Bluesky Introduces the Ability to Subscribe to Independent Moderation Services

Steinertiene Eleonora -

Bluesky Introduces the Ability to Subscribe to Independent Moderation Services

Bluesky, a decentralized rival to Twitter/X, has just announced the open-sourcing of Ozone, a tool that enables individuals and groups to collaborate in reviewing and labeling content on the network. Bluesky declares that this change will grant users "unprecedented control" over their social media experience.

The company plans to open up for individuals and groups to operate their own independent moderation services by the end of this week, meaning users will be able to subscribe to additional moderation services in addition to Bluesky's default moderation. The company envisions a layered ecosystem for moderation, enabling users to add on filters from third-party moderation services to the existing foundational measures set by Bluesky.

As a result, users will be able to create a customized experience that aligns with their preferences. For instance, someone could create a moderation service that blocks spider images across the network. If you are someone who gets startled by spiders, you could install this moderation service, and all labeled spider images would vanish from your feed.

"A group will never be perfect at moderating and curating for the entire world, with its diversity of contexts, cultures, and preferences," the company's blog post states. "Therefore, we are thrilled to open up the ecosystem to empower experts, developers, and users with local context to offer their own opinions that you can subscribe to, on top of Bluesky's moderation service."


Upon launch, the moderation service filters will be available on Bluesky's desktop version. The filters will soon be available on mobile. Bluesky indicates that installing filters from independent moderation services will be as simple as following another account. The moderation services will enable users to report content, so if you encounter an unlabeled spider image, you can report it to the service.

While Bluesky permits the creation of personal mute or block lists for public subscription, they are usually linked to individual accounts, hindering collaborative efforts and potentially leading to an influx of direct tags that can be burdensome. Moreover, unlike block lists that only let you add accounts, Ozone allows you to label specific posts.

Individuals and groups creating a moderation service will have access to a report queue, eliminating the need to tag you directly each time. Those running moderation services will be able to set custom labels and define their functions. Moderation services are not tied to individual accounts, so multiple people can manage them together.

Bluesky notes that moderation services may start as community-run projects, but also hints that "nothing prevents a moderation service from having paid subscribers.