He first made mention of this in 2019 in a number of tweets.
We are trying to do our part by funding an initiative around an open decentralized standard for social media. Our goal is to be a client of that standard for the public conversation layer of the internet. We call it @bluesky: https://t.co/51or6OuNNv
— jack (@jack) January 14, 2021
Researchers involved with bluesky reveal to TechCrunch an initiative still in its earliest stages that could fundamentally shift the power dynamics of the social web.
Bluesky is aiming to build a “durable” web standard that will ultimately ensure that platforms like Twitter have less centralized responsibility in deciding which users and communities have a voice on the internet. While this could protect speech from marginalized groups, it may also upend modern moderation techniques and efforts to prevent online radicalization.
When I first heard about Bluesky there was little information then at some point during the pandemic I heard about the iOS only app Planetary. My instant thought was oh no there going to try and bypass all the excellent work which has been done by others already. Especially with ActivityPub now a W3C recommendation.
I looked beyond the Techcrunch post (which is full of little odd bits) to see what I could dig up about Bluesky. Looking at the Github repo from Planetary it seems to be based on the Scuttlebot.io protocol? Its good to also see Scuttlebug to ActivityPub and RSS too. As its Scuttlebot, theres other clients for many other platforms.
So my question is what difference does it make over what already exists?
I get if twitter was to be a client of the protocol that would be generally a good thing and I imagine the publicity for decentralised systems would be welcomed but beyond that? Will their business model change? Will anything change? I guess does anything need to change from Twitter’s point of view?
On top of this all, will all the efforts before hand be forgotten now Twitter throws their hat into the ring? That would be awful for all the hard work others have put in for years and years.
I just watched the social dilemma.
I have to say its actually very well produced and gets the points across in a way which I feel might actually cause some thought. We have heard this before in many different places but I liked the family story which gave it some well needed context. Although it does go maybe a bit too far in the story. Heck I was wondering if the son was about to get himself a gun…
My only really issue is its very American focused except Myanmar which received a short segment. The insiders don’t reflect the diversity of wider society but of course that speaks volume. But Cathy O’Neil said it best,
Do we really want to hand this problem over to technologists who helped create this problem?
Unfortunately that kind includes the well meaning Tristan Harris and many others on the documentary. Its interesting who isn’t in the documentary, such as people like Douglas Rushkoff, Doc Searls, Clay Shirky, etc.
Is it the business model, is it the economic model, shareholder value, lack of governmental pressure, legal regulation, monopolistic practices, undemocratic markets? Or is it actually a bit of all of them?
So its a 7/10 its good but I feel After Truth: Disinformation and the Cost of Fake News (2020) has the edge.
I guess the biggest question is what happens next? Will people actually act after seeing the documentary? Thats the big question.
Little note: I enjoyed the older sister reading The Age of Surveillance Capitalism on the sofa. I didn’t spot Cathy’s Weapons of math destruction and there was attribution to Natasha Schüll’s Addicted by design
About a month ago a few friends cc’ed me into a conversation with tech for good live on Twitter by friends
Would anyone want to use the @techforgoodlive podcast platform for #BlackLivesMatter? Is there a pod you want to make about being black and working in tech? About bias in AI? Whatever you want, it's yours. We can help if you're new to podcasting. Is this a good idea? DM me
— Bex Rae-Evans (@RebeccaWho) June 10, 2020
After a while we finally got talking agreed a schedule and I went about getting people to join me on the agreed 3 podcasts. I won’t lie, getting time with busy people in the middle of lockdown was difficult but I managed.