The Mammoth Blog

Official news and notes from the team behind Mammoth, a beautiful Mastodon app.

By Riley Howard

I’d like to hear thoughts on this solution, and/or other solutions/proposals. Our goal is to bring new people to Mastodon, and we’re looking to make the experience as smooth and friendly as possible.

I wanted to share a problem that’s been driving me a little bonkers since my first day on Mastodon, our current solution, and hear from you —our users and the fediverse: what do you think? Good? Bad? Spot on, or did we miss the mark?

The problem is when I find an interesting account, I’d like to see who they follow, and who follows them. Surely there are some interesting accounts for me there, right? If you’ve been on Mastodon for a while you’ve probably had quite a few experiences like this: you find someone interesting on another instance, check their “following” list, and… only see a small subset of the accounts they follow. What gives?

Well, you may already know that the list of accounts you see are the accounts of people on your instance who follow that person. In my case, this number was very (very) small.

Now, I (think I) understand the general reasoning here — federation. Individual communities, etc. But as a new user, it was very confusing (and isolating) to not be able to see those other accounts. And slightly more confusing (again, as a new user) was learning that I could find that list — I just had to go look on their instance. So… as far as I could tell, this wasn’t a privacy problem, but more of a convenience problem.

Our current solution is to pull down that list of followers from the account’s instance. This makes all the people they follow visible to the user. Of course, there’s now a bit more work to follow any new accounts of interest, but… that’s a different story.

By Bart Decrem

A few folks have asked about our business model, our investors and why we boldly can state that Mammoth will always be free.

We have mostly decided that there will be a subscription version of Mammoth & However, we have not yet figured out the details, and we care about the details. For example, we love the part of Mastodon culture where folks are encouraged to make a donation to their server team to help cover server costs, and we’d like that to be a significant part of our subscription system (supporting servers beyond, that is), but that comes with legal issues, App Store TOS issues etc.

But we don’t think our subscription will be a paywall or that free users will get a read-only version of the app or Simply: we want to contribute to Mastodon having 10m active users, then 100m. It’s early days still, and we don’t want to do anything that slows down adoption. Therefore, we likely will have a subscription, but it won’t stop you from enjoying the app if you’re not paying. We don’t have all the details or the timing figured out yet.

We also think that there is room for experimentation around business models, and folks will come up with cool new ways to pay the bills that are consistent with the values of Mastodon. I was on the team that worked out the Firefox business model (search monetization). That was a fantastic win for the users and allowed the project to thrive. As Mastodon grows, there may be similar aha moments that benefit the entire system —users, app and other developers, and the project itself.

As for our investors: we’re still working on getting the OK from everyone to announce their involvement. But we love our investors and they’re in it because they too believe that Mastodon can be a critical part of a better, healthier internet, and want to support that. Stay tuned!

By Shihab Mehboob

Hey y’all!

The Mammoth First Look is now live on the App Store!

First off, a huge THANK YOU to the 10k+ of you who have tried out our beta –your feedback has allowed us to get to this milestone at record speed.

If you’re already down the Mastodon rabbit hole, we hope Mammoth will end your search for the one app that has it all. Mammoth is a fastfunalways free Mastodon app that offers access to all the Mastodon features and lets you customize your setup exactly as you like. No more need to use multiple apps. And we hope that you’ll enjoy the attitude and love for the iPhone that we bring to our work.

Mammoth is also the best way for new users to join the Mastodon community. We’re the only app to offers a super easy in-app way to create an account, set up your profile, and discover your first batch of people to follow!

This first App Store release is just the beginning though. We have a big appetite to make Mammoth a beautiful Mastodon app for the rest of us. We’re a small startup team with a long history in the indie dev community, deeply steeped in Apple culture, open source, and building apps used by hundreds of millions. Our focus is on the end-to-end user experience we can offer as we combine Mammoth with our server and backend work, all fully open source and building on what makes the fediverse special. And if you just want to use Mammoth with your favorite server, that should still be an awesome experience. We’re here to help the next one hundred million users join the Mastodon community. Read all about our vision here.

