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Pre-collected questions (from here)
Mask & Bluesky: Mask just engaged in bluesky development, can you tell us what contribution mask in bluesky development?
Bluesky was founded by Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter and Square. Around two years ago, he announced Bluesky, which aims to build social protocol. Bitcoin is the money protocol, Ethereum is the protocol with smart contracts. After the controversial presidency of Donald Trump and the banning of his social media, Jack decided to launch Bluesky, independently outside Twitter, supported by Twitter’s core team. Last year, they wrote a report, mainly contributed by Jay, and Mask also contributed in this educational report. It’s mainly a landscape of decentralization, especially for the social networks. The existing decentralized social network, existing protocols, existing experiments, you may be familiar with some of them, for example, Ethereum, Bitcoin, DeFi, NFT… Some of them you may not be familiar with, for example, Mastodon, which is the federated social network (Fediverse, in my opinion, part of the metaverse), there are many other topics, protocols related to decentralized social networks.
Last week (around 10 days ago), Jack Dorsey announced the first group of founding members of the bluesky organization. Things may be moving very slow, but it is an important step for Twitter and other mainstream social networks. Mask Network was one of the founding members. Other founding members include IPFS, Mastodon, Audius (in the crypto world), etc.
Yisi was part of the bluesky community chatroom. The chatroom had around 40 people, consists of the founders and engineers in many decentralized protocols. They were discussing topics around decentralized database, social network, etc. everything around decentralization. They surveyed all existing protocols that could be beneficial to bluesky project. Mask is one of the community projects, you can take a look here, to give them all a try.
Bluesky is a decentralized social network protocol/standard, you won’t see an entity or a demo very soon, because Jay and the team are actually trying to build the very first design of this protocol, started from identity and the social graph. We can be the very first projects to touch the design and give it a try in our project. We can test it a little in the future, will let you know once it is here.
Mask 2.0 progress
The ETA is in the middle of next month. We are currently working on the SocialFi events, and after they are finished, we will release Mask 2.0.
We are not just polishing the existing version, but also building new apps on both iOS and Android, so you can feel it the same way as the desktop/browsers.
Since last time, we have 10-20 people signed up for a beta version, it will be released very soon (https://forms.gle/udpUcYjJhypYdWcG8). We almost have everything done, but just need time to merge them all together. We developed different features and different components by different engineers, and we want to make sure the one we bring is complete, and you can do everything you want with Mask without any missing points. Stay tuned, we will release them very soon.
As more projects use Mask, you can directly interact with more on Twitter, that would be pretty cool. It got a cool name: Dapplet. Dapplet is something core in the Mask Network, you can use the SocialFi apps on Polygon, Arbitrum, other chains. We don’t want to push the dapp part.
We are one of the largest bounty providers. Yisi has funded 28 bounties on Gitcoin, we could be the largest in China/ the world.
Another thing about Mask 2.0: the new features may not all be able to directly seen or use, but is more like a future plan (1-2 year plan). There are three main topics:
Third-party dapp market, use it directly on Twitter (e.g. Red Packet, ITO), trying to grow the ecosystem in 2.0 era;
Multi-chain wallet, to integrate more blockchain projects (apart from Ethereum, Polygon, and BSC), can directly interact with smart contracts or with those chains, don’t need to install a million wallets;
Identities. We have been talking about identity-related stuff especially in 2019. In 2020 we focused on blockchain related dapps. Now we want to bring it back. Someone from the community mentioned the similarity between Mask and Keybase. Yes, we pay a lot of attention to identities, want to bring a better identity system for users, not just Web 2.0 era, not just blockchain related projects, but can use directly in web2 platforms, in Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms. We will release a bunch of articles, so you can take a look in more details.
Edward Snowden just brought attention to the privacy issues that Apple does, and he’s talking about the “end-to-end encryption” mechanism and I think it’s the same thing that Mask Network does, can you elaborate on that?
