Fast, fun, ActivityPub server, powered by Go.
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[feature] more filetype support! (#3107)
* add more supported file types to our media processor that ffmpeg supports, update supported mime type lists

* add code comments to the supported mime types slice

* don't check for zero value string, just parse

* remove some unneeded consts which make the code a bit harder to read

* fix test expected instance media mime types, use compact ffprobe json, simple media processing by type

* final tweaks to media processing code

* don't use safe divide where we don't need to
2024-07-15 15:24:53 +01:00
.github [chore] Add AI check in PR template (#2625) 2024-02-10 15:11:48 +01:00
.vscode [chore] Refactor settings panel routing (and other fixes) (#2864) 2024-04-24 11:12:47 +01:00
archive [docs] ahs article milestone a (#2218) 2023-09-22 11:25:25 +02:00
cmd [feature] more filetype support! (#3107) 2024-07-15 15:24:53 +01:00
docs [feature/frontend] Better visual separation between "main" thread and "replies" (#3093) 2024-07-12 20:36:03 +02:00
example [feature] support processing of (many) more media types (#3090) 2024-07-12 09:39:47 +00:00
internal [feature] more filetype support! (#3107) 2024-07-15 15:24:53 +01:00
scripts [feature] Default to WASM-based SQLite driver (#3053) 2024-06-29 09:35:57 +02:00
test [feature] support processing of (many) more media types (#3090) 2024-07-12 09:39:47 +00:00
testrig [feature/frontend] Add player for audio files; use thumbnail for `poster` (#3099) 2024-07-15 10:47:57 +01:00
tools [bugfix] Fix Swagger spec and add test script (#2698) 2024-03-06 18:05:45 +01:00
vendor [chore]: Bump from 2.20.34 to 2.20.37 (#3106) 2024-07-15 09:15:31 +00:00
web [feature/frontend] Add player for audio files; use thumbnail for `poster` (#3099) 2024-07-15 10:47:57 +01:00
.dockerignore [frontend] Restructure Frontend Sources (#634) 2022-06-09 12:51:19 +02:00
.drone.yml [feature] Default to WASM-based SQLite driver (#3053) 2024-06-29 09:35:57 +02:00
.gitattributes [chore] Hide vendor from diffs (#1729) 2023-05-02 21:11:41 +01:00
.gitignore [chore] Vendor mkdocs fonts; update docs dependencies (#2789) 2024-03-29 10:52:46 +01:00
.golangci.yml [feature] Filters v1 (#2594) 2024-03-06 11:15:58 +01:00
.goreleaser.yml [feature] Default to WASM-based SQLite driver (#3053) 2024-06-29 09:35:57 +02:00
.readthedocs.yaml [chore] Vendor mkdocs fonts; update docs dependencies (#2789) 2024-03-29 10:52:46 +01:00 update coc (#2090) 2023-08-09 15:47:03 +02:00 [chore] Vendor mkdocs fonts; update docs dependencies (#2789) 2024-03-29 10:52:46 +01:00
Dockerfile [chore] update Docker container to use new go swagger hash (#2872) 2024-04-26 12:12:24 +02:00
LICENSE add docs and a bunch of other stuff 2021-02-28 15:17:18 +01:00 [feature] support processing of (many) more media types (#3090) 2024-07-12 09:39:47 +00:00 [docs] Update roadmap (#3011) 2024-06-16 14:35:00 +02:00
go.mod [chore]: Bump from 2.20.34 to 2.20.37 (#3106) 2024-07-15 09:15:31 +00:00
go.sum [chore]: Bump from 2.20.34 to 2.20.37 (#3106) 2024-07-15 09:15:31 +00:00
mkdocs.yml [docs] restructure federation section (#3038) 2024-06-25 12:04:45 +02:00


GoToSocial is an ActivityPub social network server, written in Golang.

With GoToSocial, you can keep in touch with your friends, post, read, and share images and articles. All without being tracked or advertised to!

GoToSocial is still ALPHA SOFTWARE. It is already deployable and useable, and it federates cleanly with many other Fediverse servers (not yet all). However, many things are not yet implemented, and there are plenty of bugs! We foresee entering beta around the beginning of 2024.

Documentation is at You can skip straight to the API documentation here.

To build from source, check the file.

Here's a screenshot of the instance landing page!

Screenshot of the landing page for the GoToSocial instance It shows basic information about the instance; number of users and posts etc.

Table of Contents

What is GoToSocial?

GoToSocial provides a lightweight, customizable, and safety-focused entryway into the Fediverse, and is comparable to (but distinct from) existing projects such as Mastodon, Pleroma, Friendica, and PixelFed.

