This article describes the confusion surrounding blockchains implementing NFTs and the grand vision of Web3. Scams have already occurred, yet tech giants and VCs are pouring vast amounts of money into different variations of NFT and Web3 infrastructure. I’ve already documented my disdain for the term Web3, but that doesn’t mean something good and something terrible won’t evolve out of these huge investments – they probably will. As long as you invest wisely and sell before the collapse, then there is surely money to be made. I just wish the evolution was more linear, like http and the web, where the shared infrastructure was built on a common tool that nobody owned (many, including Microsoft, tried to hijack that tool but failed):
“Web3 is a scam.
Web3 is a world-changing opportunity to make a better version of the internet and wrest it away from the behemoths who control it today.
Web3 will make some people a lot of money. But many other people will lose their shirts on it.
I know! I’m confused, too.
The fact that Web3 is hard to define — I’ll try to do that in a bit — isn’t necessarily a bug. It’s a nascent idea floated by a mix of buzz, optimism, confusion, theological battles, and pure unadulterated speculation, which means it’s incredibly malleable. You can explain why Web3 is a fundamental remaking of the internet, and some people will take you very seriously. And you can argue that it’s an MLM scheme built to enrich people who are already rich, and find plenty of people nodding along.
What you can’t do, right now, is ignore Web3 if you work in or around tech. Because it’s all anybody has wanted to talk about for the past several months.
I see and hear Web3 pitches, debates, and dunks daily. When I talk to investors, executives, or just people who work or dabble in tech, it usually takes them a minute or two to tell me — either with pride or embarrassment — that “they’ve gone down the rabbit hole” into Web3 and are convinced there’s something very Big and Important down there. Maybe the fact that the stock market in general — and the tech sector specifically — has been tumbling in recent weeks will cool interest in this stuff eventually. But it certainly hasn’t yet.
This week, for example, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki announced that Web3 represented a “previously unimaginable opportunity to grow the connection between creators and their fans”; on the same day, two of her executives announced they were leaving to join … Web3 companies.
This stuff also makes people irrationally angry — even by Twitter standards. Last month, we got to see Elon Musk team up with Jack Dorsey to have a Web3 Twitter spat/wrestling match with Marc Andreessen, perhaps Silicon Valley’s most prominent VC, and Chris Dixon, who works at Andreessen’s firm and may be the most prominent Web3 evangelist.
No surprise: These men have a lot to gain and lose, depending on the way this shakes out.”
Overview by Tim Sloane, VP, Payments Innovation at Mercator Advisory Group