Frequently Asked Questions

basics

It all started with a simple question—why does public discussion feel so inadequate?

We grew up in an era where AOL Chatrooms, IRC, ICQ, AIM, Yahoo, and MSN chat were the predominant mediums people used to connect online for discussion of the news, current events, cultural intrigues, and other fun topics.

In recent times those technologies faded away while a new generation of Social Networks rose to prominence.

The problem with those networks was that they moved away from an open "conversation-first" philosophy to one of walled gardens, infinite walls of comments, clunky user-interfaces, a focus on gaming and advertising metrics, and social popularity contests.

The idea of having an open digital garden to step into with other curious netizens, to simply strike up a conversation in realtime was never fully realized.

Enter Sqwok - A new approach to an old idea. A place that feels like home, where we can join in discussing kitchen-table topics that affect us all, regardless of what part of the world we come from.

We're mixing familiar anonymous group chat with a modern twist to create a new digital open garden, a new destination for intrepid conversationalists.

Almost anything! We want Sqwok to be the source for everything that's new or interesting on the web including links and original posts created by users. The one caveat we have for now is it must be "work safe" (SFW) which means no adult content.

Additionally anything deemed illegal under U.S. law will be removed.
Very simple: don't be a dick.

Trolling, creating drama, degrading the experience of the site for other users, or otherwise acting against the spirit of the site are all not allowed.

Sqwok is for any person older than age 13.
The only thing required is an internet connection and a browser.

Sqwok is free to use and open to the public for viewing without signing up for an account.
Yes! The site works on mobile web and we plan to develop a native mobile app soon.
Sqwok was built by a single avocado, or more specifically a fresh-squeezed side of guacamole also known as @guac in Seattle, WA.

profiles

To create your own profile page you simply sign up for an account and then navigate to https://sqwok.im/<your username>.

Yes you may upload a .jpg or .png to use as your avatar by navigating to your profile page, clicking "edit profile", and then clicking the avatar image box at the top.

You can add a custom display name, headline, location, website, and bio blurb (markdown enabled).

posts

A post is a 300 character or less statement that could be anything from a whimsical thought, to an expression about an interesting subject, or a comment on a current news topic. Posts may contain urls which are shortened and take a max of 23 characters from the 300 character limit.
The last url in a post is crawled and used to display rich meta data, such as the lead image, summary, publication date, and author information.
Posts are posted to your user profile page and can be viewed at https://sqwok.im/<your username>.
No, currently you cannot edit a post once it's created, but stay tuned as we develop the site and add enhanced functionality in the future.
Yes you can delete Posts, and it will also delete all messages.
Yes! Sqwok will automatically create an embed when you include a url from any of the following websites in your post:
  • - Art19.com
  • - Bandcamp.com
  • - Dailymotion.com
  • - Rumble.com
  • - Soundcloud.com
  • - Twitch.com
  • - Vimeo.com
  • - Youtube.com


If there's a site you'd like to enable embeds for please shoot us an email hello@sqwok.im

chat

Chat is a fundamental feature of Sqwok, and allows all people viewing a Post to communicate with eachother in real time. This is achieved by typing into the chat input dialog at the bottom of the chat box and then pressing "enter".
Anyone with an account who is logged into the app will be able to chat. There are no other requirements.
If you type @ into the chat, you'll notice a menu will appear for finding another user to @mention.
  1. who do you want to @mention?
The dialog menu is initially populated with suggested users based on the current chat thread, or it will be empty and require you to type a name.
To find a specific user to @mention, simply begin to type their name until it appears, and at that point simply press "enter" or click the name to create the mention.
  1. who do you want to @mention?
When a user is mentioned, they will instantly receive an in-app notification that let's them know you have mentioned them, and will give them the opportunity to join you in conversation.
Yes!
Sqwok has built-in support for markdown syntax, allowing rich and dynamic expressiveness in your messages, user biographies, and more.
Here is a guide explaining what's currently supported.

type
syntax
example
bold & italic
***
The alphabet of you
bold
**
The alphabet of you
italic
*
The alphabet of you
underline & italic
___
The alphabet of you
underline
__
The alphabet of you
italic
_
The alphabet of you
strikethrough
~~
The alphabet of you
code
`
The alphabet of you
codeblock
```
The alphabet of you
blockquote
>
The alphabet of you
header 1
#

# hello

header 2
##

# hello

header 3
###

# hello

url
http://...
markdown url
[x](http://y.co)

Live Markdown Emulator

  1. who do you want to @mention?
Practice makes perfect.
The input box above is similar to the chat input embedded in each post. Try typing any of the markdown syntax patterns and watch as your text is transformed, with included preview mode enabled.

The markdown syntax can be mixed and matched in most cases, have fun!