Facebook and Twitter Beware — Censorship-Resistant Social Media Is Here
Over the past few months, Bitcoin Cash developers have been creating applications that are similar to social media and forum platforms like Reddit, Facebook, and Twitter. Anyone in the world can use these Bitcoin Cash-powered applications such as Memo, Blockpress, Keyport, and Matter which offer censorship-resistant versions of these social media giants.
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Onchain Social Media Apps, Forums, and Messenger Services
Censorship on large social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter has been rampant this year. On Oct. 11, news.Bitcoin.com reported on Facebook purging hundreds of pages and profiles that regularly posted about alternative news and libertarian views. The aggressive censorship has caused many people to start searching for more decentralized platforms that allow free speech. What they might not know is that the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) ecosystem already has a few applications that are similar to the dominant online forums and social media platforms. The difference is they are free of censorship and every action is recorded onchain.
Memo.cash is a platform that is comparable to Twitter, but posts cannot be selectively removed by anyone as they are all stored onchain. Memo allows users to post text, animations, pictures, URLs, and videos while also setting a custom profile. Much like Twitter, there is a cap of how many characters can be used per post as Memo only allows 217 characters at a time. A feature that sets Memo apart from Twitter and other social media platforms is the ability to tip posts using BCH. This allows content creators to reap the benefits of their work rather than giant corporate entities.
Memo has been a popular application amongst the BCH community and there have been thousands of onchain posts since the platform launched. For instance, one individual started recording every verse in the King James Bible. One setback for Memo users is because all posts are hashed into the BCH chain using an OP_Return transaction, they cannot be deleted. Memo also offers a community and topic section so users can discuss books, film, news, and even subjects that are considered taboo or politically unacceptable. The application also allows users to follow certain profiles so they can stay up to date with the most interesting people who post on Memo.
The application Blockpress is a mixture of Twitter with a Facebook feel. The customization of Blockpress profiles gives the website a Facebook-like look alongside the application’s user interface. The amount of characters a user can post is limited like Twitter, and just like Memo the Blockpress application only allows 217 characters per post. Blockpress also has a section of communities where people can discuss anarchism, video games, politics, philosophy and whatever else they feel like discussing.
Blockpress also allows native tipping in BCH and content creators can earn tips for popular posts and writings. Similarly to Memo, individuals can follow other Blockpress users, making it easier to follow specific people. Every action on Blockpress is recorded using an OP_Return transaction and the platform cannot delete posts after they have been published. Blockpress fell off the map for a couple months as the creator was going to focus his time on another project, but he has since returned to the platform.
Keyport is a messenger service that allows people to connect with friends, family, and coworkers. The Keyport platform is an application that provides users with the ability to send and receive encrypted messages built on top of the BCH chain. Essentially all messages are hashed into the BCH chain using an OP_Return transaction but they are encrypted. Only the recipient can decrypt the message, making the messaging service difficult to censor. The Keyport developers, Atlantislabs, explain that each message you encrypt or decrypt requires a small amount of BCH dust plus the miner fee.
If people don’t want to be limited to 217 characters then they could opt to use the BCH-centric Matter platform. Matter allows users to post threads written in long form and posts can be formatted with images and things like bold and italic. Matter also has native tipping abilities and uses the BCH chain’s OP_Return capabilities as well. The same immutability problem exists with Matter, and the creators ask you to check a box that explains you are aware that all posts are permanently stored on the Bitcoin Cash blockchain. The decentralized blogging platform’s creators recently added the ability to reply to posts and users can tip the replies too. There are not as many users on Matter as there are on Blockpress and Memo, but the ability to write in long form with full markdown syntax support is a plus.
Mass Exodus From Centralized Social Media Giants Will Take Some Time
It’s going to take a lot of time for people to flock towards decentralized social media applications and forums. The permanence of posts may also be an issue for some people, but that is part of the give and take involved with these censorship-resistant platforms. After a post is published, no matter how many people don’t like it they cannot remove the post from the BCH chain and the same applies to the content creators themselves. Users do need a bitcoin cash wallet and a little BCH to use these platforms, as each action costs a very small amount of BCH. As long as social media giants like Facebook continue to remove political dissenters and content they don’t approve of on a whim, more people will search for platforms without prohibition.
Have you tried any of the new Bitcoin Cash-powered social media, forum, and messaging applications yet? Let us know what you think about these platforms in the comment section below.
Disclaimer: Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the mentioned companies/products or any of its affiliates or services. The author and Bitcoin.com are not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.
Images via Shutterstock, Jamie Redman, Matter, Memo, Keyport, and Blockpress.
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