If you've ever used something like Twitter or Tumblr (or even Myspace!) GoToSocial will probably feel familiar to you: You can follow people and have followers, you make posts which people can favourite and reply to and share, and you scroll through posts from people you follow using a timeline. You can write long posts or short posts, or just post images, it's up to you. You can also, of course, block people or otherwise limit interactions that you don't want by posting just to your friends.

Screenshot of the web view of a profile in GoToSocial, showing header and avatar, bio, and numbers of followers/following.

GoToSocial does NOT use recommendation algorithms or collect data about you to suggest content or 'improve your experience'. The timeline is chronological: whatever you see at the top of your timeline is there because it's just been posted, not because it's been selected as interesting (or controversial) based on your personal profile.

GoToSocial is not designed for 'must-follow' influencers with tens of thousands of followers, and it's not designed to be addictive. Your timeline and your experience are shaped by who you follow and how you interact with people, not by metrics of engagement!

GoToSocial doesn't claim to be better than any other application, but it offers something that might be better for you in particular.


Because GoToSocial uses ActivityPub, you can hang out not just with people on your home server, but with people all over the Fediverse, seamlessly.

the activitypub logo

Federation means that your home server is part of a network of servers all over the world that all communicate using the same protocol. Your data is no longer centralized on one company's servers, but resides on your own server and is shared — as you see fit — across a resilient web of servers run by other people.

This federated approach also means that you aren't beholden to arbitrary rules from some gigantic corporation potentially thousands of miles away. Your server has its own rules and culture; your fellow server residents are your neighbors; you will likely get to know your server admins and moderators, or be an admin yourself.

GoToSocial advocates for many small, weird, specialist servers where people can feel at home, rather than a few big and generic ones where one person's voice can get lost in the crowd.

History and Status

This project sprang up in February/March 2021 out of a dissatisfaction with the safety + privacy features of other Federated microblogging/social media applications, and a desire to implement something a little different.

It began as a solo project, and then picked up steam as more developers became interested and jumped on.

For a detailed view on what's implemented and what's not, and progress made towards beta release, please see the roadmap document.


Mastodon API compatibility

The Mastodon API has become the de facto standard for client communication with federated servers, so GoToSocial has implemented and extended the API with custom functionality.

Though most apps that implement the Mastodon API should work, GoToSocial works reliably with beautiful apps like:

If you've used Mastodon with any of these apps before, you'll find using GoToSocial a breeze.

Granular post settings

It's important that when you post something, you can choose who sees it.

GoToSocial offers public/unlisted/friends-only/mutuals-only/and direct posts (slide in DMs! -- with consent).

It also allows you to customize how people interact with your posts:

  • Local-only posts.
  • Rebloggable/boostable toggle.
  • 'Likeable' toggle.
  • 'Replyable' toggle.


Users can choose from a variety of fun themes for their profile, or even write their own custom CSS.

Plenty of config options for admins to play around with too.

Easy to run

No external dependencies apart from a database (or just use SQLite!). Simply download the binary + assets (or Docker container), and run.

GoToSocial uses only about 150-250MiB of RAM, so it plays nice with single-board computers, old laptops and tiny $5/month VPSes.

Safety + security features

  • Built-in, automatic support for secure HTTPS with Let's Encrypt.
  • Strict privacy enforcement for posts and strict blocking logic.
  • Import and export allow lists and deny lists. Subscribe to community-created block lists (think Ad blocker, but for federation!).
  • HTTP signature authentication: GoToSocial requires HTTP Signatures when sending and receiving messages, to ensure that your messages can't be tampered with and your identity can't be forged.

Various federation modes

GoToSocial doesn't apply a one-size-fits-all approach to federation. Who your server federates with should be up to you.

  • 'blocklist' mode (default): discover new servers; block servers you don't like.
  • 'allowlist' mode (experimental); opt-in to federation with trusted servers.
  • 'zero' federation mode; keep your server private (not yet implemented).

See the docs for more info.

OIDC integration

GoToSocial supports OpenID Connect (OIDC) identity providers, meaning you can integrate it with existing user management services like Auth0, Gitlab, etc., or run your own and hook GtS up to that (we recommend Dex).

Backend-first design

Unlike other federated server projects, GoToSocial doesn't include an integrated client front-end (i.e., a web app).

Instead, like's Synapse project, it provides a relatively generic backend server implementation, some beautiful static pages for profiles and posts, and a well-documented API.

On top of this API, web developers are encouraged to build any front-end implementation or mobile application that they wish, whether Tumblr-like, Facebook-like, Twitter-like, or something else entirely.

Known Issues

Since GoToSocial is still in alpha, there are plenty of bugs. We use GitHub issues to track these.

Since every ActivityPub server implementation has a slightly different interpretation of the protocol, some servers don't quite federate properly with GoToSocial yet. We're tracking these issues in this project. Eventually, we want to make sure that any implementation that can federate nicely with Mastodon should also be able to federate with GoToSocial.

