Welcome to the comprehensive guide to the crypto-monetized social platform Bastyon and their cryptocurrency PKOIN. We will cover every aspect of the platform and using the cryptocurrency in this tutorial.
In this guide we will go over the basics of Bastyon: what is Bastyon, profile setup, posting, the content feed, the search feature, settings, video content, and content in general.
We will also cover intermediate features on Bastyon: moderation, the reputation system, your keys, using multiple accounts, earning crypto rewards, KYC requirements, and messenger.
We will also discuss some insights on Bastyon such as the roadmap, whitepaper, cover some statistics & data, and decentralization & anti-censorship technology.
We will briefly cover setting up a node as well as the desktop and mobile applications.
We will also cover PKOIN, the cryptocurrency discussing what is PKOIN, its tokenomics, your wallet, the block explorer, transferring PKOIN, withdrawing & selling PKOIN, buying & depositing PKOIN, and future uses of PKOIN.
Throughout the guide, I will also insert questions and answers I asked directly to the creator for clarification and confirmation.The team currently is 24 developers and they are putting in a lot of work to improve the platforms.
What Is Bastyon?
Bastyon is an innovative social network and video sharing platform. Unlike the mainstream social networks, it is not ruled by a company. It is an open source project run by a team of developers and experts, and its scope is to provide a censorship-free platform where the freedom of speech is seriously respected.
The project was created by Daniel Satchkov and is a decentralized social media platform without any central authority. The platform does not run on a single server but on a network of nodes that are located all throughout the world.
You can view my interview with him here:
This means, in practical terms, that users are always able to connect to it, see the content and post as long as they have an internet connection.
In addition, Bastyon grants complete anonymity: users register without any email or phone number and no personal data like the IP or MAC address are stored in any way.
By doing so, Bastyon removes the chance for governments to track specific users and to associate an identity to users. Today, anonymity is a requirement for security and privacy and Bastyon is able to guarantee it.
There are many other features and measures Bastyon implements for security, privacy, and more. The main goal of Bastyon is to deliver a completely free, safe, and anonymous social platform where people can chat, communicate, and share contents without the risk of being controlled, limited, or censored by governments or corporations.
You can create an account with a username and image, and you will be given a passphrase and then you are able to start using Bastyon immediately. We will cover your keys and 12-words key passphrase later. You have the option to use an email though it isn’t needed nor linked to your profile.
After clicking “Join Now”, you may be prompted with a captcha, then you will be asked to pick from various themes you’d like to follow.
Then once you’re in Bastyon, you will be given you Private key. We will cover the importance of this later, but save it for now.
At the top left, you’ll also see the Bastyon logo with the language settings to the right of it in case you’d like to change to your preferred language.
You can find a wealth of helpful information here: https://bastyon.com/help
You are now ready to begin.
You are able to update your profile to the blockchain once an hour. You can do this by going to your profile and clicking on the “Manage” tab under your profile name. Then navigate “Edit Profile.”
It’s fairly straight forward, you can add your username, language, about section, website, and crypto addresses for people who would like to donate. Press save and you’re good to go.
On your actual profile you have your posts and then of course your followers/following, as well as blocked users, a share link (where you can get your referral link), and the manage tab.
On the left hand side of your profile you will see your reputation, your about section, your PKOIN address, when you joined, your website, and how many posts you’ve made.
As mentioned in the previous tab, your referral link can be acquired by going to your profile and clicking the “Share” tab and then copying your direct link with the referral box checked so you can earn from having other join too.
You can find the number of users you’ve referred under “My Videos” in the settings section.
For the first 6 months you will also receive 20% of the new referrals’ earnings. They will not earn less; you will just receive the bonus.
When you’re on the main feed, you will see the posting area located at the top.
You can post a status post, add images, upload videos (Need 50 PKOIN or a blue verified check), or write a full article.
You can also add hashtags/categories for more reach as well as change who you’re sharing to via the visibility.
When you go to post and click the book icon to write an article you will be prompted with this window
When you click on “Write New Article” you will be brought to the article publisher. It’s very similar to something like Medium with the addition of the category section. The caption is the title, while the text is the body.
When you highlight text, you will be able to add basic font styling, add links, and quotes.
