Future of Decentralized Applications (DApps) in Social Media Industry

"Using garlic will cure coronavirus, and it’s proven!"

This message was spreading across the internet just like the way Coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading around us. But how far is this true?

World Health Organization (WHO) rules out the news by saying;

"Garlic is a healthy food that may have some antimicrobial properties. However, there is no evidence from the current outbreak that eating garlic has protected people from the new coronavirus."

That is the end of the story. It was fake news posted by some random guy on Facebook. This is where the power of decentralized social media platforms comes in. Decentralized social media store data in a distributed network and the users in the network need to validate the data. So the possibility of spreading fake news is very low.

Decentralized Applications (DApps)

We shall learn about decentralized social platforms and the benefits it brings us.

How far is data secure in centralized social media platforms?

Facebook's data privacy scandal back in 2018 caused many users to turn down Facebook. The scandal involved personal data access to about 87 million Facebook profiles by Analytica, a political consulting and strategic communication firm. They collected the data to analyze the user behavior through a personality quiz accessed via Facebook profile and thus got access to the user’s profile data, their search history, profile activities, friends, etc. The allegation was a critical violation of data privacy.

Now let’s see whether the scam caused any decline in the number of users.

According to the reports on a popular media website, Facebook had lost nearly 15 million users between 2017-19. The reports were created based on a study conducted by the Edison research team. However, one man’s loss is another man’s gain, Instagram showed a 20% growth in its users.

If the same issue pops up in the real-world from all such platforms, people will start thinking of quitting these social media networks. The million-dollar question is how far can these people achieve it? We might even feel anxious at first to get back to that world again. If there is an option other than quitting, then won’t that be better?

Future of Decentralized Applications (DApps) in the Social Media Industry

Are decentralized social media applications (DApps) the best solution?

Having a DApp with proper data validation can resolve this issue to a greater extent. And yes, it’s very much achievable and many such decentralized applications have got a warm welcome among the users.

What exactly is a decentralized social media application?

A decentralized social media application is a platform developed using blockchain technology, where the data is stored in a distributed ledger system. That is, the data is distributed to different nodes on a network and these nodes have to validate the data. Data after validation gets added on the blockchain as a new block. The block thus added is immutable in nature. Yes, the data is transparent and encrypted with private and public keys. Only the users with a private key get access to these data. So the decision is not made by an official team but the whole network.

To ensure the authenticity of the news, the data must be uploaded with some metadata. This metadata defines the source of the content. Thus, fake news can be easily spotted, also the chances of selling private data get narrower.

Crypto-rewards - One platform to connect and make money

Many social media DApps have already launched social media platforms with a "Decentralized" tag. Also, they provide rewards for posting, curating, and commenting on the website content.

Won’t that be fabulous to use the platform and get rewards at the same time? The rewards are usually provided with native cryptocurrencies developed by the social media platform. Many articles point to Steemit as a reference for a decentralized social media platform but how far have they checked its validity?

Well, according to an article published in Steemit, yes, the same website which many refers to as a decentralized platform - "Steemit.com Is Not The Decentralized Platform You Think It Is".

That’s the most worrying part of every business. False information spreads like a wildfire that has the capability to lose customer’s trust - True story! However, STEEM, the native cryptocurrency provided by Steemit as a reward for its users follows the decentralized concept but the company Steemit inc. does have a centralized team. The shareholders have a role to play. Hence the decentralization isn’t completely applicable to this platform. Hence, a decentralized social media platform isn’t entirely a "Decentralized" platform.

Benefits of decentralized platforms

Yes, there are benefits of having a decentralized platform like;

● The depth of fake news is minimizable using content curation and validation

● The users get to maintain the data ownership or check how far the privacy concerns are met on the platform

● A reward system is an appreciable offer, socializing with reward benefits

● Freedom of speech, as there are no actual rules to follow up to a certain extent

To be frank, like the last point mentioned above, there is a certain extent!

● The fake news is still accessible to other users using certain filters and everything, however, this can be minimized!

● About the data privacy, the blockchain encryption with a private key does the job but cracking them in the future might be possible

● Rewards may initially invite or trigger our interest but later, there will be a struggle to retain the users

● Freedom to speak and post a feed doesn’t mean any data is sharable. There is a bias in that concept!

What if the curators have different opinions regarding a similar topic, people persuade things differently, right? Think about the films that made us cry, motivate, laugh till our tummy hurts. We love seeing such films but what if every movie offers you such value. It would be great for you but for accolades, deciding the best movie out of them will become a herculean task.

Are decentralized applications (DApps) the next big thing in the social networking industry?

Data privacy is the right of every individual and consent has to be given to use it for any analytical purposes. Blockchain technology, the decentralized system can increase user privacy, data protection, and data ownership.

Taking these data privacy benefits and present data violations, decentralized social media platforms gained more prominence. People have already accepted Diaspora, Minds, Mastodon, Sola, Manyverse, etc. The increase in these concerns will let more people in and accept to become social with complete control over personal data.

Yes, DApps have high possibilities of becoming the next boom in the social networking industry. That’s the answer to the final question!

Alongside the privacy concerns, consider three more aspects;

● Ethical consideration

● Legal constraints

● Awareness of what is sharing on these platforms

Let's see how different age groups accept these decentralized platforms in the future. Also, how the existing centralized social media applications are going to look at this new trend.

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TechGlobeX: Future of Decentralized Applications (DApps) in Social Media Industry
Future of Decentralized Applications (DApps) in Social Media Industry
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