Threads Rolls Out Fediverse Beta In The U.S.

One day after Instagram engineer Peter Cottle previewed what it would look like for Threads users to post to the fediverse, the company has begun rolling out the beta to users in the U.S., Canada and Japan.

“We’re making progress integrating Threads into the fediverse and launching a beta in a few countries that lets people choose to federate their posts,” Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted on Threads. “If you see this and turn it on from your profile, you’ll see likes from federated platforms appear on your posts here.”

Most of the comments on Zuckerberg’s post share a similar level of confusion around the term “fediverse,” which aligns with Cottle’s point on Wednesday: “we have to both explain the fediverse and explain all the disclaimers and then make sure they feel good about the outcome.”

That is no easy feat.

By “federated platforms,” Zuckerberg is referring to apps like Mastodon that have integrated with the ActivityPub protocol, which allows users to jump between a hub of decentralized apps with the same profile.

The beta of Threads’ fediverse integration will allow users to toggle on the feature that allows cross-platform posting and viewing likes from other federated platforms.

However, the update is still limited. According to Cottle's presentation, only users with public profiles will be able to turn on fediverse sharing, which lets users on other servers search for Threads users, follow their profile, view their posts, interact with their content and share their content to anyone on or off their server.

Users currently are not able to view replies or follows from the fediverse either, and Meta has made it clear that it cannot guarantee deleted Threads posts that were initially sent out to the fediverse will be deleted from other linked platforms.

Despite the current limitations and public confusion, this beta launch marks Meta's commitment to exploring a new way of using social media.

Threads is Meta's decentralized app that has become a direct competitor to X.

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