Chlu aims to create the internet’s “reputation 3.0” ecosystem, making it easier to search for quality products and services online. Find out how it works today in our review.
Chlu, found online at Chlu.io, is a decentralized ratings and reviews platform. The ratings and reviews are validated by proof of payment on a blockchain. Users can search for businesses, products, and services and view reliable ratings for each.
Chlu is pronounced like “clue”. The word translates to “reputation” in Irish
Chlu launched its testnet beta in March 2018. The company has also scheduled an ICO for June. Let’s take a closer look at how Chlu works – and how they plan to solve the internet’s broken rating systems.
What Problems Does Chlu Seek To Solve?
Chlu believes today’s search for products and services is broken. Here’s how the official website describes the problem:
“Finding businesses, products and services that we can truly trust, is a complicated, fragmented and unsolved problem.”
Chlu uses Google Search as an example: Google lets you see star ratings beside different businesses. Where do these reviews come from? Can they be trusted? Does a business actually have a good rating from locals? Or did they just hire a good marketing company? There’s no way to determine the validity of reviews, making it difficult to separate truly good service providers from the average ones.
Some of the specific problems include:
- It’s too easy to manipulate the current system. Businesses have a huge financial incentive to “cheat” the system. A business with strong reviews online will earn vastly more business than a business with weak reviews – even if those reviews are illegitimate.
- Reputation isn’t portable between marketplaces. It’s locked inside many individual walled gardens, which means your reputation on eBay is meaningless on a separate website like Amazon. You might be a trusted seller with a long reputation of quality service, but that doesn’t mean anything once you leave that specific website.
How Does Chlu Work?
Chlu aims to solve the problems listed above by creating a truly open, trustless, free-to-use reputation system. That reputation system is backed by payments received on blockchains. There’s no charge for using the service apart from the small fee paid to the blockchain miners (in the form of gas). The system is also open for anyone to use and portable across all marketplaces.
Chlu will require users to provide proof of purchase in order to review a product, service, or business. Your purchase will be verified in the form of a blockchain-based payment. Every payment made can be verified as a response to a payment request from the vendor. Customers can leave feedback only if they have legitimately made a payment to the vendor.
Feedback is also private to the vendor. Vendors can share their reputation with any marketplace – including on their own website. However, vendors cannot selectively hide a review. Once they share their reputation with a marketplace, their entire history is available to the marketplace.
In other words, you can hide your reputation until you’re satisfied with your rating, and then you can choose to share it. Once you share it, however, there’s no turning back.
Marketplaces are free to compute their reputation score for a vendor using all Chlu data available.
Anyone can use the reputation system as a vendor, customer, or marketplace. No central authority controls access to the platform. Chlu is a truly decentralized ecosystem.
Marketplaces, meanwhile, can store detailed customer reviews using an extensible storage format. Marketplaces aren’t limited by a predefined review data structure.
The end result of Chlu is an open, decentralized ecosystem where customers can access trusted, blockchain-verified reviews of vendors. Vendors, meanwhile, can maintain a strong reputation across multiple marketplaces without needing to maintain individual ratings. Your Chlu profile offers a permanent history of all trades, making it easy for customers to see genuine information about the product or service being offered.
How To Use Chlu’s Reputation System
Chlu requires a blockchain-based payment to be made in order for a customer to post a review. Here’s how the process works in step-by-step form:
- The vendor creates a payment request and shares it with the customer. All reputation data on Chlu must be backed by this payment request.
- The customer clicks on the payment request link to open their Chlu wallet.
- The customer makes a payment.
- The payment processor makes the payment through the blockchain.
- The payment request is saved along with the payment’s transaction ID.
- The customer leaves feedback for the vendor once the item, product, or service is received.
- Each review is saved on an immutable, decentralized storage system (like IPFS, but IPFS is not required). All reviews are backed by proof of payment, which is in turn backed by a proof of payment request.
- Feedback is shared with all the marketplaces for which the vendor has enabled access.
How Do Chlu Tokens Work?
Chlu aims to create a circulating economy with its Chlu tokens. Tokens will circulate based on the following transactions:
- Customers can earn Chlu tokens in exchange for writing reviews
- Customers can sell tokens to vendors through a built-in token exchange
- Vendors can spend tokens on advertising slots on the Chlu platform
- Vendors can earn tokens for receiving payments through the Chlu platform
- Chlu sends tokens to users who contribute to the platform – like by writing reviews or rating vendors
The number of Chlu tokens rewarded is inversely proportional to the total volume of written reviews in that hour. Chlu also maintains strong token liquidity by managing token distribution based on the number of advertising slots purchased.
The core features and benefits of the Chlu platform include:
Chlu doesn’t charge any additional fees. The only fees paid are those charged by blockchain miners.
All vendor feedback is private until the vendor approves sharing with a specific marketplace. Once the vendor approves sharing with a marketplace, all of their feedback will be shared with that marketplace.
All Or Nothing Reputation System
Vendors can hide their entire reputation – or none of it. Once a vendor has shared their reputation with a marketplace, their entire transaction history – including all good and bad reviews – is publicly viewable to users on that marketplace
Multiple Reputation Scores
Marketplaces are free to compute their reputation score for a vendor using all available Chlu data. A marketplace might use Chlu data to create their own unique rating system, for example.
Chlu is an open access ecosystem different from the walled garden approach in today’s online marketplaces. Anyone can use the reputation system as a vendor, a customer, or a marketplace.
No central authority controls access to Chlu. It’s a decentralized ecosystem managed by users.
Chlu allows marketplaces to store detailed customer reviews using any storage format. There’s no specific storage format required to interact with the Chlu marketplace.
Proof of Payment Required
Only users with a blockchain-verified proof of payment are allowed to post reviews for a vendor.
The Chlu ICO
Chlu has scheduled an ICO for June 2018.
Details of the ICO have not yet been announced. However, Chlu tokens will be used for various transactions within the Chlu ecosystem. It will be the central utility token circulated within Chlu.
Who’s Behind Chlu?
Chlu is led by Brian McSweeney (Chairman), Stephen McSweeney (CEO), and Kulpreet Singh, PhD (CTO).
The company is based in New York City, although all three executive team members are graduates of Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland.
Chlu was launched in 2017. The company published version 1 of the Chlu Protocol in November 2017. A Chlu app was launched on testnet in March 2018.
Chlu aims to solve one of the internet’s biggest problems: unreliable ratings and reviews. The company is seeking to create a decentralized, open access reputation and review system where only real customers – verified by blockchain-based proof of payment – can leave reviews for vendors. Vendors can share their Chlu reputation with multiple marketplaces. Instead of having one reputation on Amazon and a separate rating on eBay, vendors can maintain a single unified Chlu rating across multiple marketplaces.