What is Lens Protocol: Open Social Media on the Blockchain

Lens Protocol Web3 social media dapp header
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Revolutionizing cross-platform and user-owned digital identities

Lens Protocol is building a social media infrastructure powered by blockchain technology and bringing social media into the age of Web3. Lens Protocol has moved into its V2 stage, supercharging social media and allowing any internet platform to tie into Web3.

What is Lens Protocol?

Lens Protocol is a decentralized social graph that provides the infrastructure for Web3 social media platforms. One of their goals is to give users a single, blockchain-secured identity across all digital platforms.

What’s new in Lens Protocol V2?

Lens Protocol V2 introduces various new features, including Open Actions, the Collective Value Share, and an improved Profile Manager. Open namespaces allow users to split their username from their profile. We will discuss these new features further down.

Why Lens Protocol?

Social media has become very hostile, as the algorithm prioritizes hostility and arguments over cooperation, which contributes to a more fractured and entrenched public discourse. Lens Protocol wants to help diffuse this situation by ‘empowering creators to own the links between themselves and their community’.

Who made Lens Protocol?

Lens Protocol is made by Aave, the team that’s also behind the Aave lending protocol.

What blockchain does it use? 

Lens Protocol stores its .lens user names on the Polygon blockchain.

Is there a Lens Protocol token?

No, at the moment there’s no LENS token for the Lens Protocol. 

Will there be a LENS token airdrop? 

Maybe, a LENS token airdrop has been rumored for quite some time. Considering the decentralized nature of Lens Protocol, a token would help in governing and organization the project. However, criteria for the LENS token airdrop are all but confirmed.

How does Lens Protocol work?

Lens Protocol gives users access to what’s known as the social graph. This is the network of connections that social media companies use when they suggest a video, a piece of news or an advertisement to their users. Using algorithms, the likes of Linkedin and Meta will put content in front of users depending on who else is in their social graph.

Lens wants to open up these tools to let creators plug into them directly, instead of hiding that data and monetizing it. Then, creators can accurately direct their content towards receptive audiences. The social graph will also be open to users, so they can choose what they want to see. Lens predicts that this will stop centralized social media companies from fighting for users’ attention by promoting angry, hostile posts.

How to make a Lens Protocol profile? 

At the moment a select number of wallet addresses can press the “Claim Handle” button at the top of the Lens Protocol website. Anybody can sign-up for the waiting list, and they will be notified when they are allowed to claim.

Those who can claim a handle, will need to mint their own username. In exchange for a small fee, you can then claim a .lens NFT.

Where to use Lens Protocol user names? 

Lens Protocol is building a social media network that moves across various platforms. You can use your .lens username to log in to the video sharing platform Lenstube, wallet messaging app Relay, music service Riff, NFT platform Collects or blogging platform Lenster.

Can I build on top of Lens Protocol?

Yes, Lens Protocol is open-source and anybody can use the protocol to build their own social media platforms.

What can you do with Open Actions?

Open Actions allow users and developers to connect their external smart contracts into a Lens publication. This functionality will also work across different blockchains, allowing for example Ethereum, Arbitrum or Optimism contracts to operate through Lens. Open Actions will allow users to directly perform actions such as ‘Join whitelist’, ‘Buy NFT ticket’, ‘Join DAO’ or ‘Mint on OpenSea’, without leaving the blog post. 

What is the Collective Value Share in Lens Protocol?

The Collective Value Share is a new success metric that grows with each interaction. The value chain rewards creators, blockchain applications, algorithms and networks for their contributions. For example, someone who owns a certain NFT can follow other NFT holders and publish content about that collection. This then creates a value chain where like-minded people can participate. 

What happens when I sell my Lens username? 

Lens Protocol V2 introduces Open Namespaces. This means that a profile and a username / handle are stored as separate NFTs. Relationships are no longer between usernames, but between profiles. Your social network moves along with your profile, and therefore you can trade your username without losing your online friends.

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