Tsu, the ‘Tidal’ of Social Networks, Pays You For Posting
Tired of being commoditized by your favorite social media? Sick of your photos, posts, and life stories being used to sell advertising? If you answered ‘yes’ to the questions above, let us unite against social tyranny! Until now, basically no social networking startups have been able to capitalize on this concept of freedom because, well, even people who hate Facebook won’t leave it. Tsu (pronounced “sue) takes a different approach: take advertising dollars and use it to pay users, everyone shares the revenue.
The self-proclaimed “people’s social network” launched just last fall, not long after Ellosprung into our faces and quickly vanished. So far, the network has been flying under the radar, despite garnering over 3 million users using an invite-only tactic and debuting an overhaul of its site and mobile apps.
The CEO, Sebastian Sobczak, compares Tsu to Jay Z’s new streaming service Tidal. Tidal shares equity with music artists who get in on the ground floor early, providing them with a greater financial stake in the success of streaming. Tsu shares not its equity, but its revenue, but the principal remains the same: give money to people that are creating content.
How It Works
90% of revenue from ads (sponsored posts, display banners, etc.) gets paid out to users. The system itself has nothing to do with clicks, so a user can’t just throw a random post up and destroy it with clicks to try it make money. Instead, Tsu takes a look at how many people have seen a user’s post. If it goes viral, the user makes more than someone who’s post has only been seen by a few people.
“If you post something and you have no friends, no followers, and no one sees it, your audience isn’t valuable,” Sobczak told Macworld. “It’s like screaming into the middle of the forest. You can post crap content, but you have to be influential for it to go anywhere.” (McGarry, 1)
Furthermore, Tsu rewards users for bringing friends in. Let’s say you post a video; after taking a 10% administrative cut (we saw that one coming), Tsu will pay you 50% of the revenue generated from the video’s views. The person who invited you to Tsu? They make 33.3 percent. The person who invited that person? They get 11.1 percent. The person that invited that person? They get 3.7 percent.
Another huge positive is that Tsu doesn’t use any algorithm to determine which posts you see and which you don’t. In this way, many Facebook users who complain that the service is asking them to spend money to reach people who genuinely want to see their posts, may prefer Tsu. “That’s a big thing for us. We don’t do that. We won’t do that,” Sobczak said. “For the past five years, [Facebook] told us to acquire our audience and move them to Facebook. Then [Facebook] switched it on me and said, now you have to pay to reach the audience you told me to get. It’s bizarre. It’s brilliance in a sense, but it’s bizarre.” (McGarry, 1)
Before you get too excited, you should know that Tsu users won’t cash out until they have banked $100.00. That being said, as a user you can donate your earnings to charity before reaching that minimum. In fact, an estimated 90 percent of users have donated their earnings to certified charities on the network.
Thanks to Tsu, Charity:Water raised $18,000 in two weeks, putting the money towards building three wells in Ethiopia. Independent musicians are seeing the trend and following suit as well. Though Tsu isn’t the first of its kind to offer cash for posts, it is striking the market at a time where users are getting increasingly annoyed by the status quo of being sold to. Even NBA star Carmelo Anthony is an advocate, with an active account which he posts to regularly.
Though at first it may seem strange, a network based on money is all you’re going to get these days. In this light it’s easy to see that your social network might as well provide you ownership of yourself and your selfies.
Tags: Social Media, social network, Tsu