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Disroot Community

disroot@hub.disroot.org

Disapp, new donation page and planned registrations

  
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The last two weeks had some amazing surprises and developments. It was absolutely and positively motivating for us.

1. Disroot app

Many people have been asking for Disroot mobile app and we repeatedly failed to see the possibility of such app since we run multitude of services that, in most cases, provide their own separate app. Massimiliano was the one who actually saw the potential of a Disroot app and decided to take the challenge with an unexpected approach. He developed the Disroot "Swiss army knife" app that helps and guides disrooters to recommended apps, tips and tutorials on how to set everything up. The app will pick the best (in our opinion) app for email, chat, etc and for those services that do not have a dedicated app it will open them in the webview window. The app also provides directions to all community tutorials we've gathered over the years to help people use provided services. We are very thankful to Massimiliano for his brilliant idea and the hard work he put into it. The app is available from the one and only truly Free/Libre Android store: here

2. Changing notification email and Screen Name

This is something we wanted to do since a while now and we finally managed. Since not everyone uses their Disroot email, and we in no way want to force people to do so, we wanted to make it possible for disrooters to use their email address of choice for all incoming notifications from services provided by the Disroot platform. As of today, you can login to https://user.disroot.org and update your profile with new notification email and also Screen Name.
At this moment only Nextcloud is configured to accept the changes. Once you update your profile, Nextcloud will be sending your notification emails to the given address. \o/
!Note! Due to a bug in nextcloud software although your screen name won't change for you on the interface on Nextcloud, your new name will be shown to people you share files with, calendars etc. We hope this will be solved soon.
As time progresses and we test other services we will be adding those too.

2. Registration issue.

Last two weeks we spent on thinking how to solve the issue of registrations. We've had few brainstorm sessions, some open discussions eg. here and countless private talks, chats, etc. The outcome of all the discussions is satisfying and, most importantly, brings a possible solution to the problem. We will be busy with that in the next two weeks and hopefully we will re-open registrations soon after.

3. New donation page.

Last weeks Antilopa was busy punching all the numbers from all over the place (Paypal, Patreon, bank etc) into new accounting system that will help us have better overview on the current situation, the amount of donations we receive and our current costs. We still cant believe the outcome and are still recalculating it over and over. The result makes us very happy and we would like to thank everyone who decided to chip in and donate money to our project until now. But please don't quit with satisfaction yet - for long term sustainability we need you to keep this trend. As the platform grows so do the costs and the amount of work we invest in it.
The new donation page has more detailed information and hope to be as transparent as can be. We will be updating it each month as we do our administration. In the new donation page we will regularly put our short and and long term goals for the project. At the moment we are still experimenting with the idea, so more goals will show up later (including eventually the ultimate goal and dream to be able to work fully on Disroot and quit our day jobs..)

For now we have accomplished one goal we wanted to share with you:

Goal 1 - Donate to projects - Unlocked.

We heavily depend on people creating the amazing software we provide to you every day. Without the hard work of those developers there would be no Disroot. It's therefore logical to support these people and projects financially as much as we can, and to help build a self sustainable model for libre/open source software.
As of next month we have decided to donate on regular basis to the projects listed below according to this formula:
As long as the donations we receive double our costs we will share 15% of our surplus with developers of software we use to provide disroot services.
At the moment we are considering donating to the following projects: Diaspora, Taiga, Nextcloud, Conversejs, Etherpad, Ethercalc, Privatebin, Lufi, Searx and Framasoft

All this is made possible by your generous donations! We are very grateful to everyone that decided to keep buying us a coffee. Make the donations flowing :) We are very thirsty for caffeine. :P

The next two weeks we will probably spend most of our time on implementing the new registration system to get back up on our feet. Additionally we will work on small improvements here and there and maybe play and experiment with something new for a change.

Ciao!

PS.

This summer, we have upgraded our password store policy. We therefor would like to recommend you to update your password (even to the same one if you will). Once updated it will be stored in more secure way then before. You can do that by logging in to https://user.disroot.org and select "Change password" option. If you are changing to new password (which we recommend you do periodically anyway), please follow these instructions, specially when you use Nextcloud files: https://howto.disroot.org/en/basics/how-to-change-your-disroot-user-password
  
:bravo
  
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!Disroot Community
Hello everyone
"Disroot app" is great but I just have one question: to access disroot cloud I need to install nextcloud app. Okay, but once installed, my disroot idientifiers don't work. Is there another way to do it?
  
