5 Web3 Social and SocialFi Platforms to Look Out For in 2024

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As SocialFi and Web3 social media continue to gain momentum, a new wave of innovative platforms is emerging, reshaping the way we interact, transact, and engage with digital assets. Below we explore the top 5 Web3 Social Media and SocialFi platforms paving the way for the future of the industry. 

These platforms – DeSo, DSCVR, Farcaster, Friend.tech, and Lens – are harnessing the power of blockchain technology and decentralized finance to transform both the social networking and the financial landscape to empower communities worldwide.

DeSo

DeSo is a layer 1 decentralized social blockchain platform built on its own blockchain that scales storage-heavy applications, an essential feature when it comes to developing social networking platforms due to the large volume of data. The platform strives to bring back power to the users through low transaction costs, on-chain data storage, and monetization opportunities for creators. In September 2021, the Japan-based project raised $200M in funding from heavy-hitter investors, including a16z, Coinbase Ventures, and Sequoia, among others. Unique to DeSo, users can create their own coin that rewards fans who engage with it. In October 2022, the DeSo Foundation announced that they were building a blockchain-based Twitter app to appeal to the creator economy.  In February 2024, it was announced that Focus, a revolutionary SocialFi application, would be operating on the DeSo blockchain and has garnered significant attention in the cryptocurrency sector as it accumulated an impressive $75 million in token reservations. With its open-source nature and developer-friendly tools, DeSo provides a user-owned, user-controlled, and censorship-resistant environment that empowers creators and users embedded in the world of social media. 

DSCVR

DSCVR is currently the largest Web3 social network and community-building platform and the leading social network on Solana. DSCVR boasts over 450K connected wallets, 400K monthly uniques, and more than 25 million posts and reactions. In July 2022, DSCVR announced a $9M fundraising round led by notable companies such as Polychain Capital, Upfront Ventures and Bertelsmann. DSCVR is focused on serving the community-building needs of crypto projects and creators. Users can monetize their content and build tokenized communities with native token-gating, airdrop, and marketplace functionality. The platform allows communities and individual creators to earn digital assets through tips, airdrops, or NFT sales. In November 2022 DSCVR announced its API in development for embedding other apps and has recently released a Lootbox product for claiming NFT and token drops in feed. 

Farcaster

Known as the “sufficiently decentralized” social protocol built on Ethereum-scaling network Optimism, Farcaster was founded by ex-Coinbaser Dan Romero. During the summer of  2022, Farcaster closed a $30M fundraising round led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) to develop the platform. Fresh off the heels of “Frames” – a tool that allows developers to embed interactive experiences in their posts – Farcaster has showcased its mission as a groundbreaking protocol designed to empower both users and developers. Farcaster allows users to move their social identity between applications and enables developers to build applications with new features on the network. The platform embodies a hybrid architecture that combines on-chain and off-chain systems to cater to various operational needs. While the platform highlights eliminating bot activity, Farcaster does offer free one year membership to those who disclose their phone number information when creating an account. If users choose not to, Farcaster does require a $5 sign-up fee. Despite the price entry, it is currently home to an average of over 28,000 daily users, according to data from Dune

Friend.tech

Friend.Tech, a social token-driven platform operating on Base and backed by Paradigm, stands out as one of the more finance and trading-focused SocialFi applications. The platform has notably pioneered the concept of allowing creators to monetize gated communities using social tokens called “keys” and has hit major milestones since its launch in August 2023. Boasting over 100K users and having facilitated over 1M transactions totaling $50M, the platform has also onboarded gaming influencer Ricky “FaZe Banks” Bengston and NBA player Grayson Allen. However, despite its quick rise to fame and innovative approach, the platform and active content creators have experienced boom-and-bust cycles influenced by the bonding curve – which resulted in rapid fluctuations in the prices of keys. The platform continues to introduce new features such as external wallets, bot removal, and a bug bounty program. Once Friend.Tech addresses key price fluctuation and broadens its social networking functionality, Friend.Tech can resurge as one of the highest-performing platforms in the space positioned for mainstream adoption. 

Lens

Lens Protocol is a decentralized social graph from the developers of Aave, an open-source liquidity protocol, utilizing NFTs and smart contracts to offer a permissionless and composable framework for social media applications. Built on Polygon, the protocol launched in June 2023 and raised $15M from IDEO CoLab Ventures, General Catalyst, Variant, and Blockchain Capital. Lens Protocol was first introduced to allow social media users to have complete control over their data, such as overall profile and content creation as well as connection features – all of which are stored and formatted as NFTs. Lens has been a prime example in showcasing the adoption of SocialFi through onboarding several applications such as Hey (formerly known as Lenster) and Phaver. The platform carries high potential to strengthen its position as the go-to platform where developers build and import data between different applications through further developing and promoting its strong use case for finances through monetizing content, token-gating, and token minting features. 

Each of these Web3 Social Media and SocialFi platforms is equipped with unique features that illustrate the importance of decentralization and blockchain technology to empower individuals, foster meaningful connections, and create economic opportunities for everyone. As these platforms continue to evolve and pave the way for a more inclusive, transparent, and community-driven financial future, 2024 promises to be an exciting year for the intersection of social media and DeFi. 

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