Based on three substantial premises, i.e., ownership of personal data, control over user-generated content, and censorship resistance, decentralized social apps allow us to share our ideas and connect with others in brand-new ways.
Social blockchains that are paving the way
Two leading blockchains on which social media dapps run are Hive and Steem. They were specifically developed to empower communities with built-in incentive mechanisms for content publishing, curation, and voting. Most of these apps reward those community contributors who receive the most upvotes. That’s why they’re generally associated with terms like “upvote economy” and “tokenized attention.”
Steem was the first network that rewarded content creators and curators for their contributions. Hive emerged as a fork of Steem, so the two networks basically run on the same foundation and have many things in common.
Both blockchains use a delegated proof of stake consensus model, where delegates are called “witnesses” who earn 10% of the newly created tokens for adding blocks to the chain. This consensus method enables free and fast transactions in less than three seconds. Consequently, they’re scalable, a prerequisite for effective social media applications.
Top Steem-based decentralized social apps
It’s a social network where community members can earn rewards by posting and curating content and upvoting a post before it becomes popular. It’s also possible to earn more coins via vesting. Rewards are paid in STEEM currency. Every day new tokens are minted, and a fixed number of tokens is added to the rewards pool.
DTube is a decentralized video-sharing platform. It’s like YouTube, but on DTube, content creators don’t have to rely on advertisers. Instead, contributors earn DTube Coin.
It’s possible to earn rewards by uploading a new original video, sharing a video from the web, and also voting, tagging, and commenting on videos.
It’s already a popular platform where a new video is shared every three minutes. It has 189K registered creators and curators. The platform pays 90% of the total revenues to DTubers.
Top Hive-based decentralized social apps
The most popular social media app running on Hive is PeakD. As expected from a decentralized app, your posts and comments only belong to you through cryptographic keys. Nobody, including PeakD, can interfere with or alter them.
A unique feature of this dapp is the ability to build communities where you can connect with people with common interests and passions and share your own content. You can own the communities. A list of all PeakD communities can be found here.
Another decentralized social network built on the Hive blockchain is Ecency which also brings the advantages of content ownership and uncensored content. Content creators are rewarded with HIVE, HIVE DOLLARS, and HIVE POWER cryptocurrencies.
A decentralized social app with a focus on investment topics is Leo Finance. It’s a tokenized blogging tool exclusively for creating content about cryptocurrency and finance.
Content creators earn LEO coins for publishing original content on the platform. They can also gain LEO if they receive upvotes. Another way to earn is to stake LEO coins into LEO POWER. The revenues are split 50%-50% between creators and curators.
Hive Blog is another decentralized blogging tool. It’s akin to Steemit; users can post, comment, upvote, and earn incentives for these contributions.
The Hive ecosystem is rich in social blogging applications. There is also dBlog that allows everyone to build their own websites by offering free templates. Another decentralized blogging tool is TravelFeed which mainly focuses on travel content.