In the pursuit of liberty, say goodbye to Zuck and Jack’s old divisive toys
What do Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube have in common? Other than being big tech corporations, they control the majority of the social media market. Around 1.7 billion people access Facebook daily, while around 192 million people access Twitter daily. Youtube doesn’t count daily user access but instead uses watch time as a metric, they have 1 billion hours of content being consumed daily. In layman terms, it equates to 114,000 years worth of video hours watched daily.
Social media has grown so fast that it has become dangerous. The narrative of the entire world can so easily be curbed by a handful of corporations. This became more apparent when the big tech companies started to censor mainstream major users.
Consequently, the current status quo puts company leaders as the de facto “kings” of the narrative. One can hope that these “kings” are guiding us in good faith. Business interests, shareholder demands, political pressures, and personal moral beliefs might say otherwise. It isn’t surprising that some people aren’t keen on the notion of being controlled by the likes of Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, or anyone for that matter.
The Next Generation Social Platform
Our free and democratic way of life is at risk. Social media has not helped us cure our current social and political division, on the contrary, it may have aggravated the situation. Customized algorithms that echo the beliefs and mindsets of their users cause the social climate to destabilize, because obviously — how could you understand the other side if you never hear them speak?
People are not given a choice on these platforms. And because the majority of communications are done through social media there is almost no way of escaping it. It’s like you have to be trapped in a cage in order to socialize with your peers, such a dystopianesque endeavor.
In this digital era, it’s increasingly hard to live without social media, the connectivity and ease it brings are unmatched. We cannot fight progress, rather we should embrace it and find a better solution. Myriad is a fully decentralized social media platform designed to address the current status quo, with the aim of reshaping how we view relationships, users, and communities.
Social media has brought upon an age of interconnectivity unlike we have ever seen before, but the freedom that comes with it is slowly fading away. Social and political manipulation are commonplace. The lack of transparency marks one of several issues regarding manipulation.
In social media, the algorithm is everything. All the posts you will see are shown according to the algorithm. If the exact algorithms are known to the public, the environment could be easily manipulated by the masses. This is akin to the early days of search engines when people would fill their pages with keywords that would put them on the top of the page.
More sophisticated platforms use artificial intelligence to customize the feed to each user. These kinds of algorithms are unknown to the user and are favorable for manipulation. For example, Twitter is famous for shadow banning its users. Shadowbanning is a practice of blocking or partially blocking users from a particular community.
Big platforms also benefit large advertisers, because they will attract more views. Sites like Facebook and Twitter benefit from how they arrange their advertisements on the user feed. For some platforms, their entire revenue comes from ads. So, there will be discrepancies between their and the users’ interests.
Myriad is all-in on transparency and believes that it is the future of how we communicate on the internet. Because without transparency, there cannot be trust, and a lack of trust is one of the main problems of the internet today.
Myriad does not practice secrecy. Myriad is one of the few social platforms to let you choose what kind of algorithm you want to apply to your content. Each algorithm will be scalable and manipulation-resistant. You would not need to worry about big brother demonetizing your content if it doesn’t fit the narrative or even worse — shadowbanning your account.
Each creator is the master of their feed. They can choose the appropriate algorithm for the type of content that they are sharing. This way, we can trust that our content can be seen by others and isn’t blocked by some arbitrary code running on a remote machine in a cold dark room.
The freedom doesn’t end there though. Users can also see the chosen algorithm of a feed before subscribing to it. Users are free to subscribe to any feed and would not be recommended anything without their discretion.
The Myriad team is not blind to the fact that our generation is already too attached to the social media platforms of today and seeks to be a remedy to the situation rather than another free alternative.
If you are afraid you will miss out on the content from your favorite creators on other platforms, you will not need to worry.
Myriad is a meta-social platform, the first of its kind. Even though the posts are published directly on Myriad, you can still access content from external social media platforms.
Imagine being able to browse content from your favorite creators without having tech conglomerates tell you what you should or should not watch. This is a big win for both sides of the aisle, creators do not need to change platforms to have access to Myriad (albeit, they are always welcome to migrate) and users can still enjoy their favorite content in a secure place.
Content from multiple platforms will be aggregated into topic-oriented feeds called Experiences. Experiences are a collection of posts from multiple people and multiple topics. To create or subscribe to Experiences you must first create a Myriad account.
Once an Experience is configured, the Myriad server will crawl the selected account in other social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, etc. The server will look for relevant posts to be added to the Experience.
Myriad believes in three fundamental rights of users that must be preserved:
- The Rights of the Users to express themselves freely.
- The Rights of Community Operators to control what happens in their communities.
- The Rights of Server Operators to control what communities or User data they will host on their servers.
To safeguard the three fundamental values of its users complete sovereignty must be given to all the parties involved. Server operators should not be forced to host content that they don’t agree with, and users should not be forced to comply with community guidelines that they do not agree with.
Think of the social media site Mastodon. Mastodon is a microblogging site, similar to Twitter in terms of functionality. The aim of Mastodon is to be an open alternative to Twitter. But, other than to dethrone Dorsey’s empire, Mastodon also has a use for community building because users can choose to host their own Mastodon instances for personal use. Server operators are not obligated to connect to the Mastodon instance for their node to work, making complete decoupling possible.
Myriad implements a very similar concept, but with an added twist — Blockchain. Myriad implements a blockchain solution using Substrate an open-source blockchain framework developed by Parity Labs. Most famous for being the backend of the popular Polkadot Network.
But it is very difficult to host separate data on different Blockchain nodes. So, Myriad implements the federated server architecture similar to the previously mentioned Mastodon.
Monetization: Tipping and Social Tokens
On top of all this, Myriad also allows creators to earn money for their content. They implement direct monetization policies using tipping and social tokens. Most of all, you don’t need to create a Myriad account to start getting paid.
No seriously, you don’t.
Myriad allows you to tip posts on other social media in which the owners have not created a Myriad account yet. Though the only way you can withdraw the money is by making a Myriad account. This is because Myriad implements an escrow system on a smart contract. The tip will be transferred into that account’s escrow until someone can prove the ownership of the tipped account by linking the accounts.
In layman’s terms, you have to prove that you are the original creator of the tipped content to withdraw money. Fair enough right?
This is a whole other level of freedom and monetization. There’s simply no reason for you not to create a Myriad account, you can still earn even though you post on mainstream social platforms.
Another awesome way of monetizing content is through Myriad’s social tokens. Social tokens are just a cool name for NFTs on the Myriad platform. Because the data is mostly aggregated from external platforms if there is a viral post it can be turned into an NFT.
NFTs are digital assets that have taken the internet by storm lately. Currently, the most popular use of NFTs is for the selling of digital art. But in the near future, viral posts might be the next Picasso because of NFTs. The trend of owning viral content on the blockchain is just getting started.
Myriad also allows indirect monetization through adding ad spaces in the Experiences page, this feature is also optional. Mind you that the ads are not controlled by Myriad but are directly managed by the owner of the page.
Any user can create an ad space. Ad spaces can be configured for a specific topic area and targeted users. Because the creator of the ad space holds full control over the listings, it, in turn, allows the creator to maintain a level of quality in their space. Increasing credibility, thus increasing traffic.
For Myriad this is only the beginning. The dream of an internet where we can express ourselves freely is still on the horizon. All they need is support from the community to remedy the current social media chaos we are experiencing today.
Even though the goal of Myriad still sounds philosophical, the opportunity is still at hand to secure the way we communicate and reshape how we view relationships, users, and communities.
Join us on this journey of experiment and discovery as we demonstrate the creation of a social internet beyond the reach of undue influence. The world is ready for us!