Telegram is a sinking ship?
In 2017 when the token sale epidemic started, every investor felt lightheaded from the thought of doubling, tripling, or even quintupling their investments. However, Blockchain project founders ran into a bit of a hiccup, which revolved around how to actually coherently communicate with their potential investors, and not only them but thousands of people at the same time. Primarily to demonstrate that they aren’t running a scam, but also that investing in their project is actually worthwhile and perspective.
First, Slack was used to do so, but, more on that in another post. That was pretty much dumped in favor of Telegram. Why? Well… nobody can give an exact answer. There’s a theory going around that back then, practically 70% of all Blockchain and crypto projects had Russian roots. And Russians with IT background primarily used Telegram. In part due to their loyalty to the regime victim, Pavel Durov (Telegram Founder).
Initially conceived as a messenger for private chats, Telegram’s triumph shouldn’t come off as an unexpected success story in the world of online community building.
The first wake up call occurred when the earliest investors in the crypto world and chat participants began losing money. There was no secret or hidden attack, social hacking, reverse psychology or any other such nonsense used either. Scammers ever so cleverly pasted their own, personal cryptocurrency wallet addresses in chats and wrote that they were real project admins. Naive investors quickly rushed to transfer significant sums of cash until someone said, “wait, this doesn’t feel right,” and such scam was uncovered. But, back then it wasn’t obvious who made a chat group or who the real admins were. By the way, millions were sucked away by such schemes.
However, when the number of members in project group chats reaches into the thousands, it becomes quite apparent that Telegram isn’t exactly the best tool for community management. Initially, there was a limit of 200 people per group. But, Telegram rolled out updates and expanded on the allowable user limit. However, communicative chaos remained due to limited functionality. The issue still persists, 3 years later.
Moving along we will brush over the main functionality issues of Telegram, due to which it can be labeled as totally unfit for community building:
1. Mobile Databases Parsing
Telegram accounts require mobile telephone numbers to function. Which can cause sensitive data leaks and the theft of nearly every user’s data. opening up room to be used as a tool for mass solicitations.
As a matter of fact, there are even days when spammers directly attack you in private messages and unwanted phone calls. Hm, seems like there’s limited privacy in “the most confidential messenger” in the world.
2. There’s no such thing as secrets
Private chats are those whose invite links consist of a random sequence of numbers and letters. The folks working on Telegram are adamant that only admins and trusted members can invite new users to their chats by forwarding these invite links via private messages.
Great, however, we don’t live in Wonderland with Alice, and all those “private” chats, well, they are actually indexed fairly well by search engines. So, if you happen to be a search engine maestro and understand how they operate — you can quite easily gain intel on the majority of private chats along with their sensitive information.
3. Attack of the clones
One can create fake accounts in Telegram that are almost carbon copies of their originals, aside from slight username alterations. Such accounts are commonly used to impersonate project administrators, business personnel, and even entire channels or groups. This frequently results in investors losing funds due to the actions of scammers.
While users stopped being misled by such primitive means, scammers evolved as well. They soon started sending links to sites that are nearly identical to those of original and authentic projects. But there’s a key difference, smart contract addresses on these fake sites differ from their original counterparts. Ultimately causing user funds to leak away into the pockets of scammers.
4. Unwanted new friends
Don’t be surprised when you find yourself randomly being added to “What the F&$% is this?” type of groups and channels. Happens quite frequently in Telegram. It’s actually a great example of illegal user data usage. The bad news though, you can’t protect yourself from it too well.
Imagine sitting on the loo in the morning and coming to notice that you’ve been added to a few dozen spam channels. Bet you wish you could leave them all in one click. Too bad Telegram doesn’t offer such a feature.
5. Fake Chat Activity
As we all know, it’s not hard to create different accounts in Telegram. That gives an opportunity to keep the fake activity in groups and open chats. It might seem that people actually discuss and have engaged with the project, when in fact it’s all done by one scammer, who just wrote a script. Not the best news for investors, who actually try to understand the stage at which the project is in.
Our team believes that a stricter registration (KYC) process + a reputation system, which reflects the reality of the situation are viable solutions to the above issue.
Considering the factors above, it becomes quite evident that Telegram is the last platform in the list in terms of its ability to create a healthy, functional community.
In our next posts, we’ll go over the shortcomings of other existing platforms and provide you with our solutions.