Could Bluesky Become the New Black Among Social Networks?

Exploring Jack Dorsey's latest creation

What the @ is going on @Twitter you ask? Well, it can really only be described as a cross between the *this is fine* meme and *Michael Jackson eating popcorn* gif. The Twitterverse erupted into chaos shortly after it was announced in April that everyone would need to pay for verification, but then if you had over a million followers you didn't actually have to pay, and even then there were exceptions.

Let's just say the news didn't sit well with a few users, like the ones who ghosted the platform altogether and immediately entered into an exclusive relationship with TikTok or Instagram.

For a minute, it seemed as if Mastodon was our only hope for posting short-form content lacking an edit button, but now it seems everyone who has been able to score an invite code is flocking to Bluesky, founded by Twitter co-founder @Jack.

Like every other digital media strategist on the planet, I'm just trying to keep up; creating accounts on every Twitter clone possible, all while thinking THIS time around I'll score my @firstname. I also need to be ready in the unlikely event my company should require a new social media platform strategy. Bluesky has an early Twitter vibe with over 50k users, but this "blue" space isn't associated with a check mark protest movement. There’s no algorithm, no ads, no official verification, no video content, no DMs, and I believe the ability to block (mute) another user happened overnight. There aren't even hashtags yet; believe me I tried. Posts are referred to as posts, although there are passionate users who have unofficially designated them "skeets."

The new social network keeps me entertained as hilarity ensues. Folks are stepping up to the mic with their best attempts to make Bluesky's "What’s hot" list—the app's "For you" page. And because the feed isn’t a traffic jam of news networks vying for clicks, "what’s hot" is an abundance of cat photos, announcing well-known personality arrivals, and sharing the dirt about what's going on over on that other app. Since the app is in beta, you can’t send a link to a specific post, so we're all relying on screenshots or it didn’t happen. 

In this new virtual world, Cher and Madonna are not THAT Cher and Madonna, and you can't squat on known handles including "Beyonce," "Google," "NYTimes," "Nike," and "Starbucks." We'll have to wait and see what happens to the parody @Arbys account, but for reference, there’s a Myspace co-founder Tom account that has been heavily "flagged for impersonation."

For now, things in the friendly skies of blue are quite uneventful. It's a safe space because your boss isn’t there, yet. It’s a new beginning (but we’ve been here before) and there's a shiny new Wikipedia page waiting to be filled with cultural moments. Who will have the first "skeet" to go viral? What brand will eventually make the list of companies to watch on Bluesky? What will be the mascot for when Bluesky is over capacity? 

Here we go again, it’s the social media platform circle of life.

Leslie Richin
Leslie Richin is a digital media strategist and freelance writer living in Washington, D.C. In addition to Muse, she has contributed to Billboard, Hollywood Reporter, Spin, Paste, Adweek, Spotify for Artists News, PopMatters, ABC News, Bethesda Magazine and Curl.

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