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What is the Engage-to-Earn Social Media Model?by@ishanpandey
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1,324 reads

What is the Engage-to-Earn Social Media Model?

by Ishan PandeyJune 13th, 2022
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Taki is an “engage-to-earn” social network that combines user currency with social media elements to reward and encourage activities that benefit the Taki community. Users can engage with their favourite content creators, create their own content, mint their own user coins, and earn a daily income in TAKI tokens. Taki was founded to be easily accessible and serve as a gateway into web3 while addressing the fast-growing demand for alternative social media engagement channels.

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Sakina Arsiwala explains the “engage-to-earn” Social Media Model

Ishan Pandey: Hi Sakina, welcome to our series “Behind the Startup.” Please tell us about yourself and the story behind Taki?


Sakina Arsiwala: Thank you for having me. I have been building consumer & social products for a while now - I love building products that level the playing field. Having built for creators for so long (at places like Youtube, Google, Nextdoor, etc.) - I feel that it is getting harder and harder for today’s creators to earn a living and have control over their own financial future while doing what they love. Taki aims to be a solution - not just to earn but to build wealth for the creators.


Vested Interest Disclosure: The author is an independent contributor publishing via our brand-as-author program. Be it through direct compensation, media partnerships, or networking, the author has a vested interest in the company/ies mentioned in this story. HackerNoon has reviewed the story for quality, but the claims hereon belong to the author. #DYOR


Ishan Pandey: Web3 advocates envisage a variety of applications, including decentralized social networks. What are your thoughts on this paradigm shift from the traditional social network framework?


Sakina Arsiwala: We believe that decentralization and other web3 elements can significantly improve the social media experience. Today, social networks are centralized and focus on revenue generation, which puts their incentives at odds with their end users. These networks charge exorbitant fees, can arbitrarily change rules, and censor users as they see fit. Decentralization can solve all of these issues.


In particular, Taki is focused on incorporating crypto-native elements such as user level tokens that add richness to today’s social media products. By incorporating token economies in a social network, we not only understand the social graph in terms of likes and follows but also a “value graph” in terms of who participates in each others’ economies. Our goal is to build an exciting new set of social features around this economic activity.


Ishan Pandey: Solana is a blockchain that has solved most of the difficulties that other blockchains face. Why did Taki choose to build on it? Do you think it has the potential to replace Ethereum?


Sakina Arsiwala: We foresee a world with multiple blockchains that serve different purposes. While we love the Ethereum ecosystem, there is an emerging set of Layer 1 blockchains that we think are very interesting. Solana, in particular, is incredibly fast and has a thriving developer ecosystem. We don’t think any of the alternative Layer 1’s will replace Ethereum, but rather will co-exist with it. Many applications looking to put more in-app interactions directly on-chain will look to Solana, other similar emerging blockchains, or Ethereum L2s.


Ishan Pandey: Taki originated in the Indian market but has since expanded into more of Asia. Some claim India is a natural frontrunner for web3 startups (including Binance’s CEO). Do you agree with this statement? If yes, why do you think that is?


Sakina Arsiwala: We think India is a fantastic market and we were excited to begin our operations there due to its strength in terms of internet users, crypto penetration, largely English speaking population, and thriving technology sector. Since launching, we’ve been experiencing a large amount of user growth in many other markets, such as Indonesia, Bangladesh, and Vietnam. We will continue to push our growth globally with India as a hub.


Ishan Pandey: Please tell us a little bit about Taki and the engage-to-earn social network protocol?


Sakina Arsiwala: Taki is an “engage-to-earn” social network that combines user currency with social media elements to reward and encourage activities that benefit the Taki community. Users can engage with their favourite content creators, create their own content, mint their own user coins, and earn a daily income in TAKI tokens.


Taki was founded to be easily accessible and serve as a gateway into web3 while addressing the fast-growing demand for alternative social media engagement channels, especially given the rise of censorship across centralized social media platforms.


With Taki, users not only have the freedom to engage with the content they love, but they also get cryptocurrency rewards for producing their own content.


Powered by the RLY protocol and built on Solana’s blockchain, Taki can be accessed through a mobile app that is capable of some of the fastest transaction throughputs in web3.


Ishan Pandey: Web2 platforms (i.e. Meta/Facebook, Twitter, Reddit) are aware of SocialFi's increasing popularity and are working on ways to give users the ability to earn crypto. Do you think this will hinder the web3 movement?


Sakina Arsiwala: Web2 platforms are in quite the predicament. On the one hand, they see crypto and SocialFi emerging and need to figure out how to play in the space. However, they still must protect their core businesses. They are all under significant regulatory scrutiny already, so making a big shift into web3 opens them to many risks (Meta, for example, ended up shuttering its crypto operations primarily due to regulatory pressure). So, we believe it will be difficult for big incumbents to compete in web3 successfully. That said, any efforts they make are a net positive for the space, and if they can get onboard a large swath of their users into crypto, that will also be a big positive for the space.


Ishan Pandey: The blockchain and cryptocurrency industries have long sought mass adoption. Do you think social media has the potential to catapult blockchain adoption into the mainstream?


Sakina Arsiwala: Absolutely. We believe that mass adoption will be driven by projects that successfully incorporate web3 elements to enhance the largest web2 internet categories such as social, gaming, and media. With Taki, we’ve built a product experience that has the potential to scale to hundreds of millions of users.


Ishan Pandey: According to you, what new trends are we going to see in the blockchain industry?


Sakina Arsiwala: I think we’re going to see a lot of interesting experimentation around web3-based social, games, media, communities, and commerce. We’ll see projects leveraging web3 primitives such as NFTs, fungible tokens, decentralized storage, compute and identity, as well as data portability, to create next-gen consumer products that we couldn’t have ever imagined.


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