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It's a guide for non-technical people who are concerned about protecting their privacy online. It only lists easy-to-use sites and apps that are ethical and privacy-friendly.

You can find out more at

If you know someone who might benefit from this guide, please share the link with them!


I like your site!

I think we need more sites like this, geared towards less technical users that show making privacy-conscious choices is neither impossible nor "too technical" for the average user.


Ethical Alternatives to WhatsApp, Messenger and Skype: I can't find Wire in the list. Any reason?

@samae Wire's business model is slightly unclear, they're a centralised system so it's really important to know where the money is coming from.

@switchingsocial They are selling the secure group communication to companies. Also they have been delivering on their promises of open-source code, encryption by default and ownership of data. Self hosting is on the roadmap so as far as today they are recommendable, in my opinion.

@switchingsocial Why no mention of Matrix as a messaging alternative? It is open and federated.

@switchingsocial @nickfarr Your site is really resourceful and useful, but the font is really really hard to read. Any chance that's going to change?

@morre @nickfarr

It's meant to give the site a non-technical vibe, but if it's difficult to read then that would be a problem.

Is there a particular font or other site that you would suggest as an alternative?

Welcome! Like the lightweight site. Alternative to Google Play store seems to be missing though :)

@Coffee You mean f-droid? currently seems aimed at technical users rather than non-technical ones?

I would like to think that F-Droid is aimed at anyone who likes their apps clean and free of tracking.

It is unfortunate that it is a bit more fiddly because Google disadvantages alternative app stores, but it's not *that* much harder. Non-technical people can and do use F-Droid. You might like to read regarding that.

@Coffee It's awkward because the f-droid app is easier to use than the site, and people have to go through the site to find out about the app.

For example there aren't any categries on the site, but there are in the app. is for people who aren't comfortable with terms like "repo" or "FOSS".

If someone *is* comfortable with those terms, then I'd recommend they go straight to Framasoft's guide which is much more comprehensive (but also more techy):

@switchingsocial This is an awesome resource, thank you!

Should I take the lack of an Instagram alternative to mean that, as of now, there isn't any good ethical alternative?


Actually there is one just in testing, you can follow its progress at @pixelfed

The test PixelFed site opens for registrations daily:

Once it's ready, it will be available for anyone to set up their own site, which will federate with each other and with Mastodon.

@switchingsocial @pixelfed Very cool, I was completely unaware! You're providing a valuable service, thank you!

@switchingsocial glad to see this guide. if you have some francophone version of it I know a lot of people I would love to share it with


Someone was doing a French version a while ago but haven't heard back from them.

The whole site is licensed under Creative Commons BY-SA so anyone can do their own version in their own langauge if they want to. (The licence just requires that is credited for the original text, and that the new version is also shared under the same licence.)

Good @switchingsocial!
An interesting section is :
*MASTODON TRUNK – Click here to find people to follow on Mastodon by topic*.

This is what a lot of #Introductions posts and #newstarters have been asking for. Thanks for them.

@switchingsocial First, your website is really nice! Wanted to ask which criteria you use when you recommend different alternatives? For example, when it comes to Slack alternatives, Zulip, Rocket Chat, and Mattermost should also be mentioned (besides Riot/Matrix).

@switchingsocial Why didn't you include Telegram APP? Client side is GPLv3 They maintain even separate branch for AOSP users that have notifications without Firebase and Ggl services

Several Apps you haven't include (that I like) that surprised me. What is the criteria? It's not GPL only as I noticed.


The critera are that the alternative has to be as private/ethical as possible while still being easy to use for a non-technical person.

I asked the Fediverse their opinions of Telegram and it brought up some significant problems:

Telegram gain big respect and proved that they are very ethical. Heard this on 36C3:
Private chat is optional not default. That is main problem I have. Usage experience is miles ahead Signal and Wire.
RMS wouldn't endorse any of this 3 mentioned but while waiting for ideal chat App, Telegram deserves to be listed due to huge contributions to GPL and for being easiest and first convenient App to offer E2EE that I could recommend to my laziest friends.

@switchingsocial Love your guide! One thing I recently realized... Mozilla Thunderbird is not a good Outlook alternative UNTIL you install & configure the proper Extensions. Then it becomes awesome!

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