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VIEWS: The upcoming trend

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    Blockchain technologies, and their varied applications, are set to revolutionize culture and society. The possibilities are endless, and visionaries and entrepreneurs are continuously developing new ways to use these emerging technologies in every aspect of our lives. Therefore, it is essential that policymakers ensure any proposed legislation or regulations aren’t short-sighted or over-reaching.

    Restrictive regulations will only stifle the forward-looking vision of the web3 pioneers who are building the next generation of the internet. Worse yet, it will send them packing to develop software, systems, and innovations elsewhere in the world.

    Blockchain, which is the foundation for web3, is inspiring entrepreneurs and unleashing a new wave of creativity and innovation. A wide variety of applications for this technology will protect investors, create lasting business relationships, and give consumers more control over their personal data. Unfortunately, like many emerging technologies, blockchain is often misunderstood. This misunderstanding is only compounded by stories in the media that conflate the underlying technology with bad actors in the cryptocurrency space.

    The reality is, web3 is the next iteration of the world wide web — the early web was bound by the limitations of static publishing, then came the movement to the social-oriented, participatory, and engagement-centric web 2.0. Web3 is focused on decentralized, token-based, democratized ideals that give users more freedom and agency. Web3 emphasizes individuality and decentralized ownership of data, content, and digital and real-world assets.

    Right now, we generally don’t discuss HTML, CSS, and JavaScript – the core technologies that underwrite the web – when talking to each other about the internet. The same will soon be the case with blockchain and web3. It will just be the internet.

    NFTs are one of the many technologies associated with web3. What makes an NFT so valuable and indispensable? An NFT is a non-fungible token, a digital record of ownership, like a certificate of authenticity. It can’t be reproduced or changed. It can represent ownership of digital assets like art, photographs, collectibles, music, memberships, tickets, and shares of stocks and private equity or physical assets like paintings, real estate, and luxury goods such as high-end and rare wine, sneakers, and fashion.

    Web3 ticketing, memberships, and loyalty rewards programs can also be built out through NFTs. For example, if you have a season pass membership to a club, concert venue, or sports team and that membership is an NFT, it is a real asset that can be rented out to generate income for shows and games you do not want to attend. The NFT owner can “sell” their access to a show or artist that they themselves are not interested in seeing. Other applications include programs that ensure quality performances from certified musicians and venues in the local live music scene. Through its web3 powered membership program, the startup MUSIC Reform gives fans of local live music access to exclusive events and VIP experiences. They’re working to create a more fair, equitable, and transparent environment for musicians to thrive and ensure fans get quality shows. A win-win-win for fans, musicians, and local venues.

    Web3 will also help wrestle our personal data back from a few giant companies. Vendor relationship management, or VRM, can put the control of data directly into the hands of consumers. Under the current model, dominant technology platforms own the data and, in many ways, the consumer is the product. VRM can disrupt this model by using blockchain technology to give people back ownership and control of their data, and in the not-so-distant future people will use AI-powered virtual assistants that grant access to their personal data. These services will find and recommend the vendors that have the best products and services suited to your personal needs and interests. This development will create a true internet of value for consumers.

    We are on the cusp of an economic and social revolution thanks to emerging technologies. This is not unlike the arrival of the world wide web in the 1990s, which transformed our social, political, and economic lives. As government officials debate digital policy in the halls of Congress, in state houses throughout the country, and at administrative proceedings, they must keep in mind the positive, innovative applications for the next generation of core internet technologies. We can’t let a few bad apples and negative headlines hold back all the benefits of technological progress.

    Peter Chmiel is a serial entrepreneur who works with startups to launch innovative web3 and AI products. He is the co-founder and CEO at GO! NFT Yourself, a platform that powers custom-branded NFT storefronts that accept credit cards.


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