Six Alternatives to Telegram for Cryptocurrency Communities
Telegram is great…when it works. Unfortunately, the crypto world’s favorite messaging app is prone to periodically going down due to technical failures and what seems like repeated attempts by the Russian security services to meddle. Over-reliance on Telegram is a classic case of over-centralization. For cryptocurrency projects seeking a fallback alternative, the following options are worth a look.
Telegram CEO Pavel Durov embodies many of the qualities that
cryptocurrency users espouse. In addition to being passionate about bitcoin, he’s defiant against governments that seek to backdoor or shut down his encrypted messaging app, refusing to be cowed. Durov is only one man though, and for political and technical reasons, his network is prone to sporadic outages. Pavel Durov might be trustworthy, but Telegram is obviously not.
When the network is knocked offline, it tends to affect specific regions, leaving members of some Telegram groups talking to themselves and others unable to connect. From cryptocurrency projects launching ICOs to bitcoin news teams working remotely, Telegram forms a vital hub. The next time that hub becomes temporarily unavailable, the following platforms can serve as substitutes – or even as permanent replacements.
Discord is basically Slack for gamers, but even if you’ve never blasted your way through PUBG and don’t know your L2 from your R1, the platform is easy to master. It doesn’t scale as well as Telegram so large groups can get unwieldy, but at least it isn’t prone to tapping out without warning. Among the cons to consider is the fact that Discord is less private than Telegram, and does not employ end-to-end encryption.
Never Miss Any Critical Bitcoin Related News Again With This Easy GuideThis list is by no means exhaustive; messaging apps such as Whatsapp and Wechat also serve as Telegram surrogates. One of the reasons why Telegram has become the crypto community’s go-to platform is because it does big and small very well: it’s as adept at one-to-one messaging as it is at following large groups where the discourse moves fast. Regardless, crypto communities that are reliant on Telegram would do well to establish a backup they can default to, so that the next time it goes down, business can continue elsewhere.
We are also seeing the beginnings of next-generation decentralized messaging platforms in Memo.
cash – a messaging solution based on the blockchain of Bitcoin Cash, where users can interact in certain ways. It’s still far off from competing with Telegram and its likes, but some day soon it or another decentralized app will offer real competition.
Decentralization is a sliding scale, not a switch. The cryptocurrency community can’t control external forces that might threaten their ability to interact. But they can certainly do their best to ensure that no entity, including messaging applications, gains undue control. Through diversification, bitcoin, and the cryptosphere it supports, become stronger.