Most Fediverse server types including Mastodon have options to show three different timelines: Home, Local or Federated. They might have slightly different names depending on the server type, but they’re usually something like this.
- Home is the normal timeline that you see by default. It shows you all the posts from all the people you follow in chronological order. This is what you see when you log in to your account.
- Local (also known as Community on some apps) shows all the public posts made by all the people on your server. On larger servers this can be a so-called firehose that is too random and unfiltered. However, on smaller servers this can be a really interesting feed to read, especially if the server is well moderated. Many people on small servers discover new accounts to follow through the Local feed.
- Federated shows all public posts that your server has noticed. Click here for a guide to which posts and accounts your server will notice. On larger servers Federated is an absolute nightmare to comprehend as there are so many posts on so many different topics.
To view the Local feed on the official Mastodon app by clicking the magnifying glass and then scrolling to the “Community” tab. Community is just another name for Local, they are exactly the same thing.
The official Mastodon app doesn’t show the Federated feed at all, but you can see it by switching to a third party Mastodon app, or by logging in through your server’s website.
The timelines are scrolling way too quickly, I can’t keep up with them! Help!
If you’re logged in through your Mastodon server’s website, you can optionally use “slow mode” to stop all automatic scrolling on feeds. When slow mode is activated, the feed will only show new posts when you manually click a special link at the top of the feed. To switch it on:
- Log in through your server’s website
- Go to ⚙️ Preferences
- Tick the box marked Slow Mode, then click the button marked Save Changes
To deactivate slow mode, do exactly the same thing but UN-tick the Slow Mode box and click Save Changes.
How do I see another server’s Local timeline?
Click here for more info on how to do this.