The next social network already exists and it’s owned by no one.

Instead of networks owning users and all their content, users will soon own their content and will be free to share it anywhere.

Some believe that the next big social network will be a clone of Instagram or Twitter with a flavor of Web3. That’s what Mastodon, BlueSky, Nostradamus, and Farcaster try to replicate. The main challenge is that the existing social behemoths and Web2 platforms already all have massive user bases, and they automatically create network effects and moats.

That’s very likely the calculation Elon Musk made when he acquired Twitter. Any good businessman can quickly realize that with hundreds of millions of active users, paying billions to buy a major social network (either monetizing or with a clear path to monetization) is not a bad deal, especially when Meta is now valued at over a trillion USD today.

New social apps, like Amo and Lapse, have been experimenting with aggressive viral growth loops. The reality is that people generally don’t like sharing their address book and messaging all their contacts, especially for a new app or network, until that network shows real value to them (yes, it’s a bit of a catch-22).

These “growth hacks,” forcing users to invite their contacts, work to build awareness and installs quickly but seldom work for long-term growth. Of course, the benefit of quick bursts of viral growth is you can easily understand what products and features users want most and build these features before the next burst of growth. The reality is that the initial wave of users will likely become disengaged and won’t promote the product via word of mouth to family and friends. Plus, most product teams can’t keep up with the needs of these initial waves of user growth. Too many users too fast equals not enough time to innovate.

Also, no one anticipated ChatGPT adoption arriving so fast through a simple web chat interface. The numbers speak for themselves: 100 million+ users in a matter of a couple of months. This demonstrates that a simple utility that provides real customer value has the potential to grow exponentially—and fast.

It is very likely that the next social network will have little to do with any of the platforms and apps we are using today.

Messaging solutions are on everyone’s phone, and interoperability is improving. iMessage won the hearts of all Apple users, but with RCS, all Android users will likely start to love their native Android messaging again. WhatsApp is ubiquitous and the go-to app for exchanging contacts while traveling, especially outside the US.

The rails for exchanging information and content are already here, and the next-generation social network is emerging.

If it is so easy to exchange information with anyone from anywhere, it would be amazing if users could share their content while keeping ownership and enabling their friends and contacts to interact.

That’s the bet Nodle has taken with Click. Click is a new camera app that enables anyone to create authentic content and share it with anyone globally through any messaging app or social network platform using a short URL.

Short URLs linked to external content are so powerful that Instagram, TikTok, and others make them very difficult to use. They know that’s a way to drive traffic off their platform. Elon did the same when blocking links to Mastodon. Just look at tools like Linktree that had to engineer a mechanism with a complex UX to let users access the content they want outside of Instagram.

So why not let users access and interact with the content they want from anywhere? Independently from their social account?

YouTube succeeded at this, except users must embrace video ads—we all thought that model was a thing of the past! At least, that’s what people from my generation thought. None of us care much for traditional TV channels. The most popular TV channels are associated with a brand or theme you can trust for the quality of their content production. Think Nat Geo, History, or Disney—they all have their own apparel and retail shops, too.

Now, there are alternatives to video ads and advertising to finance content production.

The subscription model is what makes Spotify, Apple TV, HBO Max, Netflix and Disney+ so successful. It just works. The issue is that it still is not fully inclusive and seems to have reached its limits in compensating original content creators.

Remember, Web 1.0 was all about connecting with content, Web 2.0 was all about connecting with people, and Web 3.0 is now about building trust, ownership, and security.

Platforms can’t keep capturing most of the value their users and content creators generate. The model of the future is certainly a model that can enable anyone to benefit from their interactions, their content, and their data. That’s the promise web3 is supposed to fulfill. Except today, you need to be an engineer to interact fluently with anything that involves some form of value or currency.

With Click, we are exploring a new territory where anyone can create, own, and share any media content anywhere.

You can install the Click app and join us in this early phase of our journey to rewrite the dynamics of social networks. You can also make a difference along the way.

Each authentic content piece you share is promoting trust and protection of your freedom. Your freedom of exchanging, your freedom to discover and go wherever you want, and your economic freedom.

Isn’t this what the internet was supposed to do in the first place?

Reposted from Medium:

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#social networks#authenticity#deep reals#blockchain#content creation#instagram