Have you received your invite? Bluesky Social, the new decentralized social media platform and alternative to Twitter, has opened up its invite-only platform to friends of members. In beta testing since March of 2023, “Bluesky is like Twitter without Musk,” according to TechRadar and has more than 40,000 members and growing with a waitlist over 1m.
With the chaos of verification checkmarks being stripped from users and many facing the prospect of paying for services that were once free, users are looking for alternatives. Should you join Bluesky if you score an invitation?
What is Bluesky Social?
The interface looks awfully like Twitter – for good reason. The company has ties to Twitter founder, Jack Dorsey, who sits on the board and was formed with funding from Twitter in 2021. The company describes itself as: “an open and durable decentralized protocol for public conversations can allow users a choice in their experience, creators control over their relationships with their audience, and developers freedom to innovate without permission from a platform.” With the turmoil Elon Musk has brought to Twitter, users are leaving for alternatives like Mastadon with mixed reviews. With Bluesky Social extending membership to friends, buzz is abound for a new alternative to Twitter. According to Bloomberg:
According to the same Bloomberg article, after testing the app, “it works much like a rudimentary version of Twitter, allowing 300-character posts and replies, the ability to repost and also share photos as well as text. In testing by Bloomberg News, the Android Bluesky app was occasionally slow to load, but it has all the basic features required for communicating with a much quicker and smoother onboarding process than Mastodon.”
What Bluesky and other Twitter competitors are doing differently is running them on decentralized platforms. According to Bluesky Social’s CEO:
The development and adoption of decentralized protocols is a path we see towards establishing a strong technical foundation for permissionless innovation and user choice… by creating an environment where developers can freely build, communities can self-govern, and users can easily switch services, decentralization can catalyze the innovation necessary to improve the public conversation.Bluesky Social CEO Jay Graber
Doing so allows users the ability to have more control over their experience and user details. You can move your username to different sites, profile link to any website you want (unlike Twitter) and, in theory, have community-based rules and more autonomy. So far, in a closed ecosystem, there are fewer bots and heated debates, too.
Over time, we will see how this community develops differently than Twitter thanks to the power of decentralization.
In the meantime, sign up for the waitlist here: https://bsky.app