Today we got our first custom domain name handle registered on Bluesky. Daniel was previously @dan.bsky.social. Now his handle is @dholms.xyz, because he owns the domain dholms.xyz.
Here’s why we’ve designed the AT protocol to let you join a social network with a custom domain and prioritized it as a feature in Bluesky:
- You can tell which accounts are authentic based on the websites they’re associated with. Custom domain handles are a decentralized way for us to achieve a level of account verification. Curious if “@potus.bsky.social” is actually the president of the US? Once this feature fully lands, you should assume the actual president of the US would have an official domain handle like “@potus.whitehouse.gov”.
- You can use the same handle to identify you across social media services. I own jaygraber.com, so if I set my handle to @jaygraber.com on Bluesky, I can tell my friends to find me at this stable handle across any AT Protocol social site that supports custom domains.
- You can keep a custom domain handle when you switch services. If you’re currently using the bsky.social service we’re running, but you decide you don’t like our policies and want to switch to another, you’ll be able to keep the same domain handle.
Custom domain handles are a way for us to improve the state of trust and control users have over their social identities online. It builds off the existing infrastructure of DNS, the naming system for websites.
We’re excited for this feature to ship as the first step in our roadmap for protocol features that will create a more user-controlled social network.