Transformations based on the Blockchain technology are currently taking place at a rapid pace, and social media is no exception. As such, these transformations are constantly offering one of the most lucrative and exciting opportunities in technology and are creating a platform for the disruption of social media. Blockchain technology is progressing towards the decentralization of the next-generation economy.
The ability of the Blockchain technology towards replacing the existing centralized platforms with enhanced distributed systems has been creating disruptions in the economy. This is achieved by offering the capability for spreading both profits as well as content to the target users via rewards of cryptocurrency which get strengthened by social media’s community interaction. In other words, rewarding humans for the scarce commodity of human attention, that of the “Attention Economy”.
Existing Social Media
The giants of social media are able to capitalize on the user data and rich content. As such, these giants are effectively gaining immense amounts of profits at the expense of the private information of their users. Similarly, these centralized social media platforms play the role of major “control centres” of individuals online.
Consumers of different social media are searching for the highest value in return for their time. As such, they would like to be in control of their privacy, monetization of their data, and other valuable & personal information. Users do not like to be censored. At the same time, they also do not want complex algorithms that are constantly manipulating what they see or read on social media platforms. Consumers simply wish to be in control of their data and what they are served, they expect high integrity of social media platforms without the fear of being censored by the centralized control centres.
The Founder of eBitcoinics, Nawaf Abdullah, has a belief that the unchanging nature of data that is stored on the Blockchain serves as a necessary benefit with respect to the technology it brings to the social media industry. Nawaf quotes that any layman would consider the Blockchain technology as something that cannot be ever broken or altered. As such, this consideration itself establishes trust when it comes to the security of individual data.
He added that the social media is all about data. As such, the Blockchain technology improves the overall security as well as trust by assuring its users that their content is not being manipulated in any form.
The Attention Economy
The fundamental idea behind the workings of the Attention Economy is quite simple. Attention Economy facilitates a mode of exchange wherein consumers agree towards receiving services [or payment] in exchange for their dedicated attention. This kind of attention economy is nowhere else so dominant as in case of the social media industry. However, a sudden rise of unease within the growing social media industry when consumers seek alternative solutions.
Derin Cag, Board Member at Humaniq, says that the reality has now become digital. Cag adds that though the mainstream social media industry is able to make billions of profits every year from advertising revenues, they are not rewarding their consumers. As such, Blockchain is able to transform this scenario by rewarding users a fair share of the pie to post updates. The next achievement with respect to Blockchain would be towards mass communication that would most likely be decentralized.
The market is seeking for an alternative solution to social media and a form of attention economy would serve as an effective disruptor. Of recent, many new versions of paid social media have been trialed, where the decentralized idea seems to be seeking the best solution for consumers at a fair exchange for their dedicated time, attention, and even complete control.
Much more than ever, consumers now are seeking:
- Increase data privacy & security
- Enhanced individual control over monetization and data
- Compensation for attention, time, personal content, and major contributions made towards social media
- Ability to apply filters through the “noise” or fake news
- Effective tools for accessing relevant information instantly
- Absence of any complex algorithms
- Absence of top-down censorship
- A proper streamlined user experience
Another major factor that needs to be considered in this aspect is that the individuals are still used to the status quo social channels and might not immediately jump or shift to a completely new system. The significant social media channels hold a major share of the dedicated Attention Economy. As such, any kind of disruptive technology like the Blockchain has to be thoughtful & practical enough of the current environment. The recent technology must be able to create a unique user experience which would allow the individuals to achieve a simplified transition from the mainstream to the alternative economy.
Considering all the facts, Blockchain \ is poised to bring about necessary transformation in the current Attention Economy by providing censorship resistant and highly secure global ledger technology. This technology will be responsible for putting each individual in complete control of their personal data as well as monetization without the presence of any top-down approach. As the Blockchain technology continues to rise and evolve, additional disruptive occurrences can be considered to be inevitable.