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Web3 Platform Twetch Shutdown After Six Years

Jimmy Aki
Last updated: | 3 min read
Twetch shutdown
Source: Twitter/ Twetch

Twetch, one of the longest-running apps built on the Bitcoin SV (BSV) blockchain, shut down on June 6 after six years of operations. The Twetch shutdown has left its community in shock as the announcement came without prior notice.

Reason Behind Twetch Shutdown Remains Unknown

Twetch announced its abrupt closure on X (formerly Twitter), which is its rival social media platform.

Although the reason for the Twetch shutdown remains unknown, it encountered difficulties operating on the BSV blockchain to achieve its free speech goal.

Twetch was built entirely on the BSV network, which is known for its emphasis on immutability, censorship resistance, and decentralization. By hosting its data on the blockchain, Twetch had hoped to create a platform where users could freely share their thoughts and ideas without fear of censorship or privacy concerns.

However, a large majority of Twetch users discussed topics related to Bitcoin or token collectibles. Despite efforts to diversify its content profile, the platform struggled to attract a broader audience, limiting its growth prospects.

Reacting to the sudden closure, Twetch co-founder Billy Rose lamented the platform’s lack of free speech, stating that “Elon buying Twitter and dedicating it to free speech was a major blow for Twetch adoption.”

Despite this setback, the Twetch boss remains hopeful for Twetch’s return, suggesting that the crypto industry needs to mature for such a product to succeed long-term.

Shortly after Twetch announced its shutdown, several crypto investors found themselves unable to redeem or cash out their non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and virtual collections. In response to one investor’s concerns, the company disclosed ongoing efforts to rectify the issue.

The Wrong Pathway That Led to Twetch Shutdown

Co-founder Billy Rose disclosed some poor decision-making that led to their demise. This includes bloated databases and application programming interfaces (APIs), a closed system for NFT technology, and an inability to scale micropayment fees.

The Web3 platform’s decision to design its NFT technology as a closed system meant that the technology was limited to internal use only. This approach restricted interoperability with other platforms or ecosystems, limiting the potential for broader adoption and utility of Twetch’s NFT features.

Additionally, Twetch relied on micropayments as a revenue model, where users paid small amounts for various interactions on the platform. However, Twetch failed to grow its user base and engagement levels to a point where these micropayment fees could sustain the business.

Nevertheless, Twetch hinted in a follow-up post on X that the social media platform might not be entirely doomed. The company intends to preserve the essence of Twetch by making its code open-source.

This move could potentially pave the way for community-driven development and the possibility of Twetch’s revival in some form.

Recall that alternative platforms like Gab, Parler, Mastodon, Truth Social, and BlueSky have emerged as X contenders, championing free speech and less content moderation. While these platforms have mainly attracted users who feel marginalized or censored on X, they have struggled to achieve global adoption.

The struggle to grow into a global brand is particularly notable in the wake of the Twetch shutdown, which was necessitated by its inability to scale while accommodating its policy on free speech. Meanwhile, X, the incumbent powerhouse these startups plan to displace, is struggling to combat the proliferation of NSFW content, hate speech, and crypto scams on its platform.

On June 4, Crypto News reported Microsoft India’s X account hack, with crypto scammers impersonating ‘Roaring Kitty,’ the name behind the stock trader Keith Gill. Also, a cryptic NEAR Protocol X post raised suspicion on May 8, which prompted blockchain investigators to suspect a possible hijack.