CyberConnect — Building Social Graph Protocol for Web3

BTS Labs held an AMA with CyberConnect on August 25th. The theme of this AMA is “CyberConnect — Building Social Graph Protocol for Web3”. The guest we had were Roy Shen, the Head of Community of CyberConnect. He introduced that CyberConnect is a decentralized social graph protocol that helps dApps bootstrap network effects and build personalized social experiences.

Q1:

BTS Labs: Introduction of CyberConnect and Link3.

Roy Shen(Head of Community): CyberConnect is a decentralized social graph protocol that helps dApps bootstrap network effects and build personalized social experiences. The decentralized protocol allows users to own their social connections while providing a composable social data layer for developers.

The protocol is composed of the CyberConnect Social Data Network for storing, indexing, caching, and serving social connection data from both on and off-chain sources, as well as the Interest Graph Engine that aggregates social connection data and empowers developers to build powerful and personalized decentralized applications (dApps).

CyberConnect protocol was launched in November 2021, as the first social graph protocol published. Within the first 7 months since the launch, we have accumulated 1.48m users, and 21.3m connections, effectively making us the biggest decentralized social graph in the market. CyberConnect API has been called 108m times.

There are more than 30 projects that have integrated with CyberConnect and more than another 80 are in the process of doing so.

To name some: Animoca Brands, Ceramic, StepN, Zerion, POAP, zklink, Project Galaxy, Unlock, Coinvise, Snapshot, Animoca Brands, Mask Network, Treasureland, Grape Protocol, Convo Space, Unipass, Bonfida, Inspect, Roci Finance, RSS3, Dialect, Metaforo, ShowMe, Realy.

Link3 is a Web3 social network of verifiable identities built on CyberConnect. Aggregating both on-chain and off-chain data, the Link3 profile page serves as your holistic identity enabling trustworthy networking and meaningful connections among users and organizations.

With Link3, users will have their holistic identities to present themselves in a more complete and credible manner, easily build trust with new connections and be more discoverable in the network to get connected with the right people. For organizations, Link3 could be the all-in-one link that helps the community discover everything about the project in one place.

Link3 organizational profile was first soft-launched in June and is invitation-only. Within the first month, 200+ projects have joined the network and started establishing social connections through CyberConnect. Many of them have included Link3 in their Twitter bio too. To name some top projects:

We’ve officially launched the Link3 personal profiles on June 19th with a series of whitelisting and NFT campaigns. For more information about Link3, see the intro blog here.

Q2:

BTS Labs: What are the key features of Web3 Social? Social goes beyond social networking and entertainment, what do you envision in this new form of digital society?

Roy Shen(Head of Community):

  • Self-sovereign & ownership
  • Interoperable & composable
  • Trust-worthy and verifiable
  • Holistic and contextually meaningful identities
  • Relational and organic identities
  • User-centric
  • Hyper-connected but with configurable identity and privacy-preserving mechanisms

Q3:

BTS Labs: Besides solving the problems of Web2, what brand new possibilities are you envisioning?

Roy Shen(Head of Community):

User-centric web

  • Not only that now users have full say on how their data and identity can be used and ported to any platforms, ie, a platformless web. But users become the basic units and nexus of the web.
  • A whole new way of understanding the topology of the web and how we access and discover information and content, now all primarily through users and user connections.
  • Social graphs, ie the connections between users, are the backbone of such user-centric system upon which diverse and abundant content and utilities can grow.

Trust & identity

  • Trust is not necessarily a Web2 problem but a layer of trust and identity has been missing since the advent of the Web, which was primarily created as a communication system among machines.
  • Despite the patchwork tries of platform account systems and federated account systems, now we mainly exist only as identifiers on many centralized platforms to whom we have provided all our personal information.
  • With Web3, and constituent blockchain technologies, we see a great opportunity to build verifiable and organic identities with trustworthy connections, credentials. And such identities will be user-centric and self-sovereign meaning that they will be totally interoperable among different services and platforms while stay flexible and under the control of the users to be configurable according to contexts.
  • Just think about if we can rebuild the whole identification, authentication, access control, social networking, collaboration and even passport, ID card, diplomas all together in one collective effort, for the better.
  • Link3 will be our try at this.

Q4:

BTS Labs: What are the primitives for the new generation of social? Where are we now?