We have integrated end-to-end encryption since day one, as our core feature. End-to-end encryption is something that only you and the one you are talking to can see/decrypt the text. No one else can decrypt it.
In Mask, you can see an encrypted tweet, encrypted by a key. In the traditional end-to-end encryption, or messengers, each message is encrypted by your private key, and my public key, or vice versa. Your data can only be controlled by you, and yourself only. You can control whom to share/post the content with. No one else, not even us, will be able to have permission to do so. This is also another feature in 2.0, we will log all the encrypted posts you created, in your local database. Everything will be encrypted by your keys, not ours. You can take a look at your history in your local computer, but nowhere else. What we want to achieve is that you can take control of your data, by you, yourself, only. Not by any other platforms, not Twitter, Facebook, or any centralized platforms. That’s our goal since day1, and that will be our goal always.
Market building in non-English/Chinese speaking countries (international community)
Translation in Japanese & Korean translation, run by the community unofficially, but we have official people in these group (Vietnam, Indian, Russian-speaking)… Bitcoin and Ethereum rely on the communities, we’ve been supporting these communities by posting bounties and grants on translation, rely on community to promote the evangelisms about the Mask.
Is it possible that mask provides the encryption and decryption service to other platforms through collaboration?
We already done that to Twitter, Facebook, and eventually everywhere. Not sure about YouTube? Even with videos, there’s a way to lock it and pay. For Instagram, probably everything you posted could be an NFT. It will be a universal service for anyone.
In Mask 2.0, we will have Minds.com coming. It’s an American-based social media, with over 4m users. We funded a bounty a month ago, to have the Mask extension available on minds.com, it is already integrated by the community members, will be be released in 2.0. We look forward to integrate more platforms like Reddit, or even Mastodon in Fediverse. We want to leave this part to the community members to focus on building the infrastructure instead of these things. You can expect more in the near future.
Mask Future development in NFT and gaming?
We had the Twitter space with Axie co-founder Jihoz. Probably with YGG, YGG did some investment with us on the SPS token. It is pretty experimental thing. Send NFT on Twitter, some of them are not on very public chains, so there’s no way to integrate them right now. But for other EVM compatible chains, like Flow related chain, we can definitely integrate it and do some involvement. The latest version of the Mask extension supported the NFT wall. We may also verify your Punk avatar, your penguin avatar, this is all going to be done in the next few weeks.
A lot of them are actually done by the community, like the SocialFi thing. The SocialFi was done by several bounty hackers from Gitcoin and other bounty platforms. They are anonymous.
For NFT and gaming development is the same. You are probably going to see it in the next few weeks about the gaming, NFTm and the metaverse. It’s all ongoing.
Mask is funding RSS3. Why were you decide to fund them. What kind of thing do you want them achieve?
The history of RSS: 1.0, 2.0, the current version. It’s related with social network and NFT, and everything we just mentioned.
The massive adoption in RSS and Google Reader is heavily developed by the co-founder of Reddit: Aaron Swartz. Very sadly, he passed away, it was a tragedy. You can take a look at the documentary “the Internet’s Own Boy” to learn more.
The RSS was abandoned by Google Reader and other mainstream media for various reasons, including Medium.
The universal adoption of the Web 3.0 revolution. We are happy to see someone carrying that forward and do RSS3, the RSS in the Web 3.0 era. RSS3 is about content creation, distributing content to the right person, in a decentralized way.
Twitter was largely influenced by the RSS idea in its early days. As we done the investment with Cent, every tweet can become an NFT, every Instagram post can become an NFT, you can subscribe, do decentralized patron. This experiment is not only done by RSS3, but by other programs as well. One of the founders of RSS3 is here with us, we will invite him to speak later.
As one of the earliest Web 3.0 projects, how is Mask going to stand out among other Web 3.0 projects?
Suji: don’t think there’s competitors yet, some projects may be sharing some of our idea, and we are very glad there are people who share our vision to work with us, like RSS3 and Gitcoin.
