People Wanted alternative social networks long before Elon Musk bought Twitter and went full chaos mode. From BeReal to Gas, multiple new options enjoyed breakout moments as legacy platforms sputtered. The hunt for a viable Twitter alternative sped up after most people on Twitter’s staff were laid off or chose to leave. One social platform that’s gained recent traction is Hive Social. Oh, and it appears to be run by two people.
“You want to see your friends and family, so we just kept it simple and people seem to really like the chronological feed,” Kassandra Pop, CEO of Hive Social, told Teen Vogue in 2021. The overall structure of Hive is reminiscent of Twitter crossed with Instagram. A reduced focus on algorithms is one of the platform’s primary differentiators.
It’s worth noting that core security measures and accessibility features expected from mainstream social platforms are not yet present on Hive. Android smartphone owners may want to wait for an update, as the recently released Android app is much more buggy than the iOS option. It’s also worth noting that the service has no web frontend right now: It’s mobile only. You can follow the team on Twitter or LinkedIn or on Hive as, predictably, @hive, for updates as the platform grows.
Want to experience what all the buzz is about right now anyway? Here’s how to join, and a few tips for new users.
How to Sign Up
- Download Hive Social from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.
- Open the app, and tap on the button that reads Create an Account.
- On the next page, choose whether you want to create an account using your email address or phone number. It’s possible to create an account with your Apple or Google credentials as well.
- After that, you may need to enter a security code sent to your phone number or email address.
- The following page requests your date of birth.
- Next, choose a display name and username. (Think of your username as equivalent to a Twitter handle, although it’s not unique to your account.)
- Pick three or more topics that interest you, like anime, tech, and horror.
- Tap Start Exploring to find and follow people you enjoy.
- Choose the tab with a beehive icon to see posts from people you follow. The magnifying glass icon is where you can find posts from the community or search for people to follow. The middle tab is for composing your own posts. The next tab along the bottom is for notifications. And the one all the way to the right is for your profile.
Tips to Help You Get Started
- If you experience issues signing up via email, try using your phone number instead.
- Adult content is allowed, but you have to enable it first. Visit your profile page, tap on the settings gear, choose Privacy & Safety, then tap on the Mature Content tab. The toggle needs to be to the right. Any nudity posted needs to be tagged as NSFW.
- On the Privacy & Safety page, you can make your account private so it’s only visible to your followers. This is also where you can mute specific words, control who is allowed to comment on your posts, and block accounts.
- From the settings page, tap on Music to choose whether or not the song on your profile page automatically plays. Think of it as your walk-on music. The first song choice does not cost to add. More song slots are available for purchase.
- Tap on the question mark icon seen on a mutual follower’s profile to ask them public questions.
- When you’re editing your profile, it’s possible to set your pronouns to be only visible to specific audiences.
- You may be accustomed to Twitter’s photo limit that caps the number of pics in a post at 4. Hive allows users to add more than 4 images to a gallery post.
- Make sure to use hashtags if you want your post to show up in the discovery tab.