Social networking is only going in one direction – up. The huge social networking sites such as Facebook, X and LinkedIn have become a necessity for businesses. They increasingly recognise the importance of incorporating social networking features with their content strategy. The benefits are broad and wide. Social networking helps to increase brand awareness, improve social signals, offers word-of-mouth advertising, and boosts audience reach and influence.
Social networking’s appeal is even more notable among consumers. Social media helps individuals follow breaking news, keep up with family, friends, or colleagues, as well as contributing to online debates, and learning from others. Social networking sites have been rapidly adopted by children and, especially, teenagers and young people worldwide. 98% of 18-24 year old use social media in the UK.
The open source community plays an important role in the social networking space. It helps individuals create their own social network easily. With the software featured in this article, users can take more control of their site, and help establish and maintain a connection between users of the site. New social networking platforms keep appearing from every corner. Unlike newcomers, all of the mature software packages featured here are professional, have a good feature set, and are easy to install and configure.
To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled the following list of open source social networking software.
Here’s our ratings chart capturing our recommendations. All of the software is free and open source.
Click the links to learn more about each program.
|Social Networking Software
|Social network server based on ActivityPub
|WordPress plugin that offers social networking in a box
|Privacy-aware, distributed, open source social network
|Joomla social networking and Subscription Management software
|Decentralized social media platform
|Award-winning social networking engine
|Microblogging server software
|Feature rich and highly flexible social network software
|Fork of Misskey
|Communications platform that integrates social communication
|Social communication software used in federated social networks
|Social server with an ActivityStreams API
|Enterprise social network
This article has been revamped in line with our recent announcement.
|Read our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.
The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.
There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.