Mammoth’s notable features include:

  • Beautiful UI built exclusive for iOS
  • Browse and interact with any Mastodon server’s timeline
  • Share posts as images that you can decorate as you wish, with custom colours and more
  • Quickly switch between timelines
  • Customize the toolbar to meet your needs
  • Picture-in-Picture to pin specific posts to your screen
  • Threader Mode to automate creating post threads
  • Undo posts (within a custom duration)
  • Include GIFs, polls, drawings and more in your posts
  • View posts and media in AR
  • Multiple scrollable columns on iPad (or single column if preferred)
  • Top friends list to quickly access your inner circle

Other exciting features include:

  • Trending posts, follow suggestions and a supercharged explore section
  • Sentiment analysis: we’ll let you know if your post might be inflammatorySentiment analysis: we’ll let you know if your post might be inflammatory
  • Set post language when composing
  • Translate posts whilst you’re composing them
  • Text and image text translations
  • Image description alt-text support (we can remind you if you forget to add an image description)
  • Use Siri Shortcuts to publish posts
  • Biometric app lock
  • Support for Mastodon filters
  • Custom compose button placement (can be dragged around)
  • Share Extensions to share media and open Mastodon links in the app
  • Push notifications

We’re excited to continue this journey and have you all on board! Make sure to follow and subscribe to this blog. If you’d like to get more involved, hop on over to our Discord!

By Mark Mayo

TL;DR: I’ve gone from skeptic to fan of Mastodon and the Fediverse. I’m part of a small team that’s releasing a new iOS app today: Mammoth, a beautiful Mastodon app for the rest of us. It’s free, it’s high quality, we’re doing some novel things to make the whole experience more friendly and fun for new users, and it’s also a deeply customizable app we think anyone will love. I hope you like it.  🙂

We've already had a lot of amazing supporters who believe in the potential of the Fediverse and have been helping us start on our journey. A special mention goes to Mozilla who not only contributed financially but also with expertise and guidance. 🙏🙏

The story so far.

It was back in October, on a rainy weekend, and my daughter and I ended up watching Kris Nova’s Twitch stream as she and her band of merry ops peeps were hacking on the backend infrastructure for a Mastodon site called Curious name, we thought! More importantly, we saw cool people working on something they loved, building something that mattered to them. A node on new kind of decentralized, community-at-the-core, network of social networks.

I’d last looked at Mastodon in 2017 as part of a project at Mozilla to investigate feasibility of new p2p messaging platforms. Frankly, I hastily concluded it could never work: incredibly tricky usability challenges are the hallmark of federated consumer products, a lesson I’d learned trying to bring Persona to market for Mozilla years earlier with Ben AdidaMike Hanson, and others. Yet the more I signed up different servers, followed more folks, followed more hashtags, I was drawn in as I saw a whole community of people who wanted a place to call their own and just didn’t fucking care it was never going to work. They needed this thing to exist, so they were building it anyway.

I’ve seen this kind of dynamic first hand a few times now, as I approach 30 years of working with and on open source software. The first time for me was living through the rhetoric about how there was no way Linux on cheap PCs could ever replace the entrenched operating systems and expensive servers from Sun, HP, Digital, SCO. They owned the market! But we needed cheap servers and free operating systems to build the internet, so we worked on Linux and BSD regardless. 2nd time it was: “obviously nothing can beat Internet Explorer. Microsoft won.” Brendan and Ben and whole slew of people didn’t care —they built Firefox anyways because the web needed it. 3rd time it was a belief that there was no way anything could replace PHP as the de facto web development stack! Ryan Dahl didn’t care it would never happen, and soon neither did a whole team of developers who wound up building Node.JS.

Eric Allman (sendmail), myself, Kirk McKusick (BSD). Late 90s? Kirk loved a good margarita. :)

Sometimes, it just needs to be built. And that’s where we are today with “social networks”, I think. Reasons why decentralization won’t work far outweigh the reasons it might work. But we’ve been playing with approaches for decentralization for years now, and I think the Fediverse gets it right by putting the power where it belongs: with passionate communities and developers building stuff because it’s cool, because it makes their community stronger, more connected

We’re at a point where there’s enough people who believe decentralization is what’s next for the Internet. The inertia of the current systems will indeed be overcome. My bet is that “the Fediverse” is our best shot at how to do a decentralized internet right now.

Today I’m excited to introduce the first release of Mammoth, a beautiful Mastodon app for the rest of us. If you’ve already gone down the Mastodon rabbit hole, we think Mammoth is the only mobile app you’ll need —it’s fast, fun, and fully-featured and you can customize it to be just right for you. If you’re new to Mastodon, we take the headaches out of getting started with Mastodon: we’re the first app to offer simple, in-app account creation and a quick way to find your first set of hashtags and conversations to follow.

Mastodon is already wildly successful, and quickly becoming the place where many of the best conversations, especially around technology, start.

