How Does Mastodon Make Money?

Most social networks make the bulk of their income by running ads on their platform.

Despite its Twitter-like appearance, Mastodon is not like most social networks, their de-centralized setup discourages ads.

Although being decentralized can make it hard to work out how to join Mastodon, it is also the key reason why they don’t need to be aggressively focused on money-making.

If Mastodon was set up on one website it would require a huge amount of processing power and infrastructure to run which would require lots of capital to maintain.

So they don’t need to spam users with ads to keep the network running, nor do they need to go public and sell shares, they do however make money in a number of different ways:

1. Patreon

Mastodon accepts donations via Patreon.

Currently, they have over 8,000 patrons contributing over $30,000 a month.

2. Sponsorships

Mastodon makes money from sponsorships.

They sell three sponsorship packages:

Rosegold Tier – $100/month:

  • Your medium-sized logo
  • A followed link
  • A mention in Mastodon documentation

Gold Tier – $200/month:

  • Your medium-sized logo
  • A followed link
  • Brand mention on the sponsors’ page

Platinum Tier – $500/month:

  • Your medium-sized logo
  • A followed link
  • Brand mention on the sponsors’ page
  • Visibility for your brand on the frontpage
mastodon sponsor pricing

You can see current Mastodon Platinum tier sponsors at the bottom of this page.

3. Feediverse Subscriptions

If you want to set up your own space or a space for a small group on Mastodon you can do so with a Feediverse subscription:

  • $6/month (+tax) for up to 5 users
  • $9/month (+tax) for up to 20 users
  • $19/month (+tax) for up to 100 users

Screenshots from here

4. Community Fees

If you want to set up a community on Mastodon you will need to set up a server, you can buy a subscription from at the following price points:

  • $39/month (+tax) for up to 500 active users.
  • $89/month (+tax) for up to 2,000 active users
  • …for bigger plans you can contact them for pricing inquiries.

5. Selling Storage Space

For $10 a month (not including tax) you can buy cloud storage. 

$10 will get you 4 Processing Threads, 4 GB of Database, and 40 GB of Media Storage.

6. Elastic Search Fees

Mastodon is spread across different servers, when you search on one server for something you will only find mentions of that thing on the server you are currently on.

If you pay the Elastic search subscription fee of $10/month to cover the server resources needed then you can use the elastic search function to search all Mastodon servers.