Here comes RSS3

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The right to create, disseminate and distribute information should not be in the hands of centralized governing. It is the basic right of cyber lives.

Gradually over the past two decades, contents and links have been controlled by several data superpowers, who then eats all the profits, privacy and freedom. This centralization also resulted in a terrible environment of user experience innovations: No matter how well your design and engineer your application, there is no way to compete with the data monopolies.

The world has been eager for a new way of constructing social and content networks. RSS used to be the pioneer of its time, now it’s time for us to pick up the baton and carry on.

Derived from the best out of RSS, RSS3 is an open protocol designed for content and social networks in the Web 3.0 era.

The Ideologies We Carry

Open Source

It goes without saying that the whole RSS3 project, including the standard and protocol itself and all other supporting layers like hosting and indexing should be open source. Everyone should have the right to inspect and understand what the code is and how it works. Also, being open-source gives all developers a direct way to contribute to all parts of the project.

We will encourage all applications that utilize the protocol to be open-source as well. Otherwise, users won’t be trusting them with their valuable private keys. Chances are that malicious and non-open-source applications will be eliminated by market competitions while data monopoly no longer exists.

Right now, people are forced to trust centralized parties for what a internet service actually does. There are of course big brands to trust, like Facebook, Google or Amazon. People used to have the idea that “big brands won’t cheat”, but recent incidents have all reminded us that giving anyone the chance to do evil is equally dangerous. We need transparency.

Distributed Control

The old RSS was designed to be decentralized but not distributed. And that leads to super sub-centers which still carries too much power similar to centralized architectures. For example, Spotify hosts a great amount of long tail podcasts and, though it still uses RSS for publishing, controls all the RSS files and the audio files.

The ultimate distributed control is to have every cyber persona control its own data. And this means both indexing files and content file should be under distributed hosting, and the right to edit the files are determined by their key pairs like in Bitcoin or Ethereum. However, it is important to note that this key pair that controls ownership can also be changed by their key holder, which will result in transferring or trading of a certain persona.

That being said, we still need to keep in mind that general users will take a pretty long time to adopt this idea of keeping ones keys and controlling ones data with them. There will likely be a gradual process which involves efforts from multiple parties.

Inclusiveness

RSS3 and its applications are determined to win against the old giants, so it has to be inclusive in two major ways.

It starts with the inclusiveness regarding types of applications. Any content or social network is defined by its content form and network structure, where network structure is determined by type of links and mechanism of discovery. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp and TikTok are not that different technically. We need the protocol to support very different types of applications so that innovations can continue to happen.

Then we need the inclusiveness on modules. Whether it is hosting, indexing or monetizing, RSS3 is designed to be extremely open to modules with different functionalities. This gives RSS3 great flexibility and possibility regarding what it can do in the future.

The Future We Aim

Empowered Personas

Cyber personas will truly have full control regarding the data they produce. Any persona can freely express their thoughts and ideas without being censored by any centralized agency. You can go to any application with your own contents and relationships. No platform can ever force you to labor for it anymore. You, no longer the platform, will be empowered to create, own and monetize.

Platformless Medias

Medias right now are closely bonded with platforms. Each social media platform has its own social graph and primary form of content. The adoption of RSS3 will give medias a chance to have the largest unified group of subscribers, an efficient monetization channel without platform commission, and a freedom to generate contents of various forms.

Innovative Applications

Innovations on user experience has slowed down so dramatically as data superpowers continue to grow. We want to rebuild the prosperous ecology of applications for different user experience to emerge. When users control their data, they can easily choose to move to applications with better design and engineering efforts. Unlike competing for the scale and speed of data monopolizing, now applications will be actually competing for user experience.

The Team We Build

To achieve what we aimed for, we formed a distributed organization with high standard. Every member works on RSS3 comes from his/her/their/its true belief and passion. We share the culture below:

Mission

To Liberates Contents and Links

Vision

Build a world where information and its flow are free, secure, efficient and distributed

Value

  • Neutrality
  • Inclusiveness
  • Equality
  • Security
  • Privacy
  • Meticulosity

I first was working on an RSS related app in 2018, which led me to the famous RSS project on Github called RSSHub (https://github.com/DIYgod/RSSHub). The app failed badly and I did not anticipate the experience with that app would do me any favor. I worked on different types of social networks after that and gradually shifted my focus onto decentralized social and content networks. It was not until the second half of 2020, did I suddenly remembered RSSHub and its creator DIYgod (https://diygod.me/). I connected with him and decided that we could carry some of the best from RSS and build something better. With great help from suji (https://twitter.com/suji_yan), founder at Mask Network, we were able to know more people in the decentralized world and raise our seed round. Suji was actually the first person advised us to change our project name (formerly AIR) to RSS3 :D

To Conclude…

It is never easy to build something great. Especially when you are confronting the well established giants. However, as developers, we have a firm belief regarding what is right and what should be done. We must dedicate all what we have to overthrow the old world in order to build a new one.

If you want to join us, know more about RSS3 or just want to have a talk, we are always happy to connect :D

All the best ❤️

— Joshua & The RSS3 Team