We want to preserve what makes Mastodon special. We’re all-in on the Fediverse, open source, and supporting the tens of thousands of instances and micro-communities. But we think we can help make Mastodon easier to approach for the next 100 million users so they too can enjoy the thrill of finding their place. By combining great client engineering with a backend team that operates our own instance & can build our own backend services (as well as send patches upstream to the core dev team), we think we can help craft a better end-to-end experience.

A big part of how we want to work is by being as completely open and considerate as we possibly can. We’ll be open sourcing our code, of course, but more importantly we want to be part of the conversation around what behaviors are good to reinforce, what the performance implications of a neat features might be on the network as a whole, what approaches might lead to good or bad outcomes across the system. Let’s get this right.

Hack on!

Mammoth and are built by a small team. We’re all-in on open source and the fediverse, and we’re also a startup, with support from Mozilla, Marc Benioff, Long Journey Ventures and others.

We are looking to hire a few full-time team members. These positions are all full-time (we do like to start with a few consulting projects, to get to know each other), but we need you to have at least 3 hours of daily working hours in common with regular California working hours. We believe that building an inclusive and diverse workplace is key to our long-term success.

A backend & fediverse engineer. You’ll be building backend services that benefit all Mammoth users, features for the instance, and, over time, upstream patches to the Mastodon project. Def a Jaxx Of All Trades position: the bulk of your work will be thinking about backend code, in Ruby, but ideally you’ll moonlight as our sysadmin, at least at first. And you’ll constantly be thinking about the fediverse architecture, and brainstorming with our client engineers about how to deliver better user experiences into the app (“hey, let’s show users everyone that person is following, not just the folks on their shared server, as long as it respects their privacy settings. What’s the best way to do that and be a good citizen?”)

Community & QA lead. Another Wear Many Hats position. You’ll be running our @mammoth and @daily accounts, and be the voice of the community. You’ll be super tech-savvy and know everything that’s going on in the world of Mastodon. And on the side you’re our QA lead, helping us file, triage, and QA issues.

Fullstack Designer. You care deeply about end-to-end user experience, love the promise of the fediverse and want to make it much more approachable for “the rest of us”. You enjoy playing with pixels in Figma, tweaking marketing assets or our logo, but you’re also into thinking about how we want the app to behave in a year, when Mastodon will be ready for the Next 100 Million users.

Interested? Shoot us an email to info at Make sure to include links to your Github or portfolio and tell us why you’re excited!

By Shihab Mehboob

Hey y’all! Mammoth has been growing steadily over the past few weeks, and we’re excited for what’s still to come. Today we’re entering beta and focusing on the initial app launch. Along with that, Mammoth is getting a whole new look with a gorgeous new app icon and default color, a great new onboarding experience, and a bagfull of bug fixes and stability improvements to make your experience even more enjoyable.

The new Mammoth icon is immediately noticeable on your Home Screen and in your notifications. You can’t help but keep glancing over to look at it, and neither can you resist the temptation to tap it. It is full of fun and a joy to look at, and best of all, its silhouette is instantly recognisable. The new app icon also comes with a set of 20+ alt app icons, all of which are hand-crafted to match your own unique preference. Read all about designer Matthew Skiles’ journey designing them here!

Mammoth’s onboarding experience has grown tenfold, both in its joy and its value. Most of us associate empty profile pictures with bot accounts, so Mammoth now has the ability to add a profile pic built into the flow, along with display names. Furthermore, we’re aware how hard it can be to get started with Mastodon and find interesting people, and Mammoth now presents a list of amazing hand-curated people from across the fediverse. Perfect for first-timers! This new onboarding experience, coupled with the previously available easy sign up to, instantly elevates the Mastodon experience.

If you’re new to Mastodon, Mammoth is the perfect intro to the space. No confusion or mental overload with server selection of finding interesting people to follow, and you can get started immediately.

➡ Our default server for new accounts ( is growing quickly, and we hope to see you on there to help us debug & welcome you to our community! Just click on Create An Account when you install the app. Don’t worry, you can still (and always) connect to all your existing Mastodon accounts. We’re evolving our instance’s feature-set to add cool and useful features going forward.

Mammoth is also moving to a new home (The BLVD, Inc.). To make that work with Apple’s Developer setup etc, we settled on an entirely new app build on your homescreen. Please delete any prior build, as it won’t be receiving any updates from here onwards, and move over to the new one on TestFlight. Regrettably, we’re unable to transfer folks over to the new TestFlight, so this is a new first-come-first-serve set of 10,000 beta slots.

