We are developing iconet, an Internet protocol for interconnectivity of social networks. Users of interconnected networks can choose their application and platform individually and at the same time stay connected with all their contacts.
Our vision is to create a constructive online environment through digital self-determination of its users. Since a large part of communication takes place online, this is a basic prerequisite for an intact society - not only online, but also offline. How interconnectivity of social networks forms the foundation for this, is explained here.
Iconet stands for „interconnective networks“ and describes an Internet architecture which makes it possible to link different social platforms.
This allows users of different networks to interact freely with each other without having to use the same social media service. „Interconnectivity“ thus refers to the interlinking of platforms.
Direct and immediate linking between contacts
A crowded and chaotic super-platform
Without interconnectivityImagine you are using app A and your best friend is using app B. Currently, there is no way to exchange messages between these two different apps. To make contact, one person would have to switch to the other app.
With interconnectivityWith iconet, every user can choose any app they want and feel comfortable with. At the same time, everyone has their own general inbox, through which messages can be received from all their contacts and any content will be displayed correctly. Thus, it is possible to decide about the infrastructure and the way of data storage and still stay fully connected with your contacts without changing the app or installing a new one. This way, it is possible for everyone to individually decide on their infrastructure and type of data storage and still remain fully connected with their contacts without having to change the app or install a new one.
To sum it up, here are all the differences between the conventional and the iconet architecture:
- how the applications are designed and what functionalities are offered
- what type of content is presented to the users and through which algorithms it is selected
- where their data is stored and how it is processed
- which monetization methods are applied (e.g., advertisements)
- applications with different functionalities and designs
- different data storage models, which keep their personal data safe
- different platforms and networks, with various ways to interact, to meet new people and explore new content
Alex – Pragmatic GuyAlex values privacy and convenience. He does not want a flood of data, but simply wants to write with his contacts. Alex chooses a minimalistic user interface with accessible consistent design. It contains only the essential aspects of a messenger, no timeline or feed. His need for security is met as he is only connected to people he trusts. To interact with his acquaintances, he only needs one app.
Laila - Power UserLaila is into Search and Discover. Besides the messenger function, the newsfeed is the core element of her interface. She is willing to provide personal data in order to receive content tailored to her. She is shown posts from a wide variety of networks, which she can filter and sort as she wishes. To interact with content from all platforms, she only needs a single app.
Valery - Content CreatorValerie uses social media as an artistic platform. She thrives on uploading her content on a regular basis. It is therefore important for her to be able to monitor the development of her follower and view numbers, as well as to interact with her community. In addition to professional use, she would like to have a separate private consumer interface to stay up to date. She is reaching her entire target audience with a single app, independent of the format she is publishing her content in.
Every user has the possibility to decide where their data is stored and who has access to it. Options can be centralized, decentralized or even self-hosted open source servers or open source with various degrees of privacy.
Independently from their chosen platform, users are provided with a general inbox where they can receive everything that is send to them from their contacts from different and platforms.
Users can act independently from monopolistic global players and do not rely solely on the platform they offer to stay in contact with their friends.
Users are able to interconnect with other users independently of what platform they are using.
Everyone can choose an application tailored to their needs and conceptions without being influenced by the network effect and the underlying profit-oriented mechanisms.
How can users choose their individual social network?
- Which application do most of my contacts use?
- What content do I want to see?
- How do I want to interact online?
- What do I want to happen with my data?
Through iconet, everyone is free to choose what works best for them without losing their connection to their own contacts. This makes it possible to act in a digitally self-determined manner, independent of global players and monopolies.