If you’ve perused the “cryptocurrency” subreddit, you have likely heard the rumors that Ethereum is being used by Reddit — the giant social media forum with dozens of millions of users.
This discussion began with a post from “MagoCrypto,” who on Wednesday posted a video showing that on his Reddit app on his Android (Samsung), there was an integrated wallet with an Ethereum address, along with explanations of a digital coin/point system. The user, who purportedly works in the crypto space, expressed his confusion:
“Not sure, I just have the regular official app, didn’t install anything special.”
After some poking around, Decrypt, who managed to contact a spokesperson of the American social media giant, found out some more details. Their report indicated that Reddit is “working with one community to test a feature that represents a user’s involvement in a community.”
According to a recent follow-up from Mago, the project will use Ethereum-based ERC-20 tokens called “Community Points” that allow power users to access certain aspects of a community. A text from the Reddit feature Mago shared reads:
“Community points are fully controlled by the people who own them. They live on the Ethereum blockchain, which is the same technology as Bitcoin to guarantee property rights and control. Even Reddit cannot take them away.”
These points, the video of the beta program indicates, are seemingly different than karma, the traditional point-system on Reddit.
This move to dabble in crypto, namely Ethereum, isn’t exactly unexpected: Reddit’s co-founder Alexis Ohanian is a noted Bitcoin bull, while the forum has long been a home for members of the cryptocurrency community.
Ethereum Adoption Could Spike
Although the details about this project are still hard to come by, members of the cryptocurrency community have been thoroughly pleased by the news that such a notable site is dabbling in Ethereum.
Ryan Sean Adams, a crypto investor at Mythos Capital and writer of the “Bankless” newsletter, expressed the importance of this feature in the below tweet, writing:
“Reddit [is] rolling out a community tokens system on…Ethereum. Could this 100x DeFi users? Wouldn’t take much.”
Reddit rolling out a community tokens system
Community tokens are ERC20s, DeFi-compatible
430 million Redditors
Could this 100x DeFi users?
Wouldn't take much
And other social media platforms will follow
Ethereum is the internet's property rights system
— Ryan Sean Adams – rsa.eth (@RyanSAdams) April 10, 2020
With BitInfo indicating that there are approximately 350,000 active Ethereum addresses, even 10% of the purported 430 million monthly active users using Community Points could result in 10,000% growth (100x) of the blockchain’s active user base.
Notably, for the time being, it seems that Reddit is keeping this project limited in scope, with the spokesperson confirming to Decrypt that it is currently only working with “one community.” But, this could change as time goes on.
Some, however, brought up long-term scalability implications as a concern, explaining that an instant order of magnitude increase in Ethereum transactions may bring the blockchain to the standstill unless a second-layer or custodial solution is rolled out.
Photo by Kevin Wolf on Unsplash