Global, decentralized, and censorship-resistant social media (Nostr, et al)

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What is Nostr?​

Nostr is a protocol, designed for simplicity, that aims to create a censorship-resistant global social network. Let's unpack that a little:


The protocol is based on very simple & flexible event objects (which are passed around as plain JSON) and uses standard elliptic-curve cryptography for keys and signing. The only supported transport is websockets connections from clients to relays. This makes it easy to write clients and relays and promotes software diversity.


Because Nostr doesn't rely on a small number of trusted servers for moving or storing data, it's very resilient. The protocol assumes that relays will disappear and allows users to connect and publish to an arbitrary number of relays that they can change over time.


Because Nostr accounts are based on public-key cryptography it's easy to verify messages were really sent by the user in question.

Like HTTP or TCP-IP, Nostr is a protocol; an open standard upon which anyone can build. Nostr is not an app or service that you sign up for.

That page includes a link to find client apps for a variety of platforms. I looked at the guide for Gossip - the desktop application and it did not seem very user friendly/intuitive yet (wrt relays).

It's still a developing project, so I expect it will get better/easier or fail.
Oh wow... Iris apparently lets you participate in a global feed - everyone on the network can hear you scream (if they choose to)...


what ever happened to spelling? I dnt knw
Oh wow... Iris apparently lets you participate in a global feed - everyone on the network can hear you scream (if they choose to)...
That isn't quite correct. You can view a feed that includes up to five degrees from folks that you are following. Unfortunately, clicking the follow button doesn't really seem to work for me the way it should. Most of the time it just sticks. Only once did it actually process.
Crypto and the wider world of open-source, distributed tech has social media alternatives, too. There’s Bluesky, Blockstack, DeSo, Farcaster, Friend.Tech, Gab, Hive, Lens, Lenster, Mastodon, Minds, Mirror, NOSTR, Steemit and many, many more. There were apps that launched this year, and apps that upgraded, revamped or overhauled.

Some, like Mastodon, have seen such an influx of users that the platform is essentially unrecognizable from this time last year. Others, particularly those on a blockchain, are not quite sure if they could even scale to the hundreds of millions to billions of users that log into, post on and love Twitter, Facebook and Instagram today.

It was the year of decentralized social media. Here are a quick selection of notable moments.


Dan Romero quit his job at the big U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase five years ago to help found Farcaster, described in the project's own documentation, as a "sufficiently decentralized social network built on Ethereum."

Farcaster's launch was sufficiently notable to attract a sizable population of blockchain developers and crypto fans as users of the platform – who gravitated toward the idea of a decentralized version of Twitter, now X. It didn't hurt that Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin signed up as a user of Farcaster's Warpcast app, and has made regular posts.

But what has vaulted Farcaster to the center of Crypto-Twitter conversations over the past couple weeks is the project's release on Jan. 26 of its new "Frames" feature – essentially allowing apps to run within posts, so users don't have to click off to another site. According to a dashboard on Dune Analytics, average daily users on Farcaster has shot up from fewer than 2,000 as recently as late January to now nearly 20,000.

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