Privacy and Tracking on the Fediverse
Recently, there have been some shocking revelations. Facebook, a company in the business of selling your data to advertisers, had some of its data used illegally by a third party that used it to advertise to you. As people hate nothing more than getting their data misused without Facebook getting a cut, they are now up in arms and want to leave Facebook once and for all.
Media eye seems to have fallen on the Mastodon network as a solution this time. For an example, look at this Washington Post article, «The new technology that aspires to #DeleteFacebook for good» (19 trackers on the page, including Facebook), in which they tout it as a privacy-preserving alternative to walled-garden company-run networks.
Mastodon BDFL Gargron himself wrote an article with the nice subtitle Perspective from a platform that doesn’t put democracy in peril. He is privacy conscious, so this page only has two trackers.
(Aside: This article contains the delightful phrase “#DeleteFacebook is trending on Twitter.”)
In all of these articles, Mastodon (and by extension, the Fediverse) are described as a more private and secure way of posting cat pictures and “please subscribe to my patreon” online. But is this actually true? Let’s check the situation on the fediverse.