It pains me to make this post, but I feel I must because I care about this community and this app.
The Byte app has only been out for 5 days and already there are tons of “rebyte 4 rebyte” groups, the very thing that overtook Vine and made it awful. I get why people do it. They want followers and engagement on the videos they work hard to create. But it could be doing the exact opposite, and this post from the Byte forum explains why:
Dom tried to avoid abuse of the rebyte feature by not providing rebyte notifications and hiding rebytes from your own profile page. But it’s not working. As long as there is a ranked Popular page, people will try to game the system to get their videos on that Popular page, and rebytes are just one of the tools.
IMO, these r4r groups are already killing the soul of Byte just like they did on Vine. But even if you removed the rebyte feature completely, that wouldn’t solve the problem. I know the Byte team is working on improving algorithms to improve discovery for smaller creators, but as long as there’s a ranked Popular page, it won’t make much of a difference.
The solution is to remove the thing that is causing the cancer: the Popular page. Replace it with something similar to the For You page that TikTok uses. I dislike TikTok for many reasons, but the For You page is the best part of that app. It shows a random mix of popular videos along with other videos that you may like, some of which have only 5 likes or were posted two weeks ago. You can refresh the page and see a whole new list of videos. It’s hard to game that kind of system.
Full disclosure: I’m part of an r4r group. I don’t really like it, but it’s become a necessary evil. I’ve only done it for 3 days, but I’m already fatigued and reconsidering. The amount of time it consumes is time taken away from doing the fun stuff, like creating new videos or working on collaborations with other creators.
I hope the Byte team realizes that what’s going on right now is far from “creativity first.” But they need to act fast because the cancer is already spreading quickly.
UPDATE: I resigned from the r4r group I was a part of, and another one I was part of but never did anything with kicked me out when they saw my post on Instagram