Social media users today are often asked to pit privacy against entertainment. With recent congressional hearings putting the practices of the highly popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat in question, people are feeling it’s time to switch to a platform that caters to their privacy needs.
Though there is a variety of good reasons to avoid investing in a new social network, there are also advantages to having a presence on multiple platforms, depending on where your audience is most active. On the other hand, there are also good reasons to embrace a new social platform. One of the most popular is the desire to get away from the omnipresence of Facebook, Instagram and the like — platforms that seem to value your data more than your privacy. Fortunately, there is now a plethora of emerging alternative social media platforms that hold your privacy above making a profit. Whichever camp you fall into, it’s worth looking at some of the alternatives.
diaspora*, a non-profit decentralized social media network based on free software, could be considered a visually a sleek Facebook with many of the same features. You can create posts, share images and make comments. Hashtags help organize posts for searching and browsing. Furthermore, diaspora* claims to stay ad free and keep your personal info and what you share private with a dispersed network of pods that contrasts with larger platforms’ centralized servers.
EyeEm is geared mainly to professional artist and photographers. It has an interface similar to Instagram but is even more focused on the photos. Rather than a pure social network, another interesting point about EyeEm is that you can generate income via the app by entering “missions” or photo contests that pay out to the winners selected for each mission, and brands can also look to EyeEm creators for their content needs.
Minds is an open source social media network with encrypted messaging and an emphasis on privacy and freedom of speech. At its core, Minds resembles Facebook in its ability to share numerous forms of media to the public or within your network. If you are actively a part of this decentralized platform, you can generate income via cryptocurrency. The site still needs improvement with a low figure of users, but the future seems bright.
Wakelet is a platform where you can store all the interesting links that you find in one place and easily share to any platform with one click. You can even create themes for your “wakes” so as people visit your Wakelet profile page, they can see the collections you have created and select what they’d like to view. It’s a more organized way to share content you care about online.
Vero claims to provide a smarter way to share content and offers more control over who can see your posts. The platform is app based and does not have a web interface, but visually, it resembles Facebook — without ads. Users can post photos, videos, links and current location, all appearing in chronological order, and Vero claims to keep user info safe. The platform will soon require a subscription to use, raising questions about when this subscription will take effect as well as skepticism of its founder. As such, Vero has made potential users cautious.
No matter what your reasoning in looking for an alternative, there are apps and platforms out there where the experience may be familiar yet privacy concerns are addressed. These platform all seek to make social media a safer and more rewarding experience.