Meta Releases Threads

If you are a celebrity or public figure, you probably gained access to Threads within the past week or so. You are also probably not reading my website. For the rest of us, Instagram’s Twitter clone is out now. As promised, you can log in with your Instagram account — full ActivityPub support is coming later, says Mosseri. What you might not expect is how Instagrammy it feels: the Home timeline is flooded with posts from people you do not follow and there does not appear to be any way to limit that. It is also quite slow — though that could be because of a rush of new users — and, ironically, crashed when I tried to post a picture.

But it is easier to understand than Mastodon and, unlike Bluesky, generally available. And it has something else, too: the backing of a major company that has experience with moderating at scale.

Casey Newton spent a few hours trying Threads before its public launch:

Had Meta launched this app in 2019, it seems safe to say, everyone would have rolled their eyes. Its big new feature is … logging in with Instagram? Come on.

By the standards of Twitter 2.0, though, it can feel like a miracle. Reading unlimited posts for free? On a robust network that basically never goes down? That is monitored by a robust team of content moderators, following a stable set of community guidelines?

When the competition is an app where “cisgender” is considered a slur, Threads has an easy time standing out as an oasis of calm and civility.

Newton also scored an interview with Adam Mosseri, who sheds some light on why Meta built Threads on ActivityPub, even if full support is not available at launch.

Anyway, if you just cannot get enough of me, I am also there.

Update: Chaya Raichik, better known as LibsOfTikTok, has joined Threads. Mosseri explains that one reason for ActivityPub support is so that banned users can take their audience elsewhere. To me, that means the bar for removing someone from Threads ought to be much lower since the repercussions are comparatively minor. Let us see whether that holds true.