Apr 21, 2022

Further Thoughts on Web3

It’s been a few months since my Thoughts on Web3. After reading too many posts about DAOs in a Discord (not Sentiers’), here’s a bit of an update on where I am right now.

  1. Money. A lot of the commotion is because of the money involved. My understanding is that right now, it’s roughly the same kind of split as in the VC world. I.e. early adopters (investors) might have made quite a bit of money (if they don’t also hodl, in which case they might still lose it all), some other people have made some nice returns (early employees in VCland), and everyone else is just hoping. Basically, it’s the same as day-trading but without the rules and regulations. Btw, rules and regulations are good; that’s why you can (mostly) not get run over crossing the street, putting money in the bank, or buying property. Still very bubbly in crypto, NFTs, and tokens.
  2. Potential. I’m not going to review what I said in the first post, but there is quite a bit of intriguing potential in Web3, and I’ll mention Jay’s series again for some of that potential. Right now though, I fail to see anything matching that potential. It’s almost exclusively DAOs and communities around the tools for DAOs and communities (DCATDC). Actual communities using Web3 tools because they make sense as a solution? I can’t see that many. Even within DCATDCs, I’d be curious to see proof of anything accomplished through those tools; I can see a lot of experiments on tokens and a lot of chatting in Discords. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but that’s what it is, potential.
  3. Pre-alpha. This brings us to item three. Even if I’m wrong about the money aspect, even if I ‘just don’t get it’ about the realised potential, even if I’m just ‘get off my lawning’ or too thick. I’d say I’m pretty correct in claiming that, right now, the whole edifice is pre-alpha software. Do you run pre-alpha operating systems on your computer? Pay for pre-alpha apps? Spend a lot of your time debugging, reporting problems to the coders, et cetera? If the answer is no, then I’m pretty sure you don’t have any business spending time in there. I know some people who like coding Web3 apps or supporting the emergence of a DAO, knowing they are trying things out and participating in the early stages of building something, of realising that potential. That’s okay, even great. I’ve used alpha apps, and I learned coding in the very early days of the web. Heck, even this website is running on a <1.0 version of Eleventy! It can be fun. But if that’s not you, keeping your distance might be a good idea.