Big Whale Labs Turns One 🍰

Big Whale Labs Turns One 🍰
This week, Big Whale Labs turns 1

We’ve been heads down the past few weeks cooking up some fun things. But before we talk about all of that we wanted to celebrate our first birthday and some new announcements.


  • This week, we turned one years old (we're two in Korea because you start at one when you're born) and get sappy
  • We're soft launching a very early feature called Echo - that allows anonymous tweets based on NFT badges you create on SealCred
  • We airdropped 10K+ appreciation NFTs to 10K+ community members
  • We shipped openGSN integration making Sealcred gassless (for users)
  • We reached 10K+ community members and 100K zk nft credentials created

Hi, crypto-verse. This week we turn one.

A little history and how we started:

We started Big Whale Labs on August 16, 2021.

It's Summer 2021. Hot Vax Summer. NFT Summer. DeFi 2.0, 699004% APY summer.

summer 2021... before the winter of summer 2022

2nd doses of Pfizer and Moderna are rolling off the shelves in heaves. This is supposedly giving everyone the opportunities to log off and see people in real life but instead, people are spending exorbitant amounts of money buying 5-second clips of Lebron James on the blockchain.

Nikita and I had been casually brainstorming new social app ideas around pseudonymous writing, digital social graphs for meeting new friends outside your immediate circle, crypto, and avatars - I know a wide range of random topics.

Nikita had just sold Shieldy, an open-source, spam-fighting Telegram bot to 1Inch (the large DEX aggregator) right after scaling to 20 million users.

I had just left my prior YC startup where I was helping developer teams identity and optimize their infra and tooling stack and was reading too much Balaji.

We were dreaming of new realities, digital-native worlds untethered to the boundaries of everyday life (or just super typical tech bro stuff).

We wanted to build the next generation of social networks where people can discuss ideas freely, interact and engage in new mechanisms, and build virtual relationships with new identities.

Little did we know a certain ex-president was also cooking up a social network and dropping testflights too, but that's for another day.

When we started, we iterated and ideated on different social loop experiments with pseudonymity at the core (microblogs, long-form, audio, dating, q&a, networking, etc).  

Our first iteration of Dosu. A shared pseudonymous reading experience. Is this wildly different than Google docs? Not sure. 

Nikita had also been in the process of writing a book called We Don't Live a Thousand Years (now out as an nft) and so we started going deeper into more web 3 use cases around what social media and publishing would look like in a crypto-centric world: NFTs, content graphs on-chain, new publishing or ownership formats, identity, etc.

We started getting obsessed with the idea of being able to publish ideas using pseudonymous credentials such as being a celebrity - a certain number of followers or Twitter verification, or work experience (Michellin starred chef?), etc - and started to sketch ideas of integrating that into Dosu.

We called our early project StreetCred (before we realized this name is heavily trademarked by Snapchat).

Early Mock of StreetCred

Where we are at today and where we wanna go:

We've been officially live with Sealcred in Alpha for about 2-3 months. It looks way different than our early iterations thanks to our founding designer, Matt. And our community (4th or 5th largest on out of 2000 projects depending on the day) - is growing and active.

All our code is open source and can be viewed here:

Live Screenshot of SealCred with open GSN integration (free mints, and gasless bootstrap of anon wallets)

It's still day 0.00001 and we're still iterating and improving but using Sealcred you can:

  • Verify ownership of an NFT by creating an zk-proof /attestation and then create a soulbound nft in an anonymous wallet attesting to that ownership
  • Create an attestation of an email address/domain ownership and turn that into a credential
  • Create an NFT based on a zk proof/credential without paying gas fees (due to our latest openGSN integration)
  • NEW! Broadcast or socialize using anonymous tweets based off an zk badge:
  • Soon! Create a credential / NFT based off of asset ownership (XYZ amount of ETH, USDC etc)
  • Soon! Create a verified Review using a zk NFT (Review Daos! Review NFT projects! Review your workplace!)
  • Soon! Integrating other chains (Matic/Polygon) for attestation input and output
  • Experimenting!: Social graphs based off zk badge ownership?!?
  • Experimenting!: Decentralized attestor? Community-controlled attestor?! ZK Oracles?!
Mockup For Verified DAO Reviews
Last 4 months of activity on SealCred
Our community server stats

We still have a long way to go and many more improvements and iterations to make. But it's been amazing to learn and take feedback from our community directly and apply that to improving our protocol and product. So I'd like to really shout out and thank all our community members for their contributions so far.

Also thank you to our team: avrdude, borodutch, matt, paul, ruslan, therealnorman, tuan, westmichel, [redacted], daniil, sarmat

Thank you to all our backers, investors, mentors, and more!

there's still a long road ahead