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Bluesky: What is it, and why is the hype already dying down?

Many folks leaving the Twitter space were looking to apps like Bluesky as a safe place to land, but recent controversy has them in hot water.

A smartphone held up to a blue sky with clouds, open to the Bluesky social media app download page.

Bluesky, an exclusive invitation-only platform that emerged as a Twitter-like alternative, was initially seen as a promising escape from the toxicity prevalent in social media. However, when many finally decided to join around May, they wondered if the excitement faded. 

Originating as an experiment in decentralized social media at Twitter back in 2019, Bluesky eventually became an independent company with former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey serving on its board. The concept of decentralization revolves around creating an open-source protocol for developing social applications, with Bluesky Social being one of its projects.

In recent months, particularly following Elon Musk’s controversial presence on Twitter, Bluesky has attracted attention from media, politics, and tech figures who are considered influential in shaping a new platform for the masses. Publications like Wired and Rolling Stone have hailed it as a potentially pleasant alternative to Twitter. Initially, Bluesky offered a lighthearted and playful atmosphere reminiscent of Twitter, where posts were referred to as “skeets” and encompassed anything from picturesque forest pics to more daring content like nudes.

However, a recent less-than helpful interaction between Bluesky CEO Jay Graber and users of the platform shed light on the app’s apparent struggle in addressing the complex issue of content moderation, which has caused turmoil on various social media platforms. The controversy reared its head when several users demanded the removal of a user with the handle, who was accused of engaging in harmful activities such as deadnaming trans women, harassing and doxxing individuals. This incident raised questions about Bluesky’s ability to effectively handle and respond to instances of harmful behavior within its community. 

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Graber responded, “We’re watching, and will take action based on behavior. Blocks prevent interaction.” The response inspired widespread questioning as to why the company appeared hesitant to address the concerns raised by its users and take proactive measures against individuals accused of harmful behavior on other platforms. Many were left wondering why Bluesky didn’t prioritize the well-being and safety of its community members by addressing the issues quickly. What do you think?

Macie LaCau is a passionate writer, herbal educator, and dog enthusiast. She spends most of her time overthinking and watering her tiny tomatoes.


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