Although not many, these profiles are a good result after just a week. And the toots in my feed are enough for generating a compounding amount of relevant candidates to iterate the process.

#fediverse

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