I confirm the app stays connected.
  
Yes it stays connected. Every few minutes it checks if there are new files or if the server is online. Its specially usseful if you set automatic upload of for example photos. It will upload (depending on your choice only over wifi or at all times) new files in specific folder (for example your camera so that every photo you take, gets automatically uploaded to the cloud).
  
Ok, thanks.
Results of internal meetings regarding solving the registration issue on disroot.org

  
Hi there,

We would like to share our thoughts that came out of the series of brainstorming sessions we have had the last days.

Possible solutions we have considered and our opinion about them.

1. Invite only - where new accounts can be created only when invited by other users.
We have quite a strong position on that one. We started Disroot with the intention of being accessible to a wide audience. Invite only solution creates a barrier where only certain circles of people are allowed in. We want to be as open as possible for anyone seeking better solutions for their digital realm. By allowing invite only account we would've exclude a big portion of our current disrooters, supporters and contributors.

2. Paid accounts.
Money is the solution to everything... It's seems like the perfect tool to get all the abusers, scammers and spammers out of the platform. Paid accounts seems to solve the financial situation too. However, money also means another set of complications. First of, it closes the doors to those that can't afford to pay. It changes the whole nature of the project and creates a different relationship between disrooters (users) and admins, where certain expectations are held. It also asks for a whole set of new administrative tools and financial obligations which we would rather avoid. Such change to the project's nature is too drastic so that we feel it would be more honest to start a new separate platform based on paid accounts rather then change Disroot into such.

3. Approval based user creation.
This is the solution we are leaning towards. Originally we thought it to be too labor intensive, but after giving it some further thought we start to think approving account after a short delay will prevent most obvious abuse from happening. And with the help of some good automation backstage, we hope the extra work will be minimal.
The idea would be to ask new signups for a confirmation email address. After confirming the request (which will prevent automatic bot account creation and thus render re-captcha obsolete) we, the admins, will still have to approve the account based on a specific criteria we will develop, this will take up to 24 or 48 hours (to be decided). The waiting time will prevent spammers that need immediate access, our approval criteria will prevent other obvious abuse cases. Users could afterwards remove the verification email address or keep it as another possibility to reset password. We would like to try this method and see what the results are. How much abuse we can prevent, how much work will it impose on us and what other consequences it will bring.
  
Hi disrooters

#Faircoin has been added to cryptocurrencies
https://disroot.org/en/cryptocurrency

I've notice this now. Thanks @Disroot Community, hope I can use it on the near future ;)
  
@Xosé M :P Its been there for over a year
  
In my mind goes around a idea for some time.
I have a dream of abuse less services for everyone who is nice.

I am thinking of limitations of services who getting abused until you get peer2peer verification.

What I mean is that the people of the service verify themselves with some QR code if they think the person is trust able. Depends on service and level of trustiness from the verificator the level of the new increases. But the verification looses points after time, so that a reverification after months is necessary, cause people and the world change.

What you think?
DisrootApp & Nomad on Fdroid

  last edited: Sat, 29 Sep 2018 11:20:58 +0200  
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Disroot.org is a platform providing multiple services for many different use cases. Most of the services offered on the platform already provide their own mobile app but that is ungraspable to the many people who were constantly inquiring about a "Disroot app". Time and time again we've been explaining people that they can use any email app supporting IMAP/POP3 or that they can just grab nextcloud app to sync files or use any Jabber client for their chat. But now, thanks to a very clever Disrooter, we actualy have a Disroot app, something we, the admins, couldn't even imagine! the Disapp works as a swiss army knife for Disroot. It helps users install appropriate apps for each service, as well as open Disroot related URL's within the app window for those services that don't have a dedicated application. Its a very neat aproach that solves a lot of problems for new comers as well as veteran users. We are very excited and very thankful for @Massimiliano as well as all the people in the community that have helped making it happen.

