July 13, 2022

Merging Discord And Reddit For Web3 Communities | Grant Magdanz

Gm Web3 Academy DOers!

Web3 social is something that’s always on our minds…


Throughout our experience in the Web3 space, we've acknowledged the lack of decent alternatives in terms of Web3 social platforms upon which we can build communities and businesses.

Unfortunately, the internet as we know it today isn’t particularly suitable for web3 businesses and communities.

But that will have to change. 

Today, we sat down with Grant Magdanz, co-founder of GM.xyz and discussed: 

  • Discord’s endless issues 

  • The lack of suitable social media platforms dedicated to the Web3 ecosystem

  • The future of Web3 social 

  • And what role gm.xyz may play in that future

In Web3, community is the backbone. It also enables new tools for communities like tokens, decentralization and ownership. However, for all of this to work inside a community we need an upgrade on our social and community platforms.

Let’s take a deeper look into the existing Web2 problems and how things will change with Web3.

Wait 🚥 Not into reading? 📖Maybe you prefer to sit back, relax and watch on Youtube👀Or go for a drive and listen on Spotify or Apple Podcasts🎧Choice is yours my fren 👍🏽

Have you taken the Web3 Rabbit Hole course and claimed your proof of completion NFT?

If not, what the hell are you waiting for?

The Problem With Discord

Discord is the most commonly used communication platform in Web3 today. However, it’s not what the platform was built for. Discord is the perfect platform for a group of friends but isn’t anywhere fit for large Web3 communities. 

Community managers find it extremely difficult to distribute information considering that any conversation is lost almost instantly, especially in big Discord communities. Unless there are some announcements done in admin-only channels, anything simply evaporates in the air after little to no time.

This leads to the increased difficulty of keeping up with everything that’s going on in the community that you’re trying to stay up-to-date with. We find that it is extremely challenging to join or spark conversations and also keep track of everyone’s takes. 

Not to mention the chaos around certain releases or mintings, especially in NFT communities. The amount of spam and excitement is unexplainable and overwhelming. Most discord servers are closing down the chats during these times…

However, not everything is awful regarding Discord. Truth is that once you’re inside a conversation it is amazing and fulfilling. However, the barrier of entry is extremely high and most users are discouraged to even try.

Lastly, the user verification is basically non-existent on Discord. For instance, if you dm us on Twitter, we can check your profile and most of the time we know if it’s spam or genuine. However, in discord, anyone can change their usernames constantly and act as a moderator of some server and attempt a scam. 

We could go on and on with the issues of Discord, including the hundreds of notifications we constantly have. But the bottom line is that Discord is not anywhere near fitting for managing Web3 communities.

How GM Aims To Solve These Problems

GM is a new social media platform on the block looking to compete against the likes of Web2 giants like Discord and Reddit. GM’s platform is currently being developed with the needs of Web3 users and DAO/Tokenized communities in mind. 

When part of a community, you want to be caught up with the latest happenings. As mentioned above, Discord is not a great platform for this. To solve this, GM is aiming to basically combine Discord and Reddit into one platform. 

If you’re not familiar with Reddit, just keep in mind that it allows for a structure of long form conversations where on every post, the comments get upvotes which places them at the top of the comment sections. This way, the reader has a clear path to reading the most valuable parts of the conversation.

However, generally speaking, communities are hard to be built on Reddit. And that’s because of the lack of real time conversations, which Discord enables. That’s why GM wants to build a combination of Reddit and Discord.

In the most optimistic scenario, GM is trying to build a platform which has a friendly structure for the UX of Web3 users and fits the needs of a scalable community. Use the long form structure (Reddit style) of interacting to have meaningful conversations and use the chat (Discord style) to build engagement and create a sense of community. 

Right now, it is unclear how spam issues, the abundance of notifications and the user verification will be altered by GM but it’s still early days for the project.

