Incentives, Rewards, and Progress in the Decentralized Web
None can deny the impact Web2 has had on our day-to-day lives, as well as the global economy and the marketplace of ideas. It is the new public square, the new library, the new shopping mall, the arcade, the cinema, the music hall… It has effectively replaced many of the traditional structures, both physical and metaphorical, and relocated many of the aspects of our lives to a new dimension.
This has not only improved the quality of our lives in a certain sense, but has also allowed us to add to these experiences in a manner that wasn’t quite possible before. The internet has single handedly disbanded or obscured many of the tools and systems we used to rely on in the past to get around, and with the introduction of Web3, it’s safe to say that that was just the very beginning.
The upcoming decentralized web has implications that are far greater in orders of magnitude than its predecessor. Whether we are discussing ownership, privacy, empowerment, opportunities, security, or decentralization, it’s clear that by the time it is implemented across the globe, Web2’s accomplishments will not be able to hold a candle to what Web3 will introduce.
None of this would be possible if it weren’t for the first 2 iterations of the web, and this is by no means an attempt to bash or humiliate the amazing and life-changing technology that has revolutionized everything — far from it. What is important is to recognize the shortcomings and limitations of the current state of things, and how we can improve them so that our lives, in turn, progress along with it.
Most ideas that have been introduced have been flawed in their early stages, but over the course of years, with the input of other people with different perspectives, they’ve progressed to more refined and robust versions that can better stand the tests of time.
The best ideas are those that have proven to be versatile and adaptive to the changes that take place in our environments, our societies, and our needs. As is the case with most things in life, the ability to adapt is an invaluable and essential trait for those that seek to exist and endure despite the chaotic and unpredictable reality around them.
So what does Web3 do better than its predecessor?
While incentive layers and protocols already exist on Web2, they’re far from perfect. For instance, most of them are not open source and are highly centralized, making them less favorable options than what Web3 can offer. Furthermore, most of these programs are limited in their scope of application (usually to a specific brand) whereas Web3 is interconnected and compatible with other projects and protocols.
In the same vein, settlements work differently in each iteration. In Web2, rewards are locked in their own ecosystem, and cannot be directly converted to fiat or cash, whereas in Web3, settlements can be direct and instant with no central party like a bank or payment processor, and can be converted to any other token.
And speaking of centralization, community-led governance is one of the core pillars of Web3, and one of the strongest advantages it possesses. Not only does it make the network more secure by eliminating central points of failure, but it also makes it more adaptive by nature. Structuring protocols to factor in community suggestions and feedback in the development process is crucial to adapt according to the changes taking place in the world, hence why decentralization is rapidly becoming the norm in projects worldwide.
Many of you may have heard of the Play-to-Earn craze taking over gaming. For a lot of gamers, the ability to earn money while gaming is a dream come true, and that may be one of the reasons why GameFi is taking off. Web3 is changing gaming as we know it by also introducing ownership and trustless agreement opportunities through NFTs and smart contracts, not to mention the possibilities that can be realized thanks to the interoperability of GameFi ecosystems and free decentralized marketplaces.
Move-to-Earn is another phenomenon that is growing in popularity in the world of sports and fitness. These protocols reward individuals who record their movements on various M2E dApps, incentivizing healthy living and carbon-free movement. Although it is still in its early stages, by cooperating with various governments and organizations, M2E could one day serve to improve our physical, mental, and environmental well-being.
There are many “to-Earn” projects out there that are experimenting with and pioneering this aspect of Web3, and to say that it’s a noble cause would be an understatement. Incentives are a powerful tool that can encourage otherwise hesitant users to try something new and can act as positive reinforcement to establish and solidify healthy, productive, and interesting hobbies and practices for individuals of all backgrounds. As unusual as it may seem, this may be what some people need to give them that push to a better life, and this may very well translate to benefits on a much wider, and even global scale,
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