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Several years in the making, GitLab is now very actively implementing #ActivityPub! 🙌

The end-goal is to support AP for merge requests (aka pull requests), meaning can send a merge request to

First bite-sized todo on the implementation path there is ‘subscribe to project releases’.

Smart move by #GitLab; through ActivityPub they’re getting a distributed version of GitHub’s social layer.

@fediversenews #fediverse #GitHub #git

This entry was edited (7 months ago)
@fediversenews Awesome! I read the thread and saw no mention of @forgefed either, do you folks know anything about these efforts?
@astrojuanlu I'm also a little worried so see so little mention of @forgefed, and especially the idea that it's something that will be used for some small parts later without necessarily considering compatibility from the beginning. I hope I'm just misinterpreting what's been written and that ForgeFed compatibility will be taken into account at every stage.
This entry was edited (7 months ago)

@caesar @astrojuanlu it’s not mentioned on that page, but there are many amicable mentions of it elsewhere in the long tail of this development:

Also good news is that they're aware of #ForgeFed and are considering to implement it for the more forge-specific activities, after getting a baseline of social updates of discussions and activities via AP.

A contributor discussed @forgefed in the comments on that issue a few hours ago:



“Yep, I saw it, it looks awesome. :) It will be a good protocol [for] cross-instance discussions and merge requests.

The current [proposal] allow people on the fediverse to follow activity on Gitlab instances, without write access,[…] I prefer to avoid using an extension of ActivityPub

Given how ForgeFed already did all the design work, I don't see any reason not to use it”

@Erlend Sogge Heggen Ooo finally, this is exciting! I'm immediately slightly worried it doesn't mention ForgeFed or Codeberg in anyway - I hope it doesn't mean there are no interop discussions heavily going in the background. Using ActivityPub doesn't automatically mean interop.

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@smallcircles@fediversenews Can you explain that end goal a bit more for the only partly technical like myself? Does that mean if a project is open to PR/MRs that anyone on AP anywhere can remotely send them an MR without having to log in to Gitlab and make the MR there?

the Why and How sections of that issue are highly instructive.

Your understanding seems correct: In the most expansive version of this vision, anyone running an AP-enabled git instance (with one or more repos) can send MRs to another instance’s repo, without having to sign up there.

For starters this will be GitLab-specific, but that’s already huge for self-hosters of GitLab who currently don’t benefit from the internal interop of the network.

This entry was edited (7 months ago)

@Brendanjones also hugely impactful as a way around GitHub’s moat as the de-facto social network of open source development. I follow hundreds of developers on GitHub, though mainly just to keep track of who I’ve interacted with, effectively adding them to a dev-specific address book.

I have a much harder time keeping track of non-GitHub devs on alt platforms, but if I could follow them on the fediverse that’s actually preferable over GitHub’s proprietary follow list.

thanks for the explanation.

Yeah I'm sad to say I don't follow a single dev or project anywhere but Github. Wouldn't mind having them all on a list here, instead.

Also good news is that they're aware of #ForgeFed and are considering to implement it for the more forge-specific activities, after getting a baseline of social updates of discussions and activities via AP.

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Est-ce que c'est #Cloudflare
🔔 Cloudflare: ``

It's great to see this move!

#Git essentially has solved the distributed software development problem (at least the technical parts).

However, it has always bothered me that there is no generalization to distributed feedback in the form of issues and merge requests.

Several years ago, we've been playing with design ideas to have the issues also in git, but did like neither the models available then nor our own ideas. Finally a path forward!

Several years indeed! I've been waiting for this for a long time
Like that last point! GitHub is at this point more of a social platform that a coding platform 😉

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Even better move would be to participate in I didn't see any mention within their issues. Looks like #GitLab is trying to build ActivityPub support where it can't fulfill the need. Even while there already are efforts to build upon it and extend for a forge based protocol #ForgeFed. Leading to still isolated software instead of distributed where I don't need additional wrapper and efforts.
@danielsiepmann why can't ActivityPub work for this use case?
@danielsiepmann sorry, I should be clearer; as co-author of the AP and AS2 specs, I definitely think it makes a good fit for this use case, and I'm surprised by your assertion that it won't work.
I think they don't realize ForgeFed is based on ActivityPub (although I think it doesn't use AS/2). So it's most definitely fulfilling that use case.

@Evan Prodromou as @Blake Leonard wrote it is an extension to ActivityPub as activity pub fulfils some, but not all requirements. It doesn't know, and doesn't need to know, about patches, commits, issues, for example.

That's already mentioned on their website where you can find the source at

@danielsiepmann They're using ForgeFed logic as inspiration (it's mentioned in the epics by a GitLab developer in Brussels) but misspelled as fedForge
I'm keeping my expectations tempered atm, since Gitlab isn't implementing this, an external contributor is. That's still good, but as always with an external contributor contributing code to corp open source, there's the risk that company priorities aren't aligned, or shift such that the contribution is no longer welcomed.
is this compatible with the work gitea/forgejo has been doing?
Wow! I can't believe this move!!

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that’s really cool!

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wonder if this will work with forgefed for forgejo
I look forward to seeing this version and the communication between the instances !!!

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I hope GitLab will manage to do everything they’re planning to join Fediverse. After that GitHub would need to hustle up do the same. I will help them with the roadmap:
* Add projects avatars
* Add release discussions
* Implement ActivityPub for releases

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amazing. This would make me move my projects over to GitLab (either self-hosted or the official instance) almost immediately.

Bonus points if #Codeberg, #Gitee, and so on implement a compatible implementation.

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@CodexArcanum I was going to go with a mallory joke given the alice & bob references, but yours works too. ;) @erlend@fediversenews

That final goal looks... awesome.

At the cost of domain fixation, I can easily send someone else's GitLab repository.

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@carl what a good idea, seems like a great next step for a git solution in general. The decentralisation open such possibilities. And got already support signed commits to ensure the commit is from the correct sender.

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A good opportunity to self host a gitlab again

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I was thinking why. But yes gitlab is like mastodon also multi instance. Would be nice if they work together.

I was thinking you would be able them to follow updates on mastodon. Also a fun feature but this is better 😊

Maybe github can also join the multiverse then 😊

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Hi Erlend 👋 Now I'm officially around. :)

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@kik yay, welcome! 🤗

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