Originally published on September 22, 2023, this article has been updated to include an explainer video.
Imagine posting a thought or piece of content on Threads and having followers from another platform, like Mastodon, like and comment on that post. It’s a possibility that’ll soon come to fruition if Meta keeps its promise to allow the nearly 10 million people who still use Threads to follow and interact with users on other platforms like Mastodon.
This is all thanks to the fediverse, or the federated universe, which is best described as a group of social media networks that are independent but able to communicate with one another. The fediverse’s origins reportedly date back to the early 2000s. But in with an increasingly fragmented social media landscape, Twitter’s decline, data privacy concerns and a colossal creator economy, the promise of cross-platform communication in the fediverse has sparked curiosity for some in the industry, especially with Meta’s plan to make Threads part of it.