The Great Equalizer: Blockchain Will Liberate the Digital World


Many of us continue to take the freedom that the Internet gives us for granted. However, this is not the case in most parts of the world, even in many countries where we perceive privacy and Internet freedom to be the norm. Indeed, according to Freedom House, “State intervention in the digital sphere around the world has contributed to the eleventh consecutive year of global decline in Internet freedom.” According to the report, global norms have shifted toward state intervention in the digital sphere, with forty-eight of the seventy governments studied taking steps to more heavily regulate the digital sphere, all too often violating user privacy standards and even freedom of expression. block chain technologywithin a properly regulated environment, it can provide the necessary solutions to guarantee the future of the Internet and, at the same time, positively impact users’ rights to privacy and freedom.

The web 3.0 revolution

The much discussed Web 3.0 revolution it is unavoidable. Thanks to blockchain, its decentralized nature will provide extraordinary opportunities for freedom, privacy, and innovation. In addition, it will ensure that Internet services and products serve individuals rather than large companies. While some may not have heard of Web 3.0, its core idea is a new decentralized iteration of the World Wide Web based on blockchain technology.

Data is an essential part of how value is stored and moved on the Internet. In its current state, the Internet, and the collection of users’ traceable digital activity, is the inevitable product that enables businesses to monetize users, and the users themselves never benefit monetarily. The problem is that data is difficult to market individually, but can be very valuable in bulk. Hundreds of companies have grasped this principle and made thousands of millions of dollars selling consumer data.

With the advent of Internet 3.0, we are approaching an Internet era where the main focus is to ensure the privacy and security of user data. Decentralized information and data are at the heart of this new Internet paradigm. This movement is being led by a revolution in the way we, the collective, understand and value the Internet, and it is being enabled by blockchain technology.

A blockchain foundation

the essence of block chain technology it is its ability to disburse ownership and access to information among a wide range of entities rather than centralizing it in one intermediary. Disbursed governance allows us to ensure that people own their data and no one else. It also facilitates the emergence of new leadership structures that allow collaboration between a wide range of actors without requiring centralized leadership, distributing ownership between its creators and users.

For those unfamiliar, the beauty of blockchain is its foundation in a transparent and immutable system. Described as a kind of digital ledger, it facilitates distributed transactions across an entire network of computer systems and servers on the blockchain. Each block records transaction information, with the respective transactions added to the participants’ ledgers. Multi-participant management, immutable cryptographic signatures, and decentralized agency make the database unique.

Since Web 3.0 relies on incorporating blockchain technology into its operations, the new World Wide Web it will create will be decentralized, trustless (Web 3.0 cuts out the middle man), and permissionless (anyone can join and can never be revoked). ban anyone). ). These realities become even more critical in a world where autocratic governments seek to block access to the web for human rights activists and dissidents. Blockchain and Web 3.0 are the future.

digital property

Another positive contribution of blockchain technology to the Internet of the future is how it facilitates digital ownership. Believe it or not, although a significant part of the Internet is based on user-generated content, those who generate content, such as social media posts, do not own anything. For example, YouTube says it can delete an account if it’s not “commercially viable.” For games played on Web 2.0, game creators are free to cancel account-linked in-game item purchases. Likewise, if one decides to stop playing, the value of the game items is naturally completely lost.

Web 3.0 will allow direct ownership of digital assets. To show provenance and validity, users can create digital editions with a unique ID and digital certificate of authenticity. It also allows artists to accept submissions and transmit digital works to collectors while respecting the law. No one, including the designers of a game, has the authority to take ownership of it. Additionally, one can also sell or trade in-game acquisitions on open free markets to recover their value if they decide to stop playing.

The importance of the blockchain

None of these significant changes will be possible without blockchain, as its unique features are not replaceable by any alternative available on the market today. There’s a reason why governments around the world have been employing blockchain to improve existing processes. Of course, aside from the potential of blockchain to facilitate the secure exchange of data between users, its unique features create a sense of trust between parties that other technologies might not.

In terms of trust, the true value of blockchain lies in decentralization and the benefits of transparency and immutability. Also, by creating efficient workflow processes in the way it processes transactions, blockchain can save us all money by cutting out the middle man.

Smartly regulate and adopt

In the last two decades, the Internet has revolutionized the entire world as we know it, including financial markets, culture, and politics. The Web 3.0 revolution is closer than we imagine, thanks to the tools made available to developers through the blockchain. Currently, hundreds of applications are being developed with the help of blockchain technology, creating the necessary infrastructure for a more equitable Internet and allowing people to fully benefit and enjoy their own digital activities. The continued development of Blockchain should call Western decision makers to adopt smart regulations and make it easier to incorporate this game changer into the daily lives of their citizens.

Elif Nisa Polat is an economist at the World Bank, where she focuses on the finance, competitiveness and innovation sectors in developing countries. His focus is advising corporations and government institutions on blockchain and other emerging technologies. Elif herself completed her Masters in International Relations at Leiden University and a second Masters in International Relations and Economics from Johns Hopkins SAIS.

Efe Bulduk is a professional with a background in finance and an expert in tokenomics, providing consulting services to companies making the transition to Web 3. Prior to his focus on Web 3, Efe was the regional director for Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean for Rystad Energy. He has a master’s degree in energy finance from Sciences Po Paris, as well as blockchain and finance certificates from MIT and Harvard Business School.

Image: Reuters.