Ahead of its upcoming public beta launch, decentralized social media platform Voice announced that it hired former Forbes chief digital officer, Salah Zalatimo, as its new CEO, according to a press release, Jan. 9.
Zalatimo joined Forbes in 2015 and led a successful digital transformation, rebuilding the Forbes platform from the ground up. Block.one CEO, Brendan Blumer, gave his thoughts on the new hire:
“Salah is a rare combination of product and media talent enriched by an entrepreneurial past. His experience in creating state-of-the-art content monetization and publishing tools makes him uniquely qualified to lead Voice.”
Decentralized blockchain-backed social media
Introduced in June 2019 by developer Block.one, Voice’s stated goal is to bring integrity to social media. It intends to “establish a new economic model as opposed to […] selling personal data and targeted ads […] at the expense of users.”
Voice will incorporate advanced identity verification to ensure that every user is an actual person, in an attempt to eliminate, bots, catfish and burner accounts. Users who post content will be rewarded with voice tokens for achieving likes and community engagement. The platform intends to launch a public beta on Feb. 14, 2020.
Can anyone topple Facebook’s hegemony?
One challenge Voice will face is to attract a sizeable number of users away from the other leading platforms. Facebook’s dominance in the field has not seen any serious challengers despite many attempts Voice will have to hope social media users appreciate and want the service that it is offering.
Zalatimo himself said that blockchain technology will drive digital product innovation in the future, adding that it “presents a fundamentally better way of empowering content creators and participants.”
Another investor in decentralized social media is Jack Dorsey. The Twitter and Square CEO announced last month that he is funding an independent team to develop a decentralized standard for social media. Dorsey has said that he envisions Twitter to eventually become a user of the new standard.