Within the space of a year, BULB has transformed from just an idea into a tangible, daily reality. From its inception, the team knew that developing BULB was always going to be a challenge but one that was exciting and thoroughly rewarding nonetheless. The journey from concept to reality has been one with its many achievements and small wins, all of course with its unique host of problems needing solutions.
Let’s take a step back and reflect on how far the project has come from the very early days of September 2021.
BULB’s Journey — Where It All Started
BULB’s story begins in September 2021 by three young and very motivated founders as a Web3.0 ‘Do-to-Earn blogging’ platform. The premise of BULB was simple: From Day 1, users should be rewarded for reading and writing blogs. No user should ever go unrewarded, and all should have the chance to participate in a community where ideas, passion and engagement are rewarded.
The platform would signify the advent of a new era in the evolution of the internet, one that is radically different from the current Web2.0 world. Unlike Web2.0, where there are significant barriers to entry for new content creators looking to build an audience and monetise their content, BULB would reward users from the get-go. Even more, any content creator would be rewarded for 100% of the value they create and BULB has always been built on not needing to take a cut.
In short, BULB was more than just a ‘blogging platform’; it was a utopian vision and a thesis all in one.
From here, BULB’s founders conceived of ‘Write-to-Earn’ and ‘Read-to-Earn’ as subsets of the platform’s broader ‘Do-to-Earn’ engagement model. Not only would the writer be rewarded for contributing quality content by ‘writing to earn’ for a reward; the reader would also be rewarded for reading articles on BULB. After all, without the reader, there is no writer. Right?
What should this reward look like? BULBers earn points for quality contributions which would then be used to rank them on BULB’s weekly leaderboard. Users would then earn BULB Tokens according to their position on the leaderboard, with users at the top earning more BULB Tokens than the users ranked lower. Essentially, the more engagement someone has with the platform, the more they are rewarded. A fair and transparent system was required and the team built one.
With BULB’s inner workings complete, the founders then conceptualised BULB’s core features. As alluded to previously, the BULB Token would be the centrepiece of the platform; the ‘glue’ that incentivised the user to continue engaging on BULB. With this, the user would be able to write, read, react and comment on other blogs. Users would also have access to all articles written on BULB.
As far as use cases were concerned, BULB would start with a few narrow use cases such as Premium Content, the ability to boost your post to the top of the recommended reading list, and utility NFTs that would provide the users with some kind of usable ‘perk’. The use cases were high level, but they would come to fruition overtime with a little patience and lots of hard work.
Most importantly, content moderation would be in the hands of the community. Governance on BULB would be decentralised, with anyone on the platform being able to remove content from the platform. This would solve a significant pain point with how social platforms currently approached content moderation, where the power to remove content was concentrated in the hands of the host platform. By distributing power, users on BULB could experience a fairer platform without the risk of being censored by the host.
BULB Gets Serious
The vision for BULB became far more concrete in December 2021 when the founders released the BULB Token on the Solana network, where 100 million tokens were unlocked out of a total maximum supply of 1 billion. A month later, we recruited a full stack team across engineering, design and marketing to accelerate the development of the BULB platform. This was further assisted by the team’s first private seed token sale in February 2022, where the team successfully raised close to $100k in pre-seed funding through a selected group of private investors with on-chain token vesting.
Things got more and more exciting as the team released the first BULB Prototype platform in March 2022. The prototype platform had key functionalities such as the capability for users to write a blog, make comments, react to articles and to customise their own profile page. While the features were rudimentary in nature, the prototype allowed the BULB team to gain invaluable feedback on the platform’s design and functionality, this in turn accelerating BULB’s product development roadmap.
The testing did not stop here. Over April-June 2022, the team released three iterations of the platform to a select group of shortlisted users. The first of these releases, Beta 1.0, was released to the first 250 shortlisted users who were allowed access to core functionalities such as writing, reading, reacting and commenting. After Beta 1.0 came Beta 2.0 in May 2022 where the platform was opened to an additional 2,500 shortlisted users. The focus of Beta 2.0 was on bad actor mitigation and improving the user experience. When it came time to release Beta 3.0, the platform focused on better capturing user engagement and refining systems to ensure that users were rewarded in a way that was proportionate to their work.
