FUTURED Development — v.02

Tyler Lastovich
Aug 3, 2018 · 4 min read

FUTURED is an ultra-modern, long-form online publication covering the topics of future tech, health and society.

What is it?

We realized that we have not given an adequate answer to what FUTURED is yet. FUTURED is the testbed for an upcoming web platform. While we are planning to finish the work required for the Alpha3 program this week, general development on the greater platform will not stop. Our goal is to build an intellectual community where no quarter is given to spam or low quality content. We are looking to take the best ideas from existing platforms we admire and to learn from the challenges raised by others. This approach produces a set of features that reward users with a cohesive experience and lets content creators engage their niche on a deeper level. At the outset of this project we went looking for a platform that supported the content we plan to make for FUTURED’s niche (bleeding edge tech) and since it didn’t exist, we are building it.

Roughly this is what we are taking inspiration from:

  • The simplified content creation style from Medium
  • The topical variety and general engagement of Twitter
  • The conversation depth of Hacker News
  • The power of good, human curation from Unsplash
  • The bold/modern look and native ads from The Outline

We are leaving out:

  • Poor practices regarding privacy, data, ads from Facebook
  • Aggressive user graph use from Linkedin
  • Bots from Twitter
  • Low quality interaction style from Instagram
  • Chat from everyone

Brand new stuff we are adding:

  • Profit-sharing to end users through tokens

We understand that this sounds a bit grandiose. The goal here is not to be the next silicon valley heavyweight, but to iteratively add functionality in an increasingly profitable manner.

End Goal: Keep it clean, useful, and beautiful. Stay transparent and don’t be annoying. Opt-in, not out.

Token Economics

When we started this project, we knew that we wanted to use blockchain tech to do profit sharing, but hadn’t worked out all the details of how users would earn, buy, and spend tokens. We have given this much more thought since then, and it is quite fascinating the number of avenues there are to pursue. The primary benefit to using a branded token is that you can abstract away the technical implementation details of the blockchain and focus on what matters — building a solid economy that can be self-supportive. This is why we chose Simple Token.

Our initial thoughts on our platform economics (w/price estimates):

  1. Each user will be air-dropped a small amount of tokens to get them used to the system. All transactions will be listed in native fiat.
  2. Contributors earn tokens when users read (not view) their story.($0.5/1k)
  3. Users can appreciate (ie clap) a story cheaply. (1-50 @ $0.005/appreciation)
  4. Users can also reward a story with a variable amount of tokens. ($1 — $1000)
  5. Users will be able to comment on a story for a small amount of tokens in an effort to curb spam. (~$0.03)
  6. Users and contributors can both earn tokens when they share a story on social media. (<$0.10)
  7. Our team will be doing active curation on the site. Stories that are selected to be featured on our editorial feed will receive tokens ($5), promotion on social media, and unlock a higher profit sharing percentage for the author.
  8. Links in stories that go to an affiliate partners site (Amazon, etc) will automatically have the FUTURED referral code added. Contributors will automatically receive 50–70% of the affiliate profits from these sales in tokens.
  9. The big divergence from internet norms is that stories will cost $0.5 to place, or will be free if you include native advertising. Contributors who choose to include native advertising will also receive 20% of the ad revenue. (The primary way FUTURED will earn money)

Dev Progress Update

All is well along the blockchain front. We have integrated the OST APIs into our server and have built a user authentication system to connect that information to user accounts in our database. We are currently using the ledger and balance APIs to show user information. The general structure of the site is 75% in place and pages that will be shown in the alpha3 project video are getting priority to be made presentable. The FUTURED platform is not based on any existing code base, and as such it takes time to make everything from scratch (many, many thousands of lines of code).

Stay tuned and follow us on Twitter!

PS: Probably a bit late now, but if you are thinking of working with OST branded tokens in your own app, check out our open-source GraphQL server with OST resolvers integrated.


Inspiring thought about the future of technology, health, and society.

Tyler Lastovich

Written by

Technical generalist. Investing+future tech+generative media • lastovich.me



Inspiring thought about the future of technology, health, and society.

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