Carbon Project Update, Recap and What’s Next

Hey Carbonians!

The Carbon Beta has been quite successful, not only in terms of usage but also from a technical and performance standpoint. We have had to make some minor adjustments having seen how people are choosing to use the platform, but nothing that changes our general direction.

We’ve been closely monitoring the usage and performance of the app. Over the past few weeks we’ve had over 10,000 posts from thousands of unique users, almost 20,000 comments and over 50,000 notifications. People are using Carbon regularly. Our retention is higher than we would’ve hoped for at this early stage which is a great sign for future growth.

We still have some key features to come which will make Carbon quite a complete platform (with even more in future taking it beyond that point).

You may be aware we had planned to open up account signups via Twitter, Facebook and Google account connection. During our development and implementation of those methods, a few stories came out about some major hacks, namely the Facebook hack of over 500 million accounts. We got together to talk about this and reached the conclusion that we don’t feel comfortable leaving Carbon’s security at the mercy of other platforms who clearly have some serious vulnerabilities and don’t take privacy or security seriously. If you connected to Carbon via Facebook, and Facebook was hacked, your Carbon account is at risk too. Twitter has also recently had some problems with verified accounts being hacked, and non-verified accounts are constantly being hacked.

So we’ve decided that we won’t be relying on any other platforms, particularly since we’d rather you leave the platforms who don’t care about you, and use Carbon instead.

We’re going to allow traditional email and password account creations for Carbon, in a few weeks time. This obviously is a very familiar and mainstream-friendly signup option and it doesn’t rely on the security of who are essentially our competitors. We’ve already built most of this in and are in the testing stages now.

Users who sign up with email instead of MetaMask will still be able to insert a payout address for their rewards. Of course, they’ll need to create an ETH wallet that can receive CRBN. There may be some limitations for email users on features that require MetaMask connection, but the choice on signup method is entirely for the user to make. Signing up with email would allow the user to use Carbon in any browser on any device, which is a huge advantage. On the other hand, MetaMask accounts will always be the most secure and anonymous option. It’s up to you.

We expect this to be implemented in a few weeks time. In the mean time the beta will continue running as is.

The next update will likely also include the image uploader! Something everyone has been asking for. No more imgur! you’ll be able to upload from your device directly into your posts.

Another feature that should be coming in this update (if not, shortly afterwards) is the portfolio. This will allow you to pull in all your ERC20 tokens and see their daily and weekly performance including your entire portfolio value. Not only from your connected wallet, but we’ll allow you to paste in ANY ETH address and toggle it on or off as part of the portfolio value. This will allow you to add your multiple wallets together, or even track someone else’s wallet. Paste in the address, it pulls all the tokens in, and away you go. In future we are looking to add non ERC20 tokens too (this shouldn’t be too far away) essentially creating a fully fledged portfolio manager inside Carbon. Included in the portfolio section will be an NFT gallery, but this will be a private thing only allowing users to view their own NFTs in their connected wallet. The full NFT feature is coming soon.

You may notice that it’s a portfolio, not a wallet. At this stage we won’t allow sending or receiving via the Carbon portfolio, as you can easily just do that via MetaMask and we don’t want to reveal users addresses, even if they are friends. We’re working on better ways to handle this more anonymously and securely. For now, it’s a portfolio.

After this update some more key features are also on the way such as direct messages. You will only be able to send a DM to a contact, not a follower. DMs are part of the private side of Carbon, and your contacts should only be friends or family, not anons. Do not accept friend requests from anons and if you already have, go and remove them now. Contacts will be useful in the future for DMs but also some other features (some we haven’t mentioned yet).

Once we have some more of these key features included we can start looking at marketing to gain users. During beta with the MetaMask requirement, it’s really too much to ask of most people. They might browse the site and be interested but many won’t be willing to take the time to sign up. Email signups will help that in a big way and we’re redesigning our entire signup process. Patience is required as usual, Carbon is a long term deal. With more users, the quality content will naturally rise to the top and poor quality posts will not be so prominent.

We’re also reviewing some other parts of Carbon having seen exactly how people are using it so far. We want to keep users engaged and not subject them to very niche content that is likely unwanted. We want to give more control to the users. It’s obvious many of the posts so far have been designed to appeal to mutual interests (Carbon itself, and crypto) but we also understand that crypto users are also regular people with interests outside of crypto, and we want to encourage users to look outside of crypto. Quite frankly, crypto memes are not nearly as popular as most people think. They aren’t receiving a great response. So far the best performing posts have been in topics outside of crypto. So please, think about what you are really interested in, and don’t assume other users care only about crypto. Posting 10 posts that don’t really need to be a post at all, is not a good strategy to gain points. It will also probably result in a lot of people muting you. Posting 1 good post will be far more rewarding. Please refrain from the constant low quality thoughtless posts, it also makes a worse first impression for new users and is quite off-putting. Most users have been putting effort in, but 3 or 4 in particular are basically just spamming, and it simply doesn’t work.

We will also be constantly reviewing the points and rewards system to make sure it’s fair and rewarding users appropriately, and not being manipulated.

Finally, we’d like to remind everyone that “Carbon is Carbon”. We are not Twitter. We are not Telegram, or Facebook or Reddit. We are unique. We do hear your requests for features and changes and they are appreciated, however we do have a vision of what we are and where we are going, and we will not be implementing features from other platforms simply because they are familiar. They need to serve a purpose and help people to use and benefit from Carbon specifically. We never set out to be “another Twitter” and we need to be very conscious of allowing people outside of our team trying to take us in new directions.

In summary:

  • Email and password signups to replace other platform signups

That’s all for now. We’re working hard as usual and some more key features aren’t too far away, so just keep using the beta as usual for now and thanks for your support!

Thanks!

Carbon Team
crbn.social