Don’t see something to compete with, it’s still too early to think about the Web 3.0 war. I know there’s a competition of wallet, with exchanges, DEXs. But speaking of doing everything on Twitter, and put everything together, I don’t think there’s competitor yet. The team is gathered in late 2017, project founded in 2018, first version released in 2019. Don’t see others understand what we try to do.
Yisi: We don’t want to compete with anybody else, we just want to be friends, to create an ecosystem that welcomes everybody to join. That’s the point of decentralization, there’s no centralized platform or authority to control everything. We want to build such a community, like the third-party dapp market, to welcome all projects to join, instead of competing with us. We just want to provide a better place, a better infrastructure. For them to interact with users, help them attract users. Don’t see the point to compete with us, and that’s why Mask is funding many project, we don’t want to destroy them, we want to help them. We want to grow a great ecosystem like RSS3.
Many of Mask’s functionalities are similar to that of Keybase, which is here for a while. Do you consider them as a direct competitor or an inspiration? Also do you have any plan to expand Mask’s functionalities to cover other area which currently isn’t covered by apps like Keybase?
In some ways we are like Keybase. But we never consider them as competitors. We see them as inspiration, they invented many things insightful and useful.
They could be the very first ones to create social graph, to connect one’s digital identity, like social media identities. By digital identity, I’m referring to their PGB key. They provided such functionalities that you can link your social media handles, identities to your bitcoin address, Litecoin address. That’s great functionality, but unfortunately they don’t support ETH, which I think could be the killer to the market.
We are doing that right now. If we are about to host the service close to what Keybase is doing, but we don’t want to copy and paste that. We want to adopt a better, and in a more decentralized way, which Keybase has not done yet. Many of their services are still centralized, we want to decentralize it, with the power of decentralized storage and databases. We will release the details soon, once we release the 2.0.
Can you briefly discuss the relationship between Mask Network and other (communication & computation) Web 3.0 projects? Are you competitor? Or partners?
We will briefly talk about our friends, portfolios, and reasons of our investment.
We see us as a middleware from Web 2.0 to Web 3.0. Things we will build on top of Mask Network, things we are going to collaborate with, DeFi, SocialFi. Public blockchains are something we rely on. We are going to use them, adopt them, and empower them. Our DAU is pretty high compared with other things in the crypto world.
How are you going to improve token liquidity?
By increasing the price. We can’t control the central exchange, Arbitrum is one of the partners, they don’t have smart contracts. Liquidity for central exchange is something we could control.
Cross-chain bridge for ERC721/ERC1159 token?
You mean cross-chain for NFTs. Mask is not the best person to answer those questions. It depends on how NFT contract creators decide. We can help building a cross-chain bridge, but not sure if they are willing to do so. At the moment, no projects has done that. We can offer help on that.
Cross-chain is going to be another issue for the industry to step in. However, you may not want to cross-chain this one token that worth a million dollars.
Comparing with other SocialFi projects, how is Mask different/unique?
Mask has a unique positioning. If you do some research, you will see that Mask is unique. Mask essentially enables and empowers many SocialFi projects, that enable accessibility for users, provide better interactions for users on Twitter.
Value behind your vision of the world (the community and the network)
In general, humankind is moving from the physical world to the digital world. We struggle since the very beginning, from the Egyptian kingdom, a thousands of years ago. Back then, there was no democracy, there’s no treating people equally. The Web 3.0 world is def evolving in a much faster speed, Mark Zuckerberg is still the monopoly king, but we probably won’t have a king in 20 years. The mysterious founder of Bitcoin also went missing. The part of the large goal is that, the open society dream in the digital world, when every homo sapiens species, every human transforming yourself from a physical lifebeing to a digital lifebeing.
Yisi: We want tobuild a network that belongs to all the users, that’s what we have been doing in the past, and what we will do in the future.
