Wavelength Is Shutting Down at the End of July


We’re sad to announce that we’re shutting down Wavelength. We’re so grateful to our users and community — you’ve been amazing.

On July 31st we’ll turn off our servers, which means that you’ll no longer be able to sign in, create a group, or send messages. You will continue to have access to your message history as long as you keep the app installed on your device, but we recommend saving or copying anything important out of the app as soon as you can.

Your Wavelength account data will be deleted from our servers at the time of the shutdown. Rest assured that we will not retain, sell, or transfer any user information, and that your messages remain end-to-end encrypted and secure.

You may recall I’ve been an advisor to the team at Wavelength for a little over a year, so I knew this announcement was coming. It’s a bummer, personally, at two levels. First, just knowing the team, particularly cofounders Richard Henry and Marc Bodnick, both of whom I now consider friends. They tried to crack the “privacy-minded social network” nut before with Telepath, and with Wavelength got even closer to pulling it off. So much work went into it, and so much of it was so good.

Second, though, is a more selfish reason: I’m an active participant in a bunch of active, vibrant groups on Wavelength. I’m going to miss them. The groups I’m most active in on Wavelength have a higher signal-to-noise ratio than any social networking platform I’ve seen in ages. I’d have to go back to the heyday of Usenet and email group mailing lists, literally decades ago, or the very early years of Twitter, to find anything with such a high level of discourse.

But the simple truth is that while Wavelength has been far from a failure, it’s also far from a breakout hit. It’d be an easy decision to shut it down if it were a flop. It was a hard decision to shut it down because it wasn’t. But a social platform really needs to be a breakout hit to succeed, and Wavelength just wasn’t on a path to become one.

So: time to move on. Until the plug gets pulled at the end of next month though, I’ll still be there.

Wednesday, 26 June 2024