Hive.io – My Kind of Social Media (Decentralised ownership and governance)

You might have seen me sending out a few Tweets about ‘Hive’ recently, this is just a quick post about what Hive is all about. If yer bored in Lockdown, you might want to check it out!

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I’ve been on Hive for almost three years now, since August 2017, and I’ve come to regard it as my social media home.

I use WordPress to blog about sociology, and I use Twitter, Facebook and YouTube for various professional and social reasons, but I put nearly all of my personal and more critical/ political material exclusively on Hive, because it’s the social media ecosystem which is most closely allied with my personal values.

What makes Hive different to social media as usual is that it’s a blockchain based ecosystem – which means that it’s decentralized – it’s run on several servers which are connected together, but each maintained by independent individuals in different countries all over the world, rather than it being run on one centralized server, controlled by one central Corporation.

The Hive ecosystem consists of multiple platforms and applications – the main platform I use is Peakd.com, a blogging platform, which allows you to post blogs and comment and vote (‘like’) other people’s content; but I also use 3Speak occasionally which is Hive’s equivalent of YouTube, except there is no de-platforming.

If you post content to Hive and people vote for (‘like’) it, you are rewarded in cryptocurrency – the HIVE token and you can use your HIVE in various ways within the Hive ecosystem, or cash it out and spend it (although you’ll need access to a cryptocurrency exchange to do this!).

I’ve posted a lot of content on Hive over the past three years and earned around 15 000 HIVE for my efforts, which is currently worth several thousand dollars (although the price does fluctuate, which is something to watch out for!

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Hive people

I’ve met some fantastically intelligent, interesting and diverse people on HIVE. Because of it’s decentralist principles, this social media platform tends to attract a lot of radical free thinkers such as anarchists and people living alternative, ecological and nomadic lifestyles. It also attracts a lot of ‘geeks’ – coders, data analysts, scientists, and creatives – artists and musicians.

I interact with dozens of people in the course of a typical week on Hive, and have met many of them IRL at the various social meet ups that are organised through the ecosystem.

Hive is naturally censorship resistant – once you post content to the Blockchain, it stays there, so unlike with Facebook there is no deplatforming – this invariably means there is a lot of differences of opinion on Hive, but that just come with free-speech.

Communities and ‘Smart Tokens’

There are several different communities centered around different interests on Hive – everything from Running to Beer and from Art to Coding.

Many of these communities have their own ‘secondary tokens’ and you can get rewarded in both Hive and these other tokens by being active within them.

Applications

There are lots of Applications built on Hive – Peakd.com is the most well used and probably the easiest to start off with, but I’ve included a few others below:

  • @3speak is the video platform, where you can upload videos, just like YouTube except you won’t get deplatformed – this is a pro free-speech application.
  • @actifit – through which you can get rewarded for being active, such as taking steps.
  • @splinterlands (*) – is a fantasy card playing game in which you ‘battle’ with other players. When you buy into Splinterlands, your cards are your assets, and you can sell them on to other players, unlike with ‘skins’ in regular games, for example.

I recommend you check out Splinterlands especially, one of the most popular blockchain games out there. Here’s a post I wrote about winning a battle with my favourite Death Summoner pictured below…Click here to see the battle.

I’m not really a gamer TBH, but by I’ve made about $500 over the last year or so just by investing in cards and playing this game for 15-20 minutes after dinner most evenings!

Decentralized Governance

As a Hive user you can vote for the people you want to run the servers (called ‘witnesses’). The top 20 (by stake weighted votes) have the power to determine the way the ecosystem changes (or not), but 17 out of those 20 need to come to a consensus about any changes that are going to be made. Literally anyone can set up a server and vie for one of these top 20 positions.

Find out More about Hive and Sign up to Hive

To get a Hive account and get started on Hive , click here.

NB there are numerous ways of signing up for an account, but they’re all giving you access to the same thing.

To find out more about Hive, you might like to click around the hive.io website.

Getting started on Hive

It can be difficult to find your feet on Hive at first – if you have any questions you can either leave a comment below, contact me on Twitter (@realsociology), or on Hive (of course!)

Alternatively you can try the Hive Discord Server.

One of the major communities on Hive is the Peace Abundance Liberty Network (PAL) (link to their discord server here) – their motto is ‘Do no harm, take no shit’. PAL run the Minnow Support Project (MSP), an initiative designed to help out new users on Hive, and a good way to connect with people in PAL/ MSP is to attend one of their many online radio shows.

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Notes

(*) technically Splinterlands is on the Steem blockchain, from which Hive was created, but it’s only a matter of time until it moves over!

NB – Hive used to be called Steem, but Steem got taken over in February 2020 by a crazy Chinese Billionnaire called Justin Sun. He centralised that chain, so the ‘real witnesses’ forked Steem and created Hive, which is just like Steem, but without Justin Sun – because his massive Steem stake was not airdropped to Hive.

NB the whole Steem-Hive thing is a very long story, BUT this is a very brief summary!

This post is NOT financial advice, if you are going to invest money in anything I’ve mentioned, you do so at your own risk, do your own due diligence first!

Even if yer not going to sign up, this whole blockchain based social media thing should be of interest as part of the Media module – it’s certainly alternative media!

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