This isn’t super well documented but Alex explains it pretty well. As more people try to migrate to the fediverse there are four distinct goals for Mastodon WordPress integration I think in order of difficulty
- Verify you are not a bot on Mastodon. Or anywhere else for that matter. Your WordPress site has a link that says I’m who I say I am. The Simple Mastodon Verification Plugin does this. The performance hit is minimal, it only happens once you create a profile on your Mastodon instance.
- Show your Mastodon feed on your site. I don’t do this because I’m not sure people read it. I do it for Instagram and there is the Mastodon Feed plugin that allows this. The performance hit is low as it updates on every Mastodon update. But the real problem is that this is hard to get your internal Mastodon identifier by hacking at this URL “https://firstname.lastname@example.org&resolve=true&limit=5”. You replace the instance for mastodon.social and then your username. You don’t own the content, that is on your Mastodon instance, but you can see it on your site.
- Post to Mastodon with Mastodon Autopost. This is the simplest thing you copy the posts to your Mastodon instance. It works like Buffer for Xitter or JetPack for Facebook. The main issue is that you have to remember that toot is on. I used this for a while, but am moving to a full move-over
Keeping your content on your site with ActivityPub,
Those were the simple things to do, but you can go farther with Mastodon, I’m right now all the way down the rabbit hole here.
- ActivityPub plug-let’s a Mastodon user follow your content. That is if Xitter comes apart or Reddit then you still have access to your posts and replies, the easiest way to do this is to host your content and then cross-posting as needed to get people to see your stuff. When you install this plugin, then your website becomes searchable with a Mastodon client, for instance @rich works as a search in any Mastodon client and you can follow the posts there. This is going to increase your cost and load because your server will have to wake up, but I haven’t found this a big deal for non-famous people like me, it only does a pull when someone is following you (in that case, it sends the post out). One small trick here is that if you use this, then you want to disable Mastodon auto post otherwise you will just see yourself in all the posts!
- Enable Mastodon Apps is another plugin that allows actual posts to be accessed as Mastodon clients. This is confusing, while ActivityPub implements notifications of new posts, this lets a Mastodon user browse all your posts (so they go hand in hand).
- Not being reliant at all on any reader with the Friends plugin. What happens is that when you go to https://tongfamily.com/friends, your visitors will see your public page of people that you follow. The main work here is that you have a bookmarklet that lets you add Friends on their servers and also you need to move your followers here. This makes your website, a Mastodon client so you don’t see any ads at all. With the move of Threads to support Mastodon, you can even see @email@example.com in this way. There are a host of smaller plugins that support the main Friends plugin including Friends Parser for parsing feeds, Friends Post Collection to collect posts as a separate type so you could make just a feed for your followers
- The above lets you follow any RSS feed as well, so it is a personal combination of an RSS Reader and Mastodon client.