As influencers and celebrities fret over chaos at Twitter, a new platform called Bluesky is being hyped as a promising alternative.
Bluesky was created by Twitter’s co-founder Jack Dorsey and is now the talk of Silicon Valley, leaving those in the know scrambling to secure an invite to join the app that is still at the testing phase.
The platform looks and feels like Twitter as its backers want users from the Elon Musk-owned site to feel at home, though posts on the app are referred to as “skeets”, not tweets.
The momentum gained for Bluesky last week as left-wing Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and fashion model Chrissy Teigen, who have millions of followers on Twitter, joined the platform.
Bluesky is right now invite only, following a similar path to success taken by many other platforms that built buzz and fear of missing out by limiting initial users.
According to Forbes magazine, citing data from Data.ai, the Bluesky app has been downloaded 360,000 times and is currently ahead of some popular platforms such as LinkedIn, Bing or Zoom in the Apple App Store ranking.
“Bluesky might be the Twitter-like we’ve been waiting for,” wrote the influential tech news site The Verge last week.
A key difference from Twitter is that Bluesky will run on a decentralized network which gives users more control over how their data is stored and how content is moderated.
This is in the spirit of Mastodon, which has also been ballyhooed as a potential threat to Twitter, but whose complicated signing up procedures has so far stopped it from gaining traction.
The hype over Bluesky came as Dorsey used the platform to say that he no longer thought that Musk was the right leader for Twitter, the site he co-created in 2006.
“It all went south,” Dorsey said of Musk’s Twitter ownership in a series of Bluesky posts, responding to user questions, as reported by CNBC.
Dorsey said Musk should have “walked away” from the $44 billion deal and that the board of Twitter was mistaken to hold the Tesla tycoon to the acquisition when Musk tried to undo it.
Musk’s tumultuous takeover went through in October with Dorsey’s backing and many users have shopped around for a new forum to communicate, with nothing yet emerging as an alternative.