Table of contents

  • What is Lemmy?
  • What is an instance?
  • How do I join a community from another instance?
  • How can I find interesting communities?
  • Why are image uploads on lemm.ee limited to 100kb?
  • How can I post images hosted on external services?
  • How can I ensure my community on lemm.ee gets found on other instances?
  • How can I take over a community with inactive mods on lemm.ee?
  • I’m still lost, how can I get assistance?

What is Lemmy?

One great way to understand Lemmy is to check out this simple infographic (author: @ulu_mulu@lemmy.world)

But if you want it in text form:

Lemmy is a link aggregator, in many ways similar to Reddit, but with one key difference - there is no one central authority controlling Lemmy. The code is open source, and more importantly, there are hundreds of Lemmy instances which are all independently run.

Even though instances are independent, they are all part of the Lemmy network, and thus, users of one instance can participate in communities of other instances.

What is an instance?

Lemmy instances are servers which run the Lemmy software. https://lemm.ee (where this post lives on) is one instance, but there are also many others.

There can be several key differences in instances:

  • Some instances are small and run out of home servers, some instances are large and run on commercial hardware (lemm.ee is one of the latter)
  • Each instance can define their own set of rules (lemm.ee rules are visible in the sidebar on our front page)
  • Instances can decide whether downvotes are enabled for their users (lemm.ee users have the ability to downvote)
  • Some instances may choose to limit community creation to admins only (lemm.ee allows all users to create communities)
  • Some instances have a tight focus, others are general-purpose (lemm.ee is the latter!)

If you ever find yourself unhappy with your instance, you are always free to create an account on another one and continue using Lemmy. Unlike centralized platforms, you always have another place to go!

⚠️ Lemmy does not currently support migrating users or communities from one instance to another. Until such a feature is implemented, your post history will remain on your old account when you create a new one on another instance.

How do I join a community from another instance?

The following is up to date as of Lemmy version 0.17.4, but may change in the future.

Option 1: go to the list of communities by clicking the “Communities” link on the top navbar. Open the “All” tab and you will be able to browse and subscribe to any community from other instances that at least one lemm.ee user has previously subscribed to.

Option 2: if you know the exact name of the community you wish to join (for example, !gaming@beehaw.org), you can navigate to the search view by clicking the looking glass icon on the top navbar. Enter the exact name of the community into the search box, including the leading “!”: !gaming@beehaw.org. If at least one person from lemm.ee has previously subscribed to this community, then you should immediately see a link to open the community and subscribe to it.

Important caveat: if you are the first person to search for a community, then Lemmy will initially tell you that no results were found. Don’t worry, if the community exists, then lemm.ee will begin syncing it and you will be able to successfully search for it again in a couple of minutes.

Important caveat 2: if you are the first lemm.ee user to subscribe to a community from another instance, then historical posts and comments will not be immediately synced. This is a limitation of the Lemmy software currently. However, if old posts start getting some new activity after you’ve subscribed (like a new comment or edit), then that will trigger a sync and the old posts should start showing up for you as well.

How can I find interesting communities?

You have several options!

Why are image uploads on lemm.ee limited to 100kb?

One of the scaling issues so far with Lemmy is multimedia storage. Several instances report growing their storage by significant amounts daily - if lemm.ee grew at that same pace, I would start seeing increased infrastructure bills very quickly (within months, if not weeks).

To help mitigate this, users are asked to use external image hosting providers as much as possible. On lemm.ee, we currently only allow image uploads for images up to 100kb in size.

100kb was specifically chosen as it SHOULD cover most needs for any avatars, and possibly even simple banners for communities.

How can I post images hosted on external services?

For posts, just submit the image URL directly (in other words, copy the image URL into the “URL” field of the post you are creating).

Additionally, for text posts and comments, you can use the following syntax: ![alt text](image url), for example ![lemm.ee logo](https://imgur.com/earIilI.png) results in:

lemm.ee logo

How can I ensure my community on lemm.ee gets found on other instances?

  • First of all, you should ensure that your community looks welcoming to new users. If your sidebar has useful info and there’s perhaps some activity in the community already, then new users are much more likely to subscribe
  • Once you have your new community set up, your community will soon become automatically visible in our local communities list at lemm.ee, as well as the global community indexes like https://browse.feddit.de or https://lemmyverse.net
  • If you want even more exposure for your community, I recommend making a post about it in !newcommunities@lemmy.world

How can I take over a community with inactive mods on lemm.ee?

  1. Make a post in the community you want to take over
  2. DM me (@sunaurus) 1-2 sentences about what your plans are for the community, and a link to the post you made in the community

If the community you want really has no active mods, then I will be happy to pass ownership to you!

I’m still lost, how can I get assistance?

If you feel like anything in this guide is unclear, or if you have a general question which you believe will be useful to others in the future, please just drop a comment with your question under this post and myself or other helpful members of our community can try and help you out.

If you’re having any issues that you feel are not relevant as a comment here, then feel free to post a thread and tag me in our !support community.

