At its core, Better is a microblogging platform with all the standard features & functionality social media users would expect from such a platform: character-limited message format; the ability to post text, images, and videos with external links and the ability to follow friends, favourite journalists, politicians, academics, sports people, celebrities, influencers and, of course, all those funny meme feeds.
Being the newest platform on the market has given the company a unique chance to include some of the most requested features and functionality from across a variety of other social media sites.
- All accounts must be linked to a single verified user. Multiple accounts will not be allowed at launch, but his policy may be reviewed later.
- Non-verified accounts may consume (read) content only; they cannot create new posts or contact other users.
- Pseudonyms may be used in handles to protect anonymity for personal safety and security.
- The verification process is handled by third-party verification specialists - unique in each territory - who are experts at finding and eliminating fake accounts.
- Verification information will not be held by Better; it will remain with the verifying authority.
- Verifying all users will ensure no children under 18 are on the platform, reducing the risk of inappropriate contact with minors.
Confidence Rating for Published Stories
- News articles and published information will be scored on the reliability and accuracy of the information and shown so users can make their own decisions about what to trust and what not to.
- 420 character limit for all users enabling people to express themselves Better
- Posts longer than 420 characters will be automatically split into several Posts in a User’s timeline.
- Posts can be edited for a limited time, after which they will be permanently locked. (The exact time limit has not been decided yet.)
- Edited Posts will be marked with open history, so anyone can see the original content, protecting against abuse by users temporarily posting abusive or illegal content and quickly changing it.
- All news feeds will be clearly labelled as such. (This will be handled by Better, not the account owner.)
- News feeds must be linked to a single verified user who takes full legal responsibility for anything posted from that account.
- News feeds cannot follow or interact with any other accounts - they can only have followers.
- The velocity and frequency of posts will be restricted to avoid spamming.
- User home feeds default to a chronological list of all posts. This is known as the “raw feed”.
- A curated feed will be available for users who want a more tailored experience. The curated feed will prioritise new posts from followed accounts, then a chronological list of posts selected for the user by their interests.
- Global repost blocking - block all reposts without comments to improve Home Feed contents
Handles that continually Post abusive language will be automatically de-prioritised in public feeds. This is called ‘shadow banning’ on other sites because other sites deny doing it, but research has repeatedly shown it happens.
Better has committed to always being open with its users and the public about its content moderation policies and home feed algorithm, and this is no exception.
To be clear, no matter how the auto muting function may or may not affect a user’s probability of appearing in the home feed, all their followers will still see all their posts, all the time.
“No ad” Subscriptions
Better understands that a growing percentage of users dislike the number of ads online, are uncomfortable with their data being used for advertising and are worried about their data being sold to third parties for analysis and targeting. For those users, Better will offer a subscription service, “Better Pro”, with features such as
- removal of all third-party ads,
- exclude user data from data licensing, and
- enhanced content moderation capabilities.
Better Pro will charge a modest monthly fee based on the average ad revenue per user to offset the loss of ad revenue and data licensing - a small price to pay for those people looking for added privacy.
Other platforms expressly prohibit users from selling their Handles to other users.
Better believes its users should be free to manage their handles however they see fit, so it has taken the opposite approach - the company will provide an official marketplace where its users can buy and sell handles in an open and supported environment.
Users can purchase highly desirable handles - directly from Better or from other users.
The company will take a small percentage of each transaction as a handling fee which will help support the cost of running the platform.
Features and functionality are great, but what does that mean for Better users?
- Better users can feel confident that every other account on the platform is a real person (or linked directly to a real person) who can be held accountable for their behaviour - good and bad.
- Feeling safe in knowing if another User acts illegally, swift action can be taken.
- Users can feel secure they are not being targeted and/or influenced by Bad Actors running Inauthentic Accounts.
- Brands and advertisers can feel secure that their interactions are practical interactions and not fake.
- Verification data is encrypted before it reaches Better so the chance of an identity data leak is greatly reduced.
- Users can easily avoid all third-party advertising - if that’s important to them.
- Users can easily avoid sharing their data with third parties - even for research purposes.