Earlier this month, Flipboard launched its Mastodon integration on iOS, allowing Apple users to follow any Mastodon user, hashtag or feed directly from Flipboard under “Connected Accounts.”
Now, Android and Apple users can see the most recent posts from their Mastodon timeline in their Flipboard For You feed and access feeds for their @mentions as well as their Mastodon bookmarks inside the Flipboard app.
According to Flipboard's Head of Communication Christel van der Boom, the integration is “just the beginning for Flipboard in the Fediverse.” While the Android integration uses the Mastodon API, Flipboard plans on “building a more interconnected internet” by using the ActivityPub protocol (an open, decentralized social networking protocol) to build services that work together across platforms, like Tumblr, which has adopted ActivityPub.
“As we embrace ActivityPub at Flipboard, we'll effectively allow anyone who's on Mastodon to follow a user on Flipboard, and to follow a Flipboard magazine, and vice versa,” explains CEO Mike McCue. “What ActivityPub enables is a common, open social graph.”
Flipboard's Mastodon integrations also mark a conscious turn away from Twitter, as the once-successful microblogging app continues to plunge into chaos under the oversight of CEO Elon Musk.
With Musk's plans to end Twitter's free API, McCue no longer sees Twitter as a viable option for Flipboard.
According to Engadget, referring to Twitter since Musk took over the company, “The writing on the wall is that I don't see [Flipboard's] Twitter integration lasting much longer.”
Mastodon became popular as a Twitter alternative soon after Musk took over five months ago. In less than two months, Mastodon’s monthly active users went from 380,000 to over 2.5 million. However, that number dropped to 1.4 million by late January. Since then, almost half a million more users left the app due to widespread confusion on how to use the app.
This story has been updated.