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welcome to the socialdb

this is a list of all social networks

Name Type Distributed Open Source Free Speech
Fark aggregator no no no
Voat aggregator no no varies
Hubski aggregator no no yes
Reddit aggregator no no varies
Frizbee aggregator yes yes yes
Steemit aggregator yes no yes
Forekast aggregator no no no
Hubzilla aggregator yes yes yes
Empeopled aggregator no no yes
Flipboard aggregator no no no
Soup blogging no no yes
Known blogging no yes yes
Xanga blogging no no no
Hatena blogging no no no
Tumblr blogging no no no
Blogger blogging no no no
Typepad blogging no no yes
Bloopist blogging no no yes
FreeYork blogging no no no
Postagon blogging no no yes
Thoughts blogging no no yes
WordPress blogging no no no
Wallinside blogging no no yes
JournalHome blogging no no yes
Blog Catalog blogging no no no
Google Spaces blogging no no yes
InsaneJournal blogging no yes no
Blog Talk Radio blogging no no no
Skyrock blogging no no no
Musteus bookmarking no no yes
StumbleUpon bookmarking no no no
Viadeo business no no yes
APSense business no no no
LinkedIn business no no yes
Solaborate business no no yes
Movim chatting yes yes yes
Skype chatting no no yes
Discord chatting no no yes
VK generic no no yes
hi5 generic no no no
Ello generic no yes no
MeWe generic no no no
Path generic no no no
Minds generic yes yes yes
Yuuby generic no no no
Tagged generic no no no
Myspace generic no no no
Vivaldi generic no no yes
Facebook generic no no no
Friendio generic no no no
SocialER generic no no yes
diaspora* generic yes yes varies
Friendica generic yes yes yes
Seen Life generic no no no
GNU Social generic yes yes varies
GooglePlus generic no no yes
LiveTalkie generic no no no
Yuku meta no no varies
Disqus meta no no varies
Google Groups meta no no yes
Gab micro blogging no no yes
Twister micro blogging yes yes yes
Twitter micro blogging no no no
Fluther Q&A no no no
Ask Jelly Q&A no no no
Vidme videography no no yes
Vimeo videography no no no
YouTube videography no no yes
DailyMotion videography no no yes
MediaGoblin videography yes yes varies

aggregator = site collects links to news stories or text posts submitted by users

blogging = site provides space for users to create and maintain a blog

bookmarking = users can favourite links from all over the internet and share with friends

business = site provides space for users to network among colleagues and future employers

chatting = the service is primarily focused around instant messaging and/or voice calling

generic = basic social network, e.g. Facebook

meta = site provides space for users to create hubs for their online communities, e.g. gaming guilds, social forums, etc

micro blogging = users can blog with a character limit, usually without formatting tools, e.g. Twitter

Q&A = users can ask and answer questions

videography = users can create, upload, and share videos

free speech:

yes = free speech is either allowed within reason or there are no clearly stated rules that restrict it in any way

varies = site mostly likely hosts user-created communities with their own rules

no = free speech is restricted in some way by clearly stated rules, or there is evidence the site admins censor posts even though they still fall within the rules


Preemptive responses to likely FAQs:

Q: What qualifies as a social network?

A: A social network matches the following criteria:

Q: What does not qualify as a social network?

A: Forums or other social media sites that exist to serve a specific purpose or cater to a specific audience. A social network should be open to anyone and everyone and users should be able to post about anything and everything within reason.

Applications or services that allow people to interact each other solely through chatting or voice/video calls also do not count as social networks- ie, VoIPs.

Q: How do you determine which sites do or do not allow free speech?

A: I look at the Terms of Service and, if they exist, the Community Guidelines. If these documents contain the now meme-level standard of nebulous language such as:

Contributions must not: Contain any material which is defamatory, obscene, indecent, abusive, offensive, harassing, violent, hateful, inflammatory or otherwise objectionable.

– The Terms of Service for Blog Catalog

... then I mark it as against or disallowing free speech. Most of those concepts are all very subjective and can be interpreted in vastly different ways. Who is the one deciding what content matches those descriptors and how do they define those terms?

I will sometimes mark a site as either pro- or anti- free speech based on past actions of the staff of those sites regarding unpopular opinions or political opinions they disagree with. I determine what those actions were by finding articles detailing and explaining them. If you see I've marked a site inaccurately, please provide me evidence that my initial conclusions are false by either leaving a comment above or contacting me directly.

Q: What's a meta-forum?

A: A service that allows any user to create and moderate their own forums and communities based around any subject while still being a part of the larger service.

See: Reddit is a service with default communities about various things, yet countless other communities exist on the site and are still subject to Reddit's larger existence.

Q: Why are Discord and Skype listed?

A: Skype fits all the criteria for a social network, and Discord will too, eventually.

Q: Why is Vivaldi listed?

A: Vivaldi is a company that has created a web browser, a social network, and an email service. They're all called Vivaldi. It's the social network that's referred to here.

Q: Should I care whether or not a network is distributed or open source?

A: I don't know. Probably not. Ask somebody else.

Distributed social networks are generally less prone to corporate takeover because they're not necessarily beholden unto any one individual or group. They're also less prone to sudden permanent downtime because they're distributed across many servers that are hosted by various people.

I'm sure there are plenty more positives - and numerous negatives - but I'm not extremely educated on the topic.

Common pro- open source arguments are that, because the code is open and available to the public, it is more trustworthy and is inherently more secure and less prone to malware. The idea behind these statements is that ordinary people can read and examine the code, thus ensuring less shady business by developers and staff.

Of course this relies on the assumption that a given open source project is popular enough to attract the attention of independent engineers and developers who know what the code means and will actually take the time out of their days to look through it all. I'm not convinced people who advocate for open source software take this into consideration. Or they might, but are simply dishonest about it.

But hey, don't take my word for it. Decide for yourself.

For more information on distributed social networks, see:

For more information on open source software, see: Wikipedia: Open-source software

Q: But what makes this list of social media different from other lists of social media?

A: I don't include any social networks that target a specific audience or serve a specific purpose. Other lists often do include those, leaving you to sort through them yourself and figure out which ones you should or shouldn't join. On this list you can feel secure in the knowledge that you can join any site you click on.

I also include information on whether a site allows free speech, and whether it is open source and decentralized.

Do you see an error? Do you know of a social network that's not already listed?

Leave a comment above or contact me directly.

- created: 10/16/2016

- last modified: 02/22/2017