Getting Started

Check our releases page and our getting started documentation.

Stable Releases

We package our stable releases for both binary builds and Docker containers, so that you don't have to build from source yourself.

The Docker image superseriousbusiness/gotosocial:latest will always correspond to the latest stable release. Since this tag is overwritten frequently, you may want to use Docker CLI flag --pull always to ensure that you always have the most up-to-date image every time you run using this tag. Alternatively, run docker pull superseriousbusiness/gotosocial:latest manually just before use.

Snapshot Releases

We also make snapshot builds every time something is merged into the main branch, so you can run from whatever code is on main if you wish.

Please be warned that you do so at your own risk! We try to keep main working properly, but we make absolutely no guarantees. Take a stable release instead if you're unsure.


To run from main using Docker, use the snapshot Docker tag. The Docker image superseriousbusiness/gotosocial:snapshot will always correspond to the latest commit on main. Since this tag is overwritten frequently, you may want to use Docker CLI flag --pull always to ensure that you always have the most up-to-date image every time you run using this tag. Alternatively, run docker pull superseriousbusiness/gotosocial:snapshot manually just before use.

Binary release .tar.gz

To run from main using a binary release, download the appropriate .tar.gz file for your architecture from our self-hosted Minio S3 repository.

Snapshot binary releases in the S3 bucket are keyed by Github commit hash. To get the latest one, sort by Last Modified, or check out the list of commits here, copy the SHA of the latest one, and paste it in the Minio console filter. Snapshot binary releases are expired after 28 days, to keep our hosting costs down.

From Source

Instructions for building GoToSocial from source are in the file.

Third-party Packaging

Thank you so much to the cool people who have put time and energy into packaging GoToSocial!

These packages are not maintained by GoToSocial, so please direct questions and issues to the repository maintainers (and donate to them!).

Packaging status

You can also deploy your own instance of GoToSocial with the help of:


You would like to contribute to GtS? Great! ❤️❤️❤️ Check out the issues page to see if there's anything you intend to jump in on, and read the file for guidelines and setting up your dev environment.


For questions and comments, you can join our Matrix space at This is the quickest way to reach the devs. You can also mail

For bugs and feature requests, please check to see if there's already an issue, and if not, open one or use one of the above channels to make a request (if you don't have a Github account).



The following open source libraries, frameworks, and tools are used by GoToSocial, with gratitude 💕

Image Attribution and Licensing

Sloth logo by Anna Abramek.

Creative Commons License
The GoToSocial sloth mascot is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

The Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License license applies specifically to the following files and subdirectories of this repository:

Under the terms of the license, you are free to:

  • Share — copy and redistribute the abovementioned material in any medium or format.
  • Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the abovementioned material for any purpose, even commercially.


In alphabetical order (... and order of smell):

Special Thanks

A huge thank you to CJ from go-fed: without your work, GoToSocial would not have been possible.

Thanks to everyone who has used GtS, opened an issue, suggested something, given funding, and otherwise encouraged or supported the project!

Sponsorship + Funding

Please note: GoToSocial has NO CORPORATE SPONSORS and does not desire corporate sponsorship. In addition, we do not take donations from any of the following: adult websites, affiliate and review websites, casinos and gambling, insurance and financial products (credit), pharmacy products, SEO services and social media buying, VPN and proxy services, and essay writing services. Donations from such sources will be automatically rejected.


open collective Standard Sloth badge open collective Stable Sloth badge open collective Special Sloth badge open collective Sugar Sloth badge

If you would like to donate to GoToSocial to keep the lights on during development, you can do so via our OpenCollective page!

LiberaPay patrons receives via LiberaPay

If you prefer, we also have an account on LiberaPay! You can find that right here.

Crowdfunded donations to our OpenCollective and Liberapay accounts go towards paying the core team, paying server costs, and paying for GtS art, design, and other bits and bobs.

💕 🦥 💕 Thank you!


NGIZero logo

Combined with the above crowdfunding sources, 2023 Alpha development of GoToSocial was funded by a 50,000 EUR grant from the NGI0 Entrust Fund, via NLnet. See here for more details. The successful grant application is archived here.

2024 Beta development of GoToSocial is being funded by an additional 50,000 EUR grant from the NGI0 Entrust Fund, via NLnet.


the gnu AGPL logo

GoToSocial is free software, licensed under the GNU AGPL v3 LICENSE. We encourage forking and changing the code, hacking around with it, and experimenting.

See here for the differences between AGPL versus GPL licensing, and here for FAQ's about GPL licenses, including the AGPL.

If you modify the GoToSocial source code, and run that modified code in a way that's accessible over a network, you must make your modifications to the source code available following the guidelines of the license:


Copyright (C) GoToSocial Authors