Bluesky (protocol)

Summary

Bluesky is an initiative to develop a decentralized social network protocol. Organized by Twitter as a non-profit initiative, it was announced in 2019 and is in a research phase as of 2022. Bluesky is owned by the team itself, without any controlling stake held by Twitter.[1][2]

DescriptionEdit

Bluesky is an initiative to develop a decentralized social network protocol, such that multiple social networks, each with its own systems of curation and moderation, can interact with other social networks through an open standard. Each social network using the protocol is an "application".[3]

DevelopmentEdit

 
jack⚡️ Twitter
@jack

Twitter is funding a small independent team of up to five open source architects, engineers, and designers to develop an open and decentralized standard for social media. The goal is for Twitter to ultimately be a client of this standard. 🧵

Dec 11, 2019[4]

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey first announced the Bluesky initiative in 2019 on Twitter. The company's Chief Technology Officer Parag Agrawal invited initial working group members in early 2020. The group expanded with representatives from decentralized networks Mastodon and ActivityPub. The group coordinated through Element chat software. Twitter commissioned Jay Graber of the Happening decentralized social network to compose a technical review of the decentralized social network landscape.[3] She was hired as the Bluesky project lead in August 2021.[5]

Twitter executives approved of the initiative's scope and goals, which include what the protocol itself should encompass and what should be left to applications (the social networks built atop the standard). Some of these goals include letting applications customize their system of moderation, making applications responsible for compliance and takedown requests, and preventing virality algorithms from reinforcing controversy and moral outrage. The working group did not have a common consensus towards these goals, so Twitter decided to field individual proposals, which ranged from reinforcing existing standards to endorsing standard interoperability, letting usage data decide where to invest. In early 2021, Bluesky was in a research phase, with 40–50 people from the decentralized technology community active in assessing options and assembling proposals for the protocol. The hired project manager will assemble the team of protocol developers.[3]

The company's blockchain division, newly announced in November 2021, will work with the Bluesky initiative.[6]

In March 2022, Bluesky announced three of their first employees. Aaron Goldman, who had previously worked for Google and Twitter, was hired as a security engineer. Paul Frazee and Daniel Holmgren were hired as protocol engineers.[7]

On April 15, 2022, Jack Dorsey acknowledged that the initial progress on the project from the first developers was off to a slow start.[8]

On April 26, 2022, Bluesky put out a statement saying that the project will remain unaffected by Elon Musk's takeover of Twitter, stating that Bluesky has been independently operating as a public benefit limited liability company since February of that year. This gives Bluesky the freedom to put their resources toward their mission without an obligation to return money to shareholders.[9]

In May 2022, Bluesky unveiled its first set of codes, including the code for its "Authenticated Ata eXperiment (ADX) protocol. They also revealed that they will begin to share the platform's development process, before the process is complete.[10]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Benson, Decrypt / Jeff (April 26, 2022). "Decentralized Twitter Project Bluesky Says It's Unaffected by Elon Musk Purchase". Decrypt. Retrieved April 26, 2022.
  2. ^ "What Elon Musk's Twitter Takeover Means for Developers". The New Stack. April 30, 2022. Retrieved May 1, 2022.
  3. ^ a b c Matney, Lucas (January 15, 2021). "Twitter's decentralized future". TechCrunch. Archived from the original on September 6, 2021. Retrieved September 6, 2021.
  4. ^ jack⚡️ [@jack] (December 11, 2019). "Twitter is funding a small independent team of up to five open source architects, engineers, and designers to develop an open and decentralized standard for social media. The goal is for Twitter to ultimately be a client of this standard. 🧵" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  5. ^ Matney, Lucas (August 16, 2021). "Twitter taps crypto developer to lead 'bluesky' decentralized social network effort". TechCrunch. Archived from the original on September 6, 2021. Retrieved September 6, 2021.
  6. ^ Lyons, Kim (November 10, 2021). "Twitter is launching a dedicated crypto team, part of its push toward decentralization". The Verge. Retrieved November 16, 2021.
  7. ^ Dang, Sheila (March 31, 2022). "Social media interoperability project Bluesky names first employees". Reuters. Retrieved April 21, 2022.
  8. ^ "Bluesky Funding to Be Reviewed If Twitter Owners Change: Dorsey". Bloomberg. April 15, 2022. Retrieved May 11, 2022.
  9. ^ "Bluesky Unaffected by Elon Musk Twitter Takeover". Coinspeaker. April 26, 2022. Retrieved April 26, 2022.
  10. ^ "Twitter's decentralized Bluesky releases its first codes - Techiexpert.com". May 21, 2022. Retrieved May 26, 2022.

Further readingEdit

  • Palmer, Annie (December 11, 2019). "Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has an idealistic vision for the future of social media and is funding a small team to chase it". CNBC. Archived from the original on March 29, 2021. Retrieved September 6, 2021.
  • Robertson, Adi (January 21, 2021). "Twitter's decentralized social network project takes a baby step forward". The Verge. Archived from the original on August 19, 2021. Retrieved September 6, 2021.

External linksEdit

  • Official website