Aja Romano Profile picture
Nov 20 18 tweets 4 min read
🧵Journalists signing up on mastodon at the journa[.]host server should know that through no deliberate fault (that i can tell), the server has quickly gained a reputation for transphobia and has been widely banned/blocked.
So if you are using journa.host as your home server, you should know that people on many of those servers can't find or follow you, and won't be able to see your content on their feeds. Some of the servers banning you are major ones, too, like mastodon.art.
I'll spend the rest of this thread trying to unpack why this is happening (it's complicated?) but the bottom line is that the server is tainted and now its reputation precedes it. If you're using it, that may well extend to you, too, as you try to network there.
There are 3 main reasons for the bannings as far as i can tell.

1) The server used a scrape tool that came from k*w*f*rms. I can't find any details at all regarding how they found this tool, and they have since stopped using it.
This has naturally made people think the whole server is transphobic, because wtf how would they get a tool from KWF unless they were affiliated with KWF?! I'd love to have more context for the k*w*f*rms thing if anyone knows; if their only association is a single dev tool, then+
—i'm not sure that justifies labeling them as transphobic; they could have gotten the tool some other way, and they stopped using it. And it seems to be more complicated than that; their mods skew liberal to progressive, and one of them is trans.
2) Mike Pesca, fired from slate for defending his right to use the N-word, posted a transphobic NYT article and allegedly the first thing the journa[.]host mods did was ban another user for complaining that they hadn’t banned Pesca. (cont'd)
I say allegedly because the only post I can find about this has since been deleted. (It probably says something about how difficult it is to access info on mastodon that i've spent HOURS searching for info about this today and all i can come up with is a single deleted post.)
The mods did eventually also ban Pesca, so that interaction is also gone, but here's a screenshot of Parker Molloy yelling at him
The third reason is a lot more nebulous and has to do with the nature of journalism on the internet. It's not connected, but a lot of servers who really seem to distrust journalists on principle are using "they're transphobic" to justify their hostility in this case.
Because so little of this is transparent and source-able, it's really hard for me to parse how much of this is just negative spin and how much of it is valid concern. The journa[.]host server skews liberal blue-check journalist overall and has lots of influential users;
the server also recently got a boost from CUNY's school of journalism and @jeffjarvis mastodon.social/@jeffjarvis/10…
I'm flummoxed about this because i want to follow many journalists on journa[.]host. the server has lots of professional support behind it and honestly seems...fine?? but i also feel obligated to warn other journalists away from using it at this point.
I'm not trying to suggest that journa[.]host doesn't deserve its reputation for transphobia, either, just admitting that i can't *source* that reputation. Meanwhile what i can source doesn't really tell me much. Please let me know if you have any more info!
Bonus: A lot of servers have also begun to blacklist mastodon.social for a bunch of reasons including its size and lack of heavy moderation. If banning whole servers instead of individual people is really the prevailing 🦣cultural norm, i'm not sure that's sustainable.
Aha! Parker Molloy *was* the banned journalist and also thinks banning the whole server is a bad move
Clarification about the KWF thing from server creator Adam Davidson:
*correction, Pesca was suspended from Slate, not fired

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More from @ajaromano

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Interested in Post because the interface is clean and Twitter-ish and it's run by, like, a real tech dude, but the waiting list requires referrals to cut line, which feels like a pyramid scheme (but also if you sign up, use my referral haha) post.news/?r=qCuDQ
Update Post seems kinda scammy? When you sign up it tells you that you need 5 referrals to cut the line (which currently has like 80,000 signups lol), but then I got 7 referrals and IT LIED TO ME!
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well if twitter's really going down i'm going to go down tweeting yibo videos
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Hello twitter, just yeebs freestyling in babie 😭🥰
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