Users Flock to Jack Dorsey’s Twitter Rival Bluesky, but Fine Print Gives Some Pause

The Twitter alternative reported its biggest single-day jump in users yet on Thursday

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Social media users are flocking to Bluesky Social, the Twitter alternative created by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey announced in 2019 and formally founded in 2021.

The invite-only platform, which has not formally launched and is one of several rival platforms to emerge in recent months, has been picking up steam in recent days.

Bluesky Social had already received 30,000 signups for the app within two days in October, and it reported its biggest single-day jump in users yet on Thursday. Notable users include U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, writer-comedian Dril and model Chrissy Teigen.

According to Fortune, Bluesky Social has been downloaded 360,000 times from Apple’s app store worldwide, citing data from the consumer data group, with over a million more users on the waitlist.

Dorsey unveiled the Bluesky project in 2019, which was initially funded by Twitter to develop an “open and decentralized standard for social media.”

“The goal is for Twitter to ultimately be a client of this standard,” he said at the time.

While the company distinguishes itself from Twitter by claiming user data will be controlled by users and free of governmental or corporate influence, one social media user already suggested reasons for hesitation after reading the fine print of Bluesky’s terms of service.

Ashley Gjøvik, an American program manager known for her whistleblowing and labor complaints against Apple, posted several screenshots and warned that Bluesky’s terms of service give Dorsey “a ‘perpetual’ and ‘irrevocable’ license to all your content (posts, names, likeness, pics).”

“Bluesky can delete your account for any reason, but may refused to delete it if you ask,” she added. “All disputes = individual arbitration.”

Bluesky CEO Jay Gaber replied to the post, explaining that she “asked for a standard social media [terms of service] from our lawyers in preparation for our beta app release.”

“It was not my intent for the legalese to end up so confusing and unfriendly,” Gaber added. “We’ve already been working on a second pass over the past few weeks.”

The rise of Bluesky comes amid continued confusion and chaos at Twitter under the ownership of Elon Musk, who earlier this month removed legacy verification marks en masse, turning the Blue Check into a major social stigma in the process. The removal was part of the billionaire’s effort to spur sign-ups for an $8 per month subscription service — an effort that has failed miserably.

Several high-profile accounts have since had their verifications restored, though Musk admitted he is paying for some of the verifications himself.

Musk purchased Twitter in October for $44 billion. He was however forced to do so in order to avoid a lawsuit, after he spent months trying to back out of the deal.