New/old social network

Might Delta Chat be adapted to become a social network with just minor modifications as an alternative to Facebook.

As a social network it has the benefits that all your contacts are already on it, and, you have an existing history with them in your inbox/email server.

The usual problem with new social networks is encouraging friends away from existing ones. None of your friends & family want to leave because all their friends and family are in it, etc etc Catch 22.

Most social networking consists of sharing, and commenting on, photos and videos.

It wouldn’t take much to make photo sharing/commenting a key feature and most people’s email server/inbox already contains a repository of shared photos and documents so you would not be starting with a blank feed which is what puts people off often.

My Opinion:
Out of scope for DC (DeltaChat is a Messenger not a social network), but interesting idea.

Sharing photos and videos often can quickly reach the data storage limit of those free email providers that most people use, so having a big history of photos there is not very likely in my eyes. :thinking:

There are many open source decentralized networks that are better for the job, sure they don’t have every email user, but they are cool non the less: (twitter alternative) (Facebook alternative) (statistics about instances) (overview site of decentralized social platforms) (a standard for decentralized social networks)

:wink: Even more opinion from me: I think passively consuming feeds on sites like instagram, facebook or tiktok is not good for anyone. It’s a waste of time and attention. It also creates addictions and other mental illnesses like doing a vacation just for the likes on the photos from the beach to keep up a cool fake persona.


We are planing reactions to messages, but we do not currently plan to implement a “Status/Story” feature (see Delta Chat "Status" features).

we don’t really have a standalone Feature Proposal for reactions yet, but it is mentioned here: React / Reply to specific message

We are currently implementing that the user has the option to load existing emails on first start:

I think most would agree and also point to Facebook’s wider subsequent corrosive impact on society as whole, but that’s part of the point for providing a ready made, hopefully more edifying, alternative.

An open source alternative that facilitates connections without the manipulation.

Absolutely. All great alternatives but the key problem is most people won’t use them because of the legacy of photos and friends on existing social networks.

A social network based on existing email accounts circumvents that. All your contacts are already on and you already have a history. As with Delta Chat.

Thank you!

This is more of an aspiration than a feature request.

As well as being a great open source, decentralised chat app, Delta Chat’s killer feature is its use of a familiar, pre-existing network (e-mail).

I’ve found that the biggest obstacle when trying to get people away from Facebook, and on to alternative social networks is that ‘all my friends are on Facebook’.

Delta Chat solves that.

Something loosely related, goes in the direction of making a social network out of DC too: Plugins / Enhanced Messages

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Great! Thank you.

I don’t see how this proposal can be implemented on top of email.

Email is a “push” protocol, while social networks require a “pull” protocol. That is what ActivityPub is to the fediverse networks mentioned above. It can push updates, but it also provides “feeds” with pages, which can be downloaded by anyone browsing your profile. With IMAP protocol, which Delta Chat uses, you can only browse your own mailbox, there is no way to provide read-only access to someone, so all images have to be pushed in advance to your mailbox for you to browse them.

The closest thing to making email work on top of pull protocol is IM2000, but it has never left an experimental/discussion state for reasons.


it could be like: you publish something and you send it to all your followers in some kind of broadcast messages using BCC, and the same for the people you follow, they send the messages to you just like briar’s blogs work, when someone sends a request to follow you, if you accept, you add him to your list of subscribers and send him/her your profile/bio and probably some of your latest posts as a “history”

not saying it is efficient but not impossible, more like a e2e encrypted social network on top of email :slight_smile:

Then you need a way to “boost” (repost) messages with some link to the source. Forwards can’t be used as they are anonymous now. Otherwise it is impossible to discover feeds that you want to subscribe to.

This proposal looks very similar to channels:

I share Simon’s thoughts.
If you want you can use bots to interface with mastodon etc.
I invoke the spirit of @adbenitez who can explain the use of bots (created by him). :person_in_lotus_position:‍♂

for a chat app like Delta Chat, I think this “telegram-like channels” are the correct “social network” flavor

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