contact message

Contact messages are used to follow or unfollow another user. This affects your social graph and gossiping. Once you follow a given user, you’ll start replicating all of that user’s feed and, depending on how your client is configured, your followers’ friends. Most clients will do two levels of replication, so you end up with all your friends’ data and friends-of-friends’ data, much like the physical world in which you’ll often hear gossip regarding your friends’ friends.

What does it look like?

  "key": "%JJW6l3PphHHNxkbe6q+gzsgsgOIgIEjqtnKVq5fo=.sha256",
  "value": {
    "previous": "%4UrrxMHmjgkw/tDZ40ztxwwrg2TQSzPVMw9efqj9E=.sha256",
    "sequence": 1182,
    "author": "@GLH9VPzvvU2KcnnUwgwgTUtzw+Rk6fd/Kb9Si0=.ed25519",
    "timestamp": 1560279915710,
    "hash": "sha256",
    "content": {
      "type": "contact",
      "contact": "@S954DSMnCh8aBqwegwegVZSBtK9N49Wq5AHh3OwOjo=.ed25519",
      "following": true
    "signature": "laHTnqQkbem2rFxvfwegwegwI4B7l2BE8n60sWsW8UZ/H6B1xz1yhlFGJ/2NkIBGsxpIW7GJM4i8uTCDg==.sig.ed25519"
  "timestamp": 1560279930388,
  "rts": 1560279915710

In the message above, the author is following (specified by the following field) a user specified by the contact field. If the value of the following field was false, that would be an unfollow message.