A new decentralized social media application for long-form content, powered by the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) blockchain, has launched this week, the latest in a series of apps running on the Bitcoin network.
The new app is called Matter and it is the third such platform to emerge in recent months, following Memo and Blockpress, providing a platform for its users to record content on the Bitcoin BCH blockchain. On Reddit, the Matter team said the platform was their “attempt at bringing long-form posts (blogging) to Bitcoin Cash.”
Distinct from its rivals, Matter takes advantage of the minimal miners’ fees for Bitcoin BCH to allow users to arbitrarily create immutable records of varying lengths on the blockchain. The platform works by ensuring private keys are stored locally to the user’s browser, rather than being shared with Matter. Users are also provided with a mnemonic phrase, required as part of the login process to add an additional layer of security.
All features of the platform are executed on the Bitcoin blockchain, and users are reminded beforehand that “all of the information will be permanently stored on the [Bitcoin] (BCH) blockchain”.
While Blockpress limits the size of content submissions to just 217 characters, Matter allows for much lengthier submissions, with 500 words costing as little as just $0.10 for permanent storage on the blockchain. For instance, the Matter team published the app’s protocol document on the blogging platform—a 47-part post that cost around 12,500 satoshis or about $0.14.
The key benefit for Matter over other social media platforms is the lack of central control, afforded by the decentralised BCH blockchain—especially relevant, given the tendency of social platforms to censor and sell user data.
The app has reignited the debate within the Bitcoin community about storing arbitrary data in blockchain records. However, with the enhanced block size and in-built scaling potential of the Bitcoin BCH blockchain, Bitcoin proponents are broadly in favour of publishing platforms built on BCH.
The launch marks the latest move towards maturity for the Bitcoin blockchain, as it continues to become more widely recognised and accepted. With the SegWit BTC blockchain on the wane, crippled by high transaction fees and length verification times, new startups aimed at the Bitcoin ecosystem can only help hasten this process.