Snip is a revolutionary type of news platform, decentralized and community driven. To understand the value of the platform, we need to go a little way back in time. The internet brought the revolution of user-generated content through blogging platforms (Blogger.com, WordPress, Tumblr, Medium, and others). It represented a new way to broadcast your thoughts to the world. This major revolution put the publisher’s monopoly in danger. Publishers found it difficult to compete with the high quality articles users provided online, especially within niche content category. This problem created a wave of clickbait articles polluting the internet. Publishers weren’t ashamed to publish this kind of low quality article because it drove a lot of users’ traffic to them. In other words, they had good earnings through the use of ads. This revolution is still ongoing and there are no encompassing solutions to be found yet. Now, we can take a look at Snip’s idea.
Snip isn’t a newbie in the world of content creation. Snip 1.0, was launched in May 2016 and represented a paid content business. The company employees would summarize content from a variety of fields – news, culture, science etc. Snip 1.0 had already reached 1400 paid subscribers and they had a demand to use the Snip service more extensively on a wider range of topics. This brought Ran Reichman, Snip’s CEO, the idea of creating a decentralized platform where anyone can contribute and write a short news story about any topic. Writers get rewarded for views and might also receive tips from readers.
Readers are able to buy a subscription which allows them to get premium services like audio Snips and access to an ad-free platform. Advertisers are the third angle within the platform. Snip’s goal is to provide readers with the most relevant ads. On the other hand, readers are able to flag bad or misleading advertisements. Snip plans to integrate AdEx’s ad bidding and anti-fraud technology within their advertising system, allowing for high-quality ads without building the ad-tech knowledge in-house. All of this will be facilitated with the SNP token, which can be used within the platform.
The SNP token will be used to perform all inter-system transactions. This token can be used by readers to buy a monthly subscription, allowing them to see exclusive content and view the website ad-free. In addition, a personalized feed of audio snips is created based on the user’s interests. It is also possible to buy a subscription for a professional content stream, allowing them to keep up-to-date within their specific field or profession. Great posts are rewarded with SNP tokens. Lastly, advertisers pay with SNP tokens to display their ads.
Encouraging High-Quality News
Snip’s community members can vote on the quality of content that has been added. This is backed by Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning algorithms that filter out spam and low-quality articles. If an article turns out not to match the platform’s standards, it becomes hidden on the platform – stored on the IPFS. This might somehow be a disadvantage as all platform users pay to store this kind of useless content indefinitely. Snip devs have to develop a strong algorithm to detect low-quality news. Currently, articles are still checked manually by Snip for plagiarism, but in the near future they plan to add an algorithm which can recognize plagiarism automatically.
“Our main competitors are the legacy news sites, which still gain a lot of user attention but are not personalized, and often host low-quality or biased content.”, according to Reichman, “In addition, our content will have to be interesting enough in order to engage people outside of their social networks, so in a sense we’re also competing with major social platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Unlike the news sites, in the case of social networks there are also many opportunities for cooperation. There are crypto projects such as Factum which are also on the scene, but we look at them as like-minded companies who are disrupting the current ecosystem and not as direct competitors”.
Team Formation and Culture
Reichman founded Snip in May 2016 with machine learning and data science specialist Rani Horev, a co-graduate of the elite Talpiot program of the IDF. Reichman had previously served as a major in the Israeli Intelligence Unit 8200, where he managed teams and large scale programs. He gained expertise in software development, product management and cyber security. Both Reichman and Horev were frustrated by the low-quality of news and how hard it was to find high-quality, interesting, and brief content. Basically, there was a lot of long and well-written content and a lot of short and badly written content but almost no high-quality short content. They started Snip as a growing Facebook page for friends and family and it gradually grew to more than 30,000 users and 1,400 paid subscribers.
“Rani and I became good friends in the elite Talpiot program of the IDF, and later also worked together in the Israeli Intelligence Unit 8200. We found that we were not only good friends but also work together very well, so when we wanted to retire from the army it seemed natural to create something together. We’re currently located in Israel but plan to move our HQ to San Francisco”, Reichman said.
The Snip team is relatively small and works very closely together, with no barriers on information and no strict hierarchy. “Though we expect to grow significantly in the upcoming months. We’re confident that we’ll keep our open and inclusive culture, which values great ideas no matter where they are coming from”.
Behind the token sale
The reason for the token sale is basically because Snip is shifting from a centralized platform to a decentralized one. Using a token, aligns the interests of all the stakeholders in the ecosystem. According to Snip, a token sale is a great way to engage the community around the project, garner interest in Snip, and continue creating great personalized content.
Without any doubts, marketing will make or break the platform. Without a clear marketing strategy, it won’t be easy to attract new users. However, we do believe that such high quality, concise information will be easy to share on social media platforms with the potential to reach many readers. That said, Reichman agrees that marketing is the key to the success of the platform: “An important part of our marketing strategy is focusing on power users, passionate Snip lovers who can help spread the word in their community.”
The Challenge of Snip
“The next biggest challenge is adding more content to the platform and gaining more users. The opportunity is huge since the news industry is valued at tens of billions USD, and most of the legacy players still work like online newspapers and not like Internet platforms”, Ran told us.
The Future of Snip
“Our vision for Snip is to become the go-to place for news, a household name which everyone can rely on for information on what’s going on, and also discover new and interesting topics of conversation. In 2 years we aim to reach more than 1.5 million daily users. In 5 years we envision Snip as the top news website in the world, covering any subject in many languages, and allowing for a large community of writers to profit from creating content.”
Pros and Cons
The network is decentralized and owned by the community. All content will be stored openly on the IPFS network, putting censorship out of sight. Snip allows readers to stay up-to-date with the latest news and trends within their field or profession. A more technical advantage is that Snip allocated a very low cap with high potential for market size. Plus, they already have a working product and good experience in the field of content creation.
Snip has a small team and advisory board. Also the community is not huge with just 30.000 registered users on Snip 1.0. Competitors can easily jump into their market of summarizing content and fact-checking clickbaits. The success of the platform will mainly depend on Snip’s marketing strategy and on the amount of users adopting the platform.
Snip is a new type of news platform, decentralized and powered by the community. On Snip, anyone can write a short news story about any topic, and readers can find news that matters to them. Contributors are rewarded according to reader feedback, with a strong bias towards short and concise content. The goal is to become the top news site in the world and cover any subject, from breaking news to entertainment and everything in between.
At the heart of the platform is SnipCoin. Readers can use it to buy premium services and advertisers can use it to purchase ad space. The revenue goes to the writers. The more services people buy, the more writers earn, a virtuous cycle which constantly improves the platform.
More Info and Technical Details
Telegram (1000+ members as of writing this)
ICO Launch date: September 29th
Total funding goal: $8M, Raised so far on pre-sale: $4M