A change in WhatsApp’s terms of service has triggered a massive exodus of the messaging platform to more private and independent rivals like Telegram and Signal, which have registered millions of new users over the past week.
Rather than agreeing to new terms specifying the app’s right to share user data with Facebook, millions of WhatsApp users simply gave up using the platform, abandoning it for lesser competitors. intrusive. Telegram alone has been downloaded 25 million times in the past 72 hours.
Telegram has passed 500 million active users. 25 million new users have joined in the last 72 hours: 38% are from Asia, 27% from Europe, 21% from Latin America and 8% from MENA. https://t.co/1LptHZb9PQ
– Telegram Messenger (@telegram) January 12, 2021
Some of these new listings understand refugees from the free speech platform Speak, looking for a way to connect and organize after the right-wing alternative to Twitter was suddenly taken offline by the service provider Amazon Web Services (AWS) hosting.
Lots of people on Talk joined Telegram when it started being banned by Apple and others.
Not to say it’s the 25 million, but there has certainly been a big shift towards Telegram. https://t.co/Taxow05M9W
– Yashar Ali (@yashar) January 12, 2021
The ability of web hosting giants like AWS to unilaterally shut down sites and infrastructure worries some players in the cryptocurrency industry for the future health of blockchain-related projects.
Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum described The removal of Speak as “very disturbing” in a series of tweets, noting that AWS was much more of a “common infrastructure provider” than a social media site. Buterin too Express some level of dismay with Twitter decision to permanently ban President Donald Trump from his platform:
“The fact that so many people who would never normally support such corporate power are now cheering tech CEOs who poke fun at democratically elected officials deserves some soul-searching…”
Take Infura and AWS offline and see how decentralized ETH is.
– Stephen Cole (@sthenc) January 12, 2021
In the past, estimates have suggested that around 60% of Ethereum nodes run on AWS.
EOS and Bitshares co-founder Daniel Larimer recently called for a massive abandonment of large social media platforms before Parler is dismantled. He correctly predicted that this might be the “last chance” to download some social media apps. Larimer recently stepped down as CTO at EOSIO block.one developers, promising to work on censorship-resistant platforms that he says will become more and more important as more people go. will find themselves banned or suspended from traditional platforms.
Other crypto projects are wary of the centralized nature of tech giants like Amazon and anticipate the problems that depend on it. The THORChain decentralized liquidity network, for example, encourages nodes running its software to avoid AWS by granting them additional benefits for using alternative service providers.
Thorchain continues to decentralize.
Thornodes are encouraged not to run on AWS, due to centralization issues.
– Sage⚡ (@Bitcoin_Sage) January 12, 2021
Providers of decentralized solutions, such as Handshake Domain Name Server, resist censorship in that they avoid relying on traditional domain name resolution processes. Sci-Hub hacker academic journal archivists changed DNS provider using Handshake, like mentionned by Buterin.
For the moment. But it will be a boon for the open web, decentralized tools and networks. Short-term concentration will result in long-term diffusion. Antifragility is not free. https://t.co/f0u6Ln3XXj
– Jonny (@wysinati) January 9, 2021
Censorship issues aren’t the only reason relying on a single hosting service provider poses risks for encrypted services. In November, the AWS outages affected Coinbase, causing problems signing in and browsing their accounts.