How Does Mastodon Make Money?

Have you recently joined Mastodon, which is hailed as an alternative to Twitter? Are you amazed looking at the decentralized system with various open-sourced servers? Then you must be wondering ‘How does Mastodon make money?’. In this article we have tried to decipher the source of income to determine how does Mastodon make money.

Mastodon is a recently popular online open-source micro-blogging platform, with a decentralized system. It operates on user-managed servers, which is unique when compared to all the social networking sites. Users have the opportunity to exist in a ‘federation’ with each other. This is called a Fediverse in Mastodon.

 Let us see how does Mastodon make money, by studying its business model.

1. Sponsors

2. Patreon Sponsors

3. Fediverse subscription

4. Community fees

5. Storage fee

6. ElasticSearch fee

7. Crowdfunding

8. Advertisements

Eugene Rochko, the CEO of Mastodon, has stated in an interview with CNN that the app has gained over 230,000 new users since Elon Musk has taken over Twitter. So, how does Mastodon make money if it is a free and open-source platform?

How Does Mastodon Make Money?

In the world of social networking, where advertisements and subscription fees seem to be the major income generators, Mastodon seems different in this front. It is an ad-free open-source platform that does not annoy the users to pay a subscription fee to avoid advertisements.

So, how does Mastodon make money, as there will exist operating expenses and development costs that are essential.

Method 1: Sponsorship

How does Mastodon make money? - Sponsors

Mastodon encourages users to become a sponsor on their website. By becoming a sponsor, users will get to see the company’s logo along with a  go follow link on the Mastodon website. Users can become a sponsor directly through their own platform.  You can help Mastodon make money by visiting the Mastodon website, you will be able to ‘Become a sponsor’, easily by clicking on the button. You will also be able to see the list of sponsors on their official website.

How does Mastodon make money? - sponsor

Method 2: Pateron Sponsors

How does Mastodon make money? - patreon

Users are encouraged to make contributions through Patreon. Patreon is a paid subscription service which showcases the products made by creators to the patreons. It is a platform that connects creators with their supporters, where they can send rewards and fees to their favorite creators.

How does Mastodon make money? - use patreon

Mastodon encourages users to support them through Patreon. Users can help Mastodon make money by clicking on the ‘Go to Patreon’ button found in the Mastodon official website.

Method 3: Fediverse Subscription

How does Mastodon make money? - fediverse

The Mastodon Fediverse is a network of interconnected servers that can communicate with one another, depending on the protocols of the decentralized network. These Mastodon servers can be used for various different services depending on the interest. is one such fully managed Mastodon hosting server, that helps in running a Mastodon server. Users of such servers are asked to pay a subscription fee to help in owning and running their own Mastodon server.

Method 4:  Community Fee

How does Mastodon make money? - Community fee

Users can create their own community on Mastodon servers, based on their interests. Such servers require users to pay a minimum subscription fee for operation and maintenance expenses. You will be able to operate on high-capacity servers, with good processing threads. You will also be allotted cloud storage space up to 400GB and accommodate as much as 2000 active users, depending on the server you use and the subscription plan you avail.

Method 5: Cloud Storage

How does Mastodon make money? - cloud storage

Mastodon servers offer cloud storage space that can be bought by the users. You can opt to get extra resources and add-on costs for $10/month and have 4 processing threads along with 4GB of database with an additional 40GB Media Storage space. This can help Mastodon make money, for operational costs.

Method 6: ElasticSearch Fee

Mastodon supports Elastic search or full-text searches. This is not set by default. Users can enable it on the Mastodon servers and search for posts made by them. They can view posts published by them, their favorite posts, posts in which they were mentioned and all their direct messages.

Elastic search is a paid-on service available on Mastodon, as it does not allow searching for arbitrary stings in the available database.

Method 7: Crowdfunding

Each Mastodon server is owned and operated by a different community. Running the server costs money. Instead of getting external financing, Mastodon generates funds by crowd funding. This enables them to get money from a large number of people via online platforms.

Method 8: Advertisements

All online platforms mostly operate with the income generated from advertisements. Mastodon is a decentralized platform that does not encourage advertising. However, independent servers that operate on Mastodon, are allowed to host advertisements. Thus Mastodon makes money with advertisements via their independent servers.

Wrap Up

Mastodon as a decentralized system, which is still on its rise to fame, indeed has lots on its plate. Considering the storage space of texts, images and videos of a million users, and still counting, will be expensive. Imagine the internet connectivity fee for transferring countless data, which will rapidly add up. However, as it is a decentralized system, each server will handle its own cost. Usually, the expense incurred to maintain a server is crowd-funded by its users. This proves that Mastodon make money, and as a decentralized system, there is absolutely no way for it to go bankrupt or be banned by the government. This makes Mastodon unique from all the other social networking platforms today.

Frequently Asked Question

Q1. What Are Mastodon Server Requirements?

All mastodon servers are expected to have these requirements.
1.Domain name
2.a VPS
3.An email provider
4.The object storage provider.

Q2. Is Mastodon Safe?

Users should be as cautious as they should be, in Mastodon, as they are in any social networking platform. Even though Mastodon is decentralized, and is not considered to be safe as they are not end-to-end encrypted. Users will be immediately issued a DM from Mastodon stating “Do not share any sensitive information over Mastodon”.

Q3. Is Mastodon Better Than Twitter?

Users in Mastodon can post as many as 500 characters which is twice as much as you can post on Twitter. Users can attach links, images, audio and video files to their posts. They can also enjoy additional features like polls and content warning on their post.

Koushal Jaral

Koushal is an Associate Content Writer at TopHillSport. He is one of the most passionate writers whose fondness for video games has made him write about trending Video Games, their live streaming & Discord, daily for a living. Any How to, FAQ, or any other troubleshoot for any Video Game is available with Koushal 24x7.

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