toot-length discourse 

Is it weird to say if you need more than 500 chars to say something, write a blog post?

The servers that allow seemingly-arbitrary character lengths feel a little elitist to me. Help me understand that it’s not “our toots are more important on your feed” or “our admins have the time and energy and privilege to patch the software”.

long toot about long toot instances is long 

@DialMforMara @phildini Initially it was just I thought it would be funny given my instance's theme: dragons are big and so are their social-media posts. Let's make the limit 7777!

I also knew that I didn't want to be running that instance that regularly emits giant textwalls, so I added in a thing that makes you add a CW for anything over 777 characters. Which has been really interesting to use; I have trained myself that this is a text box that I can just start casually *writing* in, doesn't have to be good, just write. And when that "please put a CW on anything this long" warning comes up, sometimes I *do* cut it all and paste it into my blog. Sometimes I don't - I certainly won't if it comes up when I try to post this one, for example.

It is also really, really nice to never, ever have to worry about managing a @#$%^ "thread" again in my life.

And as to "it's elitist because your admin has the time to patch it": my end goal for this change is to add a couple of fields in the instance admin that makes it super easy for ANYONE to say "I want my instance's toots to be THIS long, and require a CW at THIS length." When I get to that point I'll be offering a patch to the main Mastodon project; if it's accepted then it'll be one update away for the entire Mastodon world.

(If you want the current version of this change for, have a look at - change three files, run webpack, restart the instance, done. Hell, ping me if you want help getting it working.)

The fork deals with long toots another way - users can tell it to auto-collapse long toots in their feeds. Maybe that's the better solution? Maybe both will prove useful? Mastodon is new, and we're all still figuring out how it *should* work.

toot-length discourse 

@phildini Personally I like the 500 characters. It sets a happy medium between brief enough to be digestible, and long enough to write a full complex thought. If you want more characters, then it's simple just to reply to yourself and chain a second or third tweet.

I think the problem with 750 or 1000 is that you're sacrificing a lot of screen real estate for most people and that's a big turn-off.

toot-length discourse 

@phildini 500 characters is plenty for anything that fits into a timeline format. It wouldn’t be a bad thing to have a mechanism where a <500 character toot serves as the abstract to a longer Markdown document that appears in a pop-up that could be opened in a separate tab if desired. A longer-form document like that would look terrible in a timeline, though.

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Wandering Shop

The Wandering Shop is a Mastodon instance initially geared for the science fiction and fantasy community but open to anyone. We want our 'local' timeline to have the feel of a coffee shop at a good convention: tables full of friendly conversation on a wide variety of topics. We welcome everyone who wants to participate, so long as you're willing to abide by our code of conduct.