Drops, An Experiment: Credential Claim Links

Drops is a conceptual experiment for exploring how issuers can create their own claim links/pages for anyone–or those who meet specific criteria–to claim a credential. Shout out to @carlfairclough for pulling this initiative together.

Drops, An Experiment: Credential Claim Links

We often ask ourselves:

Why would somebody want to create a data backpack?”

“How do we encourage people to take control of their own data - knowing that value and consent are on the line?”

We’re focused on empowering people to take control of their data, and while we’ve made numerous iterations of our onboarding process, we recognize that making significant strides towards improvement demands more than just theoretical advancements. So we set out to run real-world, lightweight experiments to more deeply explore user behaviors and experiences–empowered by our API.

Our first experiment: Claim pages

Part 1: Claiming IRL

To reflect on our own experiences, we set out to address on the following questions:

  1. How might we make it easier to issue credentials en-masse?

  2. How might people easily claim a credential, even without already having a data backpack?

  3. What pain-points are present throughout the authentication process?

At EthCC this year, Evin, Masha, and Carmen were able to issue credentials for meeting someone IRL or attending an event, simply by showing a QR code linking you to a Claim page. This proved to be a more meaningful and relevant flow journey getting credentials for specific interactions, without first needing to create a data backpack.

An example of a claim link for meeting Evin IRL at EthCC
An example of a claim link for meeting Evin IRL at EthCC

The results were promising, as claiming a credential felt purpose-driven, and existing backpack holders had a seamless experience collecting credentials via the claim link as an entry point.

What did we learn?

  1. We proved that collecting credentials for specific behaviors through claim links, without first needing to create a data backpack with Disco, provides a more seamless journey.

  2. Existing users found it easier to accumulate credentials for their actions without disrupting their overall experience. The goal of "claiming a credential" proved to be more relevant and tangible, motivating new users to authenticate when creating a data backpack, knowing they already have credentials.

  3. Several people still faced challenges in generating their identifiers (DID) at EthCC, which validated our ongoing efforts to take ownership of the issue and enhance user experiences, and isolated the issues.

We decided to expand Drops, allowing any user to spin up their own link, gate who can claim, and manage the link even *after* publishing. First, we of course wanted to test this out ourselves…

Part 2: Claiming Newsletter Bookmarks

Building on our experiment, we integrated the Drops concept into our newsletter, Disco Beats. We introduced a Bookmark schema that allowed readers to claim a "Bookmark" for reading our newsletter.

A snip-it from our newsletter, Disco Beats, showing a link to "Claim Bookmark"
A snip-it from our newsletter, Disco Beats, showing a link to "Claim Bookmark"

We allowed anyone who opened and read the newsletter to claim. However, we're also considering how you, as an issuer, could set access controls for claiming with unique links or by validating whether someone meets specific criteria, such as holding another credential type, having minted an NFT, or meeting any other requirements. For example, you could create unique claim links that are distributed only to a specific group or community, ensuring that only members meeting certain criteria can access and claim the credentials. This way, you can foster a sense of exclusivity and tailor the issuance process to specific target audiences.

Additionally, implementing access controls based on holding certain credential types or having completed particular actions, such as minting an NFT, could encourage engagement and participation within your ecosystem. By introducing these access controls, you not only streamline the issuance flow but also foster a more personalized and meaningful experience for your users.

Beyond Claiming: Gleaning more granular insights

Looking beyond the direct benefits of claiming credentials from a relevant source, we've come to realize that issuers can gain valuable insights through this process. By allowing readers to claim Bookmarks, we enable issuers the opportunity to track engagement and understand their community at a deeper level. Verifiable credentials provide a comprehensive view of how individuals contribute and participate, going beyond the limitations of onchain or transactional data.

While onchain data does provide valuable insights, it only scratches the surface of understanding your user base or community. For instance, someone may have minted your NFTs to show support, but they might be relatively inactive across your community channels. On the other hand, a highly engaged community member who consistently reads your newsletter may not have minted your NFT. See how that can get interesting? Let’s broaden data creation and curation.

What’s next?

We’re excited to introduce Bookmarks as an alpha product with some of our partners.

Do YOU have a newsletter? Want to create Bookmarks for your readers to claim? Want to learn more about creating a Drops?

Let’s set up a pilot! Reach out to ask@disco.xyz to get started.

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