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What is Bluesky? How to get on the waitlist for this decentralized Twitter alternative

Backed by Twitter's co-founder, Jack Dorsey, Bluesky could be the Twitter alternative many people are searching for.
Written by Jada Jones, Associate Editor
Bluesky social media app
Photo by Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

As more changes appear on Twitter at the command of Elon Musk, more people are looking for an alternative to the social media app. The decentralized Mastodon proved to be a promising alternative for some, but others found it too complicated. 

Also: I tried Bluesky Social and it's basically a far friendlier Twitter (for now)

But in late February, another decentralized Twitter alternative hit the App Store: Bluesky. The app is backed by Twitter's co-founder, Jack Dorsey, and is an invite-only beta version available on iOS and Android

What is Bluesky?

Bluesky is a decentralized social network, meaning it runs on its open-source Authenticated Transfer Protocol, where servers can interact with one another. And to appeal to Twitter users, the app's interface looks very similar to Twitter.

Also: Mastodon isn't Twitter but it's glorious

The app has yet to roll out fully, but we've had a few glimpses into the app's details. Bluesky users can post text and photos and like or repost other people's content. Like Twitter, user profiles can have a header image, a profile picture, and a bio, and can see each other's follower counts.

People on Bluesky are dubbing the posts made on there as "Skeets," a borrowing of the word Tweet and blending it with the word sky. 

Bluesky is showing promise to be a serious Twitter competitor, as U.S. House Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, "Guardians of the Galaxy" director, James Gunn, and actors Pom Klementieff and Kumail Nanjiani have joined the app.

Also: How to find your followers and friends on Mastodon

Twitter-lebrities like dril and We Rate Dogs are on the platform, signaling that people are interested in migrating from Twitter to something that looks just like Twitter but is free of Elon Musk. 

How can I create a Bluesky account?

Right now, the app is invite-only. So, without an invite, you can't use the app. But you can join Bluesky's waitlist and try out the beta version. If you have a friend already on the app, they can send you an invite code. 

Also: The best Twitter alternatives

It's unclear when Bluesky will be available to the public. According to the app's website, the app will launch soon, but a specific date has yet to be announced. 

Why is decentralized social networking becoming popular?

A few months ago, it was discovered that Meta was working on a decentralized social network to compete with Twitter. Like Mastodon and Bluesky, Meta's decentralized social network aims to give users more control over their social media experience.

In particular, decentralized social media apps aim to give users the most control over the content they consume. On traditional social networks, the app controls what people see and when they see it.

Also: Twitter Subscriptions give creators a new way to make money

On Twitter, Twitter Blue subscribers receive the most visibility on the app because they pay for an upgraded version of Twitter. Apps like Bluesky are determined to create customizable algorithms that leave it up to the user what content they see when they see it and how often they see it.

Bluesky says its AT Protocol allows users to own their online identity and move their account from one provider to another. According to Bluesky's blog, users have complete control over their algorithm, to give them autonomy over their experience on the app.

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