On an empty line, you will see a + similar to how Medium works. By clicking on it you will see a play button and a camera. This allows you to either upload an image or a video link.
The feed of post content being shared looks like this below:
You have your categories/hashtags on the left side, recent comments on the right side, top videos at the top, and then your regular content feed based on who you follow and the topics you follow shown in the middle.
You can rate content based on how good you think it was. This will determine their PKOIN rewards for that post and their overall reputation which we will dive into later.
On the left hand side you have your categories that you can easily check or uncheck to see the topics you’d like. By pressing the + button at the top of the categories section allows you to add your own custom category that can include many topics.
I created a Decentralization category that essentially includes everything I’m interested all in one topic category. You can also use these custom tags to tag your own posts more effectively though you can only use up to 5 tags on one post.
At the top of the feed, you can filter between all types of content, only the people you’re following, video content, and top trending content. This allows you to prioritize the types of content you’re interested in viewing.
Search is fairly straightforward. You can search topics or for users directly. This is found near the top right of the page by your notifications and PKOIN balance.
To navigate to settings, click on “Manage” on your profile.
When you go to upload a video, you will be presented with the page seen below. There is a bonus program you can participate in that’s currently being shared. You can get $1,000 for every 15k views and 1,250 five-star ratings, and 1,000 users. Note that for English speakers the referral limit will be lowered to 500.
When you upload there is a range of video formats, but you are limited to a 4gb video. You can always use something like Handbrake to compress your videos to make it work or you can import directly from a YouTube URL.
This is what it looks like when you’re setting up your video, you can change the thumbnail at the top left via the “Change Preview Image,” add your video title, description, and tags, and then you can share it within the video section.
Because there are many different ways to view and consume content, it’s beneficial to share various forms of content including video.
Under settings, you can access “My Videos” which shows your overall total ratings from videos, unique voters, your video views, and your max upload amount based on your reputation.
Eventually, videos that have no or very little engagement will be removed after 6 months, but you will be able to pay PKOIN to keep your video up. Video node servers will also be rewarded with a portion of the earnings.
Currently, this is the only thing being done manually by developers. Eventually, this will be decentralized and decided via voting. You would make a post to apply and ask for the blue checkmark and it will be done via the community in the future.
You currently cannot officially delete or edit the content after posting it as it is baked into the blockchain. However, there is a feature to create an overwrite transaction as well ❛hide❜ transactions, which would effectively translate to edit or delete. Functionally you are able to edit a post within the first 24 hours of posting and otherwise, you can “remove” it, which again is actually just hiding it.
“Can you clarify how editing/deleting content?”
- For text content, overwriting for editing and deleted content is “hidden.”
- For video & images, when these are deleted, they are fully removed. Only the record and text are kept on the blockchain.
Bastyon Intermediate Features
How Does It Work On The Backend?
Bastyon is modeled on the style of cryptocurrency (like Bitcoin and Ethereum), because it has no central authority and uses the blockchain to make transactions and ensure security.
There is no central server: instead, the platform relies on a network of nodes, located all over the world. Every person in the world with a computer can actually run a node (and be rewarded to do so).
Each post, each comment, each interaction (except chat messages!) is stored on the blockchain. This means that there is no way to remove a post or censor it. Every post is and will always be available on the blockchain and no authority, government or corporation can remove it.
Bastyon uses a dedicated blockchain, derived directly from the Bitcoin chain.
You can find your reputation & related account restrictions by going to your Profile > Manage > Reputation.
Here you will find a list of your account limitations and your reputation.
You start at 0 and level up based on the star ratings you receive on your posts.
There are some limits. But as your reputation grows you can upvote more and more. This is done, so bots don’t break down our blockchain.
Initially, you can make 5 posts, 5 videos, give out 15 ratings, 150 comments, and 300 comment ratings per 24 hours. This will increase every time your reputation increases at various milestones.
With my current reputation of 660, I can post 30 posts, 30 videos, give out 200 ratings, 300 comments, and 600 comment ratings per 24 hours.
We do have some limitations, but after testing it we have increased our limits. At the outset, you can make 15 posts and issue 100 ratings every 24 hours. Once your reputation grows above 50, you will be able to make up to 30 posts and 200 ratings every 24 hours.