Roy Shen(Head of Community):

The User-centric Web3 Data Stack (also used by Ceramic):

  • Storage — Data(Standards) — Indexing(Querying&Recomendation) — UX(Friendly but also secure + privacy)
  • CyberConnect is built with Ceramic and IPFS, spanning all later three, specifically for and starting from social, going beyond Ceramic with our indexing & recommendation system.
  • Data standards for social connections and social-related relations and records.
  • Graph-based indexing and recommendation system that can handle advanced queries in a complex and decentralized system.
  • Product demos that let users explore and manage their social graphs and data in a contextually meaningful way.
  • Verifiable connectionss and SBTs not only contribute to the raw data but also contributing to the indexing, or sense making

The Web3 Social components:

  • Identity and social graph will be one of the four pillars of any dApp that has social components.
  • While the layer-1 blockchains, decentralized storage protocols, and on-chain data infrastructures are laying down the building blocks for Web3 apps, the infrastructure for identity and social graphs is missing. As the social element is playing an increasingly important role, CyberConnect will be an indispensable part of Web3 social.

We’ve got the visions right and have started building, but we have a lot more for trial and error, with big problems to tackle along the way such as privacy.

  • ultimately, we’ve got a great vision of web3 society and that’s more or less shared. but one of the key challenges is that we still need to have more social related data
  • and now we are making great progress in setting out the structure, and everyone’s got its angle. so we are super excited to really start building experiences and getting real users to experiment with us.
  • some critics say web3 is like a map looking for territory. but we surely already have the territory and landscape in mind, we’ve got a lot from this discussion as well. so yeah let’s get started and build.

Q5:

BTS Labs: Why should people care about ownership? If they don’t, what else should they care?

Roy Shen(Head of Community):

  • It’s like what property rights meant for modern market economy — the scale of value created by such simple yet fundamental rights sometimes can be unfathomable.
  • From ownership, there’s interoperability and portability.
  • then aggregated content, connections, assets etc. that form holistic identities.
  • they are relational and organic, carry way more meanings and represent who you are in a more complete and authentic manner. a collective meaning creation at a web level.
  • better services while improving control
  • So yeah, that also means you don’t have to care about ownership, as it is only a means not ends in itself.

Free Questions

Q1:

BTS Labs Community: What technology do you own or use that makes CyberConnect more unique than others? Is your project more innovative and useful than other competing platforms?

Roy Shen(Head of Community): The most unique thing about CyberConnect is our architecture design, where we combine off-chain and on-chain solutions together. For high-frequency interactions, we store those data on IPFS and Arweve to ensure the data availability while offering a seamless user experience. For those user interactions that are more “serious” and “payment-related”, we directly put those transactions on-chain to make querying and indexing more developer friendly.

Q2:

BTS Labs Community: If there are more teams to join link3 in the future, will there be any charging model?

Roy Shen(Head of Community): Currenly we don’t have any plan on this.

Q3:

BTS Labs Community: Your platform is able to generate a huge amount of data about users preferences, searchings and behaviors. Are you already using those data? Do you plan to use them in the future as an additional source of profit?

Roy Shen(Head of Community): Although we already have abundant data, we haven’t generate much revenue up to date. Currently, the idea of Web3 social is still in the early stage and we haven’t seen many dapps with mass adoptions. In the future, our main revenue source will be having a “marketplace”, where developers and indexers can either pay with our token to curate recommendations, or get paid to index data.

Q4:

BTS Labs Community: Can Link 3 ID be bought and sold?

Roy Shen(Head of Community): The short answer is NO. Link3 profile NFT will secure your unique domain and serve as a data standard for all your related data on Link3. It’s not designed as naming services such as ENS.

Q5:

BTS Labs Community: Can you tell us some about your team and their experiences in the market?

Roy Shen(Head of Community): CyberConnect was founded by a couple of web3 believers and serial entrepreneurs in 2021 and headquartered in San Francisco, California. In 2018, the same team founded Lino blockchain and built DLive.tv, the biggest blockchain-based live streaming platform. Our team is equipped with talent and skills to make blockchain applications achieve massive adoption. When building DLive, we exclusively contracted with the №1 YouTuber PewDiePie, and achieved 1 million daily active users within 6 months.

If you think what we build is interesting, please check out our link3 page at https://link3.to/cyberconnect/ and join our Discord community at https://discord.com/invite/cUc8VRGmPs/ with other 60k members.

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