Lens Protocol Expansion Hopes
The founder of Lens Protocol has announced plans to expand access to the Web3 social protocol on a gradual basis.
It is a big move for Lens Protocol as well as the wider Web3 ecosystem.
Stani Kulechov announced the plans in early October.
What is Lens Protocol?
Lens is designed to be interoperable, meaning it can be integrated with other Web3 apps. This means creators can build customised social media experiences.
The open-source, blockchain-based social graph aims to reshape social media in the era of Web3.
Unlike current social media platforms, such as Facebook and X (formerly Twitter), Lens is not centralised. Its composable, permissionless design lets content creators ‘own’ their digital identity so they can connect with wider communities.
This is achieved through interoperability with other Web3 applications.
When Lens Protocol was introduced at the start of 2022, it garnered attention in the cryptocurrency and blockchain communities thanks to the revolutionary approach to social media it promised, as well as its connections to the well-regarded Aave team developing it.
Using Lens, creators can produce customised, unique functionality for common features, such as follows, and how they interact with the content of other users.
It allows for integration with other Web3 protocols and smart contracts, for example allowing creators to mint NFTs from other platforms. Essentially, users can leverage the Web3 ecosystem within Lens posts.
Creators own their profiles, connections, and content, unlike on current social platforms, so they can switch sites without having to start over. The tokenisation of social data, through NFTs or smart contracts, ensures ownership is retained by the creator and they can be easily transferred to any other platform in the Lens ecosystem.
Lens says it will give users seamless access to all their content with a single login, whichever platform they are on.
How’s it going?
Lens Protocol, which has raised $15 million towards building its decentralised social network since inception, is being built by Web3 lending platform Aave.
Currently in beta on the Polygon network, Lens works with any Ethereum Virtual Machine-compatible blockchain.
It claims to have more than 100,000 beta users, and last month's announcement of expansion plans could see this increase.
Lens introduced a new scaling solution, Momoka, to hyperscale social actions. This increases the scale of activities while lowering costs without compromising the decentralisation principles.
The protocol is a realisation of Kulechov’s longstanding advocacy for the democratisation of access to blockchain tech. He is a prominent figure in DeFi (decentralised finance) and blockchain.
In his expansion announcement, the founder encouraged anyone interested in Lens to connect their wallets and join the waiting list.
A potential strength of Lens is the opportunity for creators to earn from everything they post.
Users control and own their content, not the platform, so it, and the followers, go where the creator goes, giving them more monetisation opportunities.
Lens also includes the power to give other addresses limited access to profiles, so you can store yours on a hardware wallet or give others access to post through a shared account, with private keys and security being compromised.
It’s also possible to split revenue, so income can be shared with collaborators, charities, or anyone else you want, simply by adding the profile or address of the recipient and stating their percentage share.
Back in June, it was reported that $15 million had been raised to fund the Lens Protocol project.
Support has come because of a shared belief that people want an alternative to Web2 social platforms, where ownership of content and the ability to monetise are limited.
The Lens team believes this protocol will appeal not only to those who want to own their online identity, but also to creators who are fed up with starting from scratch, in terms of content and followers, every time they move platform.
As current social media players are not built on the same platforms, the ability to transfer seamlessly does not exist. Within Lens Protocol, everything can be easily moved across platforms within the ecosystem thanks to enhanced compatibility.
While others have announced or launched Web3-based social protocols, Lens says its point of difference is ownership. It prioritises the right and ability of creators to own their identity and content.
## Lens Protocol risks
While there are plenty of advantages promised by Lens, there are disadvantages that should not be ignored.
Cointelegraph, in a report last year, pointed out that blockchains often have limited on-chain storage capacity. This means secondary storage solutions can be required for content and NFTs.
Diving deeper, the site said Lens publications use ContentURI and all original files are kept in distributed file storage systems, like Arweave, IPFS, and AWS S3. This, Cointelegraph claimed, means content could be manipulated.
If original files are not recorded on the blockchain, instead being kept in secondary storage, they could be damaged or lost, the site said.
X and Web3
Kulechov has also stated that he doesn’t believe X, formerly Twitter, will join Web3 ‘any time soon’.
Despite new owner Elon Musk’s interest in blockchain and cryptocurrency, the Lens founder does not believe X will become blockchain-based quickly.
Author: Brendan Beeken
Moni Talks Founder and Chairman Brendan Beeken is an entrepreneur, commercial strategist, investor, and philanthropist. He writes on a wide range of subjects, including cryptocurrency, decentralised finance, blockchain, business advice, and professional wellbeing, for news and business websites, as well as Latest Moni and his personal site, brendanbeeken.com. Brendan draws from his own research and more than two decades of personal experience in business to offer a unique insight, perspective, and commentary on diverse subjects. He is passionate about making the cryptocurrency space more accessible and encouraging safer and more responsible trading and investing. Brendan's LinkTree is https://linktr.ee/brendanbeeken.