Your reputation is the sum of your ratings calculated in the following way. Note, that users with reputations below 50 do not affect anyone's reputation or coin winnings. They can rate the content, but it does not affect reputation.
So, if you have two 5 star ratings and one 1 star rating, the total will be 2+2-2=2
This will also determine your ability to be rate-limited for spam and other malicious activities. While I did not hit the limit of 15, on a new account after 10 or so ratings, I was told I had to wait 9 minutes for this all to be logged in the blockchain. Similar to Hive, new accounts have less available bandwidth to avoid spam. On my older account, I made 20 ratings back to back with no issues.
This is what a new account looks like and is limited to the actions it can perform on the blockchain.
To begin with, not all types of content are allowed. However, and this is crucial, the enforcement is transparent and up to the community in the way, we will explain below. Enforcement is done by the community and is in the open with no hidden shadowbans or selective banning practiced by Silicon Valley.
It is very similar to the concept used on Hive for reputation and ratings to moderate content.
When your reputation gets to 100 and you press on dots in the upper right of any post, you will see an option to Complain. If enough complaints come in, the post will not be shown anymore. When someone has more than 2 posts that are voted off the platform in 24 hours, they cannot post for another 48 hours after the second post. Complain is completed when a number of complaints is at least ⅓ of the number of 4 and 5-star ratings, subject to a minimum of 10 complaints (which will be adjusted over time in consultation with the community).
Sometimes we can have a user who comes in with a specific purpose to attack Pocketnet by posting a series of vile images. To protect against that we have a following mechanism. If someone’s reputation reaches -50 (negative 50), their account is automatically blocked. Getting a reputation of -50 is equivalent to having 25 one-star ratings and no four or five-star ratings. This is nearly impossible to achieve without having lots of bad posts.
“So when someone is getting blocked at -50, what exactly does that entail?”
- That is currently an old system that will be updated.
- The new algorithm will be Flagging leads to high rep users to be randomly chosen to be jury members to judge a specific piece of content/user that the content did in fact break the rules.
- Users' funds will remain available and will not be affected, only their ability to post based on the decision outcome.
- Appeals will be allowed.
Your public address is what Bastyon uses to verify you own the account. Essentially, your private key is a really large number (that can be represented with a 12-word sequence or a QR code). This number gets multiplied by another that everyone knows (called a base point) and Bastyon gets a public key. When you enter your private key, they can multiply it by the base point to get your public key and we can match it against public address. If they match, they know it is you. It is impossible to go back i.e. to divide the public key by the base point to get your private key. The way multiplication in cryptography works is it is only one way and cannot be reversed, so your key is safe. Bastyon uses the same exact cryptography as Bitcoin.
As such when you registered, keeping your seed phrase for logging in and resetting your password is critical. Since it’s truly decentralized, no one can help you recover your account if you lose these.
When logged in you can navigate to the settings and view your private key by clicking “Private Key” in case for some reason you’ve lost it but still have access or forgot to save it.
A feature that will allow users to spend PKOIN to “boost” their normal feed post on Bastyon within the network to be shown to more users and increase its visibility.
- 1 user would only see 3 boosted posts out of 30, so 10% of posts in the feed out of the top 30 would be boosted. The determination of how posts are shown is random with each post receiving lottery tickets in the proportion of the boost. All of the posts that are currently boosted are randomly entered to be shown in the boost spots.
- The amount you put in determines how likely you are to be shown. The interface will give you likely statistics and estimated results based on the PKOIN you use. There is a chance that with a very low amount, your boost may not be shown, but the interface should tell you.
- Boosts should be queued up for bidding and last about 8 hours.
- You are competing with the other boosters to be shown to the users.
- All actions for boosting and related to PKOIN will be done by a Pocketnet button that will be below the post. Anyone can boost anyone’s post.
- Boosts are paid directly to the nodes to fund the network.
This is different from boosting where these are actual ads that are served to users versus content on Bastyon being boosted.
- You will also be able to launch ads that are pay per view or pay per click soon (this will be similar to offers on Minds) – Offers will not be editable after the fact, you have options to post forever, 24 hours, or 48 hours. While boosting is paid to the nodes, advertising is paid directly to the blogger.
