current position:Home>Take advantage of Web3 "for the better": slowing down is faster

Take advantage of Web3 "for the better": slowing down is faster

2022-05-14 16:41:35Investment Bank Online

at present Web3 Rapid development , So difficult to digest quickly , And haunt the real world 、 The original Internet and Web 2.0 The problem also exists in Web3 in ; Hastily “ Xianghao ” And Web3 Together, ignoring the complexity : In the face of centralized control 、 Inherent energy consumption 、 Betrayed trust 、 Squeezed marginalized people and so on ,Web3 Revolutionary changes are taking place in the operation mode of the back end , It will continue to exist and develop , And we're thinking , How to build a Web3 The world , among “X Xianghao ” Not a separate effort , It's all construction 、 The basic spirit of distribution and use ?

2022 year 2 month 2 Japan , WWF - British chapter (WWF-UK) Through about “ Natural tokens ”(Tokens for Nature) Caused a sensation on social media : This is a fundraiser , Will sell non homogenous tokens ( translator's note :non-fungible tokens or NFT, It is a data unit called blockchain digital ledger , Each token can represent a unique digital data , Electronic authentication or certificate as the ownership of virtual goods ) To support the protection of 13 Efforts to protect the most endangered species .

WWF - The British chapter had planned to work in a place called Polygon Carry out this activity on the so-called layer 2 blockchain network , They claim that the network is “ The etheric fang ”( translator's note :Ethereum, An open source public blockchain platform with smart contract function , Through its dedicated cryptocurrency Ether money Provide decentralized Ethernet virtual machines to handle point-to-point contracts ) Of “ Environmentally friendly ” edition . but Polygon That's not the truth : Buy encrypted tokens in exchange for Polygon Own currency , It means relying on infrastructure that consumes a lot of energy to maintain . This reversal is so rapid , So that this project is just 48 It disappeared in an hour .

chart  iStock/ Black Salmon

“ Natural tokens ” It's just a fast-growing 、 Designed to take advantage of the limelight “Web3”/ There are many of the third generation Internet “ Xianghao ” ( “for good”) One of the projects or activities .“Web3” Decentralization is a series of patterns 、 Protocol and Technology —— Blockchain 、DeFi( Decentralized Finance )、NFTs、 Encrypted tokens and so on —— The general term of , These attract both innovators and swindlers . Mention only Web3 Enough to drive the share price up ( Or the recent decline ), Therefore, from celebrities to central bank governors are scrambling to formulate strategies . It's growing so fast , So hard to digest completely ; On any given day ( Depending on the initiative of the day ), It's hard to tell Web3 Whether it is booming 、 Scale up or transfer . People are building , Use its model , However, the potential and hidden dangers are often not clearly understood , Of course , There is no set of standards or models of accountability and Governance .

take “ Xianghao ” The framework applies to Web3 Brings its own complexity . In the field of technology and social influence “X Xianghao ” The project is basically based on this theory , That is, applying the right tools to the right problems will produce large-scale social benefits . Of these projects “X” Artificial intelligence has always been involved 、 data 、 Tools such as virtual reality or games , Or social media and communication platforms . In the best case ,“X Xianghao ” The framework allows the community to lead the development of appropriate tools , Help generate positive social influence in areas such as poverty alleviation or social justice movements . However , It often leads to technology solutionism ( translator's note :tech solutionism, According to the Evgeny Morozov An interview with , Is a popular ideology , Reshape complex social phenomena into problems that can be solved by calculation ), And impose tools on the community , And these tools are not designed for the community , Nor was it designed by the community . Like Mark · Ratonero (Mark Latonero) said ,“ The deeper problem is , No large-scale social problem can be simply connected to the solutions provided by the smartest enterprise technical experts in cooperation with the most respectable international organizations .”

The social sector is still working with... In the context of prestigious technical tools and platforms “ Xianghao ” Dogfight , But there are few definite answers . that , When Web3 Maybe it's just another brief frenzy , Or there is such a beginning worthy of torture , Why should the social sector care about it ? That's a good question .

