Will Elon Musk and Binance bring Twitter into Web3?

The Tesla boss has big plans for the social network. And Binance’s financial support is not insignificant.

October 28, 2022, the announcement is made. After seven months of twists and turns, Elon Musk took control of Twitter. Very quickly, the boss of SpaceX wanted to mark his first days at the head of the social network with a series of measures and announcements. The arrival of Elon Musk marks a new era for Twitter, in particular turned towards Web3.

Jack Dorsey, founder and former CEO of Twitter, was already a strong supporter of Bitcoin. The social network was therefore already considered quite open about crypto and blockchain. Dorsey is even a real bitcoin maximalist and he eventually quit his job to carry out his plans. However, Twitter has never lost its pro-crypto side and Elon Musk’s take on it will reinforce that sentiment.

At the time of the formalization of the takeover, an announcement also caused a lot of talk: that of Binance’s participation. Changpeng Zhao, boss of the crypto exchange platform, has indeed confirmed financial support of up to 500 million dollars. A significant participation, to officially help Twitter successfully transition to Web3. This is also a great opportunity for Binance.

Musk, Twitter and Web3, a long story

He wanted it, he finally got it after long months of negotiations. Since last May, the takeover of Twitter by Elon Musk has given rise to bitter discussions and various controversies. The billionaire wants to restore freedom of expression, which he considers not absolute on Twitter, especially since the suspension of Donald Trump’s account. On his first day, he fired the majority of Twitter’s board, including the former CEO.

Elon Musk also announced the creation of a package to certify his account at 8 dollars per month. This measure, which is already being debated, is a first response to the proliferation of fake accounts that Musk has denounced since his desire to take over. But the boss of Tesla also wants to turn to Web3, and not just a little.

A few hours before the takeover, the social network communicated on its next step in the democratization of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Indeed, Twitter will become a pre-marketplace outlet for NFTs. Artists or sellers will be able to list their NFT on the social network and interested people will be automatically redirected to an exchange platform dedicated to NFTs.

In the United States, Twitter users can already put their NFT as a profile picture, with mention of ownership of said NFT. Still across the Atlantic, cryptocurrencies can be used as tips paid to certain users. There is no doubt that these advances should be extended to the whole world. Elon Musk should go further, without knowing exactly what measures he will take.

What is certain is that the new boss is in line with Jack Dorsey, who wanted to make his Twitter the most open social network to Web3 (or rather to Bitcoin). The most advanced measure would be the integration of an in-house crypto wallet that can be directly activated on Twitter. Given Elon Musk’s passion for Dogecoin (DOGE), there are also rumors that the dog-headed crypto could play an important role on Twitter in the future. For example, could certification at $8 per month be paid for in DOGE? With the future integration of a wallet, this is a possibility that could prove to be real in the months to come.

But Elon Musk is not necessarily the person who will really bring Twitter into the Web3 world. Indeed, as we have seen, a surprise investor slipped into the takeover of the social network: Binance.

The news was not made official until the day of the public announcement of the takeover of Twitter. The world’s largest exchange, Binance, participated in the amount of $500 million. It was Changpeng Zhao, boss of Binance, who confirmed it himself… on Twitter!

When looking at Twitter’s ambitions in Web3, Binance’s participation is anything but a surprise. Indeed, the platform has everything to help bring the social network into the Internet of the future. Officially, Binance wants to help Twitter embrace blockchain technology and crypto. It’s pretty vague!

Patrick Hillman, Chief Strategy Officer at Binance, gave some background. The first objective will be to test, a lot. Indeed, Hillman evokes the desire to make Twitter a kind of sandbox in order to solve certain problems inherent in Twitter. In other words, the objective will be to use Web3 technology to solve purely Web2 problems.

The first of these issues is the one that is most important to Elon Musk: fake accounts or bots. By using blockchain technology to certify the veracity of an account, Twitter would be one of the first giants to use a kind of decentralized identity that remains to be defined. Neither Musk nor Binance have specified how the blockchain will be used to combat fake accounts, but both are committed to ending this scourge.

A logical continuation for Binance

The arrival of Binance, directly or indirectly, in the capital of Twitter is the confirmation of the immense ambition of Changpeng Zhao. We have also devoted an article to it. The exchange platform does not want to become a key player in Web3, since it already is. She sees much further.

Binance is getting registrations in many countries, not just France. It is notably very involved in the Gulf countries (Bahrain, United Arab Emirates). Binance wants to become a crypto-bank and a bridge between traditional finance and cryptocurrency. If the platform has many competitors, it is the one that is the most advanced on the subject, that makes the most significant investments and that is the most in demand.

By taking a stake in Twitter, Binance is now getting involved for the first time in a large purely Web2 company, in order to make its transition to Web3 a success. This is also a desire that is clearly not in the philosophy of the decentralized Internet, since Twitter would remain under the control of a person or an entity.

Until today, Zhao’s bets have always been good. There is therefore no reason for Binance to stop on such a good path.

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