Twitter Announces Intent to Build a Decentralized Social Media Protocol
Jack Dorsey is the visionary founder behind Twitter and Square Financial. In a fairly long Twitter thread, Dorsey announced that Twitter is hiring a small team of developers to help build an open and transparent protocol named BlueSky, which could serve as a base for what is to be the rise of decentralized social media, December 11, 2019.
Building a Truly Open Protocol
Since Jack Dorsey outed himself as a Bitcoin proponent and integrated that faith into the core of Square’s business model, he has proved time and time again that he truly understands the need for decentralisation of services.
As per his announcement, Twitter will help fund the development of this protocol by building a small team of engineers and architects who can give shape to a social media standard that puts power back in the hands of the end user. Dorsey believes that social media, as it stands today has fostered an unhealthy culture where conversation is diverted towards controversy and sensationalism, rather than promoting healthy meaningful dialogue.
The goal of BlueSky is to create an open standard that isn’t monopolized by a single private corporation. He revealed that in his capacity as the CEO of Twitter, the only thing the company would do is fund development and provide a single vision: to build a new protocol from scratch or to refine an existing protocol for decentralized social media into a viable model.
In truly pragmatic fashion, Dorsey acknowledged it would take years of work to make BlueSky scalable for mass consumption. And by now, it should go without saying that BlueSky will run on a blockchain.
Existing Blockchain Social Media and Problems in the Real World
Steem and Gab are notable examples of projects that are trying to build decentralized social media platforms. But the problems with these two projects are rooted in various issues that cannot be solved easily.
Gab recently took a stand to ban pornography, which is a moral stance they took, but decentralization knows no morality. There have been several complaints of the platform giving a strong voice to racists and antisemitic persons, which is honestly a real problem for any decentralized means of communicating.
Twitter plans to eventually become a client of whatever standard BlueSky builds, so the problems regarding promotion of hate speech migrate here as well. Nevertheless, the intent is noble, and it will be interesting to see the shape and direction BlueSky takes.