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Semafor LogoJ.D. Capelouto
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Over 170,000 people have joined Mastodon in the last 24 hours

J.D. Capelouto is a Breaking News reporter. You can reach him at jcapelouto@semafor.com. Sign up for Semafor Tech, led by Reed Albergotti, to get our scoops and coverage of the industry’s biggest stories in your inbox twice a week.

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Title iconThe Numbers
  • 171,000: Roughly the amount of new users on Mastodon in the last 24 hours, according to an account tracking activity on the newish social media platform.
  • 7,043,802: The total amount of Mastodon users as of Friday morning.
  • 12,000: The approximate number of new accounts made in a single one-hour span Thursday evening.
A screenshot of the @mastodonusercount account showing the spike in new users in the last 24 hours
Screenshot/via @mastodonusercount@bitcoinhackers.org
Title iconKnow More

Since Elon Musk bought Twitter last month, Mastodon has been viewed as an alternative for those who want to leave the site.

Musk gave Twitter employees a Thursday deadline to either stay on or resign with three months' severance, leading to mass resignations, The New York Times reported. The company also closed all of its offices and suspended badge access, leading to speculation that Twitter could go offline.

According to the @mastodonusercount account, which uses a code to track Mastodon usage, the latest spike in new users began Thursday evening, and the platform surpassed the 7,000,000-account mark Friday morning.

Title iconstep back

Founded in 2016 by German software developer Eugen Rochko, Mastodon allows users to join different servers that are part of a "decentralized" and open-source network, meaning anyone can download and modify Mastodon's code for their server.

Title iconNow What?

Musk has said the "best people are staying" at Twitter and it will remain functional, but experts expect outages could become more common.

Title iconNotable

Zoe Williams at The Guardian chronicled her first week on Mastodon, from the initial confusion to this realization: "Something missing. I can’t quite put my finger on it. Oh yes: where are all the arseholes?"

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