If in the past 30 If the history of the Internet can be used as a guide ,Web3 The actual situation is not a “ If ”. since 2008 A pseudonym in “ Nakamoto ”(Satoshi Nakamoto) Introduce bitcoin to the world ( translator's note : A kind of P2P Form of digital currency , According to a specific algorithm , By a lot of calculation ) since , Developers have been studying the concept of blockchain , Time can even be traced back to earlier . Even if it feels like it just broke out last year NFT Concept , Also in 2014 First realized in . This is supposed to be “ The next wave of digital infrastructure ” The development of , Billions of dollars have been invested . Investment not only revolves around the so-called creator economy , And through the global bank 、 software company 、 The media empire and the work of hundreds of thousands of developers revolve around the macro economy and its track . therefore , We have reason to say clearly :Web3 Will continue to exist .

However , Any new innovation frontier can , And it does include chaotic failure .Web3 Its components range from state supported projects to spontaneous bedroom drumming , The motivation and management quality behind these projects are also different . constitute Web3 Some of these technologies and platforms in the world will indeed fail , Or fail to deliver on the huge promises offered .

Like social media and Web 2.0 Of “ Connect ” Same tool ,Web3 It is considered to be a means to regain control from the corruption or vicious political interests of technology leaders . but Web3 There is nothing magical about itself . Just by applying “ Xianghao ” The framework aims at economies at risk , It's equivalent to media activist Olivier · Jutel (Olivier Jutel) said “ Blockchain imperialism ”. Haunt the real world 、 The original Internet and Web 2.0 The problem also exists in Web3 in , These problems can travel at the speed of cryptocurrency transactions , create ( And record ) Destructive power asymmetry .

therefore , The question we are interested in is : How do we build a Web3 The world , among “X Xianghao ” Not a separate effort , It's all construction 、 The basic spirit of distribution and use ? Although we are in Web3 A certain stage of development , Exploitation and inequality can become entrenched and rigid , But we believe , We still have a chance to shape it effectively , To achieve common prosperity and justice . The best way is to slow down , Take a minute to check , Then consciously and actively establish protection 、 Privacy and fairness systems , As part of the framework .

Three challenges

Web3 There are three related challenges , Any advocate of positive social influence must address .

1. Go to middle Mind technology is not equal to distributed power (distributed power).Web3 Has become synonymous with decentralized networks , and Web3 One of the selling points of technology is decentralization or shared ownership of network infrastructure . But actually , Ownership tends to go to those who already have resources 、 The rich ( Even if it's just the rich with money ) And company concentration .

just as NFT On the market OpenSea As the example shows ( translator's note :OpenSea It is the world's first and largest encrypted collection and irreplaceable token digital market ), Risks are too easy to spread to users , The revenue is still very concentrated on platform owners and a few participants . Even Ethereum co-founder vitalik · Butlin (Vitalik Buterin) Also based on Web3 The concentration of power in token economies is a warning , Cryptocurrency “whales” There may be too much power in these economies . Unless ownership is by the majority , Especially by those who are traditionally most vulnerable to exploitation , Otherwise, the system will become essentially exploitative .

For this reason , Must be in Web3 Actively design a fair power structure in the system (equitable power structures).

2. A significant proportion of existing power holders have put their Web3 The business model is based on exploitation and grabbing . at present , These business models exploit energy and other resources , Damage our climate and environment and energy poor communities , In some cases , Also actively revive wasteful or harmful power projects . They did so without addressing these issues in their core business model ( Not even creating offsets , Even if this is a less ideal choice , But it's still better than nothing ).

These models are designed to avoid being economically or environmentally responsible to platform users or vulnerable communities . But even so , They still demand our trust ?

3. Building community trust requires more than decentralization . Those who are building distributed technology often claim that this is the solution to the trust deficit ,“ trust ” Is inherent in the system . But that's not the case .

Building trust , Among other actions , Requires deep listening and honest participation . Just like Molly · white (Molly White) written :“ How this technology will be used to harass and abuse people ?( This problem ) Often not asked , Especially considering that the people most likely to be abused and harassed are often less in the population composition of the industry , Underrepresented .”

Or like sydet · Harry (Sydette Harry) That's what it says :“ Speculators in technology creators , Never miss the opportunity to make the same mistake many times , They have created some tools …… They collect information about people who are not part of the user's traditional background Twitter Lists and accounts . With such articles and products , People can ‘ diversification ’, collect ‘ New experience ’, Instead of hiring black writers or reporting on black experiences based on context . Information becomes : You need to know what blacks are doing , But you don't need to talk to them .”