- You can create ads directly from the posting section or from the advertising section and creators will have an offers section to receive ads.
If you have a business page, manage accounts, or just want to have multiple accounts on Bastyon, it’s very easy to utilize this and switch between them. Simply click on the drop-down arrow beside your profile picture and you will be prompted with this window.
If you have added an account you can easily switch between the two. If you haven’t added an account, you can click “Add Account.”
Then you just have to copy and paste in your Private Key for the other account and click “Add.”
Now you can easily swap between multiple accounts by going to the dropdown menu and clicking on an account to switch.
Earning Crypto Rewards
The main way you will earn rewards is through platform content rewards. Rewards are given out based on a random draw of 25 winners per block that is mined. The way to be entered into the random draw is to have received ratings on your content within the block mining time frame. A block is mined every minute and thus 25 users are rewarded with PKOIN every minute totaling 1,500 per hour or 36,000 per day. After 6 months your ability to earn rewards on content expires.
In terms of how reputation affects your rewards, it doesn’t. You don’t earn more for having a higher reputation and your votes are worth the same too.
Pocketnet also features a unique direct marketplace where content creators can sell advertising to ad buyers. This isn’t fully implemented yet but will be soon. Content creators set their price and can accept mass-produced ads or can offer highly valued custom placements (creators pitching the product in their own way). Direct Marketplace is essentially an exchange for advertising that allows ad buyers to target specific audiences without any intermediaries. All ad buys and ads themselves are linked on the blockchain, therefore ad buying is completely trustless.
Comment tipping on posts pins the comment and adds a badge. In order to do this, you must donate any amount of PKOIN to a user’s post then you can comment on the post and that comment will be pinned to the top (assuming you have the highest donation) and the amount will be shown beside your name as a badge.
In 2022, there is an initiative where you will receive a bonus copy of whatever tips you receive matched by the Pocketnet team that will be time-locked for a year. This means if someone tips you 5 PKOIN, you will also be given 5 time-locked PKOIN. They would still be in your wallet, just time locked. This is a fun way to encourage people to tip each other and essentially get a free copy bonus of that tip.
“Do you earn more PKOIN from having a higher reputation and or being upvoted by someone with a higher reputation?”
- You do not earn more from having a higher reputation and your votes aren’t worth more either.
- Rep 100, 100 users give you 5 stars, over time the threshold decreases, so after 3 months, you may only need 30 users to give you 5 stars to be eligible to affect others' reputation.
“How are rewards given out, every 24 hours, immediately, every 7 days?”
- Rewards are given out randomly to 25 winners per block in a lottery and you earn more entries by getting more high ratings. Blocks are mined and rewards are given out every minute.
- After 6 months there is an expiration for your ability to earn more rewards.
“Do you earn PKOIN rewards from curating content / rating content?”
- No, you do not earn from curating content.
You do not require anything whatsoever, not even an email address to get started on Bastyon. This is the ideal all platforms should aim for.
Bastyon has a private messenger that feels similar to the Facebook messenger on the right side of your screen
- Private messenger that is NOT connected to your phone number
- End-To-End Encryption of every 1-on-1 conversation by default
- All images sent or received through chat are stored encrypted
- History of messages is saved for 7 days only and then deleted
Bastyon provides an encrypted chat system, not associated with any phone number or personal data, protected with 1 to 1 encryption model. No one except the two persons involved in the chat session can access the messages and governments has no way to look into the database since the communication is encrypted and there are no backdoors and no "master keys" that can be used for decryption. Moreover, all the chat messages are automatically deleted after 7 days.
The link above takes you to the official roadmap. Some of the big features set to go live soon are the ability to boost posts on Bastyon, an advertising tool facilitated by smart contracts, Node optimizations, and a decentralized reputation platform and crypto store.
We still can expect a lot in terms of advertising and boosting content which will be the main use case for PKOIN in the future as well as a decentralized marketplace where you can trade goods and services.
The whitepaper gives a good formal overview of Bastyon and what it offers. For those wanting more insight on the technical aspects of the blockchain including the mathematic formulas and economics applied to come up with reputation, voting, etc.
