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All You Need to Know About Lens Protocol (LENS)

The move from Web 2.0 solutions to Web 3.0 solutions is here. While not many people are paying close attention to it, as it might not be that apparent, the undeniable switch is about to come gradually, but then suddenly, as is very common in the cryptocurrency space.

This rapid change in the popularity of Web 3.0 projects will come mostly due to the fact that many of the potential leading projects of this epoch of the Internet are already being developed. One of such projects is Lens Protocol, which aims to improve the whole social media experience in the Web 3.0 interface.

What is Lens Protocol (LENS)?

Lens Protocol (LENS) is a composable and decentralised social graph platform. This project aims to focus on building a way for content creators and social media users to improve their experience, while not necessarily having to focus on scaling. On the contrary, Lens Protocol wants the users to focus more on creating a great experience for their followers.

Through this, Lens wants to empower the content creators to “own their digital roots.” They would therefore be able to own the connections between them and their communities. This is expected to be all done in a permissionless, composable and decentralized way. Moreover, it would allow the Web 3.0 social platforms to become easy and transparent.

Lens Protocol is built on top of Polygon (MATIC). Polygon is an eco-friendly Proof-of-Stake blockchain. Currently it is compatible with different cryptocurrency wallets such as MetaMask, Gnosis Safe or Argent. The project is built around two main ideas, which are modularity and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

The NFTs will act as a central feature of the protocol, since they will establish users’ profiles. Thanks to this, the users owning their content will be able to create and maintain it, as it will be represented in the NFT form. This also creates a clear sense of who owns the data about themselves and their communities. Therefore, the content creators and users will have complete ownership over their content.

Lens Protocol ecosystem graphed, Source: lens.xyz

While the clear benefit of this is the data handling as well as the scalability of the followers by users, there is one more important piece that makes this solution so appealing to the users. And that is monetization. Through Lens Protocol, the content creators are provided with features that make monetization simple and easy, whether that is through subscription or different purchasing models.

What problem does Lens Protocol solve?

While many of you might have already figured out what the main problem Lens Protocol solves, let’s put it out clearly. The current Web 2.0 setup is not ideal for content makers and creators. Anyone who puts their own content out on almost any platform is dealing with a huge problem and that is centralization.

Content creators do not truly own any of their content once it is published online. It is the platform that owns the content, which means that it can censor or deplatform any content creator it wants. This was seen in the past few years on many occasions, with several people pushed outside of social media platforms for the type of content they release.

Web 3.0 wants to solve this and Lens Protocol plans to be right in the middle of it. Thanks to its decentralized nature, Lens wants to give the ownership rights back to the users and content creators. They would thus not have to trust anyone and would truly own all of their content that they produce, since they would be in full control over everything that is connected to their accounts.

Key features of Lens Protocol

While the NFTs and modularity are the two key concepts that the Lens Protocol is built around, there are different features connected to that, which might probably need more explanation. So here are the key concepts:

  • Profile NFTs: Composable, non-custodial and permissionless, these dynamic NFTs are the core of Lens Protocol since they contain the whole history the user generates. This includes all posts, comments, likes etc,.
  • Follow NFTs: When the user of the platform decides to follow someone else, a follow NFT is automatically generated and granted with a unique token ID. These types of NFTs can also be traded in the open market.
  • Publications: Anything that gets created, posted or shared on Lens Protocol or any of its DApps is supported by IPFS, whether that is pictures, music or different pieces of art.
  • Collect: Another important feature is collect, which allows users to collect publications from the people they follow.
  • Mirror: Basically, a re-share feature that amplifies the content that is being shared. It also allows users to earn a cut from anyone, who collects the original content via the share or in this case “mirror.”

Those are some of the functions that the Lens protocol wants to emphasise and push forward. However, they also want to improve social networking through building decentralized applications (DApps). As of now, the project allows any DApp or a blockchain-based media platform to connect into it thanks to its open social graph architecture.

This ensures that there are no centralized entities or service providers who could benefit from the selling of user data. Moreover, it also protects the users as there is not a single point of failure or centralized power. Yet another benefit for the users is the fact that since they are the owners of their data such as content, followings etc, they do not have to worry about being censored due to regulatory or policy measures.

Lens Protocol also adheres to one of the cornerstones of the cryptocurrency world and that is the open source code. The team made sure that the community can build directly on top of the protocol as well as to verify whether it does what it’s supposed to do. Analytics platforms, social apps, verification systems, DAOs or different DApps are just few of the possible platforms, services or products that can be built on top of Lens Protocol. But its ecosystem is much broader.

Some applications featured on Lens Protocol, Source: lens.xyz

Lens Protocol and its ecosystem

Lens Protocol has already built a pretty noticeable ecosystem. As of now it already has dozens of different apps, DApps and projects built on top of it. It is also closely working with several of them to improve their efficiency, help them progress and gain as much attention from users and content creators as possible.

Here are some notable projects that have already been built on Lens Protocol. These are:

  • Lenster: Lenster is a decentralized and permissionless social media app providing a Web 3.0 experience in line with what the users of Web 2.0 have been used to.
  • The Cultivator: The Cultivator is an app planted directly in the centre of the Lensverse (the whole ecosystem of Lens). It helps visualise the whole network of each individual user and provide such intriguing data as mutual followers or interconnections between users.
  • Iris: Iris is a social media platform that combines all the favourite platforms into one place, with a little twist, giving all the users control over who views their content. The main goal of Iris is to encourage more organic reach.
  • Clipto: Clipto is a platform that allows users to request personalised videos from their favourite crypto stars. It also allows anyone to connect with their favourite creators.
  • Phaver: Phaver is a platform that allows its users to get rewarded for both online and offline content curation. It helps curate and share the most interesting content, for which the users are rewarded.

Lens Protocol also has some interesting partners. These include Polygon (MATIC), IPFS, Arweaeve (AR), Zerion, Worldcoin (WDC) or Livepeer (LPT). However, the biggest name in the mix is Aave (AAVE), who is behind the development of this project.

Partners of Lens Protocol, Source: lens.xyz

More specifically, Stani Kulechov, the founder and CEO of Aave was the one who helped with the creation and shaping of Lens Protocol the most. This is mostly due to his “rage” against the current Web 2.0 “internet setup,” which he wants to solve thanks to projects such as Lens Protocol. Another key person in the development has been Christina Beltramini, who is the current Head of Growth of Lens Protocol.

Conclusion

Lens Protocol is slowly getting traction. Considering that this project is not even one year old, it has seen a considerable rise in DApps and projects that are connected to the platform. Its future, however, will be mostly determined by its users, which is where Lens Protocol has a lot of room to grow. 

 

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