Exploit —— Especially the exploitation of those who have been marginalized in history —— It has occurred in many forms on the existing network platform , Examples include : monitor ; Unrestricted hate speech 、 Calls for harassment and violence ; Failed to protect vulnerable users ; Trying to suppress critics of the technology industry ; Without informed consent , Extract and tamper with data for profit ; Occupy work results and processes without compensation or ownership ; wait . Why should we automatically believe those from the process in history 、 People who profit from the pain of products and communities , Especially when Web3 The exploiter of looks like Web2 Our exploiters are so similar , Or, in some cases, the same group of people ?

Too many are under construction Web3 Our people haven't solved this problem yet . For those who may be Web3 People who are used on the platform , There is no accountability or remedy ( Whether it's point-to-point or institutional ). Remediation of the impact of platform and program design defects is often carried out through ex post facto procedures , And those who seek redress rely heavily on using the headlines of the media , Or fear of them to create stress . All this happens when distributed systems allow billions of dollars to be transferred to hate groups without transparency or accountability .

When Web3 Initiatives endanger communities 、 When it backfires or betrays their trust , Community —— Especially those “X Xianghao ” The main body of the initiative —— What can be done ? Very few , Except pointing at ledger( translator's note : Serve a family 、 Cutting edge security technology companies for institutional investors and enterprises ) And hope to get some form of repair . The technology that reproduces the previous power asymmetry is not a system with its own trust . Have a decentralized on these issues ledger You can't magically do this .

No, “ Fast failure ” Space

If we should start from toxic Web 2.0 What did the spill learn , At present, we are trying to clean it up , That's it “X Xianghao ” It's often a strategy that's bad for the earth and its creatures . for example , Social media companies are in a hurry in Russia “ clean ”, Just the latest example of dangerous hindsight self-regulation . stay Web 2.0 Time ,“ Do social welfare ” Become “ Do anything ” Wearing a coat : As long as you can make the most money , As long as it can drive the fastest growth , As long as meet “ Too big to be regulated ”(too-big-to-regulate) Conditions .

at present ,Web3 Is in danger of repeating the same mistakes . We have seen vague social impact initiatives , From sharing benefits with charities NFT Gallery to social fund audit on blockchain , Then to the social welfare currency that claims to share part of the expenditure with charities ( Cleverly named SocialGood). Whether it's trying to provide transparency in capital flows , Or protect intellectual property , Or just automate altruism , Seems eager to prove Web3 There are public welfare (social good) One side , Instead of just accumulating new forms of wealth in new digital ways .

However , This mission of doing social public welfare —— In the process of expanding the boundary of cryptocurrency —— It looks like an opportunistic afterthought , Use social influence or social welfare ( No matter how vague the definition is ) Plunge into... As a head Web3 A reason or cover for , When you enter, you often have little experience , At the same time, there is no guidance , Poor information , Lack of common sense 、 Morality and empathy . except WWF-UK Mistakes in energy consumption technology , With charity water For example , Its service is to turn your cryptocurrency donation into legal tender immediately … Then use it to fund clean water projects , Without mentioning that the required energy will erode the environment and … Um. , You know what we're talking about .

From disgusting PR gimmicks to 2012 year SXSW Interactive( translator's note : It was founded on 1987 year , Committed to helping creative people achieve their goals , Events are held regularly every year in Austin, Texas ) On the infamous “ Homeless hot spots ”(Homeless Hotspots) All in the same tone , Too many of these early moves rudely took the pain of others as  " Content ", The final result of the distribution is no less than one ledger Upper “ Porn about poverty ”.

With Floydies For example , This is a NFT project , It is said to express the right to “ The life of a black man ” The movement's support . However , It's like George · The image of Freud is racially exploited , For the creator's own interests and expansion . these NFTs Finally from OpenSea Removed from the list .

Another example is, This is a series of images of the ongoing conflict and massacre in Ethiopia NFTs. The group behind this attempt , The fair trade artwork originally planned to be produced by Tigray female craftsmen NFTs, But the conditions of war prevented these plans , They turned to selling images of the victims of the conflict NFTs. It is difficult to determine whether these sales raise any money for communities at risk . Anyway? , Image and its based NFTs It's all paternalistic , For the local residents, it is deprived of power .