Glad to be part of the Mask Network ecosystem. Just closed this round of funding, will continue in the distribution of nodes, the whole creating economy system, from creators to consumers. In the ecosystem, people can use the RSS3 index.
Makoto Inoue, Dev at ENS domains:
There is some development. One thing we actually did yesterday is that ENS is known for the ETH name but we do let people claim ENS name for Internet domain, so for example is like argent.xyz, the wallet company has the Internet domain, hence they can have an ENS. We did actually deployed a new version which allows more than 90% of Internet domain to be able to claim ENS names. We didn’t announce it because there’s a caveat.
This is one of the most technically complex Smart Contracts in our ENS Smart Contract. ENS Smart Contract is relatively simple, it is just basically a qualifier key valid but this one has one specific way of being able to prove the ownership of the domain using the prove by retrieving that, approve from that Internet domain data, and to make a prove is quite expensive.
We also have to do recastly. If there is any TLD (Top-level Domain) claiming for TFD which never existing in ENS, you have to claim compute for the TLD as well. So yes, I think two days ago we just did bradleymilligan.com. That was a fast .com domain but that cost like 0.1 ETH To claim. So it’s quite expensive. Then someone cost like 0.4 ETH. Just identify that there is something efficiency in the code? So we are going to make a another change so we might not publicly and announce until that, but that should cut down the cost by half.
Again, a bit disagreement between .eth and the Internet domain, with .eth you have to pay 5 $ annual registration to prevent people from squatting. Whereas this Internet domain, you already own the Internet domain, you paid the registration to DNS provider. We have no reason to charge anything extra. So, we don’t charge anything, the Gas cost is just quite expensive But it is kind exciting that there are so many companies who wanted to use ENS name in the past but because it has been squatted, they may not have had a good .eth name. For this we can say that you can actually have the Internet domain. This is kind of latest latest??
Yisi: Basically I think ENS is one of the most important identity projects. I happened to joined this Twitter space yesterday about decentralized identities. So I guess someone from ENS spoke there. Basically, what we are doing is pretty close to what you guys are doing. But broader than domain, we are not just focusing on Ethereum, but on other blockchains. We treat all of them as identities. So how do you think about integrating different addresses on different blockchains into ENS. Say, you can just find someone’s Bitcoin address from their ENS name. What do you think about it?
Makoto: So we do already have a multi-coin Support, as I mentioned ENS is just like verified phone book and all the stuff and most people know store Ethereum address. But we do have a special of field to put something called Coin ID which is defining something called slip 44. There is over 200 coins already. If you go to your own name or search it at app.ens.domains, you can see that your Ethereum address, which you did to register the name, you set as a default Ethereum address. But you can also see the field where you can put BTC, Doge, and all the popular name. So you can set other coins. Then it comes down to the wallet to support these. Something I often use for example is Trust Wallet, they do actually support ENS domain. You can bradleymilligan If you type bradley.eth on Trust Wallet. If you want to send a ETH, you can resolve to the Ethereum address. If you want to send to a BTC address, as long as the wallet supports and the recipients have that name set, you can send with a single name.
Suji: We’ve been coming around these ENS. We have the mask.xyz, both the centralized domain and DNS. Our plan is we are trying to assign everyone on Facebook or Twitter a domain name, like suji.twitter.mask.xyz. Definitely on our dream. But it’s super hard on Layer1, for many reasons, like the gas fee is super expensive. Do you have any plan on Layer2? Or anything like a cheaper, secondary domain that can be assigned to anyone with cool functionality?
Makoto: That’s exactly the topic I gave the talk to the Ethereum Committee in Paris about a month ago. If you google Makoto EthCC you will the YouTube video. The gist is that we are working on the proposal called During, which is kind generalized way to retrieve the data from either from outside of the Ethereum L1. It could either be Layer 2, or even off-chain.