Statistics & Data
The block explorer allows you to see all the transactions and zero in on your own which we will cover under the “My Wallet” section. What I’m most interested in for this section is the statistics on user growth and user engagements. It also has information on proxy servers, Pocketnet nodes, and node information.
Below is the graph charting the user growth on Bastyon over the past 3 months.
Below is the graph charting various types of user engagement on Bastyon over the past 3 months.
I believe this trend will continue to increase as more and more look for decentralized social media alternatives to what they use now.
Decentralization & Anti-Censorship
Bastyon uses open-source platform called PeerTube. PeerTube is fully integrated with Bastyon authorization, each video server is registered on the blockchain. Details of the algorithm are coming.
A more in-depth breakdown of the backend and technical side of Bastyon can be found by reading the whitepaper.
If for example, the government tried to block your access, you could still get on Bastyon using the application.
You can verify this yourself by simulating a disappearance of the domain name bastyon.com.
*Refer to appendix of whitepaper*
Anyone can join Bastyon without an identity check, so if posts are chronological, this can easily be abused. That is why developers implemented a merit-based post feed. Here are the calculation details for it:
No data is collected on you whatsoever.
Using the application, you can still access the platform via the desktop application.
just open this file:
Open this file
Then add this row:
This would ensure that bastyon.com is pointing to your local machine, which means that it is not pointing to any outside IP address.
Then launch the desktop app and you will be able to continue using Bastyon as if nothing happened.
This information can be found in the FAQ linked at the top.
So long as you meet these minimum requirements you can follow along the instructions listed in Zerodev’s guide to setup a Pocketnode using Linux
- Requirements for Linux (I'm using Ubuntu desktop 18.04 LTS):
- >12Gb RAM
- >6 core CPU
- >10Gb free disk space
- >10Mb/s internet speed ( https://www.speedtest.net )
- You will need to be able enter and edit your wifi/lan router setup (see your router instructions)
Easy Node Setup:
- What is a node? A node is a computer owned by any user of Bastyon that supports the network and earns Pocketcoin. Your computer can be one of those nodes, assuming you have at least 50 GB of free SSD space and a decent internet connection. Your node will verify all of the activities that happen on the Bastyon network. In exchange for that, you will earn Pocketcoin. Node has to lock some Pocketcoin in it to earn more Pocketcoin. That is called staking in cryptocurency.
- What is staking? Everyone today knows that Bitcoin has something called mining. Mining is based on the concept called Proof-of-Work, where computers expand computing power and electricity to solve puzzles to mine Bitcoin.
- In Bastyon, there is no mining, because Bastyon does not use Proof-of-Work. Instead it uses something called Proof-of-Stake.
- Proof-of-Stake does not expand nearly as much electricity and solves no puzzles. Instead it supports the network by verifying transactions and earns Pocketcoin, by locking Pocketcoin in a node. This is almost like a percentage return on deposit on a bank, except there is no bank. The more Pocketcoin the node has, the more chances it has to create a block and receive the associated Pocketcoin reward.
- Your machine is not running any other Bastyon/Pocketnet node software
- Your hard drive is SSD (not HDD)
- Your computer has at least 50 GB empty space on your SSD
- Your computer has at least 2 GB free RAM
- Your internet speed is at least 10 Mb/sec
Desktop & Mobile Applications
On this page, you can find the downloads for the Windows, MacOS, and Linux versions of Bastyon for desktop. The download and installation is very straight forward and this is the recommended way to use Bastyon.
There is an Android app, you can download it here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=pocketnet.app
The iPhone app is not available because Apple required Bastyon to remove any content on 24-hour notice. They refused and so you have to instead use the mobile web app.
What Is PKOIN?
Pocketcoin is a network token. It is used exclusively to buy advertising from Pocketnet contributors and to pay transaction fees for such payments. Pocketcoin emission depends on the number of users of Pocketnet and has inherent algorithmic factors tying its long term value to Annual Revenue Per User (ARPU). ARPU is a term in digital advertising which signifies the total amount of revenue platform receives for one active user per year. In Pocketnet all of the revenue is split between content creators and nodes
Let’s discuss the tokenomics behind PKOIN and the basics you need to know.
It has a total supply of 24.37 million. Blocks are mined every minute with rewards being distributed randomly amongst 25 creators each time based on their ratings used as entries into the lottery draw.
