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Web3 Social | Bankless Africa Weekly Newsletter
This is the Bankless Africa Newsletter, your one-stop plug for well-curated and up-to-date crypto and web3 news around Africa.
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In this issue, we explore some shortcomings of centralization and make a case for the decentralized movement!
Our sympathies remain with Nigerians who seem to be struggling with myriads of coordination issues on a national level.
Here’s a brief on the situation;
The past few weeks have been tough for the country and its citizens — from the hike in fuel prices to poor implementation/distribution of new Naira notes and its security concerns in its elections. Nigerians must choose between paying as high as a 30% withdrawal fee from money agents or spending their entire day in bank queues.
Many speculate that its cash shortage is a move by the Nigerian government to push the adoption of its e-Naira CBDC and ultimately, a more cashless economy. The question remains: how effective is it?
The truth is, Nigeria lacks the resources and infrastructure it needs to successfully go cashless. Not only do citizens have to grapple with poor internet service and electricity in their day-to-day lives, but over 40% (42 million)of its adult population remain unbanked due to a lack of access to basic banking services.
This has made digital banking unreliable and created a lack of trust in these services from both citizens and petty traders/vendors.
On the social media front, Meta appears to have taken a leaf from the Twitter CEO, Elon Musk. On Wednesday, Mark Zuckerberg announced it's rolling out Meta verified, a paid verification service on Instagram and Facebook for a $12 monthly fee.
Meme credit: Feliciapaladi
What does this mean for users? — centralized platforms like Meta will always look to maximize stakeholder profits and make decisions that are non-user centered.
Nigeria’s issues and Meta’s introduction of paid verification is an indictment on the many failings of centralized institutions/platforms when it comes to making people centered decisions. It’s also all the more reasons we all need to go bankless!
Read on to discover how you can join the decentralized social movement!
Side Note: A quick reminder that you can earn up to 4000 BANK tokens by completing some simple quests on your mobile. Read till the end to find out how.
Bankless Africa Podcast has kickstarted the "Boom, Bust, Build" podcast. In the first episode, ThinkDecade and Digital Guy introduced the podcast, revealing what will be discussed in the coming episodes. Boom, Bust, Build, as ThinkDecade described, will discuss projects building something valuable in crypto. It promises to be exciting, inspiring, intriguing, and insightful.
Taking Back Control: A Look into Decentralized Social Platforms
Social media takes a huge chunk of our time and attention, especially web2 platforms — like Facebook and Twitter — where we have no control over our own data. Our personal information is owned by these big companies who manage them and also track our online activities before selling them to advertisers for profit.
With the advent of the third generation of the internet: web3 — which uses artificial intelligence, big data, and blockchain technology designed to be fully decentralized — we can now have access to our data, be in full control of them, and have decision-making power over who gets to see those data.
These decentralized social media platforms are currently killing it and making a big impact on the internet. As content creators on these platforms, users are allowed to own their content and have greater control over their data and privacy.
As incentives, users receive cryptocurrency rewards for creating, viewing, and sharing content on these web3 platforms. When it comes to making decisions on matters that concern the growth of the community, every member of the platform is involved. One of these web3 social media platforms is the Lens protocol.
Lens protocol is a decentralized social media network that has an open-source structure, allowing users to build their own web3 social media platform, create and own their content, and control their own experience. Developed by the AAVE team in early 2022, the Lens protocol gained a lot of traction in crypto communities like DAOs (Decentralized Autonomous Organizations).
Technically, DAOs can own a profile on Lens, and their followers can be members of its community. Since the protocol was built on the Polygon blockchain — which supports web3 cryptocurrency wallets like MetaMask — the platform allows communities to incentivize their members.
In January 2023, Lens experienced an all-time-high engagement rate with 299,446 posts, 63,914 comments, and 111,215 mirrors. Over 100,000 profile owners had helped Lens Protocol accomplish such a significant milestone.
Perhaps you are wondering “how does Lens work?”, let's get to that!
How it Works
To own an account on the Lens Protocol, you have to create/mint a profile in the form of an NFT (Non-Fungible Token). Each profile is an NFT, and these profiles incorporate all of the posts, comments, and reposts made by a particular user.
This means that all activities on this platform are tokenized as NFTs. Every user of Lens protocol that follows a particular profile receives a follow NFT in return. Also, as a basic monetization property, followers can pay a fee to obtain content from creators.
What Web3 Socials Offer
Web3 socials are here to change the future of social platforms for good, this cannot be overemphasized. Basically, they give you the power to own and control your content and data.
Web3 socials guarantee absolute privacy. There are neither third parties nor centralized authorities like in web2 — where third parties have the power to delete, edit or remove content or profile.
With access to blockchain ledgers, you can track every activity made on the blockchain, and provide more reliable measures for fair pay and compensation.
Why Not Web2?
Recently, Mark Zuckerberg took to his official page to announce that to get verified on Meta, a subscription of a certain amount will be required.
You must have also noticed that there is no more text 2FA (Two-factor authentication) for none Twitter blue subscribers. Day by day, web2 social platforms keep getting more and more centralized, creating a good reason to begin to opt for web3 social alternatives.
🥁 African Adage
Adage: When the king of the vultures perches on a tall tree, all the birds below feel insecure.
Meaning: When a few people hold all the power, it can make others feel uneasy and suspicious of those in charge. This is why decentralization is so important — it helps promote stability and equality, and allows for shared decision-making among everyone, not just a select few. (Share this adage on Twitter)
😂just for laughs
Q: When was the first ever Bankless Africa Newsletter published?
🔎 Community updates
🤑 Looking to earn BANK tokens? Complete these quests, rank #1 on the leaderboard, and win 4000 BANK tokens.
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🚨 Bankless Africa Podcast: Main Show – Expanding Access to Global Capital
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Disclaimer: This post does not contain financial advice, only educational information. By reading this article, you agree and affirm the above, as well as that you are not being solicited to make a financial decision, and that you in no way are receiving any fiduciary projection, promise, or tacit inference of your ability to achieve financial gains. If you’d like to be featured in the Bankless Africa Newsletter, Reach out to us via Discord or Telegram