🎉 Tweet Of The Week 🎉

How Is The Concept Of GM Unique?

Right now, GM is still at a very early stage. However, the concept is exciting because of one thing: it’s being developed with the Web3 perspective first:

  1. GM allows for wallet connection, eliminating the need for creating an account

  2. GM allows for gated communities and content based on certain tokens or NFTs in your wallet (Discord can do this via a bot, whereas this is native to the GM platform). 

  3. GM can turn on functionality to support communities to launch or create tokens directly in the GM platform.

  4. GM may use NFTs to establish roles in communities that can accrue value and be sold on to other members.

  5. GM is experimenting with ways to use smart contracts and tracking of wallet activity to determine whether or not someone is a bot / spam.

All of these reasons (and more) make for an exciting future for this project because it’s clear how many problems we encounter on a daily basis due to the current web2 applications. 

The need for a Web3 friendly social platform cannot be highlighted enough.

What’s The Business Model Of GM?

Web2 social platforms use our data to generate revenue via ads, will that carry on into Web3? We asked Grant this question, the same as we asked Brad from Lens Protocol. Just like Lens Protocol, GM is focusing on first building a valuable product and then monetizing it. However, Grant shared two insights about how GM aims to make money off of their platform:

  1. Making premium features for which the communities will have to pay to get access to

  2. Take a cut of the transactions happening on the GM platform. (As mentioned earlier, they will look to enable projects to launch tokens and NFTs for their communities)

However, one thing that’s certain is that GM doesn’t plan to adopt the business model of big tech, which is data manipulation. 

😂 Meme Of The Week 😂

Allegedly, Web3 Academy is serious… allegedly.

Is Decentralization The Answer For Web3 Social?

Decentralization is at the core of Web3, but is it required for our social apps as well? The answer is absolutely! We should own our social graph and no one entity should be in control of applications that billions of people communicate on.

With that said, the tech stack of Web3 is limited at the moment and it’s not ready for the incredible UX that social platforms require. Not to mention, decentralization across the board can be a drawback early on in the build of a project because it can take a long time to get things done if you’re going to vote on every single move you make.

Therefore, decentralization isn’t necessary at the beginning. However, it is something that you need to think about once your project has grown, has meaningful adoption and is facilitating value.

At the beginning, moving fast may be  more important than decentralization in order to build something that people actually want to use GM certainly isn’t decentralized and looks more like a Web2 platform rather than Web3 at the current moment. You can think of them more as a “read only” to the blockchain rather than actually being built on the blockchain.

However, they are building a platform dedicated to the Web3 ecosystem and they have a flexible roadmap to decentralize parts of the application over time. It will be interesting to see this unfold in real time!

Where Is Web3 Social Heading?

First of all, it should be noted that most of the existing social platforms are not rightfully rewarding users for creating content, apart from maybe YouTube. The rest (TikTok, Instagram, etc…) do not reward their content creators at all, although they are responsible for the traffic that’s being generated. 

Second of all, the algorithms of social media platforms will be open-sourced (what Elon Musk is trying to do if he ever takes over Twitter) (By the way, Elon seems to have pulled out of the deal).

Third, the competition will be more present and we won’t only have a select few social media platforms like we have today…

And lastly, users are going to have multiple identities across the web to fit their interests in certain communities. Right now, most of us have the same identity across all of the different platforms. Web3 will enable users to be more flexible!

Connect with Grant on TwitterFollow gm.xyz on Twitter

🚀 Action Steps For Web3 DOers 🚀

👉 Visit gm.xyz and join the c/gm community

👉 Learn more about Web3 social by checking out our discussion with Bradley Freeman from Lens Protocol (a protocol focused on decentralizing our social graph)

👉 Join our Discord and help us launch Web3 Academy DAO, a tokenized community which aims to further the mission of Web3 Academy by creating resources, products and services to better support the wave of entrepreneurs, businesses and creators moving into Web3 over the coming decade.