How to move to a new Mastodon server

How to move to a new Mastodon server

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Table of Contents

Most sapphic fiction authors who are on Mastodon chose as their instance. Unfortunately, shut down this month (May 2023), so many authors had to move to a new Mastodon server.

I know it’s super annoying to have to jump through all the hoops again, so I thought I would help make it easier by giving you step-by-step instructions.

If you aren’t on Mastodon yet but want to set up a presence there, check out my previous blog post on how to set up a Mastodon account.

Back up your data

Before you move to a new Mastodon server, you have to back up the data from your old one. Log in to your old Mastodon account. Go to “Preferences” (the gear icon in the top left), then click on “Import and export” in the left-hand menu.

Click on “Data export.” Download the CSV file of the people you follow by clicking on “CSV” next to the word “follows.”

Then click on the “request your archive” button.

Mastodon request your archive

Once your archive is compiled, click “download your archive.”

Pick a new Mastodon server

Most people I talked to went to either or A few went to The first two are big servers with good up times; the latter is smaller.

Before you decide on a server, check its code of conduct. For example, has rules for author self-promotion (Posts with paid book links are only allowed in every 6th post). says you can’t be on the platform only to sell, and any nudity (erotica covers!) needs a content warning, etc.

Personally, I decided to move to You can now find me here.

Create an account on your new server

On the server of your choice, click the “create account” button on the right. Read and accept the rules.

Enter the same display name and user name that you used for your old server. They’ll send you an email with a link you need to click to activate your account.

Set up the profile of the new account

The easiest way to quickly set up the profile in your new account is to have the old account and the new account open in two tabs.

Go to “Profile,” then “Appearance” in both accounts so you can just copy your bio and all the links to your website & newsletter from the old to the new profile. Don’t forget to click “enable advanced web interface.”

Move to a new Mastodon account

Again, I suggest being logged in to the old & new account in two tabs so you can access them both easily.

In the new account:

Go to “Preferences,” then “Account.” Under “Moving from a different account,” click on “create an account alias.” Enter the handle of your OLD account, e.g.,

Click “create alias.”

In the old account:

Write a post to tell people you’re moving and where.

Go to “Preferences,” then “Account.” Under “move to a different account,” click on “configure it here.” Enter the handle of the NEW account and the password of the OLD account. Click “move followers.”

Your followers are then transferred from the old to the new account. It will take a while, so go make yourself a cup of coffee.

Import your follows

Your followers are imported automatically, but you need to import your follows (the people you follow) manually.

Go to “Account,” then “Import and export,” and then “Import.” Upload the “following_accounts” CSV file you downloaded in step 1.

Write an introduction

Congratulations! You have moved to a new server! Let people know you are there by writing an introduction post, using the hashtag  #SapphicMigration. Pin your intro so new followers can check out who you are.

Add your Mastodon handle to the Google doc

I put together a Google doc of Mastodon handles of sapphic authors & reviewers. Make sure to enter your new handle into the document or update your old handle.

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