- IOHK’s Charles Hoskinson has claimed on Twitter that Cardano is working on a decentralized social media initiative that could solve Twitter’s challenges.
- Twitter’s Jack Dorsey has faced backlash over banning Donald Trump from the platform, prompting him to tout Bitcoin as the solution to social media challenges.
Cardano is working on a decentralized solution that could lay the foundation for the future of social media. Charles Hoskinson, the CEO of Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK) further offered to help Twitter to decentralize its social media platform.
Twitter’s Donald Trump nightmare
Twitter has been in the spotlight in recent months following its run-ins with outgoing U.S President Donald Trump. The social media platform has been fact-checking the outspoken politician for months. It took this further on January 9 when it permanently banned Trump from the platform. This has led to heated debates on the future of social media, with CEO Jack Dorsey touting Bitcoin as the best solution.
Responding to Dorsey on Twitter, IOHK’s Hoskinson claimed that Cardano was “working on something” targeting social media. He also called on Dorsey to discontinue Twitter’s in-house decentralization efforts. The company has been working on Bluesky, a decentralized social media platform that it announced in December 2019.
Hoskinson believes that the best way forward will be for Twitter to make Bluesky an open-source project. This will allow the entire cryptocurrency industry to contribute to the project.
We are working on something Jack. You shouldn't build this in house. Make it an open source project and our entire industry can contribute.
— Charles Hoskinson (@IOHK_Charles) January 14, 2021
Hoskinson didn’t reveal any further details about Cardano’s decentralized social media project. However, even if IOHK is working on such a project, it will take several months before it becomes a reality. One of the critical insufficiencies of Cardano is that it doesn’t support smart contracts yet. This will change in March once the blockchain project enters its Goguen stage.
Even when Cardano finally has the infrastructure to support a social media application, building it may take several months. This will put it at a disadvantage since other blockchain developers have already released blockchain-based social media apps. Cardano may make it into the market too late.
Is decentralized social media the future?
Decentralized social media is every cryptocurrency enthusiast’s dream. Such a platform would finally take the power away from the tech giants, including Facebook, Snapchat and Twitter. It would also allow the users to earn from their content directly, such as receiving some micropayment once someone likes your post.
However, this utopian future is years away at best. Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and others have billions of users already. The network effect, which is the rise in value for an individual user with the rise in overall number of users, allows these giants to attract new users and maintain existing ones. Additionally, with hundreds of blockchain networks in the market competing for users, growth is limited for blockchain-based social media platforms.
A possible compromise would be for an established social media platform to develop its own decentralized alternative. Twitter is the most likely to do this, with Dorsey being one of the most vocal blockchain proponents.
In a recent Twitter thread, Dorsey referred to Bitcoin as “foundational internet technology that’s not controlled or influenced by any single individual or entity.”
The reason I have so much passion for #Bitcoin is largely because of the model it demonstrates: a foundational internet technology that is not controlled or influenced by any single individual or entity. This is what the internet wants to be, and over time, more of it will be.
— jack (@jack) January 14, 2021