In this Faiā-sponsored video, we sit down with Kevin Pham to discuss a few Bitcoin (BSV) products, what they did well, what can be improved, and how other builders or developers can leverage "communities" to improve their product launch efforts.
Below you'll find a break-down of the chat we had together
On Common Mistakes
"A lot of builders sometimes focus a bit too much on the product and then not enough on the people side. You can focus on creating an excellent product, or you can also try the alternative, which is building out sort of relationships beforehand, getting people involved in the idea of the problem, etc. What are your thoughts on this?"
I think it's just a bandwidth issue that when you're building, you're not socializing and if you're socializing, you are not building. So I think it's good to have those types of personalities.
My personal experience is that I was there when the idea of twetch was created, and twetch was launched. So I think the twitch guys, they're the ones that have the most intuitive understanding of building community and building a tribe. I noticed from the beginning, they fancy themselves as innovators and as people are they're going to change the world and they did an outstanding job. Just hanging out on Twitter and identifying those people. The thing is that when I met the twetch guys, twetch was never in people's minds they were authentically surrounding themselves with, like minds. And they created this group called "wings'' which was another pretty large private Twitter group that was a little bit more formal and yet they did a perfect job of creating an identity and making people feel special like they were part of something special. When they were launched, they already had a robust inbuilt group to evangelize for them. I think the key is the authenticity of people that you share like minds.
"Can you describe to people what Twetch is?"
Twitch is a very similar application to Twitter, but they incorporate Bitcoin by first enabling a monetization scheme to where you have to pay to interact with twetch and to write to twitch, but also people have to pay to you pay you to write to you and to like your posts and to share and also, all your twetches get saved to the blockchain. So theoretically, your twetches can follow you know your identity, and you can own your data.
HandCash, First Exposure & Views
"When was your first sort of exposure to HandCash? And what have you seen them do good outside of just the wallet itself?"
I think it was just like a very intuitive, well-built application to me but also what I think they did well was the whole $handle with the dollar sign in your name; you saw people posting that on their Twitter to identify themselves as BSVers. That was kind of like social signaling.
People would tip you and ping you and all that stuff. I think that it was cool with hand-casting that I believe the combination of them just creates a very simple, easy to use the app and then also the $handle thing that could be posted anywhere. I think those two things were crucial and from what I'm seeing is that their community is BSV early adopters that want to test things out, show people what BSV can do.
BSV Early Adopters
I was pretty critical about these communities because I said they were like a circle jerk, or whatever, just wanted to get people on to pump the price or whatever and that's not a real, sustainable use case, or it's a false positive. But when I really thought about it, it's basically what these companies are BSV early adopters, and that's the people that are creating these products. So, on the one hand, I think it's valid because if you look at basically like a technical, logical adoption curve or if you're above that curve is called. Still, then it's always the early adopters and like, enthusiasts in the beginning and later as that gets fleshed out, and then you go to the mainstream adopters and then the laggards. That's a logical progression or evolution of any technology's adoption.
I think I'm a little hoarse on hating on it, but I just want to call it out for what it is because I think a lot of people think we're going to go straight viral, like Snapchat or Facebook, or Instagram, and I'm like, No, it's not, it's not going to happen that quickly. You got to understand where you are.
On PowPing & Unwriter
"What are your thoughts on Powping?"
Powping's launch was interesting because I think everybody was under the impression that unwriter's just building up infrastructure, only on the back end for BSV apps. Then boom, he launches powping, which is a kind of a social media kind of consumer app, which I think surprised a lot of people.
He actually reached out to me early on because I guess he appreciates my feedback or appreciates my followers. I saw the app, and it was a very well built app. Unwriter has been here since the beginning, and to me, he is one of the smartest, most prolific, most profound thinkers, most original thinkers in Bitcoin. He has a significant following just from how much impact and the contribution he's had to the community, but also he launched the Atlantis builders collective. So he had a strong community and strong values and also he had a strong reputation. His values are about proof of work and not playing games and just launching and just getting the job done and just like showing what you've done but also like, culturally,
Interestingly, you can always see this interplay or a bet or just a need for an ecosystem to balance itself, and I think twetch was the big social media thing at that time. They're very brash and abrasive. Whereas underwriter I think he's a little bit more thoughtful and collaborative with people. So when he launched, it's fascinating to see that culture kind of just authentically grows. I think that's based on underwriters just dominant personality; his thing was very organic as well because powping wasn't a thought or did not exist when unwriter was building out his community as well.
On Social Media Platforms & Personas
"What were your thoughts on that video in its relation to what you're seeing, sort of growing within even the BSV ecosystem?"
Every community has a distinct way. A different culture, distinct personality and you can literally see it between powping and twetch because twetch would be like, we're going to burn Twitter to the ground like San Francisco, Hagar is going to burn your resume, and then everybody's going to escape to twetch because we're going to be like Noah's Ark. They're like, Sodom and Gomorrah and there's going to be a flood probably be wiped out because they're just insecure and just corrupt and then you hear unwriter and unwriter's like, "You know guys, I have nothing against Twitter, and I feel sorry for them. We're not even trying to compete with Twitter; we're just trying to do our own thing, just have our own style. We have enough divisiveness in our, in our society. I don't want to add to it."
I think the world needs a little bit more powping right now just to balance the equation because everybody's at each other's throats
I think right now we're all in dysfunctional, unhealthy communities and then we believe it's normal. So I guess if powping wants to lead the way, and say, no, this is what a healthy functional, safe community is supposed to look like. I hope they go that way.
I'm just going to be real with you. Like, don't try to jump the shark. Right now. Empirically, what I'm seeing is your target market is BSV early adopters. Just let it flow naturally from there. Don't try to force people to talk about normal things, just make it occur naturally because I do think BSVers, the Wolgast in crypto. I believe they are farthest ahead. So I guess only usually they're going to attract more like minds.
"Any final things that you wanted to share just around the subject or successful product launches and leveraging communities?"
My whole thing is to to bring it back to realness and authenticity, and not trying to force something to happen, I kind of have resistance to formalizing these processes of like how to create a committee or how to launch an app and stuff like that because my thing is that that shouldn't be the prime mover.
The prime mover should be "I saw a need, or I have a group of friends. We're working on this thing together, just for each other."
For the BSVers that are following this, let's keep things natural. Let's just hang out and then as we find problems with the existing tools that we're using, maybe it's not anonymous enough, or perhaps you're afraid of losing your data or whatever. It's like, well perhaps we can do this in a better way and just allow things to go organically, just don't forget that.