6 Web3 Social Media Apps To Keep an Eye On

“These startup decentralized networks may not take over in 2023, but they will cause big players to take notice,” the report said

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Big Tech companies have reached high valuations and mammoth user bases, all while collecting personal data of their users. Developers and digital natives are now demanding safer platforms that protect their data and offer them total ownership and creative liberty over everything they post online.

A recent report by consumer intelligence firm Talkwalker shows decentralized social media platforms are shaping up to have the biggest impact on social media channels in 2023. This move toward decentralized networks is expected to grow as users seek greater control over their data and privacy.

“These startup decentralized networks may not take over in 2023, but they will cause big players to take notice,” the report said.

Here are some Web3 social media apps industry observers are talking about:

Lens Protocol 

DeFi liquidity protocol Aave’s last year launched Lens Protocol, a Web3 social graph said to give users complete creative and monetary ownership over their data and content. Built on Polygon’s proof-of-stake blockchain, the open-source tech stack allows users to monetize through community-based tools like “mirroring,” its own version of retweets, and portability — which enables users to “distribute once, distribute everywhere.” 

Lens has over 100,000 active profiles and has so far surpassed 12 million gasless transactions. The team is currently working to bring over 100 applications to market, and five of those are already consumer ready, including Web3 Twitter alternative Lenster.

Damus

Jack Dorsey-backed Nostr recently launched its own decentralized social media protocol called Damus, which enables end-to-end private messaging between users. The app aims to disrupt traditional social media by creating a censorship-resistant global network where users can’t be identified by their name or user handle, but rather by a public key. 

According to Nostr band data, the network has over 524,000 profiles with bio attached and more than 30,000 daily new users as of early February.

Chingari

On-chain social network Chingari recently expanded its community by bringing on Aptos as its preferred layer-1, moving on from Solana. Chingari’s user base has sprouted to more than 2.2 million users in 2022 and subscription revenue came to $700,000 in January this year alone, according to the company.

Chingari is a video-sharing mobile app on which users can create original videos and use augmented reality filters. It has more than 5 million daily active users and 40 million monthly active users. It is among the top 20 most downloaded apps around the world on Google Play. 

The newer version of the Chingari app, including the migration to Aptos, is expected to go live in the second quarter this year. The app is currently available in India, the United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Turkey and the US. 

Taki

Built on Solana, Taki is a tokenized social network that aims to create a community by rewarding users with an active stake in itself per token. Users can earn social crypto tokens (TAKI) simply by posting content and interacting with others through posts or commenting. TAKI can then be used to purchase user coins, representing the value and influence creators bring to the platform. 

The platform has more than 820,000 users and a similar amount of unique user coins, according to statistics on its website.

DSCVR

Launched on Internet Computer in 2021, DSCVR (pronounced “discover”) was founded by three friends. It describes itself as similar to Reddit, but if its development was governed by a few of its most dedicated users. A Medium blog states that one of its goals is to become an “alternative for anyone who uses Reddit.”  

It chose the Internet Computer protocol because the blockchains give it “the web speed you need to bridge the gap between users who are used to centralized product experiences, yet on decentralized technology.”

It’s estimated to have close to 200,000 users, and all control not just the content, but the platform too. 

Bison Relay

Decred launched Bison Relay last year, a platform that offers “zero knowledge communications” with end-to-end encryption ensuring only intended recipients view the content of messages. Like Nostr, it also aims to be censorship-resistant. And the operators that run the network are unable to see what content users are sharing or which chats they are engaged in, a key effort to combat censorship.

Currently, its user base consists of only 50 to 70 people.


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