Nomad.
As some of you know for last months we are experimenting with an amazing social network called Hubzilla. Together with other disrooters we are working on the documentation, theme, plugins and few other things that will make our instance a complete package easy to onboard and use. Yet again, with pure caffeine running through his veins, the sleepless Disrooter decided to take on the task of creating dedicated app for hubzilla called Nomad. Nomad, created by @Massimiliano , is a fork of #{massimiliano@hub.disroot.org} (mobile app for diaspora) which serves a webview version of hubzilla with extra features such as native menus, share with, and other neat things you expect from the mobile app. It's still in early stages of development and needs a lot fo work but its very much awesome already and makes hubzilla usage on mobile a breeze.

We are very excited about those two new apps and would like to thank all the people that were involved in the process of creating them, testing and translating.

you can find both apps on fdroid if you don't use that app store yet, its about time to start:
disrootapp
nomad

#{massimiliano@hub.disroot.org} #{massimiliano@hub.disroot.org} #{massimiliano@hub.disroot.org}
 apps  android  news
  
There is alai mBrowser that is webview based

https://f-droid.org/packages/am.zoom.mbrowser/

  
@Massimiliano

I tired Foss browser and it works very well. It saves username and password. I feel its better then the app. smiling face with open mouth and tightly-closed eyes
  
@Anmol Sharma
I don't know what to say. I am not a real develloper. just a regular guy who is trying to do something nice for the community, and absolutely no expert. I can only promise you i can try to solve it.
New Sprint - Solve Registration

  last edited: Thu, 27 Sep 2018 00:38:05 +0200  
Monday is a mark of yet another sprint. Last two weeks we spent mainly on wrapping our heads around finances. We've moved all of our accounting and financial administration to an awesome looking open source application called akaunting. @Antilopa did a great and very labor intense (and definitely not fun) job of punching in all the numbers from all over the place (paypal, bank account, liberapay, patreon etc) so we can have a clear overview of the current financial state. We are very pleased to see how well we stand financially (hope this trend will stay on course).

We've also managed to do some work on matrix purging. Currently we managed to shrink the database size from 400GB to about 168GB. All this after purging the history on all public rooms older then 4 months. It's a satisfying result and we hope that once we deactivate inactive users, this number will drop even more. This also means we will be running our purging script on regular basis to keep that number low and database clean. ( script if anyone wants to use on their instance).

We have also fixed small issues on xmpp side and we are now scoring 94% on compliance test board. Hopefully if we scramble few extra hours this coming weeks we will be providing jabber/xmpp service over web port 443 which will mean we are fully compliant.
While doing all this @muppeth felt artistic and worked a bit on his vision of xmpp-webchat theme for converse.js he wants to implement (beware, image below has alarming amount of cats):

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(Its not totally finished and polished, but it gave us a general idea in which direction we want to go with the theme and the base to start implementing).

Coming two weeks:
In the upcoming sprint we will focus on the issue that led us to temporarily close the registration. We are planning to do series of brainstorm sessions (between both admins internally, closed group of active disrooters, on the chat and the forum), outcome of which will be hopefully a decision on how to deal with future registrations. We also hope that we will have an idea of how to implement the solution and that it won't take long.
To everyone who has been asking for account creation: Please be a bit more patient. We do not want to create accounts on per request basis because of the amounts of them we get on regular basis. If we do not come up with a solid solution in upcoming sprint, or if the implementation will take long time, we will however create user-accounts on per request basis.

Additionally to solving the registration issue, general maintenance, updates, and solving little things here and there, we will implement a new disroot donation page.
For a while now we realized that current donation page was not really illustrating the current state. The planned budget we estimated in august last year was depleted already in January when we invested lots of money in the hardware and that was just the beginning on the year! We recently began to think on ways to better show the situation and give better overview on our monthly income and costs as well as introduce some goals we would like to strive to. We think we came up with a quite nice idea, and we hope you will find it interesting once its online within next two weeks time.