In another more recent example , The associated press is in their NFT An iconic picture was placed on the market , A rubber boat carrying immigrants across the Mediterranean , Raise money for their own non-profit newsroom . The Mediterranean is basically from East and North Africa 、 Mass graves of immigrants in the Middle East and elsewhere . Associated press in Russia 2022 This statement was announced on the same day of the war with Ukraine in —— Predictably enough , This will lead to the displacement of millions of refugees —— It has been criticized for profiteering and exploitation . The associated press removed the ad .

The world has no time to waste on such projects . We don't have time to build a forked network : in other words , Technology is bad / Neutral vs Technology is good . When we stand in the environmental crisis 、 Become destitute and homeless 、 unequal 、 This is especially true when authoritarianism and the loss of democracy are brought to the brink of cross cutting social collapse . Social welfare is not the of current and future technological systems “ Add a beautiful thing to a contrasting beautiful thing ”.

Imagine a new network

If Web3 Provides a chance to fix our failure , It needs an internalized value system , Not optional . This means that social welfare should not only become an integral part of morality , And be part of the architecture and rule set of any new network or technology paradigm . When we consider applying digital technology to social welfare , Or more importantly , In a Web3 In a world where technology has become a part of life , How can we turn our present into a fair 、 justice 、 A happy and growing future , This is particularly critical and necessary .

Some good explorations and projects have pointed out the way forward . for example ,WITNESS, An organization with decades of experience in the intersection of human rights and Technology ( translator's note :Witness Foundation, Founded on 2020 year , Parallel to the platform The Witness:Black Christian Collective Together to promote black Christians who refuse to choose between faith and identity ), Already with Filecoin The foundation ( translator's note : The foundation coordinates and supports the creation and improvement of open source software and open protocols for decentralized data storage and retrieval networks ) cooperation , Some activists and non professionals have found ways , Use decentralized ledgers, Securely and truthfully record violations committed by centralized networks that put them at risk .

In another area , Culture shapers , Such as Afrofuture Strategies Institute( translator's note : African Institute for future strategies , A creative think tank and consulting firm , Designed to promote future literacy , Pay special attention to Africa and African diaspora ) Ingrid, the founder of · Lazer (Ingrid LaZeur), The perspective of distributed technology has been applied to the inclusiveness of communities in areas with less resources 、 Ownership and platform control issues .

alike ,DisCO project ( translator's note :DisCO The project aims to support “ Distributed corporatism ” An integrated framework for global development , Further promotion DisCO The ideas and practices put forward in the declaration ) Put forward its DisCO declaration , To support the development of distributed cooperatives around the world , and “ For new and complete ownership 、 government 、 Provide prototypes in the form of entrepreneurship and value accounting , To combat widespread economic inequality ”. There are signs ,Web3 The community may respond more to injustice than it does Web2.0 Our predecessors are faster . lately ,.eth ENS The loudest speaker in the address system is an open and determined paranoid , Leaders of Ethereum community Dame.eth And others quickly called for community management to address this toxic leadership .

According to our own decades ( In technology development 、 Outlook and social change 、 Rights and global development ) Experience , We believe that it is necessary to take the four basic principles as any Web3 The cornerstone of the initiative , Most importantly, for those who are interested in directly or indirectly improving the situation of mankind and the earth :

  • Intentionality (Intentionality)

  • Accountability (Accountability)

  • Mutually confirmed specifications (Mutually affirmed norms )

  • Ethical framework (An ethics framework)

When there are trillions of dollars worth to compete for , These creeds may be considered idealistic , And the opportunity to reposition power in many industries and sectors is also calling . Objections without alternatives can easily be  " optimism / Pessimism  " Drowned in the wrong dualism . But we are not interested in alternatives . We propose a new paradigm , A new social contract , Recognizing the value of these trillions of dollars is meaningless in the face of what is happening on earth and people on earth . Let's remember , We all live here , In determining this paradigm shift , The weak have the least say in too long .

This must change . Discussion of different things —— No , requirement , It has to start here .

For convenience , We use “ matters needing attention ”( dos and don'ts) In the form of , For those who are considering , There have even been efforts to social influence Web3 plan , Put forward our suggestions and call for action .

Don't :

  • Don't ignore or try to avoid Web3 Inherent energy consumption problems .Web3 The downstream impact on vulnerable groups is the most serious , Now and in the future . Unless this key problem is fundamentally and concretely solved , otherwise Web3 Will continue to export environmental damage to the future , Not just ourselves , And push the next generation to an irreversible climate disaster .

