Designed for news aggregation, Reddit enables registered users to submit, rate and discuss different types of content, from links and text posts, to images and videos.
In a bid to onboard its 500 million monthly active users into Web 3.0, the American social media platform Reddit is working on converting users’ karma points into Ethereum-based (ERC-20) tokens.
The so-called Web 3.0 applications, also referred to as ‘dapps,’ typically run on blockchains, or decentralized networks, where participants get incentivized for their participation.
Decentralizing social media
“Your Karma points will soon be tokens,” wrote Reddit engineer Rahul on Twitter, revealing the platform’s plans to boost and improve user interaction through cryptocurrency incentives.
Your Karma points will soon be tokens ♥https://t.co/FXdEbeynph
– community-based decisions.
– forking subreddits in disagreements.
And all of this without even losing your community points?
It’s like moving from fb to Twitter without having to rebuild your followers.
— Rahul ?? (@iamRahul20x) November 3, 2021
Rahul, who recently joined Reddit’s crypto team, continued to explain some of the key technicalities behind their plan to decentralize the social media platform.
“It’s like moving from FB to Twitter without having to rebuild your followers,” he explained the planned-out transition while assuring users they won’t lose their community points in the process.
“Everything will be permissionless, open-source, and decentralized just like crypto,” he added, revealing that he himself is excited to see what DeFi and NFT applications might emerge once the new system, in which users can earn by curating content rolls out.
This could unravel as a potential highway to mainstream adoption, since, as Rahul pointed out, 500 million active Redditors are on the verge of becoming new crypto users.
How will Reddit pull this off?
In order to build its Web.3.0 solution, Reddit has teamed up with Offchain Labs, a blockchain company behind the Arbitrum network, which enabled the social media platform to launch its own Layer-2 rollup.
By using Arbitrum technology, the partnership facilitated the creation of a separate blockchain instance, intended to be used for storing Reddit users’ tokenized community points.
“Community points for 2 subreddits (~80,000 users) are already on Rinkeby Testnet on our Arbitrum network (separate to Arbitrum One),” reminded Rahul, as he invited users to join r/Cryptocurrency and r/FortNiteBR subreddits.
According to him, there are “some cool engineering innovations coming up,” as the developers continue to work their way to gasless transactions, by further scaling the system.
Among other crypto initiatives, the Reddit community’s outreach in the space became apparent in early 2021, when Redditors helped to fuel the Dogecoin (DOGE) craze.