As always, you can follow the development via our taiga board
#{muppeth@hub.disroot.org} #{muppeth@hub.disroot.org}
  
@Aris Its nice that you see the post from hubzilla. We have had quite some issues with getting through and thats why we usually double post also form our mastodon account. I hope this will change soon so we could use only one account to communicate with the entire fediverse (avtivitypub, zot, diaspora)
  
@Sai Karthik We are strongly opposing that actually. One of the reasons we started disroot was because all the alternatives around required referral. It just creates yet another closed circle where if you dont know the right people, you are out of the game. Perfect example below (users looking for riseup invite codes on our forum): https://forum.disroot.org/t/need-an-invite-code-for-riseup/4120
  
I guess some kind of progression system would do, e.g. you can register an account any time, but only after having used for example Hubzilla for a while you have accumulated enough "points" to enable the mail account.
On our old phpBB forums a simple "please post in this thread first and introduce yourself" together with a first post always require moderator approval rule, probably stopped 95% of all forum spam.
 Summer Island 
!Disroot Community

For the second time the diaspora forwarded the post, hubzilla could not post a comment, but the non-forwarding post could。




English is not a native language, so there will be deviations in expression, forgive me

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!Disroot Community

Rocket.chat and Nextcloud have officially announced and released integrations between their software. I know Disroot has shifted from Matrix towards focusing on XMPP, but it is worth noting that Rocket.chat is also a very awesome service to consider!
  
Uhh... the way that XMPP bridge is implemented and based on years old code is not very promising. I hope someone will make a different bridge similar to Biboumi (which is an awesome XMPP to IRC bridge).
  
@sunjam The main issue with rocketchat is that it does not federate. We do not want to create yet another walled garden. One of our main criteria (especially for communication/collaboration) services is: "Does it federate?"

It would be awesome if rocket.chat would be built on top of xmpp but since it isnt, we need to build one ourself :)
  
!Disroot Community

Currently I have a domain I pay for year by year. How do you manage payments on your own domain? Do you recommend a particular registrar and options for covering 10+ years of payments at a discount rather than simply paying year by year?
  
We use greenhost.nl because it's a local friendly provider. Their prices aren't luring with stupid 1 euro for domain adverts (and then you pay double the normal price the next years), and its a small company running 100% on green energy and sharing similar values and principles towards, privacy, sustainability etc (they were one of few providers offering personal information ghosting on the domain).

Plus they're located in Amsterdam so if they fuckup, we can kick in their doors smiling face with open mouth and smiling eyes
Federating git management

  last edited: Thu, 13 Sep 2018 14:02:08 +0200  
!Disroot Community
Interesting discussion from one of the Friendica devs

https://kirgroup.com/display/61b57c7e145b17e7f0d5138286836040

([embed] not working for friendica posts? Edit: Hm, not the same as [share])

The result of their thoughts

https://kirgroup.com/projects/fabrixxm/friendica-projects


My thoughts:
Zot fork? I think we might have already discussed this before...
  
Disroot Community updated their cover photo

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Because Government Knows Best. /s
Sprint: Purge on

  
Monday we have started new sprint.
Last sprint, was not as successful as we planned it to be. Due to personal issues, and the whole shitshow with abusers, we could not finish things we've planned. We did however, purge lots of abusive accounts, sent out the disroot-matrix closure announcement and tried matrix history room purging (which failed in spectacular 24h matrix downtime). On the good note we've sorted out the mailbox size counter on webmail so you can finally see your mailbox size 🤩:

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In coming two weeks we want to put our focus on:
  • Disroot Signup problem
    In the coming two weeks we will do lots of thinking, brainstorming and discussing the best way to re-enable registrations on disroot, while at the same time preventing the abuse we've dealt with in the last months. Since we are getting a lot of suggestions on all communication platforms and we want to share our thoughts, we've created a central place in the form of a forum thread where we will keep updating and discussing the matter. You can find it here
  • Creating mockups for conversejs
    (currently our jabber webchat of choice https://webchat.disroot.org ) We want to work on a theme and extra set of features to make the webchat shine. We hope some of the community members will jump onboard and help us out too
  • Jabber/XMPP improvements
    In order to be fully compliant with xmpp compliance list we need to setup additional modules such as push notifications for iOS users and XMPP over TLS-443 port.
  • Possibility to change screen name and notification email address
    Users should be able to choose and change their screennames and those should reflect accross all services (if possible). Additionally in order to not force everyone to use our email (eg. not every cloud user wants to use disroot mail), we want to make it possible to change the email address to which notifications are going to. This will prevent the need to setup forwarding filter rules on webmail.
  • Purge continues
    We will continue trying to purge matrix room history to regain disk space on our database server. We have new ideas how to approach this issues and we hope (if all works well) with minimum downtime we will manage to purge all public rooms history down to last 4 months.
  • New financial overview page
    Our current donation page is quite outdated. We are thinking on a better approach to display current financial state and costs to give better overview on what is happening to all people.
Extras
If for some reason coffee will keep us awake or we get fired form our dayjobs, we hope to put some love into the beetroot hubzilla theme.
  