  •   Don't create artificial offsets as a way to eliminate the negative externalities of your work . Social influence is not a factor that can be used to offset Web3 Connivance framework for other negative impacts caused by the project .

  •   Don't create new financial risks for people who are already at risk . By introducing volatile into the economy 、 Speculative financial instruments , Will the poor 、 Unstable 、 Inadequate banking services or other economically vulnerable groups push greater uncertainty , It may do more harm than good . People who live in an unstable state do not hold on to the promised benefits (HODLing) The privilege of .

  • Don't impose new technology on those who have carried the past “ Technical debt ” The crowd . Technological colonialism is rife with examples of friendly air drops of new innovative technologies into communities that cannot sustain these innovations in the long term . Even among the most advanced user groups , Security vulnerabilities will also appear quickly .

  • Don't use technology to reduce or eliminate “ The donor ” Realistic contact with the cause they support . Although this may be the intention of your initiative , This is an unexpected result , Unless donors are also told they want to contribute to improved needs or crises .

  • Don't support “ Porn about poverty ”, Even if it is packaged as NFT. When images of suffering or vulnerability are stolen without the explicit and informed consent of the creator or the portrayed , This is especially critical .

Want to do :

  • Take advantage of some of the current social influence frameworks and networks , They are designed by activists and advocates who have first-hand experience of the harm they are concerned about .

  • Ask technology and its enthusiasts for the transparency of their commitments : Audit 、 Audit 、 Audit . verification 、 verification 、 verification .

  • Provide privacy and security to community members who need to support technology , And obtain their informed and affirmative consent .

  • Check in the context of the community you are trying to help , Invariance and “ intelligence ” Whether it is an ideal feature .

  • At the meeting 、 The conference 、 Group discussion and on your platform , Indicate harmful or “ Wash white with society ” Project .

  • Support activists around the world , They are exploring how to take advantage of distributed ledgers The benefits of protecting privacy 、 Protection and verification / ascription

  • Listen to those who have been marginalized in history and call for change , And design for it 、 Design with it , Or give way to them .

  • investment “ Create a World Laboratory ”(laboratories of worldmaking), This is Oliver · Jutel is with The Crypto-Syllabus Yevgeni · Morozov (Evgeny Morozov) The concepts defined in the dialogue . The integrity of our global social problems requires us to think about how we can achieve common prosperity 、 Justice and equity . We haven't established a solution yet 、 Process or practice in the community . As jutel said in the same interview ,“ We must accept the experiment , Admit that we currently lack answers .” establish 、 Support or participate in this larger exploration .

  • Continue to learn , Explore , And ask questions . We've reached the point where we can't ignore distributed ledgers technology / It's time to the basic mechanism of blockchain . If we want a chance to stop the main Web 2.0 Entities occupy their waves , These must be taught and learned .

  •   Cut out these guidelines , Post it on the cryptocurrency mining equipment closest to you ( Editor's note : China has completely banned the exploitation and trading of virtual currencies , The translation comes from different contexts , Do not violate relevant laws and regulations ). If you keep them in mind when considering your strategies , You may find yourself really making a positive impact , Instead of going to Web3“ Water pit ”( translator's note :watering hole, A network security vulnerability , An attacker attempts to destroy a specific end-user group by infecting a website that members of the group are known to visit ) On the way to become another digital road killer .

We believe that “ Xianghao ” From leftovers to incorporating positive social influence into Web3 Is possible in the structure of : Economic liberation , Yes , But it also includes race and gender justice 、 equality 、 Inclusion and participation . This is a huge demand , It is also a requirement that runs counter to many of the technologies we have learned in the real world . This further explains why this is a requirement that deserves to be made clear .

Scott · Smith is Changeist Founder and managing partner of ,Changeist It's a family 2007 Future research and consulting partnership established in the United States in , Now headquartered in the Netherlands .

Linna · Srivasteva is “ Transformation and change center ”(the Center for Transformational Change) The founder of , The center is a global influence platform for building community strength to build a just future .

source :《 Stanford Social Innovation Review 》 English website 2022 year 3 month 8 Japan

The original title :Web3 and the Trap of 'For Good'

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