How NOSTR will change the world of privacy
02/08/2023 // News Editors // Views

Bitcoin users have already flocked to it en masse. It has been the subject of constant raving from Edward Snowden. The former CEO and founder of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, is participating. It’s being heralded as the replacement for Twitter and Instagram, but some industry insiders predict it’ll destroy both.

(Article by Fabian Ommar republished from

Although it’s too early to tell if NOSTR can achieve all of that, one thing it won’t be is another social networking platform (if only because it’s not even a platform). Read on to learn more and find out what NOSTR is and why it has the potential to transform interpersonal relationships and communication.  

What’s NOSTR? 

It’s short for “Notes and Other Stuff Transmitted by Relays.” It’s officially described as “a decentralized network built on cryptographic keypairs that is not peer-to-peer.” None of that soup of words does much to describe NOSTR, and the concept may take some time to sink in for those used to traditional social media. 

However, once you do, NOSTR’s potential is obvious. 

It is not a platform. It doesn’t have a server, a fancy glass office building full of nerds playing ping-pong and bingeing on free chai lattes, slick marketers, or even a CEO. You don’t really sign up for a NOSTR account and don’t look for a NOSTR app because there isn’t one available in the stores. 

NOSTR is a protocol, or more precisely, a decentralized base-level protocol, that allows anyone to build nearly whatever they like, including a chat room, a social media platform, an interactive game, and a news site. 


A developer by the name of fiatjaf designed and coded NOSTR in 2020 as a discrete, open-source, niche substitute for both Twitter and Mastodon. NOSTR is powered and distributed through decentralized platforms and apps, or “clients,” in contrast to conventional social media. 

The excitement and expectations that followed Elon Musk‘s acquisition of Twitter are gradually fading. 

Even if the blue bird’s platform may now function better, users are beginning to realize the fact that it’s still largely the same Twitter. This is due to the fact that centralized, server-based social media is always open to outside manipulation. It can be hacked, compromised, suppressed, tampered with, co-opted, or censored. Or purchased, as the Twitter transaction has demonstrated. 

When Twitter changed hands, Mastodon, a social network made up of autonomous servers arranged around particular themes, subjects, or interests, started to grow quickly on the promise of decentralization. However, Mastodon is still based on servers whose administrators can censor or shadow-ban users’ material or manage their usernames and identity. That’s the crux of the matter. 

There is a top-to-bottom movement that favors decentralization. 

Geopolitically, this happens through the realignment of allegiances and partnerships of nations. Individuals, on the other hand, need to figure out how to keep their money, savings, and voices out of the reach of governments, bureaucrats, and technocrats. 

Nobody is pleased with the scramble for power that’s taking place everywhere, and decentralizing technology may offer the common person a way out of the rat cage. 

As big tech and legacy media collude with governments to control the narratives and censor dissent, people are searching for alternative locations and social media platforms where they can exchange and propagate ideas and their creations without running the risk of being de-platformedcensored, or canceled without much in the way of appeal.

Against this background comes NOSTR. 

Although the mainstream media hasn’t yet taken notice of NOSTR by large, it’s been making the rounds in the digital underworld for some time and beginning to surface and gain some traction. The final push was given by none other than Twitter by adding NOSTR to the list of items/services forbidden from being advertised on its platform. All this did was put NOSTR square in the spotlight. 

After everything that transpired with COVIDlockdownsvaccines, and everything else during the previous two years or so, what better way to put something squarely in the spotlight than to make it verboten

(Want to starve the beast through means other than just NOSTR? Then check out our free QUICKSTART Guide on the subject.)

How do people use NOSTR?

In NOSTR, you can create an “account” by using an operating app (more on this soon). However, the decentralized architecture means that users control their pubkey (username) and private key (password) instead of the server owner/host (because neither exists). In other words, you own your full profile and can use it across all “clients” or apps and platforms as they’re called.  

After logging in with your private key, you’re then free to run a client, log into your account (with your public key), and share posts or create articles. If a post is shared with another client, the information is transmitted “trustlessly” around the network in a similar way to how Bitcoin and cryptocurrency transactions are dispersed to all nodes in the platform.

The foundation of the system’s operation is the relay servers that send, receive, index, structure, and store events (or messages) independently. It’s quite geeky and technical, and I admit that I don’t know nearly enough about programming, computers, or the internet to fully comprehend all of its intricacies. As a result, I recommend reading this article on Bitcoin Magazine if you truly want to go into the technical details of NOSTR. 

I’m more interested in NOSTRs potential to serve as a decentralized base protocol that would enable the free creation and growth of truly independent, uncensored news and content outlets and social media. 

With NOSTR, no one can restrict you or your content because it uses a decentralized protocol, and you own your login and key. You can choose who you communicate with, who you follow, and what you don’t want to see, but you can’t restrict other users’ content in any manner or stop them from seeing your stuff. Nobody can. 

It’s a pretty straightforward protocol with lots of room for customization, ensuring that users can always communicate with one another regardless of what specific relay server operators decide to host or not to host. 


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