Do think about adding disroot to this Public XMPP Server Directory someday.

https://xmpp.net/directory.php
  
Done.
https://compliance.conversations.im/server/disroot.org/

Still need to fix XMPP over TLS443 and we'll be fully compliant.
  
Disroot StateDisroot State wrote the following post Sun, 09 Sep 2018 12:01:00 +0200
  
or maybe it is time #matrix got purged? The ongoing development of #hubzilla & #xmpp seems more in keeping with the #ModusOperandi of Disroot.org {IMHO}
Logo for Nomad poll

  
!Disroot Community

Hello,
Thanks to all. We have now a few logos to make the poll possible.

Here you find it:

https://poll.disroot.org/kjczyVwaJIEfm7CL

  
I'm happy that a logo derived from one of mine is there for the poll! :)
 
on the poll.disroot site only one logo is visible. Where are the others?
  
@King Emir The poll is over. The remaining logo, is the one who got more votes. :-)
NSFW plugin is not in effect

  
  
@Mario Vavti Just did that.
@jt Could you check if its fixed if you have a moment? (my eyes are half open atm).
  
I just checked quickly myself though one open eye. Seems like the good ol' reload module worked.
Once again @Mario Vavti thanks for reminding my of the first and easiest hubzilla 'did you try to switch it off an on again?" trick. @jt thanks for spotting and report it in such detail (with screenshots and all).
  
Disroot user registration temporary closed

  
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When we started Disroot, we wanted to have a bunch of privacy respecting tools and share them with other people, with a community of those who may share our ethical or technical choices. We had put a lot of our time and effort to build this platform and give the best and useful free and open source solutions we could find, sharing our experience and knowledge in the process. That’s the Disroot essence.

Since a year ago, we’re experiencing a non-stop growing problem with our email service. Now we have a huge amount of abuse accounts stealing our time and creating a lot of troubles every single day. That means we dedicated significant chunk of our lives trying to solve this issue instead of improving the services. Currently we bet that about 80% of our user base are scammers, spammers and abusers of all sort. Most of our energy goes into fighting these people and we are continuously maintaining a platform that is being abused by people with ill intentions. We know that as a result of our recent popularity we should expect a certain percentage of shady accounts, but in the current situation this percentage has become overwhelming with a number far exceeding the credible Disrooters we want to support. This is not only an irritant for us but a threat to the credibility of the platform and therefore to all who are using it trustfully.

This means we need to find a solution to this problem. For now we've decided to close registrations as a protection measure for our users and Disroot itself while we are trying to think of proper ways to solve it.

In coming days we will be busy cleaning up our user-base from all the abusive "pest" accounts and we will plan out how to go about user registration in the future. We want to maintain the model where onboarding is as easy as can be and where anyone could join the Disroot community and feel right at home. At the same time we want to prevent malicious behavior from ruining it for all of us. It's a hard nut to crack but we hope to find a solution that will satisfy most of us.

#disroot #disrootnews
  last edited: Fri, 07 Sep 2018 19:32:04 +0200  
With Love & #Solidarity!

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Without the continued #support & assistance of https://disroot.org the following projects would either not exist or be much less developed.
@LsN; Las Alpujarras
@FairCoop_Andalusia
@Semilla Besada @SkyEarth @perma.tec
#Respect & Thanks. #onelove
  last edited: Sat, 08 Sep 2018 06:51:11 +0200  
@Disroot Community


Inviting to sign up is a good idea.

Fully open registration, the drawbacks are obvious.

The manual review of Autistici / Inventati is very good.
  
Torrent sites also have an invite system where invites are given out based on "trustworthiness" or contributions. It's not a bad system.
Matrix Closure

  
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As some of you might have heard, we have decided to partially discontinue our Matrix server. We discovered Matrix while trying to improve our XMPP server (ironically during the sprint called: "To make XMPP great again!") and realized how great the potential of this new communication tool was. Now after running it nearly two years, we came to the conclusion that we did not give XMPP a fair chance and therefore we would like to shift our focus back to create a powerful XMPP server.

