Rapture #136: Social Networks on the Blockchain

Rapture #136: Social Networks on the Blockchain

Recently, there was an announcement on my most anticipated product launch for 2022. Stani Kulechov, the chilliest founder in crypto (founded Aave), announced the launch of Lens Protocol, the social crypto native platform meant to eventually compete with Twitter.

While information on the project is still coming out, I thought it would be nice to highlight some of the big picture goals that this new protocol aims to achieve.

For Builders, by Builders

First of all, Lens Protocol is a decentralized social graph that any application can be built on top of. Instead of starting with the application, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and nearly every social platform today did, Lens Protocol starts with the reputation system, which is brilliant.

One of the big problems with social media today is that a user cannot bring the reputation they built on one social platform to another. Build up a large following on Twitter? It does not carry over to LinkedIn. What about your TikTok viewers? Does not matter for Facebook.

Starting with the social graph itself allows developers to build around the reputation system itself, which effectively is a layer that sits above all the applications.

Owning the Reputation

Unlike social platforms on Web 2.0, where the big tech companies actually own user reputation and can deplatform a user/their reptuation at any time, the Lens protocol enables users to own their own reputation. Lens enables this through tying NFTs to profiles, posts, comments, and other forms of data.

While the Lens Protocol team is building the first social application to display how this system can work, any social application can be created around these profiles.

User Friendly

A social media protocol will of course require a large amount of transactions by users if all the interactions are on-chain. Liking, commenting, posting, and more would all require a transaction to be submitted on-chain. Lens Protocol has opted to be built on Polygon, ensuring that transaction fees remain low for users. This move makes sense, as Lens will likely generate far more transactions per user than other crypto applications.

Easy DAO Implementation

Not only is Lens Protocol built for social applications, but it also allows users to easily deploy contracts that create a DAO for their followers. In this way, Lens protocol might become the first platform that successfully allows the easy creation of social DAOs. Enabling influencers to create social DAOs for their followers is an incredibly low hanging fruit opportunity, and no other social project in crypto yet has been able to execute on this front.

Want to Learn More?

While easily consumable information is still hard to come by, Lens has published the initial developer documentation, which can be found here. I for one am incredibly excited what the proven Aave development team will do with Lens.

2022 might be the year of the crypto social network. If not this year, they are coming soon.

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