Moon Capital Observation #3— Link3
What is Link3?
In the world of Web2 social media, have you ever been scammed by fake accounts, whether as your friends or any cooperating companies? One of the hottest topics on Web3 now is the identity authentication segment. If studying blockchain more deeply, we often see the words “don’t trust, verify”, but how can we combine the information on-chain and off-chain to make an identity that can’t be forged? This is now everyone’s urgent demand and also the problem that the whole industry is trying to solve.
Link3 is a Web3 social network of verifiable identities. Aggregating both on-chain and off-chain data, Link3 profiles serve as holistic identities enabling trustworthy networking and meaningful connections among users and organizations.
Link3 helps you build trust with verifiable connections and enrich identity meaning with contexts. In Web2 we hold up our public persona by following people, publishing content, and self-attesting all sorts of attributes and preferences. On top of these, Link3 brings in a new array of dimensions that tell a more authentic and complete story about who you are:
- Connections — you have with other people and organizations, regardless of platforms;
- Assets — you own that stand for your status and tastes;
- Credentials — issued by third parties such as DAOs and projects about your key achievements and roles; and,
- all other on-chain activity records such as votes and donations that attest to your involvement in communities.
Why is this important? With Link3, an endogenous layer of trust will grow from all those added dimensions of contexts and meanings because they are verifiable. Composed of all such connections and records, relational identities like these are organic and evolving, authentic and trustworthy, rich in context and meaningful, just like how we are as social beings and would like everyone to be in vital relationships.
The product is currently composed of personal and institutional accounts, both of which now require a whitelist or invitation code to register.
As for the personal account, Link3 uses wallet addresses as the only authentication method. After registration, users can then set their Link3 link as their personal website on Twitter. It brings together all types of information about the user. Specifically, Link3 verifies all kinds of assets, credentials and on-chain activities held through connecting wallet addresses. It also verifies all types of social media accounts (such as Twitter or Medium) through pop-up webpage authentication. Then, users can choose to present some highlights of their content on their main page.
It is worth noting that Link3 will make each individual user’s profile on-chain. During the registration process, users need to mint an NFT for the Link3 handle of their profile. The price varies depending on the length of the characters as shown below. Because it will be up on Ethereum, users also need to pay Gas when minting their Link3 Handle. After minting, users can check their Link3 Handle NFT on OpenSea. With the NFT, users get an exclusive domain name (Link3.to/handle). Just because of the on-chain NFT, everyone will no longer need a third-party website to verify the authenticity of their identity in the future. We will immediately know and trust others through Link3’s on-chain profile.
As for the institution account, Link3 also uses their wallet addresses as the only authentication method. After the pop-up webpage authentication, Link3 will aggregate all types of off-chain links (such as Twitter, Discord, or Medium) and selectively display their content highlights. Institutions can also fill in their team members and link to their Link3 addresses, bridging between institutions and individual users.
There are some differences between the personal and institutional accounts. Institutions currently do not need to cast NFT to get their exclusive handle, but will be automatically assigned to a Link3 handle. In addition, users can now only follow institutions but not individual accounts.
According to Mirror article by Link3, there will be more use cases with some features to be rolled out in the near future:
- Resume — Share your profile in a specially designed business card format to quickly showcase who you are and why connections will be valuable.
- Application Process Speed-up — Use your profile to submit applications and save all the redundant processes of filling out forms and sending documents of evidence.
- Filter DMs Allowed — Gate your DM by more than payment or assets and instead invite those people with traits, backgrounds, and capabilities that you truly value to come through.
- Governance and Voting — Delegate your vote to the people with whom you have meaningful connections and whom you have real trust about who they are in the community.
Link3 is built on top of CyberConnect’s decentralized social graph protocol and will contribute back to the data network and the interest graph engine. Link3 stores all profile info and connections in a decentralized and self-sovereign manner.
Such profiles and connections are blockchain agnostic and can be ported to any platform, breaking down the walls of siloed centralized platforms and enabling users and projects to fully control their identities and connections.
The Alpha 1.0 version of Link3 went live for users with whitelisted addresses or verification codes on July 19. The product will be launched to the public by the end of this year. Some institutions registered in the Alpha 1.0 Stage include: BNB Chain, CoinMarketCap, Collab Land, DeWork, Multicoin, the Project Galaxy and Snapshot, among others.
In Web2, Link3’s main competitor is Link Tree, but Link Tree does not provide on-chain identity authentication, and hence is not friendly to Web3 users. It currently helps more corporate clients with their marketing and promotions.
In Web3, Link3’s main competitor is Lens Protocol. Lens Protocol also mints handle NFT for its users. Only users with NFT are eligible to register and socialize. Now, Lens is 100% on-chain for its verifications and activities. It does not aim to make on-chain and off-chain aggregation like Link3.
Relationship with CyberConnect
Link3 is launched by CyberConnect and is built on top of CyberConnect’s decentralized social graph protocol. The main difference between the two products is the purposes. Link3’s purpose is to present, while CyberConnect’s purpose is more for social. Specifically, Link3 can only choose to “follow” institutions but not individuals. There is no search box for Link3 and we can only use links with unique handles. However, CyberConnect can focus on all users and has a search box to search for wallet addresses. It mainly shows NFTs in CyberConnect rather than the article highlights.
CyberConnect team has many years of blockchain startup experience. The founding team all came from Lino and DLive (blockchain startups), and also worked at BitTorrent after Lino and DLive were acquired by BitTorrent. They then co-founded CyberConnect.
As for financing, CyberConnect announced a $10 million seed round funding in November 2021, co-led by Multicoin Capital and Sky9 Capital. It then announced a $15 million Series A round in May 2022, led by Animoca Brands and Sky9 Capital. CyberConnect is currently incubating multiple products, including CyberChat.
Link3 is already being used by a large number of organizations. We often see the Link3 link on others’ personal websites on Twitter. In conclusion, Link3 is a great product in the field of identity authentication, and it has the potential to open interfaces in many segments and become widespread in the future, providing Web3 users with more identity security and efficiency. We are also looking forward to more excellent products coming out in the CyberConnect ecosystem, making on-chain identity and social networking popular among all users.
About Moon Capital
Moon Capital is a cutting-edge investment firm focused on blockchain and cryptocurrency. Moon Capital portfolio includes, Project Galaxy, Woo Network , Matrix World, Litentry, DeepDAO and some other high-quality projects.