Energy and Boost Post use cases came next, allowing users to spend BULB Tokens to recharge their energy and to boost visibility for their articles. More importantly, BULB’s governance system was upgraded so any user could Report-to-Earn and selected BULB users could Moderate-to-Earn, laying the groundwork for decentralised, community-driven moderation.
Soft Launch: Now Anyone Can Join!
October 2022 was a significant milestone for BULB in that it was the first time BULB was open to anyone from the public. Soft Launch was one of the first opportunities for BULB to share its vision for Web3.0 Do-to-Earn blogging. In essence BULB was testing its thesis to the wider blogging market properly. Now that BULB was ‘open for all’, it was up to bloggers to see if they liked BULB and to start using the platform.
Soft Launch also marked another important milestone: The release of BULB’s revamped product design to the broader public. With a new user interface came a refreshed user experience, with BULB’s new design being guided by the principles of minimalism, simplicity and intuitiveness. BULB should be a platform that anyone should be able to use, and the revamped product design ensured exactly that!
BULB’s Most Significant Use Case Yet! Enter BULBmoji NFTs
With Soft Launch and BULB’s new design out of the way, the team’s focus then turned to developing BULB’s very first on-platform utility NFTs. Any holder of the NFT could appreciate the NFT for its design, but more so for the valuable use case it provided to them on the platform.
The solution: BULBmoji NFTs, allowing the holder to maximise their earnings for performing particular ‘actions’ on the platform, whether this be reading, writing, reacting or commenting. The BULBmoji NFT essentially ‘tokenised’ existing buttons on BULB so that any time the user clicked on that button, it would allow them to complete the action while saving energy and earning more BULB points.
In January 2023, the team launched the very first 100 BULBmoji NFTs which were a stunning success on the platform. They were well-received by the community who snatched them all up within a few days after release. As BULB’s most successful Spend-to-Earn use case yet, the BULBmoji NFTs signalled a new era of Do-to-Earn blogging on BULB and will be one of many key areas of exploration moving forward.
Finally, Time For Official Launch!
After a year of BULB’s first prototype release in March 2022, BULB will be launching officially in mid-April 2023. The Official Launch signifies BULB’s coming of age and a project that is nearing its potential day-after-day.
With BULB’s Official Launch comes exciting new features: Weekly objectives, improved Share-to-Earn functions and even more BULBmoji NFTs! Unsurprisingly, however, Official Launch also brings its own challenges. BULB is still a growing community, one that the team needs to nurture and continue scaling up in numbers and diversity. Moreover, with success comes responsibility, a call to constant improvement and an obligation to never stop learning. While Official Launch is exciting no doubt, Official Launch is not the end of what will be part of a long and exciting journey to bring Do-to-Earn blogging to the world by creating a platform where ideas, passion and engagement are rewarded.
Where to From Here?
It’s hard to believe that BULB has come so far in such a short space of time. Throughout this journey, the team has learnt the importance of perseverance, hard work, and above all, integrity. From Day 1, the team has strived to build a platform that is in alignment with our vision for a fairer, more democratic web where all content creators are rewarded in a way that is commensurate with their effort.
Moving forward, the team will be pioneering in emerging technologies which will allow BULB to bring Web3.0 Do-to-Earn blogging to the masses. The rise of AI and ChatGPT has unlocked bottomless opportunities for AI-driven blogging, where AI can be used as a compliment to the user’s work in order to maximise human potential and unleash all written creativity.
BULB also strives to innovate in the mobile application space which has been largely untapped by Web3.0 applications. Ultimately, we don’t know what the future holds with any certainty, but as Peter Drucker once said, “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” And create it, we will!
The final, most important point — a thank you to you! This community has been amazing from the get go and the entire team would not have the drive to work on this day in and day out without your passions, ideas and engagement. So bring on Official Launch and let’s grow this platform together!
BULB is a blogging platform, where ideas, passion and engagement are all rewarded. By giving ownership back to users, BULB rewards content creators for 100% of the value they create within the community.
Recognising writing and reading is all about sharing ideas and passions with others our belief is that only you should profit from that. BULB rewards every user for their engagement. For the first time, you can write, read, react, comment, share and earn cryptocurrency all at the same time.
Join BULB at https://www.bulbapp.io/