On Mastodon, all searches are through hashtags such as #Music or #Gardening. This is for privacy and technical reasons.
- To search on the official app, tap the magnifying glass icon at the bottom of the screen, and type a hashtag (including the # at the start) in the search box at the top of the screen. The results will appear below it.
- To search on your server’s website, type a hashtag (including the # at the start) into the search box and press enter. The results will appear beside or below the search box, depending on your window size.
- If you’re using the website through a phone, click on the # icon to make the search box appear.
Hashtags have to have a # at the beginning, and they can’t have any spaces or special characters in the middle. If you want to search for a phrase, type it all as one word such as #DogsOfMastodon.
If you want your post to be more easily found in searches, include lots of relevant hashtags. It’s fine to use lots of tags, people understand that they’re necessary in this kind of search system. Remember to use CamelCase on hashtags that contain multiple words.
Even when I search for stuff, there’s never anything I want!
If you’re on a very new server, it’s possible that it hasn’t noticed much of the Fediverse yet. Try asking your server’s admin if they might connect to a relay server, so that their server can see more of the Fediverse.