The blockchain buzz started on social media. Cryptocurrency is enjoying its current popularity mostly because the network effect that these platforms are able to create nowadays. But can crypto-based social platforms actually become the worst enemy of traditional social networks? Experts like James Murphy from Forbes and blockchain writer, Nick Rojas claim that this will be inevitable, while Andre van Regenmortel, which has more than 20 years of experience in consulting services, believes that users aren’t ready to jump ship yet. Even Mark Zuckerberg has an opinion on the topic. All of these while we’re having projects like Howdoo already putting more power in people’s hands! What’s the reality?
1. More than just promises
“There’s inevitably going to be a better way to build social networks, and a robust area of blockchain technology hopes to provide it. There are dozens of projects in the works to provide functionality similar to Facebook, as well as Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and a variety of other social media platforms.”
2. Centralization vs Decentralization
“One of the most interesting questions in technology right now is about centralization vs decentralization. A lot of us got into technology because we believe it can be a decentralizing force that puts more power in people’s hands […] Back in the 1990s and 2000s, most people believed technology would be a decentralizing force.”
3. Decentralized media? Are you sure?
“The real advantage of a decentralized social network would be that users would have all the power, rather than the network administrators […] So the real benefit of a DSN is a more democratic platform where users own their own data and are in control of their experience. The problem with a DSN is that it’s very hard to get enough people on a network to make it a truly functioning social network. The vast majority of people want to join a network because their friends are on it, not because of its founding ideals.”
4. Could Facebook actually redeem and renovate itself?
“If Facebook could give its two billion users the advantages of a true decentralized Blockchain economy on a platform that they are already using, it might have a chance of beating decentralized social media at its own game and fueling worldwide adoption of the technology.
On the other hand, it may turn out to be a case of ‘teaching an old dog new tricks,’ or worse – ‘a wolf in sheep’s clothing,’ adding to the misunderstanding of and disillusionment with Blockchain technology by the public. Only time will tell which scenario will come to be realized.”
5. David vs Goliath
“A number of commentators have described the digital marketing scene as being broken. Indeed, despite being a multi-billion-dollar industry that is dependent on the output of content creators, a large portion of this revenue goes to the big firms like Facebook, Google et al. Content creators, on the other hand, find it difficult to monetize their output […]
Despite the apparent migration of content providers from mainstream social media, it is important to note that the numbers aren’t yet significant in any way. None of these blockchain-based platforms is yet to reach the Facebook monthly average of 2 billion users.”
6. A little red pill for over optimistic thoughts
“The reality is that most people do not want to run their own web servers or social network nodes. They want to engage with the web through friendlier platforms, and these platforms will be constrained by the same forces that drive consolidation today.
Decentralized web advocates have good intentions, but there’s no silver-bullet technical solution for the challenges that lie ahead.”
7. It’s all connected – tighter than you may have thought…
“There is no doubt that social media played a huge role in boosting cryptocurrency to its current status. Global companies are taking a serious look at cryptocurrency and blockchain technology to streamline many of their current, somewhat antiquated business processes.
But the balance does seem to be shifting. Crypto-based social platforms are on the rise and solving many of the issues traditional social networks have in place for both users and businesses.”
8. Almost the same, yet fundamentally different
“Most Decentralized blockchain business models are only in their infancies and haven’t quite emerged yet to rival their centralized counterparts. However, it’s important to understand how and why some emerging blockchain projects could potentially offer much better solutions.
In time, decentralized business models should be much better than the current centralized systems most people utilize today. However, the transition towards decentralized business models isn’t easy to accomplish overnight.”
9. Some long standing decentralized social media favorites
“Social networks have been so popular because they appeal to a basic human need, namely the need to belong to a group and socialize. Unfortunately, many claim that social platforms have turned into spying and ad-serving tools.
As a result, many users are looking to join social networks that respect their privacy. So, if you uninstalled all social apps and programs from your Windows 10 computer but you still want to connect online with your friends, family and peers, you still got quite a few interesting alternatives.”
10. Rich with choices, pick your fancy
“The blockchain buzz is on. After the Cambridge Analytica scandal exposed the dangers of sharing your information on Facebook, more and more users are turning to decentralized blockchain-powered social media…
…What unites them is that they all share a different vision of how social networks should function. From now on, say no to fake news, censorship, unfair income distribution, and other downsides of Facebook and the like.”
11. One unfairly overlooked…
“The fundamental principle behind the Howdoo ecosystem is that all participants should be financially motivated to behave responsibly and share value with each other. The ecosystem itself consists of users, content creators, sellers, advertisers and 3rd party developers – all connecting and transacting with each other through a network of decentralized communities powered by Howdoo node operators and tellers.”
12. …that grows better day by day!
“The partnership between Adbank and Howdoo is a match made in heaven. Those who choose to see ads in Howdoo are rewarded with uDoos, and advertisers that reach out to the Howdoo users will reap the benefit of targeted and cost effective success.
The future is bright for sure. No matter what side wins, in the end the user will get what he wants: more power over his personal information. Now, if the solution will come from the crypto-space or an existing social network will make the shift, we can’t know. Ethan Zuckerman is right; there’s no silver-bullet technical solution, it’s something in between. In any case, we need to keep an eye on the decentralized alternatives that are here right now, like Howdoo, because these are the ones showing us how the future will be like. As Katya Michaels stated, ‘Only time will tell!'”