If you look at the protocol, majority of the case ENS names are used for the read-only operation. We came up the way or kind of protocol. Lets first step back. There is a thing called resover? We have something caeed registry, which is where it stored the names. The registry hold the same address, we hold address of Smart Contract called resorver, where it can define whatever the rule how to return/resolve the name. 99% of time, it resolves Ethereum address. But our idea is, to let people to upgrade their resolver. Currently everyboby can upgrade resolver to anything else, so you can buy your resolver to do crazy things. Then when we are going to extend this rather then return the same address, we are going to return URL, that client library, like esa.js or Web3.js. Can further ask a question like, hey please give me the data. The URL is in charge, what we call Gateway service. Gateway service is in charge of taking a data from wherever possible. In case we already have the prototype using optimism. We have one web service, you get the data from Optimism. One thing more common about the roll-up system is that because the security of L2 or L1. Most of the time, they kind batch and compress the data on L2 into L1, called data compression? Majority of so-called Rollup oppression have a mechanism to verify the state of L2 on L1. What we ask on the gateway service: just give me the data and as long as we can, a resolver on L1, has a way to verify the state of L1 and L2 and data. It basically ask the gateway to get the data with the proof, in which you verified.
By doing that, one of the use cases is that, like a resolver not in a Ethereum address, you can now put lots of random data and people like to put Twitter, social address or even avantar, which is getting very popular. You will work on a proposal of the format to put in the NFT so that people can start sharing their avantar information stored on ENS.
But the more data we are trying to put, updating the resolver currently cost $5 for every regular update at this moment. You can’t do it frequently. But by switching the resolver into L2, you can do it in a cost effective way. That’s way I was doing it. What I really want to get into is like the notion of sub-domain, which is less-used. But wallet like argent.xyz use the issue sub-domain to all their users, so they have like 1000 people have sub domain names. Unfortunately, they have stopped because issuing sub domains cause of too much Gas. But if you for example, argent set the resolver into optimism or any other layer 2. In theory they can issue subdomain under specific layer 2 almost no cost. By doing that, the Dapps can almost issue subdomain as part of username. That’s kind of longer goal we are working on. Nick Jonson made a fast a prototype on optimism in April and he also created a proposal for this generalized framework. Now I am kind of halfway trying to put that prototype into using the framework right now.
Scott from Gitcoin
Not sure how many people know about Gitcoin. Trying to find ways to solve coordination problems, in the context of public goods. Like how do we fund open-source software, how do we fund things that may not be easy to fund from a traditional corporation/government level. There’s lots of these problems that extend beyond one given jurisdiction. When that happens, governments and other institutions are very reluctant to fund them in any meaningful way. So you end up like a lot of institutions that just opt-out of funding open-source software, opt-out of trying to deal with things like climate change or these broader global problems. Ultimately, it’s a lofty goal, we are not gonna solve all that, but we are trying to take slow steps in the Web 3.0 context to start, in terms of how we like to coordinate around funding this shared infrastructure. I was mentioning that like ENS has supported us a lot, and has been a partner in this. We are hoping that we can find ways to broaden our support of public goods in the future. So that’s really exciting to me as well. Now given that power over the main part of the platform, Gitcoin grants to the community, so we’ve created a DAO, a DAO is governing how those categories for the rounds are formed, the amounts of funding that goes into those different categories, and then just structuring in general how we expand of this mission because the kinds of things one group might consider, or one public for that matter might consider a public good. It might be very different from another, and we need to figure out ways to come to share definitions and to work as a community. Like Web3, a shared definition that works well for all of us. This is something Toby Shorin at the Other Internet team has written a lot about, which talks about the idea of extending the idea of public goods and the things that people support beyond things that affect a given token community. I think they use the example of Uniswap, but something in general that we need to think about for projects in space. Mask has recently donated to the round coming up on September 8th that’s GR11. So that means we’ve done 11 quarters of these different funding rounds now which is pretty wild, and yeah mask is supporting the next one. I mean it supported previous ones as well so thank you again for that. That’s amazing.
