While most people associate blockchain with cryptocurrency, it has been used in other types of operations as well. This is becoming particularly true for the internet as online companies that seek to secure their data, customer information, and monetary transactions are looking to blockchain technology as the answer.
What is Blockchain?
What makes blockchain technology different is the decentralized nature of its structure. In other words, instead of being a centralized hub that distributes information and data from the top down, it consists of individual blocks that are controlled by the user. This makes it difficult, if not impossible to quickly spread bad information or data across a system. That is why blockchain technology is a key part of cryptocurrency as it protects it from being manipulated from the outside.
The decentralization aspect is the key. It has been quite successful at keeping cryptocurrency safe as you cannot simply hack the system and make changes. Instead, you have to run through individual points and gain access to each one. Think of it like a series of checkpoints along a highway. This means that even if someone gains access to the highway, they are still stopped before they can go very far.
But monetary protection is not the only attribute of blockchain, social media benefits from it as well. Although this technology has been around for over a decade, it was not viewed in terms of social media until just a few years ago.
Impact of Social Media
There is little doubt about the impact of social media when you think of sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn that account for billions of users. Over the past decade, social media has become a huge part of so many people’s lives. And because of its success, businesses with something to sell have seen the potential.
Yet the winds of change are coming to social media in the form of blockchain technology. The process has already started with apps such as all.me, a digital network that uses blockchain combined with cryptocurrency to create a new user experience. Currently, all.me consists of less than a million users, but it is growing thanks to the benefits that blockchain offers in the social media market.
While all.me was the beginning, there have been other blockchain social media platforms emerging in various forms to take advantage of this process. The benefits of this technology are quite striking for those who live and work with social media on a daily basis. Three major examples include the following.
One of the more dramatic changes that has occurred over the past decade is the rise of crowdfunding. From starting small businesses to raising money for charities, crowdfunding has become a powerful source of investment that has fueled many great ideas that otherwise would never get off the ground.
Because social media plays such a strong role in allowing crowdfunding to work, the addition of blockchain technology makes the process safer, more transparent, and faster to accomplish. This because of the security that blockchain offers to those who crowdfund in making investments easier and more available.
In other words, a potential investor is going to feel more secure about the money they will use for crowdfunding efforts if it is protected with blockchain. This means that those in charge of the crowdfunding can track who provides the investments, accept the payments they make, and verify users on the platform all without having to take any additional measures.
With hundreds of millions of Facebook accounts being fake, it is easy for someone to create a false account, post bad information, and have it spread like wildfire across social media. In rare cases, some bad information may go viral and influence people to make poor choices.
Because blockchain uses a ledger system which includes personal, information, and data verification, it is far less likely to be the carrier of “fake news”. This means that when using blockchain, the information must be authenticated within the applications before it can spread. This means that the information you see must be authenticated at least by those sending it which makes identifying bad or misleading information that much easier.
For example, on Facebook you can choose your “friends” who gain access to your site. But Facebook allows third parties to also access and post on your news feed. With blockchain, such third parties need your permission just like your friends.
One of the most powerful benefits of blockchain technology is that it lets the user control the data that they receive. This means that important data will not be shared to third parties who use it to post their own content designed to influence your decisions.
Standard social media sites such as Facebook allow third parties to either gain personal data from the source or create a personal profile based on your posts to the create advertisements designed to fit your demographic. And while most of this activity consists of ad placement, it can be used to manipulate you.
With blockchain technology, all that activity will cease. This is because there are applications within the blockchain that allow you to regulate what you see. You can decide what information and how much to both release to the world and to view from your social media site. Because the platform itself requires permission to gain access, you can decide just how much of your information you want to keep to yourself.
There is little doubt that blockchain technology is having a powerful effect on social media along with many different industries thanks to the benefits that it provides. The benefits of blockchain technology on social media is considerable. It allows users to control what they see and verify information or at least the identity of those providing it.
This makes it easier to know what is real, what is fake, and what information should be either accepted or deleted. With so much bad information floating around on social media sites, blockchain technology offers a powerful solution.