NFT Paris was incredible. If nothing else, it showed that decentralization is winning, and the Rug Radio ecosystem numbers prove that.
Pessimism and fear are rampant in the space right now as the market continues to contract and regulations loom on the horizon. There seems to be a concerted political effort to smear crypto and its underlying ethos of decentralization, individual sovereignty, and the independent tokenization of value in the marketplace. Yet, despite all this, decentralization is winning. Rug Radio has seen incredible growth in the past year even as the market contracts and as the biggest projects leave the space or lose 50% to 70% of their marketcap and user base.
But in Paris, we celebrated.
Conferences always bring communities together, and they let the wider NFT space connect and deepen the relationships that are the foundation of true decentralization. The blockchain may be the technology that enables it, but the essence of decentralization is the coming together of independent, sovereign individuals to build and grow together.
While in the US, regulators are itching to strangle the movement, NFT Paris hosted the First Lady of France and other political and business luminaries. In a global landscape of fear, uncertainty, and doubt for web3, NFT Paris shone a beacon of hope as we came together as builders, investors, creators, and believers in the cause of sovereignty and decentralization.
We all know we’re entering into a new era. The “digital assets cat” is fully out of the bag and there is no going back, but many people remain afraid of what that will mean for the systems that have always supported them and their families for generations, while those within web3 are afraid of what legacy financial and power systems will do to strangle our vision.
Despite this, we can say that decentralization is a winning strategy and the results don’t lie. We stuck to our ethos of decentralization while creating a globally inclusive community and ecosystem in which all voices can be heard and everyone has a chance to succeed. This is the goal of web3, and Rug Radio is proof that it’s possible, and, indeed, may be inevitable.
The numbers over the past six months tell the story of how sticking to our ethos is the “gwei” and it’s a model for others to follow. Being in Paris with our community, as well as with the larger web3 community, showed us that despite all the FUD, the energy underlying the movement is still there, and that when we come together to build, we all win. WAGMI might be kind of a joke at this point, but it’s still a worthy cause and while maybe not everyone will make it, we can still strive to create structures that give everyone the opportunity to win, without gatekeeping and without exclusion.
Our most notable statistic of our success is the number of creators we have on our platform, which has grown steadily in the past year. We currently have 62 creators distributed through our new Creator Tier system, which supports creators at every level of their journey, from education and tools, to community and coaching, to mentoring and apps to supercharge their content creation and distribution. We have 62 creators and we have had a total of 383,191 listens to our creators’ Twitter spaces in the past three months.
Also, despite most projects losing Discord activity and members as the bear market drags on, we’ve also seen an increase in organic growth of users and activity within our server. In the past month, we grew from around 30,000 members to 42,000 members, and much of that has to do with the the launch of our “Faces of Web3” PFP by Cory Van Lew and the inclusion of our Chinese community through NFTs GEM, hosted by our creators, Daniel, Bill, and Moonlight, which brought over 10,000 more members to our community.
The success of including the Chinese community shows how impactful a commitment to global inclusion and access is not only as an important ethical stand but also as a powerful strategy. The truth is that we are stronger together. Together we all win. This is a foundational ethos of decentralization, and the success of this model is clearly evidenced in our rapid growth over the past 6 months.
Meanwhile, over on Twitter, most people are seeing drastic contractions of their reach and engagement, and no place more so than in crypto/NFT Twitter, but again, Rug Radio is having massive success. We continue to grow at a rapid pace with 10,000 new organic followers in the past month and a half. Our reach is increasing by 30% every month, and our engagement has gone from 3% to 3.9% in the past three months.
Rug Radio Twitter is growing at a wild pace, and again, that’s due to our commitment to decentralization. Much of the success can be attributed to our Rewards Program, which recognizes and rewards the value that our community members give by engaging, interacting, and being a part of our community. We distribute that value back to them, because it’s obvious. In the digital layer of civilization, attention is the new oil, so we are rewarding people for their attention, instead of exploiting them. The numbers don’t lie about the success of this model. Our total Twitter reach, account growth, and engagement are all at record highs since the program launched three months ago.
Decentralization and authentic, ethical community-building are the way, and beyond the numbers, we saw that in the beautiful smiles, joy, and fun we had when we came together in Paris. We met with the people behind the PFPs, the people who are contributing to the system and creating the decentralized future that we dream of. We are all building both as individual, independent sovereigns, but also together, in a decentralized ecosystem, and it was magical to see projects and people come together after months and months of the slog behind the screens to build what we believe in. We celebrated our success as we created and deepened the connections IRL of the network that will make us all strong in years to come.
Decentralization may be under attack politically, in the press, and by society at large because they don’t understand what we’re doing, but we know that decentralization’s time has come. It will be the most competitive business model, making the old, exploitative, centralized models obsolete. That’s what they’re afraid of. And they should be. We came to win, and we are showing that we win together.