  • crowebear@lemmy.world
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    1 year ago

    I’m having an issue and wondering if it’s something with the way the site works, or just me.

    When I access a community that isn’t on my instance through my instance (for example, I am accessing this one although my home instance is lemmy.world, so the URL is https://lemmy.world/c/support@lemm.ee), I don’t see all the posts or comments on that community, only certain ones. I know this because when I then access the same community through it’s instance (so for example, if I go to the URL https://lemm.ee/c/support and view it, not logged in) I see posts and comments that I can’t through my instance. An example is the recent post here “How Come I don’t see most comments?” - when viewing it without logging in, I see the comments on that post, but when viewing it through my instance while logged in it appears there are no comments on it and it even says zero comments. Sometimes whole posts are missing. Is it supposed to be this way?

    I checked the language settings and have both Undetermined and English highlighted.

    Thanks for any help

    • sunaurusOPMA
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      1 year ago

      There are a few different potential causes in such cases:

      • If a community was recently synced to your home instance, then it will not have a lot of historical posts and comments.
      • Missing comments may be the result of moderation (for example, an instance admin has purged a specific comment originating from another instance)
      • Finally, we can’t discount technical problems with with federation (overloaded servers)

      In most cases, any new responses to missing comments should sync all parent comments as well, so if there is activity going on in the comments, then everything should “self-heal” given time.

      But if there is no activity, then currently, the only workaround to get missing posts/comments to sync is quite clunky - it’s documented here (specifically the “fetching posts” and “fetching comments” sections).

  • gravitydeficit
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    1 year ago

    Hmm… I’m still looking for a basic “how-to,” rather than a “why not,” or a “what is.” E.g., How do I use existing mod tools? How do I permanently block the dozens of posted porn links from a lemm.ee (about orbital mechanics in a video game)? How do I limit all posts to the afore-mentioned community to only approved contributors? Once done, how do I know who has submitted a request for inclusion? I apologize if this information is already available…somewhere. I’ve read all that I could find. Perhaps I need to expand my search terms…

    In any case, Thanks!

    • sunaurusOPMA
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      11 months ago

      Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of documentation like that yet, and specifically in terms of mod tools, the tools themselves are still quite limited as well. Removing posts can be done (there should be an option for it under every post if you’re a moderator), but there is currently no support for approved contributors.

  • EstroJen
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    11 months ago

    I’m having trouble creating a community. Is there a guide on how to make one? I have the name and the display name, no errors there. The “create” button spins for a second and then nothing.

    • JohnnyEnzyme
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      11 months ago

      Late reply, but just for the record-- Sunaurus helped me with this the other day by explaining that community names are limited to 20 characters. Display names can evidently be considerably larger.

      @bonobi@lemm.ee

    • sunaurusOPMA
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      11 months ago

      Can you share the exact name of the community you are trying to create? I can try to investigate further

    • bonobi
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      11 months ago

      I’m looking for the same thing. Posting here to hopefully get directions.

  • Fjor
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    9 months ago

    Hi there, I’ve just created a community for us foragers! But I cannot for the life of me upload community banner or icon. I know the size limit as stated above, but even images that are tini-tiny I get the message “uploaded image is too large”, I have also tried the same image(41.53kb) as jpg, png, svg and webp. What am I doing wrong? Thanks.

  • 2faonthissitesucks
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    7 months ago

    Want to leave a comment saying how woefully painful the 2FA is on this site. I’d ticked the box for 2FA on my account (assuming I’d receive a link or email). When I didn’t I thought nothing of it and carried on my business. Turns out now I’m locked out of my account and cannot access it without providing a 2FA key (which I didn’t set up).

    I’ve contacted the instance admin (/u/sunaurus | @sunaurus) but their last comment/post was a month ago, so I’m a little worried if I’ll ever get back into my (original) account.

    • sunaurusOPMA
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      5 months ago

      2FA has been reworked in 0.19, and as a result, all accounts had 2FA removed during that update.

  • Azzu
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    1 year ago

    I made a userscript (Lemmy post) which rewrites all links everywhere to always point to your home instance. It helps a lot with subscribing to communities and in general makes browsing the web and finding Lemmy links nicer. Maybe it could be added to the post?

  • Redd-fugee
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    11 months ago

    Is it possible to have multiple usernames/accounts on the same instance?

    • sunaurusOPMA
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      11 months ago

      It’s possible and generally allowed at the moment, but we reserve the right to add more rules if we see people abusing this. Vote manipulation, pretending to be different people in a single discussion, etc would definitely be considered abuse (just use common sense here)

  • SisterWicked
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    1 year ago

    I’m trying to join a community but searching shows no results even after multiple tries. The guide says it should synch if it’s a valid community, but nothing happens? The community is !bestupdates@lemmy.world.

        • LarmyOfLone
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          5 months ago

          Ah thank you! I tried searching for the title before and it didn’t work. But link is definitely more practical. I guess I’ll make a search engine shortcut for my local lemmy instance