We’re stoked for the road ahead!

By Matthew Skiles

Hey there! I’m Matthew Skiles, and I design app icons. I design lots of other things as well, but we’re not here to talk about those today are we 🙈 We’re here to talk about app icons, and the Mammoth app icon in particular.

When I was first contacted by Shihab and Bart about working with them on creating an icon for their upcoming Mastodon app called Mammoth, I was immediately excited. Not only did I want to get a chance to work with them both. I had just recently joined Mastodon like many others in the tech community, and saw that they were in desperate need of some better 3rd party apps.

Before we even had discussed anything about the project, the name Mammoth was springing forth lots of fun imagery of Mammoths and I was eager to see how I could work those ideas into an app icon.

Shortly there after I jumped on a call with the team. They laid out their vision for the app and what the team was building. And we discussed all the fun details of tone, style and generally what we thought would be a good starting place for ideas.

Getting Started

Some of the initial directions we explored were an “M” that was combined with a Mammoth, a full body Mammoth, part of a Mammoth, and even the idea of a Moth.

After that, a few of those initial ideas were selected to be more fully fleshed out, to see how there were feeling.

Most people seemed to really gravitate towards the third option. Personally I had a soft spot for the first one.

Further Exploration

After reviewing the above set, the team wanted to explore some more options to see what else interesting would bubble up. I created a new round of designs, including some more “out there” options this time, just to see what might start to form.

From this round of explorations, the furry “M” and solid Mammoth shapes were leading the pack.

We then added more variations of those ideas and tested them out with some different color palettes.

Narrowing our Focus

After all those, we started narrowing in on what would become the final design. We had three main directions that were dubbed, “Chunky Guy”, “Baby Mammoth” and “Furry M”.

For the Chunky Guy, we went back and forth on whether he should be rounded or more squared off.

And with the Baby Mammoth, I wanted to try out some different trunk placements to see if it made him a little less cute and more serious.

Nearing the End

The consensus from the team was the general direction of Chunky Guy was the winner. We did just a little more exploration of the body shape and eye design.

At this point the design was handed off to the Mammoth team, and they did one final pass of tweaks to create the final incarnation of the Mammoth icon that you see today.

By Shihab Mehboob

Hi folks! A few exciting announcements!

First off: Mammoth for iOS is shaping up nicely. We've added tons of new features and are fixing dozens of bugs every day. One of my fav new features is the ability to share posts as images directly to your socials (with the ability to tweak the UI exactly how you want).

We're also getting a lot of interest and excitement in the community. In fact, our Testflight beta is now full, with 10,000 people signed up! Worry not: we now have a waitlist, at


Today we're introducing, a friendly new place on Mastodon.

We're continuing to refine our vision for the app. We are building a beautiful Mastodon app for the iPhone, iPad and Mac, and making it easier for new users to onboard onto the Fediverse & Mastodon. The power of Mastodon, its federated architecture, is also the most confusing aspect for newcomers: “Where do I start?” To help solve this problem, we are building, our server. Mammoth will continue to fully and enthusiastically support all Mastodon servers (minus the icky ones), and you'll continue to be able to use it to connect with your favorite server. But for new users, we are integrating an easy use Create An Account feature that is connected to We have the 0.1 build of our server ready. Today we'll be signing up the first 100 users on our server. Head on over to if you enjoy living on the bleeding edge, warts and all!

I'm also delighted to announce that I'm now working full time on bringing this vision to market as part of a small startup team. The team includes, who has a long track record in open source starting with Linux (Eazel and the GNOME Foundation), work on the Firefox 1.0 launch, and co-founding the Mozilla Builders Fix-The-Internet Incubator with (Mark, who previously was the SVP for Firefox at Mozilla, is an advisor). is our designer – check out the styling on it's already one of the best looking Mastodon servers! Big props to who set up our server and is working on the backend.

Last but not least, just joined us to head community. Today we are launching the account. We'll be posting frequent updates on daily builds and much more… as soon as I'm back from a few days off for the holiday weekend!

Oh, and almost everything we do will be open source. That includes the Mammoth app. And of course we'll fully respect the AGPL as we tinker with backend code etc.

I'm super stoked about the next chapter for Mammoth. Follow and join the server as we open up more in the coming days. The next few weeks and months are going to be super exciting!

Here's to making Mastodon even more awesome, together, in 2023! 🥂