Social Predictions by Polkamarkets. What’s coming in 2024 and highlights of 2023.

Polkamarkets Labs
Polkamarkets Blog
Published in
6 min readJan 18, 2024

We had quite an incredible year at Polkamarkets Labs in 2023. We increased the number and quality of talented individuals working with us and expanded the footprint of prediction markets and of the Polkamarkets Protocol. We did this by taking our products into new areas, setting the stage for further growth in 2024.

Social Predictions: Prediction Markets for everyone, powered by Web 3

Our goal at Polkamarkets Labs is to enable anyone to look more accurately into the future through prediction markets. Along the way we will onboard many new users to Web3.

We have been working on an even easier to use, scalable platform and business model leveraging the Polkamarkets Protocol. In 2023, we focused our efforts on building user-friendly and familiar digital experiences, including using account abstraction, for others. Our work has proven that any brand or community can create meaningful gamified engagement through Prediction Markets, and specifically through Polkamarkets.

As we enter 2024, we have a clear recipe for success.

The recipe is simple:

Ingredients

  • Communities
  • Individuals
  • Play-money
  • Real rewards

Preparation

  • Give play-money to members of a community
  • Offer real rewards to individuals for making correct predictions

Result

  • Fun and meaningful engagement between a brand and its community members, an important KPI for brand activation and loyalty building
  • Actionable business intelligence obtained from crowd-sourced predictions, which facilitates informed decision making and better outcomes

The technique is unique:

Tools

  • Polkamarkets Protocol V3: the evolution of the Polkamarkets Protocol, the decentralized, blockchain-based protocol for social tokens and prediction markets
  • POLK: the utility token of the Polkamarkets Protocol
  • Polkamarkets Web V3: the open-source dApp codebase for Social Prediction marketplaces

Process

  • Use a single deployment of the Polkamarkets Protocol, on any given EVM chain
  • Let anyone use POLK to create Social Tokens and Social Predictions marketplaces
  • Package and distribute Social Predictions experiences using the Polkamarkets Web codebase

Outcomes

  • Tailored Social Predictions environments for any community
  • User-owned and portable data that breaks away from platform lock-in thanks to decentralized blockchain technology (aka DLT, Distributed Ledger Technology)
  • Gamified engagement and high-quality prediction markets powered by Polkamarkets
  • Expanded utility for POLK

Stay tuned to our socials for our upcoming announcements and launch campaigns:

  • Polkamarkets Social: Social Predictions platform for web3 native communities and users, with web3 native rewards.
  • Foreland: Social Predictions platform for web2 native communities and users, with physical rewards.
  • Islands: Dedicated, white-label, Social Predictions marketplaces powered by the Polkamarkets Protocol, POLK and Polkamarkets Web.

Highlights of 2023

Team changes and expansion

Polkamarkets Labs revamped company leadership and contracted new talent in different areas, bringing the current number of core contributors to 12:

These individuals have deep experience in their areas of expertise, and we couldn’t be more proud to have them contribute to the development and growth of Polkamarkets, its products, and its community. And best of all, they’re awesome human beings who want to make a difference.

Polkamarkets V2, Polygon and Kleros Arbitration

In the Spring of 2023, we announced the release of Polkamarkets Protocol V2, which made Polkamarkets the most flexible prediction markets protocol in Web 3.

With V2, market creators were given unprecedented control over the configuration of their prediction markets, allowing them to choose the token that their market operated with, the % of trading fees awarded to liquidity providers and to themselves, or to go beyond binary-outcome markets and select up to 32 possible outcomes.

Polkamarkets further embraced its EVM foundation and multi-chain capability with V2, adding support for the Polygon PoS chain in addition to the already supported Moonbeam and Moonriver networks.

Building on the philosophy of additional control and the availability on Polyon PoS, Polkamarkets integrated with Kleros Court to provide an alternative option for market resolution: in addition to the already existing crowd-sourced mechanism powered by POLK bond escalation, users can now opt to resolve a market by outsourcing the decision to a Kleros Court, where a jury will rule on the winning outcome.

Damat Tween Markets

In September, we announced the groundbreaking launch of Damat Tween Markets, a social predictions marketplace for fashion in partnership with the high-end Turkish fashion brand Damat Tween.

It was a watershed moment for prediction markets, and web3 prediction markets in particular, for good reason:

  1. It was the first time that a company publicly embraced prediction markets as a way to engage with and gain insights from their community, offering real-life rewards to forecasters participating in play-money prediction markets.
  2. Forecasters engaging with Tween Markets use social login and account abstraction to interact with the platform without even knowing that they’re using blockchain under-the-hood.

For the first time, a friendly and familiar user interface didn’t mean that engaging with a platform led to data lock-in and opaque platform behavior. Indeed, predictions and trades made on Damat Tween Markets are handled by the open-source, audited and immutable smart contract of the Polkamarkets Protocol. The predictions and trades made by users are stored in a decentralized, immutable ledger that users can access forever with any blockchain client.

This white-label implementation of the Polkamarkets Protocol and Polkamarkets Web App drew on our learnings from our first foray into Social Prediction Markets with the Illuminate Fantasy League, a predictions game for Moonbeam users centered on the Football World Cup.

These two products are at the foundation of our growth since then.

Manifest Conference

In September 2023, Polkamarkets Labs CEO Alex Solleiro traveled to Berkeley, California, to spend time with the best minds in the Predictions Markets community.

The Manifest Conference was a 3-day event attended by industry leaders such as the inventor of Prediction Markets, Dr. Robin Hanson; the author of Astral Codex Ten, Scott Alexander; the founders and contributors of Manifold, Polymarket, Kalshi and other prediction markets platforms; luminaries such as Emmett Shear, co-founder and Twitch and Interim ex-CEO of OpenAI; Nate Silver, founder of 551, and most importantly an incredible group of forecasting enthusiasts.

It was an unique opportunity to introduce Polkamarkets to many of them and start lasting conversations about the future of prediction markets.

A Bola Padel Corporate League

Last but not least, a surprise for our community.

Since October 2023, we’ve been running the Liga Fantasy for A Bola Padel Corporate League.

It is the predictions tournament for Portugal’s largest Corporate League of the world’s fastest growing sport: Padel. Portugal’s largest sports media organization, A Bola, not only lends its name to it, but also writes content about each matchday, and publishes post-match interviews. A Bola uses the favorites and underdogs determined by the prediction markets to enhance their content.

Liga Fantasy has been an incredible proving ground for us. We took prediction markets to a sports league played by employees and executives of some of Portugal’s top companies, and sponsored by some of the world’s most famous brands, such as Carlsberg, HEAD and KIND, to prove that our products can be used by people of all ages, on any device. We’ve also further proven that we can allow any company, large or small, to further activate their brand and generate more value for organizers.

The results have been nothing short of amazing. The event organizers have noted that players show increased interest in the overall development of the league, increasing for example the time they spend each week at the event (which translates into more food and beverage sales). Indeed, the accuracy of their predictions keeps on growing week after week, with a huge jump between matchday 1 and 2, as players become aware of other teams’ and players’ strengths. The event sponsors have also been eager to reward the best forecasters, with rewards ranging from hotel stays to fine wine glasses and sushi dinners, increasing the value of their investment and the depth of their relationship with the event and the organizers.

And of course, as Padel players ourselves, we took the opportunity to also show our skills. Team Foreland (yes, we’ve played under our upcoming product’s brand name!) qualified for the National Finals and aim to take the trophy on January 20, 2024. Hopefully one of our many victories this year.

Stay tuned, community. We’re taking you on an incredible ride this year.

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