The Distributed Download

3Box Community Newsletter: January and February

Rachel Black
Mar 3 · 4 min read

It’s been a busy start to 2020 for 3Box. One major highlight has been our release of the Confidential Threads API, which brings encrypted data feeds commonly used in non-public messaging systems and group data sharing. This release grows the variety of applications that can be built with 3Box threads, thus enabling a new generation of private and distributed applications.

We have also released updated versions of our Comments and Chatbox UI plugins, complete with additional social features and functionality.

On the community side, we have been busy attending ETH Denver, FOSDEM, and ETH London, as well as speaking at several meetups.

Inside this edition of The Distributed Download, you’ll find:

3Box APIs & SDKs

  • Confidential Threads

3Box Plugins

  • 3Box Plugins Get More Social

Community & Events

  • ETH Denver
  • CodeUp and Parity & Friends Meetup
  • Community Call
  • ETH London

3Box APIs & SDKs

🤫 Confidential Threads

In February we released Confidential Threads, which is our most significant update to threads since launching the Threads API last year. Developers have been asking for increased privacy for their users’ messages and content streams, and confidential threads enable this with private, encrypted, peer-to-peer messaging between one or many participants.

Those familiar with 3Box Threads will know that we support two types of threads: Persistentand Ghost. Confidential threads are a type of persistent thread with two varieties: Members Confidential and Personal Confidential.

The first terms Members and Personal describe the write permissions on the thread, while the second term Confidential indicates that read access is restricted to those who can write. Read access control restrictions are implemented using asymmetric encryption with the user’s 3ID.

Below, see the two confidential thread options in relation to other persistent thread types offered by 3Box:

Members confidential threads enable direct messaging, encrypted group chat and private shared data feeds/streams, while personal threads (with their access restricted to a single user) are perfect for shopping carts, to-do lists, contact lists, playlists, photo albums, and more.

👉For more information on this update, check out our blog post and updated documentation.

3Box Plugins

💬 3Box Plugins Get More Social

Since launching our drop-in Comments and Chatbox UI plugins last year, we have had the goal of making dweb apps more interactive and social. These react components have been designed to require minimal effort to integrate into an application. This Feb we were pleased to release new versions of Comments and Chatbox with enhanced social features: likes, reactions, replies, and votes!

Work to enhance these components began as part of the Gitcoin Global Communities hackathon; thanks to community members ThinkinUniverse and Tiramisu for their winning submissions. We have now worked these features in to our released plugins. Comments supports emoji reactions, up and down votes, and deleted comments. Chatbox includes functionality to like messages. For more information checkout this blog and the updated docs for Comments and Chatbox.

Community Events

🗻 ETH Denver

3Box was proud to sponsor and speak at ETH Denver, the largest Ethereum and Web3 hackathon. Our sponsored 3Box bounties resulted in 15 total submissions, and earned 9 out of 21 finalist spots — 41% of the best projects integrated with 3Box! We were overwhelmed by the interest in 3Box over the weekend. For a detailed list of projects built with 3Box, checkout our recap.

Over the course of the weekend, Micheal Sena joined an identity panel, titled “I’m having an identity crisis.” Rachel Black presented a workshop, “Build Better with 3Box’s User Data Cloud” at the hackathon and Decentralized Networks Summit. Joel Torstensson discussed lessons learned from building browser apps with js-ifs at the Decentralized Networks Summit. Joel also gave a talk at DAOFest, while Danny spoke about new funding opportunities for open source development at Sustain Web3. Along with hosting our pre-hack social, ETH Denver was a packed week!


Rachel, along with community member Frederic, ran a stand at FOSDEM, the open source conference in Belgium. We were swamped at the stand with lots of developers outside of blockchain wanting to know more about 3Box.

Rachel and Frederic at the 3Box stand at FOSDEM
Rachel and Frederic at the 3Box stand at FOSDEM

👩‍💻 CodeUp and Parity & Friends MeetUp

Rachel presented 3Box at February’s CodeUp in London. A video recording is available here. Joel also presented 3Box at Parity & friends in Berlin.

📞 Community Call

We held our monthly community call on Thursday Feb 27. We were lucky to be joined by Adam from Livepeer demoing the integration of 3Box into the Livepeer explorer. We also had some excellent demos from ETH Denver projects: Secure My State, DMV Demolisher and Coz, along with updates on confidential threads and our plugin improvements. Signup for March’s Community Call.

🇬🇧ETH London

Rachel also attended ETH London this weekend. Although 3Box was not a sponsor at this hackathon, there were some projects built with 3Box including Geolocker, Whoop Together and my project GoodGhosting.

🎧 This Week In Crypto Podcast

Whilst we were in Denver, Michael Sena spoke to This Week in Crypto Podcast about 3Box’s shared backend service for Web3. Listen here.

That’s a wrap for Jan and Feb 2020… let’s keep shipping and building better web3 apps! 🛳

Questions? Reach out on Discord!

We’re always online and available to chat in Discord if you have any questions.


APIs for decentralized profiles, storage, and messaging.

Rachel Black

Written by

JavaScript Developer



APIs for decentralized profiles, storage, and messaging. Learn more at

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