Taylor: Let me take on that. So going along the lines of what Scott just said, we actually started the whole thing partially because of Gitcoin. About two or three months ago we were in talk with the dHEDGE folks including Daniel who will be on the stage a little bit later. We were talking about how we can collaborate because we see the potential of having an eternal-like financial service right on top of Twitter and the dHEDGE has been the pioneer in the space for doing some similar services. And the conclusion we had was to start a bounty, put it on Gitcoin and back then i think it was the previous Open DeFi Hackathon. A couple days later someone took the bounty and about two to three weeks down the road the bounty was completed and we had the dHEDGE applet integrated inside Mask. That was dHEDGE V1. I wrote five or six more bounties that fit similar effects so there was the PoolTogether, the savings plus lottery game; the GoodGhosting, Rachel the founder of GoodGhosting team Rachel is here. I think she’s here.
That’s a savings game for people who can keep a deposit for a few weeks and whoever forgets the deposit will lose out their interest to those who remember, so that’s a friendly competition for friends.
Augur is the OG prediction market back in 2015. They’ve recently launched a Polygon version uh what was the island and also we have a few of the swaps that we’ve integrated earlier like SushiSwap and from Matic. In short, after I posted all those bounties and the results starts to turn back and I feel, can we turn this into something even bigger, because those bounties and those apps are all based on polygon and they all fits the social finance scene which we have been tackling along for quite some time. Back in early 2020, we started the road of transitioning from encrypted messengers services-only on those social networks to providing decentralized app services, run them directly on top of that kind of road. The first app was the Red Packet I think it’s we should also consider the Red Packet as our first step in the social finance route uh then later half a year later we integrated the Uniswap trading widget along CoinGecko and CMC as the data provider. That was one of our highlights in the course of company history. Another half year later we started the ITO (Initial Twitter Offering), another six months come by we have a bunch of social finance apps.
Daniel from dHEDGE
Hi everyone, it’s awesome to be here. Thanks the epic mask crew to put this event and I think that it’s super exciting what we’re seeing now with the kind of convergence of social and DeFi and DAOs and NFT, all of the lines are starting to be much more blurry and and lead us to the fast track to the metaverse. We already met back in 2019 with Suji when you were doing the Red Packet for the first time after the Chinese New Year.
It was immediately clear that we’re going to experience a very different kind of web 3. At the time web 3 was still very clunky but then with tools like Mask, we are able to hijack the distribution channels of Web 2.0 and fast-track the transition to very powerful social experiences that at the time were very novel with dHEDGE. So a lot of the interactions that people had since the early days, late last year with dHEDGE. It’s very often very social in nature, because people are coming to invest non-custodially into hedge funds. So you basically have someone set up a hedge fund they have a different strategy. And then if I want to invest in someone I would naturally want to trust right the way to trust in a kind of trustless world much of it is very social I see that someone is verified on Twitter they’re posting regularly, about their activity their views on the market, or their views on certain projects, or coins they’re investing in.
Over time I can kind of build this bond whether it’s directly by interacting on Twitter or whatever, and we saw how the dHEDGE was very much a social application from the get-go very much a social finance, and then it made so much sense, that instead of just having to have completed two separate places where you’re interacting either Twitter or dHEDGE, with Mask it’s beautiful to see how now when I’m using mask all the time, I’m basically able to already whether it’s if I’m seeing a pool from the dHEDGE or if I’m seeing some NFTs from OpenSea, I can directly click and get there and invest and buy and be a degen ape.
So I think that generally speaking, SocialFi framework these SocialFi integrations. I’ve seen the tweet just earlier today that Ethereum has completely perverted art and completely perverted finance, and we’re really just barely getting started. So I’m really excited and I’m super happy that we’ve had that chance to co-sponsor some bounties with dHEDGE and mask and looking forward to continuing that work.
Rachel from GoodGhosting
Unfortunately, Rachel, the founder of GoodGhosting was unable to join the Spaces after the first spaces broke off. Please see this article for details of the GoodGhosting campaign.