Though we still believe Matrix has the potential to become a great platform, there are several reasons why we cannot continue maintaining it at the moment. The resources needed for it cannot be provided without proper funding but that is not the only reason: Constant maintenance, resolving federation issues or general everyday problems are simply consuming too much of our time, energy and stress. But what is really drawing us to XMPP is how it is designed with the user's privacy as a central pillar. While the Matrix protocol is also taking the user's privacy seriously, it seems like its architectural focus is directed elsewhere, valuing usability over privacy. Matrix stores the data posted to any room indefinitely on all participating servers. User addresses are visible to anyone participating in the room (in case of public rooms, it basically means to anyone). We understand this is not meant for any malicious intention and is, at the moment, integral to the protocol - but, with the growing presence of various bots mapping the entire Matrix network and the growing presence of the alt-right in the network, we consider that problematic in our use case.

With XMPP, user IDs are hidden by default, unless enabled by room admins. The data can be stored on the server but can also be set to not be stored by admin and individually by users per room/contact case. Just like Matrix most of the XMPP clients/apps support end to end encryption. Data is stored only on one server, where the chat-room lives, which has both positive and negative sides. On the one hand it might seem too centralized and prone to failure, but on the other hand, it is nice to know where your data lives.

We know that XMPP is also not perfect, but it has been around for very long and we feel we need to give it a go and find for ourselves what are its downside in our use case. Hopefully we will find them minimal :)

We know some users who currently using Matrix would like to continue using it without the need to migrate their accounts (atm impossible) and their room aliases. We also don't want to shut all the doors because we might decide to come back to Matrix in the future (you never know).

Therefore we are not shutting down Matrix completely. This is what we plan to do:
  • New users can no longer login to Matrix
  • All room history of all public rooms will be purged to last 3 months of history
  • All users who have not login in last 2 months will be deleted (they will automatically exit the rooms, and their access to Matrix will be blocked)
  • Access to Matrix will be limited only to users who have been active in last 2 months
  • We will move Riot instance from https://chat.disroot.org to https://riot.disroot.org
  • We will keep purging history earlier then 3 month back of all public rooms and, when option of room history retention can be applied server wide, we will apply it on history older then 6 months for all rooms.
  • Naturally we will keep the software up to date.
With these actions we think we found a solution that does not harm existing users and gives us some breathing space to focus on other aspects of the Disroot platform. We thank you all for your understanding and support all along the way.
  
!Disroot Community

Hi, how do you go about discovering new channels / forums / communities for the arts and other social interests across Hubzilla or other federated networks? I'm still only aware of Disroot, Hubzilla Support and Hubzilla Development. Thanks for any suggestions or feedback.
  
@sunjam



Search for art and #art
  last edited: Tue, 04 Sep 2018 01:41:43 +0200  
  
@elmussol

Of course, the hubzilla does not work.DisHub
  
  
!Disroot Community

disrootdisroot wrote the following post Sat, 01 Sep 2018 00:55:09 +0200
👋 Announcement

If you want to follow info about issues, downtimes, scheduled maintenance of disroot platform, check with your favourite tool:

🍇 web: https://state.disroot.org
🍏 mail: https://state.disroot.org/subscribe
🍑 RSS: https://state.disroot.org/atom
🍓 XMPP: state@chat.disroot.org
🌽 Matrix: #state:disroot.org
🥦 Diaspora/hubzilla/mastodon/fediverse: disroot_state@hub.disroot.org
  
also best way is to send email to support@disroot.org
 from Diaspora
It was on webmail.

However, we have "good" news for Disroot. The problem seemed to be related to FireFox, since it has worked on another web browser (Vivaldi).

Thanks for the information about support and for your answer!
  
Thanks for the info I will have a look regardless.
in case you want to follow it and poke us if it takes too long to resolve:
https://board.disroot.org/project/disroot-disroot/issue/1543
  
!Disroot Community

Hey. I've been thinking about ActivityPub support for the Nextcloud Talk app, see this Github issue. What do you think of the scenario where the Talk app sends out a federated ActivityPub notification to users to join a video/audio/chat?