Yours is a new decentralized content network that uses bitcoin to reward creators. As the project gets closer to launch, more details have surfaced from the development team, and a new project website has just been revealed.
The idea came about a little over a year ago, when project leader Ryan X Charles left Reddit. Charles was employed as the one and only Reddit Cryptocurrency Engineer, where his primary goal was to decentralize the platform.
After a pivot and management change, Charles went on to start Yours. “Whether at reddit, Inc., or somewhere else, the technology to create a decentralized reddit is almost entirely in place,” Charles said at the time. “Bitcoin provides the mechanism for p2p payments, and Web RTC, or something similar, provides p2p connections between the users.”
An early technology demonstration of Yours
BraveNewCoin caught up with Steven McKie, Yours Operations Manager, to chat about the project. “We think we’ve found a way to make sure you get the best content,” said McKie, “served in a way that is simple, rewarding, and most importantly, fun.”
The platform leverages the Lightning Network to send bitcoin micropayments, and an open source bitcoin wallet that Charles created when he worked at Bitpay, shortly before starting at Reddit. “You will be able to send micropayments as little as .05-.10 cents,” McKie explains.
McKie described the platform as a fun way for anyone to earn bitcoin, and pointed out that whoever uploads the content will make the most money.
Readers of the site are called “curators,” and in order to encourage them to tip small amounts of bitcoin for their favorite content, the users who upvoted the best content get a cut from subsequent tips.
Another way users can earn is from off-site links to Yours, called ‘endorsements.’ “U
The original posts of the link/thread to Yours is rewarded with every endorsement,” McKie added, “and a portion of that is pooled to be divided amongst all who discovered and endorsed that content.”
Other plans are in the works for users to generate even more income, such as one that will divide tips made in the comment section between poster and the first upvoter of the content. Together the team plans for there to be a range of incentives bringing people to the platform. “Yours will allow you to take content you put online, and create a separate channel for you to get the $ you really deserve for your creativity,” McKie added. “No matter where on the web the content comes from, we want Yours to be the destination for where you come to monetize that content.”
The company plans to keep a tiny portion of each transaction, which is generating “overwhelming interest” from investors. “We will be revenue generating from day 1,” McKie explained during the interview. “We’re actively vetting investors and may soon be close to deciding on funding.”
“Yours will be the first mainstream consumer product to leverage the Lightning Network to monetize that which was previously unmonetizable: small pieces of content.”
Alongside payments, user identities will also be decentralized. “We plan to utilize a form of decentralized ID like BlockStack,” McKie said, although they haven’t settled on which framework they’ll be using yet.
The developer was adamant, however, about users being in full control over their own data. “Yours accounts will only have as much information as you give,” he explained. “You have full control of your private keys in your Yours wallet (and unlike Steemit) you can pull your funds out at anytime without jumping through any hoops.”
Steemit recently rocketed to fame in the cryptocurrency industry. The platform uses a proprietary currency called Steem to incentivize posters to submit great content, generating a US$275m market cap in under a month.
The Yours team makes no apologies for sticking to bitcoin, and list several reasons why. “We don’t think others in the space have gotten just right yet,” McKie told BraveNewCoin. “We think we’re close.”
While the frontend of the platform is complete, according to the developer, work continues on the backend. When that is finished, McKie says that they’ll be slowly sending out invitations to the people that registered on the website, “to try the service as we tweak it prior to full launch.”
The developers hope to launch later this year, following staggered beta testing. “We want the product to be ready,” McKie said. “It’ll be done when we feel it’s safe and secure.”