The Future Of Social Networks
I've spent a vast amount of time thinking about social networks and their evolution in web3. I've studied the game theory behind every network out there.
The plumbing is out there; today, if we wanted, we could decentralize networks without needing a blockchain if we all merely self-hosted and downloaded others' data and seeded it. If we lived in a world where everyone gave a little, we would have more than we ever needed.
However, as we know, this isn't how it works in practice. Without incentivization, you'll end up with a few things.
A: Centralisation, only a few people are willing to store the data, and there is no free lunch. The only reason someone will store your data without cost is to make more money off that data than they expend to get it.
B. Low-grade performance. Remember torrents back in the day? Ever had a file you wanted to download, and you find out no one is seeding? If no one stores your data, if no one provides bandwidth for CDN, you're experience will either be low grade or nonexistent. Users will only use web3 if it looks and feels as good as web2 and adds extra benefits web2 can't. The majority of people will not switch to a lesser experience in the name of decentralization. There will always be a honey pot of centralized sites claiming to be decentralized, offering a better user experience that users will flock to, like chasing sinking stones to walk on.
C. Easily taken over. If there is no ownership in the network, if people cannot put skin in the game, the network can quickly be taken over. The reason Bitcoin is so hard to attack is because of the hodlers. Layer zero is and always will be the essential layer of any network. Layer zeros with zero skin in the game end up putting zero effort to preserve the network under attacks.
The fact is, you need an incentive layer to run web 3. Don't believe me? Go tell Twitter to burn all of their earnings and store your data for free.
Now that we have established an incentive layer needed for a social network to become a robust decentralized ecosystem, we can look at the best ways to build such a layer.
For distributing rewards for those that contribute resources, there is only one option available that is practical, crypto. Try paying miners with your visa card when they are worldwide and anonymous. That's another thing; miners will not dox themselves to earn money; some will most a lot will not. Fiat is simply impossible to use at scale for funding a decentralized network to become self-sustaining.
Stop fighting it. Blockchain is more significant than Bitcoin. Blockchain is the perfect tool to fund a decentralized network. You can try and reinvent the wheel as much as you like, but distributed databases are the future; single points of failure are not. Decentralized funding is the future. Centralized financing is not. Self-sustaining networks are the future; VC funded networks are not.
Blockchain is simply an open-source code run by voluntarist. No one is obligated to run the code they don't want. That's why your actions matter in the blockchain world; it's run by free people who will turn the other cheek in a nonviolent way. You can easily create code. You can't easily create a community, and you certainly can't buy one.
Why Hive Can't Be Built on Bitcoin: https://hive.blog/hive/@theycallmedan/hive-is-bitcoin-s-future-sidechain
Hive has no ninja-mine; the largest holder has 3%. It takes roughly 30%+ to take out the top witnesses now. The exchange attack (Binance, Huobi, Polo) powering up users' funds for three months and using it to overthrow the network has been solved. Any newly powered up stake takes one month before it is allowed to vote in governance. Any exchange attack now will not only lock their funds for four months if they wish to attack the network, but we would see it from a mile away.
Furthermore, I don't even think you can buy 30% of the liquid Hive in existence if you wanted to. If someone tried to attack, it would make us all very rich; if they were successful, we would be so rich that we could easily have resources to fork again, dump the token the attacker is buying and getting a free airdropped token like last time. Many Hivers doubled their net worth during the hostile takeover, selling their Steem and keeping their Hive for free. Without the ninja-mine, such an attack would be nearly impossible. It's an attack I welcome wholeheartedly.