How to DM with Mastodon: A Guide to Getting Started

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Shivangi Gupta
Shivangi Gupta
Shivangi adds great value to the team with her prompt and well-researched insight. Her unprecedented love for literature is reflected well enough in her writings. She takes you on a tour to a world apart with the visual imagery in her content that urges the readers to ponder. To get the brain juices flowing, she makes sure to have a brewing cup of coffee next to her all day.

Mastodon is turning out to be the best alternative for Twitter fans. Significant traffic of new users is noticed every day, and it is accelerating as well. As Mastodon is an unfamiliar social media platform for new joiners, its features need time to familiarize themselves. In this article, I will talk about how to DM with Mastodon and what else is possible apart from text messaging on the platform.

Twitter is turning out to be a damp squib. With so many new experiments going on the platform, users are annoyed. Twitter seems to be confused as well. Last evening it rolled out an “Official” label for some celebrity accounts and withdrew it within hours. It changed some names and withdrew some features as well. Moreover, it is not sure whether unpaid accounts will gain any traffic on Twitter or not.

In this hour of confusion and annoying vibes, Mastodon is deemed to be a saviour. It is quite safe and has many features like Twitter. This has made many users leave Twitter to join Mastodon. Let me walk you through what DM with Maston works like and more things about the feature.

How to DM with Mastodon?

Mastodon works pretty similarly to popular social media platforms out there. It lets you join a particular community beforehand. The platform is accessed on computers as well as on smartphones. It lets people choose between plenty of third-party applications as per their devices and preferences.

DM with Mastodon

However, DM with Mastodon is not a great feature; it is different from other platforms. On most third-party apps getting the DM button is quite easy, but on Mastodon it seems invisible. However, I have a workaround for you.

There are two ways to DM with Mastodon. One is the regular approach, and the second is something you won’t have heard earlier.

Also, read How To Find Your Twitter Friends On Mastodon With 2 Ways

How to DM with Mastodon | Method 1

This is the regular method; if you have used any social media platform earlier, you may be familiar with it. Below are the steps that will help you know how to DM with Mastodon regular method.

Step 1: Open your Mastodon app on the computer or your smartphone.

Step 2: Go to the profile you want to DM.

Step 3: Tap on the three dots symbol next to the bell icon under the cover photo of the person.

Step 4: Tap on the Direct Message @ … option from the popup menu.

DM with Mastodon

Step 5: Write your message and tap the Publish button under the message box at the bottom right of your screen.

Also, read How To Setup Mastodon Profile Metadata? Here’s How To Do It

How to DM with Mastodon | Method 2

Here is another way to DM someone, which works exactly how the conventional or the familiar method — mentioned above — works. This method is pretty easy; you can use it across the apps to DM with Mastodon. However, it is quite odd and unfamiliar. Here is how to DM with Mastodon with the peculiar method.

Step 1. Go to your Mastodon profile (or the friend’s profile of whom you want to DM on your desktop).

Step 2. Now tap on the Pencil icon on the bottom right of your screen. It will open a box where you can write a post. We will use the same box to DM.

Step 3: Hit the globe icon at the bottom left of the field.

Step 4: Hit Mentioned people only.

Step 5: Now type the @ symbol followed by your friend’s username. Select their name from the list.

DM with Mastodon

Step 6: Write your message and hit Publish at the bottom right of the box.

That is it! You have sent the message. Please beware of both typical and unfamiliar methods; Mastodon will store your messages in two places.

Also, read Change Notifications Settings on Mastodon | Clear, Disable & Filter Your Mastodon Notifications

How to Locate DM on Mastodon?

You don’t have the envelope icon on the platform. Hence, it is difficult to locate the DM on Mastodon. There are, however, two methods to locate your messages.

1. The Dedicated Slot

This is the dedicated place where your messages are stored. Here is how to access it to see your DM on Mastodon.

Step 1: On the home screen, you will find a panel on the right or left side of the screen, subject to the type of app you use.

Step 2: Hit the @ symbol.

DM with Mastodon

Step 3: Here is the page where you can see all of your Mastodon DMs.

Also, read How to Change Server on Mastodon: Here are the 7 Easy Steps

2. Your Profile

As I said in the beginning, DM with Mastodon is rather different from other platforms. Shockingly, your DMs are also stored on your profile. It will look like a general post. However, these posts are only viewable to you and the one who is mentioned in them. You can find the messages on your recipients’ profiles as well. To view, click on your Mastodon Avatar, and there you will find the messages mingled with your posts.

How to Use DM With Mastodon?

DM with Mastodon

Mastodon DM is not end-to-end encrypted, nor are the other posts. While using the DM or post feature, you should avoid sharing sensitive or personal information.

Mastodon messages work like posts mentioned to a particular friend. However, unlike Facebook or Twitter, these mentioned posts are visible to only one person or as many as you mention.

DMs on Mastodon are not personal either. Unless you or your recipient keep it limited to yourselves. If any of the two mentions a third person in the chat, they can watch all previously shared DMs. To keep yourself on the safer side, use the feature of DM on Mastodon as you use the Post feature on Twitter or Facebook.

Also, read

What Can You Send Through DM with Mastodon?

You can share text messages of up to 500 characters, audio, videos, and photos, as well as documents in Mastodon DMs. However, you should follow the above rule, as Mastodon DMs and posts are not end-to-end encrypted.

To attach a multimedia file to your DMs, hit the pin icon at the bottom left of the box dedicated to posts and messages. Then select the file location and tap on the file to get it uploaded. Once uploaded, you can edit the description of the file and write a message along with it. You can not add two files on most third-party Mastodon apps. If you share sensitive content, you need to check the check button in front of Mark media as sensitive.

DM with Mastodon

Wrapping Up

As of now, there is no preferred method for DM with Mastodon. It is up to you whether you use the not-so-secured option or not. I would not use it for personal conversations unless I am 100% sure of the loyalty of the person to whom I am sending DMs on Mastodon. However, using it for general conversations is not that bad.

Let me know if you would use this Mastodon feature or not in the comment box below. Keep exploring more Mastodon features on Path of EX.

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