postActiv is a fork of the GNU social microblogging software, intended to refactor the code and contain a variety of improvements.

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postActiv 1.0

(c) 2016 Maiyannah Bishop

Derived from code copyright various sources:

  • GNU Social (C) 2013-2016, Free Software Foundation, Inc
  • StatusNet (C) 2008-2011, StatusNet, Inc

This is the README file for postActiv, a fork of the free software networking platform GNU social, which refactors the code base and adds several patches and features. It includes general information about the software and the project.

Some other files to review:

  • INSTALL: instructions on how to install the software.
  • UPGRADE: upgrading from earlier versions
  • CONFIGURE: configuration options in gruesome detail.
  • PLUGINS.txt: how to install and configure plugins.
  • EVENTS.txt: events supported by the plugin system
  • COPYING: full text of the software license

Information on using GNU social can be found in the "doc" subdirectory or in the "help" section on-line, or you can contact maiyannah on the fediverse at or her email at


postActiv is a free software project to develop a social networking platform. It is derived from GNU Social, which is itself derived from StatusNet and Laconica. It helps people in a community, company, or group to exchange short status updates, do polls, annouce events, or other social activites. Users can choose which people to "follow" and receive only their friends' or collegues' status messages. They can also view the public timeline of the site to see everyone, or the "whole known network" timeline, to see all the people in sites that have connected with this one, by someone following them. It provides a similar service to proprietary social network sites, but is decentralized, and with many additional features and an open, free software codebase that you can develop your own plugins for, it is much more awesome.

Using plugins available to postActiv, status messages can be sent to mobile phones or pages, instant messenger clients that implement XMPP, and desktop clients with support for the Twitter API. It is also compatible with plugins developed for GNU Social.

postActiv supports an open standard called OStatus that lets users in different networks follow each other. It enables a distributed social network spread all across the Web.

postActive is derived from GNU Social, and GNU Social was originally developed as "StatusNet" by StatusNet, Inc. with Evan Prodromou as lead developer. It is forked form commit bd306bdb in the Nightly branch of GNU Social, available here: gnu/gnu-social@bd306bdb

It is shared with you in hope that you too make an service available to your users. To learn more, please see the Open Software Service Definition 1.1:


This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU Affero General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU Affero General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU Affero General Public License along with this program, in the file "COPYING". If not, see .

IMPORTANT NOTE: The GNU Affero General Public License (AGPL) has
*different requirements* from the "regular" GPL. In particular, if
you make modifications to the GNU social source code on your server,
you *MUST MAKE AVAILABLE* the modified version of the source code
to your users under the same license. This is a legal requirement
of using the software, and if you do not wish to share your

Documentation in the /doc-src/ directory is available under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license, with attribution to "GNU social". See for details.

CSS and images in the /theme/ directory are available under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license, with attribution to "GNU social". See for details.

Our understanding and intention is that if you add your own theme that uses only CSS and images, those files are not subject to the copyleft requirements of the Affero General Public License 3.0. See This is not legal advice; consult your lawyer.

Additional library software has been made available in the 'extlib' directory. All of it is Free Software and can be distributed under liberal terms, but those terms may differ in detail from the AGPL's particulars. See each package's license file in the extlib directory for additional terms.


Being a fork of GNU social, most plugins that work with GNU social 1.2.0-beta4, the version of GNU social it was forked from, should also work with postActiv. However, if you run into porting issues with a GNU social plugin that you know works with GNU social but does not with postActiv, please raise an issue in the issue tracker and we can look into this.


The primary output for postActiv is syslog, unless you configured a separate logfile. This is probably the first place to look if you're getting weird behaviour from postActiv.

If you wish the postActiv log file to be in another location, specify this with the following in the config.php file:

$config['site']['logfile'] = '/path/to/postactiv.log';

If you're tracking the unstable version of postActiv in the git repository (see below), and you get a compilation error ("unexpected T_STRING") in the browser, check to see that you don't have any conflicts in your code.

Unstable version

If you're adventurous or impatient, you may want to install the development version of GNU social. To get it, use the git version control tool like so:

git clone

In the current phase of development it is probably recommended to use git as a means to stay up to date with the source code. You can choose between these branches:

  • release "stable", few updates, well tested code
  • master "testing", more updates, usually working well
  • nightly "unstable", most updates, not always working

To keep it up-to-date, use 'git pull'. Watch for conflicts!

Further information

There are several ways to get more information about GNU social.


The following is a list of developers who've contributed to postActiv:

Lead Maintainer / Developer


  • Neil E Hodges


The following is an incomplete list of developers who've worked on GNU social, or its predecessors StatusNet and Free Social, which postActiv is derived from and acknowledges the hard work and efforts of developers

Project Founders

  • Matt Lee (GNU social)
  • Evan Prodromou (StatusNet)
  • Mikael Nordfeldth (Free Social)

Thanks to all of the StatusNet developers:

  • Zach Copley, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Earle Martin, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Marie-Claude Doyon, designer, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Sarven Capadisli, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Robin Millette, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Ciaran Gultnieks
  • Michael Landers
  • Ori Avtalion
  • Garret Buell
  • Mike Cochrane
  • Matthew Gregg
  • Florian Biree
  • Erik Stambaugh
  • 'drry'
  • Gina Haeussge
  • Tryggvi Bj√∂rgvinsson
  • Adrian Lang
  • Ori Avtalion
  • Meitar Moscovitz
  • Ken Sheppardson (Trac server, man-about-town)
  • Tiago 'gouki' Faria (i18n manager)
  • Sean Murphy
  • Leslie Michael Orchard
  • Eric Helgeson
  • Ken Sedgwick
  • Brian Hendrickson
  • Tobias Diekershoff
  • Dan Moore
  • Fil
  • Jeff Mitchell
  • Brenda Wallace
  • Jeffery To
  • Federico Marani
  • mEDI
  • Brett Taylor
  • Brigitte Schuster
  • Siebrand Mazeland and the amazing volunteer translators at
  • Brion Vibber, StatusNet, Inc.
  • James Walker, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Samantha Doherty, designer, StatusNet, Inc.
  • Simon Waters, Surevine
  • Joshua Judson Rosen (rozzin)

Extra special thanks to the GNU socialites

  • Craig Andrews
  • Donald Robertson
  • Deb Nicholson
  • Ian Denhart
  • Steven DuBois
  • Blaine Cook
  • Henry Story
  • Melvin Carvalho

Thanks also to the developers of our upstream library code and to the thousands of people who have tried out GNU social, told their friends, and built the fediverse network to what it is today.

License help from

  • Bradley M. Kuhn