Emissions are paid to creators, nodes, and developers. Currently the team is paid via PKOIN from the early nodes. Now there is no money being made or being paid to the developers.
It’s almost the exact same as Bitcoin’s system except with creators staking content, and nodes that stake PKOIN to earn and support the system.
So, it follows Bitcoin with the halvings and all the other mechanisms it offers. Taproot for example, will be implemented and all updates will be incorporated into the PKOIN ecosystem.
The long-term vision is that while PKOIN becomes scarcer and less rewards are given out, the value will go up alongside that. Also, the advertising and boosting systems are intended to create a closed loop where creators earn it and sell it and advertisers buy it and then pay creators.
You can access your wallet from the settings or by clicking the number of PKOIN you have listed beside your profile.
After navigating there you should see this:
This is a basic wallet that lets you send and receive PKOIN.
If you’re interested in learning more about PKOIN and actually looking through the transactions or the nodes, you can find all of this listed on the Pocketnet block explorer.
Current Use Cases
- Boosting & pinning comments
- 50+ PKOIN unlocks your account and removes the majority of limitations.
- Utilizing the ad model - You will also be able to launch ads that are pay per view or pay per click soon
- Boosting content
- Running a node and staking PKOIN
- PKOIN content paywall subscriptions
Transferring PKOIN to another wallet or user is fairly simple. After navigating to the wallet you simply type in the address of who you want to send your Pocketnet to and then calculate your fees and send. You can also attach a message to your transaction.
Withdrawing & Selling PKOIN
The difference for withdrawing from transferring is simply that you will be sent to an exchange wallet. The two exchanges you can currently trade PKOIN on are BitForex and Digifinex. I’ve tested out both for selling with no issues.
Once signed up on either exchange get a deposit address and prepare to send to it.
When you click calculate fees and send you will see this confirmation page where you’re presented with the fees you must pay or have the receiver pay (you pay it regardless in this case).
From here you can confirm and finalize your transaction by hitting send.
Then when you have your PKOIN deposited you can navigate to it and click trade or find a pair in the market.
Then you can sell your PKOIN and do whatever you want with the USDT you receive for it.
Buying & Depositing PKOIN
Purchasing PKOIN is relatively similar to the selling process except in reverse. Instead of trading your PKOIN on the exchange click “Withdraw.”
This is the example withdrawal on Digifinex. You will have to pay 0.5 PKOIN in order to pay for the fees while you withdraw which makes the minimum balance to withdraw 0.5 PKOIN.
When you’ve confirmed your address which you can get from your Bastyon wallet, you can input that and withdraw your coins.
The other way to buy PKOIN without having to leave the Bastyon ecosystem is directly within your wallet just below your send feature.
If you choose to buy for crypto, you will be presented with a swap exchange that lets you use any of the cryptocurrencies listed there to buy PKOIN with.
You can also choose to buy it with a credit card using Mastercard, Visa, or Indacoin.
Do keep in mind that for this process, you do need to verify and go through extra steps that you would not need to do otherwise if you kept everything in the realm of cryptocurrency and avoided fiat.
Future Use Of PKOIN
Pocketcoin will be the main method of buying advertising on the platform. Advertisers will be able to easily find content authors with the right audience and then offer them advertising opportunities. This will be a trustless endeavor (i.e. neither side can cheat), because of something called multi-signature contracts. Multisig contract requires a digital signature of both parties to be valid. When advertiser offers an ad to the content creator, he creates the first of two required signatures. He signs the actual ad and the amount bid. Content creator reviews this partially signed multisig and if it is accepted, then he appends the second signature.
When a blockchain sees both signatures, the content creator is automatically paid and an ad is automatically shown on creator’s channel. These transactions will only be done through Pocketcoin. Thus, if Pocketcoin becomes big, it will be an immensely valuable token.
Did this cover everything about Bastyon & PKOIN? Am I missing anything? Have you tried Bastyon before and will you try it now? Let me know what you think about this in the comments below and don’t forget to subscribe!
*Disclaimer: This is not financial advice and is purely for entertainment purposes. What you see, hear, or read is my personal opinion, and any statements made are based on my views and should not be misconstrued as fact. My crypto portfolio may or may not be simulated*
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