Dear Citizen of the World,
Webium is a social network where instead of following friends or celebrities, you follow one or more geographical regions.
You can visit Webium.com, and view on a map, what others have posted.
All the posts are public, therefore Webium is like a town square where all opinions are voiced publicly, thus creating a more lively but healthier environment.
By "healthier" I refer to the avoidance of what social scientists long ago named "confirmation bias".
Essentially, when people only talk to others just like them, it leads to extremism, because people get the very wrong idea that "everybody" in the world agrees with them.
The web and all that interconnectivity that came with it, actually made it easier for extremists to obscurely meet other extremists in distant places, and one can argue, made the problem worse.
I recall back in 1995, during the very early days of the web, while working for a major investment bank in New York City, attending a seminar about the web presented by Esther Dyson.
As a matter of fact, I was a bit irritated why they were forcing me to attend this seminar. In my view, as a young programmer on the trading floor, I knew all my FTPs, HTTPs, HTMLs, TCP/IPs, C++, etc. and there was nothing else to learn!
But what I heard that day shocked me. Ms Dyson made it clear that in the future this "confirmation bias" was going to be an "unintended consequence" and it would cause many problems, and it has.
And this was not the first time, our communities in the recent decades, took a turn for the worse.
As strange as it may sound, the introduction of air conditioning and television into our homes, took us away from our front porches, verandas, balconies or sidewalks and into our living rooms, thus disconnecting us from our neighbors.
And it gets worse. Nowdays, every big company on the web seems to be using algorithms to decide what to show us.
As a result, they always shows us the same things. Even if we try to find something else, they return us back to the same things. As such, our "personalized-without-our-explicit-permission" web is getting smaller and smaller.
This is because to those large companies, we are the product and not the customer. They track us across unrelated web sites and try to sell us to their real customers, the advertisers.
Advertising per se is not bad. The problem is that those large web companies try to maximize financial results from everything we do on the web, thus forcing down our throats the same material.
At Webium, we promise that you will be the customer and not the product.
We do not track you. You are not for sale.
So, Webium.com and the Webium app is an effort to encourgage people to interact more with their communities in a public way, (but from the comfort of their living room!), while treating the members of the community with the respect we all deserve.
Please join us.
Your post can be about anything that has a geographical reference.
So, if you see, for example, a non-emergency issue, you believe the local authorities should handle, then you can use the Webium app to take a picture, you enter a description and you post it fully anonymous (no name or email address provided) or partially anonymous (you provide an email address which will not become public but can be used to inform you if your pin was rejected by one of our reviewers) .
The local authorities, reporters, or anybody else that follows that region, will be notified, sometimes, instantly.
Similarly, and because it will be unfair to any city to only post "negative" issues, this app also allows you to post "positive" items from an area, such as nature pictures, beautiful architecture, etc.
BUT IN EITHER CASE THOUGH, IMAGES WITH PEOPLE WILL BE REJECTED.
Also, if you have a house to rent, you can post it on whatever other webiste you use and then post the link to Webium.com, for others to find you "geographically".
This app does not track you in any way. We do not access or store any data that identifies you or your device.
So, if you see, for example, a non-emergency issue, you believe the local authorities should handle, then you can use the Webium app to take a picture, you enter a description and you post it anonymously.
We do though store the date, time and geographical location of your phone, only because we assign a date, a time and a location to a reported issue.
Also, since we make use of third-party tools, such as mapping APIs from Google and/or other mapping API providers, or cloud storage by Amazon and/or others, it is possible for those companies to store your IP address.
Wwe also send a "cookie" (a unique number) to your browser, so next time you visit webium.com, the map will show the last area you viewed. But we do not correlate that cookie to any other information that we might have on you, such as an email address.
If you are worried about your IP address, you can use a VPN service to add an extra degree of difficulty.
Your images and text will be posted at http://www.Webium.com as a clickable pin on a world map.
Once your pin is publicly posted, others can add comments and images.
We expect that any “Content” you upload (including sounds, photos, text, video, and graphics) to Webium.com is original and that you have the rights to it. When you upload your content to Webium.com, you are granting us a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sublicenseable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform the Content in connection with the Service and even the right to create “derivative works” from the content. You’re also granting other users of Webium.com the right to use, reproduce, distribute, display and perform such Content as permitted through the functionality of the Service. The license is perpetual and irrevocable, and we can keep copies of everything you upload forever on our servers, even if you delete it.