Rather than instances and federation, which seem like such distant terms, why not think of neighbourhoods?
A town or city has lots of little neighbourhoods. They all have their own character. Some are big, some are small. Some are full of artists, others, blue-collar workers from the nearby factory.
There's a community notice board where the neighbourhood communicates, and a bigger one that a bunch of neighbourhoods get together on.
How's that sound for an accessible metaphor?
Yay! #Mastodon 2.0 is finally here! 🐘🎆
Read all about the custom emojis, new changes and much more at: https://github.com/tootsuite/mastodon/releases/tag/v2.0.0
by next friday, "China’s Twitter-like Weibo orders users to register their real names"
''The service boasted 340 million active monthly users in the first quarter of this year, accounting for 40 per cent of the country’s population and surpassing Twitter, which is blocked in China, which had about 328 million active monthly users.''
Mastodon v1.6.0 has been released, check it out!