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Monetizing your Attention: Steemit, Synereo and Others

Blockchain

It is no secret that amongst the most powerful driving forces of the digital age is social media. Social Media platforms have a massive following, with some like Facebook even having an average of two billion subscribers. What most people don’t know is that social media platforms make their money and profits from the content they upload, or even by the mere act of logging into them. A lot of people devote huge chunks of their time and attention to these forums.

Generally, social media platforms monetize your attention by including ads and such like features into your feed. For instance, Netflix releases all episodes at once, and more often than not, most Netflix users have admitted to binge-watching. Users then renew their subscription at the end of the month because they want to continue watching shows. Additionally, Google collects user’s data in a bid to improve customer experience and create more attention-grabbing advertisements.

History of Social Media Disruption

In 2015, the Social media platform Tsu was developed. Tsu was unique in that 90% of the revenue that it amassed from advertisements was distributed to content creators. In just five weeks, it had acquired 1 million subscribers. Tsu established the genesis of social media disruption. At its peak with around 4.2 million subscribers, it saw social media giants Facebook and Instagram block users from using the Tsu URL on their platforms.

Sadly, the joy of Tsu was short-lived as it crumbled due to varying reasons. However, Blockchain technology might be able to achieve what Tsu creators had intended. Steemit and Synereo have been established as the two biggest contenders of the current attention economy. – Both platforms are blockchain based.

Steemit

Steemit defies the logic of traditional social media platforms. While traditional platforms derive profits from the content and attention of users, Steemit rewards users for the exact thing.

Steemit users have the ability to upvote the content that they like. The creators/curators of the content that gets the most votes are then rewarded. Rewards are in the form of STEEM, a cryptocurrency token ranked number 32 out of 1, 358 cryptocurrencies by Coinmarketcop.com. Steemit also employs a proof-of-brain algorithm, which determines how much STEEM power/reputation a user has.

Synereo

Synereo is a game changer when it comes to the attention economy. This is because it allows original creators of content to monetize content that has been posted anywhere on the internet. Synereo was founded in 2014 and rewards users with AMP tokens. It operates on the notion that attention is scarce and thus the most valuable resource in the online world. However, Synereo has announced an impending move of infrastructure and native token to the Ethereum blockchain in late 2018.

Steemit vs Synereo

Being the two most popular contenders, one cannot help but wonder which of the two offers more and how.

  1. In Synereo, one’s voting power is determined is proportional to the people you’re directly or indirectly in communication with. In Steemit however, one’s voting power is dependent on the amount of coinage one has invested in the community.
  2. Steemit has a lead group of people known as ‘whales’. This is a small number of people, including the lead developers who have a lot of voting power and the power to appoint brand ambassadors from the numerous content creators. Despite playing the role of ‘gatekeepers’ of the community, the whales’ feature poses the risk of a few people having most of the power, just like in traditional social media applications.
  3. While Steemit and other applications have built specific platforms where users are to create and curate content, Synereo is diverse in that users can distribute content to any social media platform and still earn from the same. This is facilitated by the Wildspark application. It has been described as a cross-platform social graph. Wildspark provides the link for Synereo users to platforms such as Soundcloud and YouTube.

Akasha

Akasha allows its users to publish, share and vote for entries. It’s founded on the Ethereum blockchain and users earn Ethereum for popular voted upon content.

Alias

Alias is a Japanese platform that allows users to create and read articles from experts. Rewards are in the form of ALIS tokens.

Decent

Decent network is versatile in that it is not a social network. It is a blockchain based distribution platform that allows users to store and distribute published materials without the need for an intermediary. The DCT token is used to facilitate trading and incentives network nodes to store content and verify new blocks.

Conclusion

The platforms discussed above provide you with means of monetizing your content, albeit in varying lengths. It is important that one understands the value of their attention, and as such, learns to treat it with utmost precaution.

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