Facebook Alternatives: Top Replacements for Privacy or Censorship Concerns

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People have been talking about leaving Facebook for quite a while now. But in the last month, calls to “#DeleteFacebook” have increased and gained momentum for a variety of reasons. One reason is because of privacy concerns. After news that Cambridge Analytica might have mined Facebook data that helped President Donald Trump win the election, many people are calling for a mass Facebook exodus. Others have been calling for that ever since news that bots were manipulating Facebook, whether from Russia or from the U.S. But still other people are leaving because of increased censorship on Facebook and the stifling of independent voices. Not everyone’s leaving social media altogether. So where are they going? Just like people from MySpace migrated to Facebook, where are people migrating now? Well, it’s not Instagram, since they’re owned by Facebook. And it’s not Twitter, since they’ve come under a lot of scrutiny lately for censorship too. Here’s a look at the top Facebook alternatives and replacements that people are trying, and that you might want to try too.


Steemit, the Blockchain-Based Network

SteemitSteemit

Steemit might be the most robust site (and the robust blockchain social network) that people are trying now. It’s a decentralized, blockchain-based social network. It’s not a Facebook clone; it’s more like a merging of Reddit and Medium in a decentralized network. Users are allowed to self-censor by flagging (although flagging is discouraged), and they vote on the merits of a post through upvotes, much like you would “like” a Facebook post or upvote a Reddit submission. But the big thing that makes Steemit stand out is that you get paid for your posts in the form of Steem cryptocurrency, based on how many votes your posts get. And you also get paid based on your own curation of other people’s posts.

There’s a bit of a barrier to entry, but it’s not that tough. If you need help signing up, there’s a great beginner’s guide here. Steemit currently gets about 9 million users visiting a month. Whereas Facebook has an Alexa ranking of 3 (both globally and in the U.S.), Steemit has a ranking already of 953 globally and 1,066 in the United States. It’s been growing fast in just a few months.

Steemit is still a work in progress, and new features are being added constantly. It’s actually fascinating to be a part of, because you feel like you’re really playing a role in the development of something new and special. There are also sister “apps” that work within the Steem blockchain. These include DTube (a YouTube alternative), DMania (getting paid for memes), DLive (for live streaming) and Zappl (a Twitter alternative.) My very first Zap just read: “This is my very first Zappl and I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing,” and it earned me six cents. You can learn more about these apps by reading the Steemit story here. Steemit also has an active “in person” community, including a Steem Creators Conference that’s coming to Las Vegas in mid-April.

If you join Steemit, be sure and follow me and let me know you’re there. I’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have. I’m on Steemit here.


MeWe

MeWe

MeWe is more of a Facebook clone, but it doesn’t have the earning potential that Steemit brings. However, many people are moving to MeWe because it boasts greater security than Facebook.

When you log into MeWe, you’ll be taken to a MyWorld pages which operates much like a Facebook newsfeed. You’ll see posts by all your friends, a photostream, and a chat box where you can talk to people. MeWe also has groups you can join and an Events feature too. Each person also has a profile page too, similar to Facebook’s, where you can add a cover photo, a profile photo, and status updates. You can also add fun little anecdotes on a sidebar, including what you’re eating, drinking, reading, watching, or quoting. In the other sidebar, you can share bio details like your job, college, interests, and relationship status.

MeWe’s Alexa ranking is much lower than Steemit’s, coming in at 47,721 globally and 11,438 in the U.S. But it’s gaining a lot of new interest from the #DeleteFacebook movement. If you check it out, follow me there and let me know what you think. When I first signed up, I actually got hit by some spam followers that I had to block, so I think that’s a sign that MeWe is growing.


Minds

Minds

Minds is another option. It’s a “Facebook clone” of sorts too, but it’s encrypted, open source, and focuses extensively on free speech. It even has a handy “migrate from Facebook” button that you can use. It looks very similar to Facebook in some ways. Each user has a profile page with a header and a profile photo. You can add stories or status updates just like on Facebook, and users can leave comments, share your posts, or vote them up or down. There’s also a newsfeed, where you can see what other people you’re following have posted. You can also create your own blog or group.

Minds also offers a means of generating revenue. You can have paid subscriptions on Minds, you can receive offers to share other channel’s content in exchange for points or dollars, you can receive tips from your audience in the form of points or dollars, or you can monetize your Minds blog with ads (which makes you eligible for an affiliate program.)

On Minds, you can subscribe to people whose posts you want to see. I’m on there as StephDwilson. If you try it out, give me a follow. You can register for Minds through my affiliate link if you want, which is here. And once you sign up, you can create your own affiliate link for referrals too. It’s an interesting concept.

On Alexa, Mind’s ranking is pretty high: 12,521 globally and 4,675 in the U.S. That’s higher than MeWe, but lower than Steemit.  It was launched in June 2015 by Bill Ottman, John Ottman, and Mark Harding. In May 2017, it raised over $1 million in Equity Crowdfunding.


Path

Path.com

Path is an app-based platform that doesn’t work with desktop browsers, so if you’re looking for something that works with both, then this won’t be right for you. This app is designed for working with smaller, more interpersonal groups rather than hundreds and hundreds of friends. Users share updates, photos, media they’re using, books, movies, and shopping purchases.

Path’s global Alexa ranking is 89,746. It’s used more in Indonesia than the U.S., where it’s rank is 3,657 vs. 128,649 in the U.S.


Raftr

RaftrRaftr

Raftr is a social media tool where users connect based on shared interests. You can connect with people from college or based on shared events. The site also has Rafter:College, which is a private social network for college students only. It works on desktop and mobile browsers and also has an iOS app. It doesn’t have a very high ranking on Alex yet. Its ranking is 2.6 million globally and 535,364 in the U.S.


Honorable Mentions

The Ong.social blockchain network is used more in India and Indonesia than in the United States. Ong.social currently  has a global Alexa ranking of 351,255, but it barely shows any U.S. users on Alexa at all. It runs on two blockchains: Ethereum and Wave, so it boasts strong encryption and stability. Like Steemit, it rewards posts with cryptocurrency.

Sociall.io is a decentralized social networking platform that’s currently in a closed beta. We’re including it simply as an example of how the blockchain social world is still evolving and changing. Expect more options and Facebook alternatives in the near future.

Do you have any Facebook alternatives you’d like to suggest? Let us know in the comments below.