KwikDesk, An Ephemeral Messaging Platform, Mulls Introducing Bitcoin

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KwikDesk, An Ephemeral Messaging Platform, Mulls Introducing Bitcoin

An interesting idea sprouted up this week called KwikDesk, dubbing itself as a “Snapchat Meets Twitter.”

The service allows anyone to send self-destructing messages into the ether with tags, which can be used to later dig them back up in a search. It’s entirely anonymous, with no senders IP log or record of individual users. Senders can choose to let the message live for 24 hours, 10 days, or 100 days.

Founder Kevin Abosch tells TechCrunch that the service plans to integrate the transmission of Bitcoin, and has just put a team on it.

It’s a head scratcher. Bitcoin is now being accepted by a number of entities as legitimate currency, but the added layer of anonymity from KwikDesk leaves a Silk Road-esque taste in the mouth.

Abosch says he never thought of that, but is rather interested in the BitCoin movement and how it can be applied to his latest art project that seemingly blew up.

“When I saw the US government is auctioning off that silkroad guy’s seized bit coin assets, I thought that’s validation of the currency,” said Abosch. “I love the idea that my little art project could end up being the easiest way to move this new currency. The whole underlying structure of bit coins is anonymity and respect of privacy.”

See, Abosch is actually a professional photographer (as well as an investor, and an advisor to Summly) who developed KwikDesk as a conceptual art project.

Here’s how he explained it to me:

Kwikdesk was and is a conceptual art project I created which was a reaction to all the noise of social media… the logging in, the cookies, the trending, the feeds, the clutter… Then something strange happened. People started using it in a multitude of ways… secret messaging by getting creative with #tags and writing messages with no spaces. Gamifying it with treasure hunt-style games, using is as a confessional of sorts.

I self-funded and then as it has grown into something rather special, I brought my two talented friends David Coallier and Connor Murphy along to help part-time.

For me Kwikdesk is, not unlike my photographic portraits of people, a “portrait” of humanity from a different perspective.

The idea is surely interesting, but does it have staying power?

You send messages and get no feedback whatsoever, contrary to every other form of social networking (even Snapchat). That might be cathartic to some people — a bottomless pit for your weird thoughts or confessions — like a Xanga to a 13-year old girl in the 90s.

But then how do you consume messages easily and repeatedly? You have to search for certain words or hashtags to see any of these ephemeral tweets.

Abosch explains that people are getting creative with messaging, using special tags like #09485wedks0932 or writing messages with no spaces, disqualifying the message from the basic word (not tag) search. But then you need this specific tag, sent through some other form of communication, to retrieve your messages.

Still, people seem to be into KwikDesk.

Abosch reports 50,000 messages sent over the past 48 hours. However, it’s fair to note that Abosch’s friend, Wired’s David Rowan, tweeted about the startup two days ago.

Yesterday, it was picked up by TheNextWeb.

Today Abosch has redesigned the site, and promises that improvements and new features will be implemented daily.

Before:

Screenshot 2013-11-22 09.54.26

After:

Screenshot 2013-11-22 09.54.37

[IMG via Blue Yonder]