With so many blockchain enthusiasts praising the cutting-edge technology day in and day out, everyone has heard how this technology will leave its mark on every industry imaginable. Blockchain holds all the answers, whether it’s exposing weak links in the supply chain or securing records & eradicating fraud. Bitcoin is merely the first case in thousands to use the powerhouse technology.
Blockchain will change the internet beyond recognition, and we’re only at the tip of the iceberg. EY Global Innovation Blockchain Leader Paul Brody explains, “The internet made it simple and easy for the people to move around information. We’ve gotten very good at that, but we are still moving information separately from value.”
There’s a mountain of layers behind each transaction we make or mouse click we take. Blockchain technology will remove those layers and then some.
Accelerating Banking and eCommerce
“Today, even when it looks like we’re paying for things online, most of the movement of value happens in a separate, parallel network between banks and financial institutions,” Brody continues. “Blockchain will unify the flow of information and money in the same systems.”
“Blockchain will unify the flow of information and money in the same systems.”
It’s fairly obvious how real-time transactions and next-to-no fees will improve the way we bank and trade online. But it takes us way beyond that as well. “It’s a small change that will make doing business online radically faster and safer and enable us to build complex business relationships as fast as we can write software code,” he concludes.
Repairing the Online Advertising Industry
The online advertising industry is broken. With 40 percent of millennial using ad-blocking software and Facebook’s algorithm favoring content from family and friends over corporations, advertisers are in a tailspin.
Not only is their audience digitally distracted and hard to reach, but advertisers find themselves victims of advertising fraud (to the tune of $7 billion so far). Many an unfortunate account manager has awoken to the news that their traffic was driven by bots, and not humans – and they say cryptocurrency needs regulation.
Fortunately for information-overloaded consumers and nervous online advertisers, blockchain startups are stepping in to save the day.
Bitmedia.io for example, is using blockchain to cut out the number of intermediaries between advertiser and publishing outlets. This way, they can confirm the trustworthiness and validity of all parties as well as automate the monetization and payment of ads. They also give consumers the choice to watch advertisements if they want to for monetary compensation.
Creating New Value Opportunities
Data scandals like Cambridge Analytica have served to open consumer’s eyes as to the value of their data. Consumers now realize that every piece of data about them is of value to someone else. If large corporations can make money off of it, why shouldn’t they be compensated themselves? Blockchain allows for even the most minute of transactions to take place. Take for example the number of steps you took in your Fitbit today. Someone somewhere is willing to pay for it.
CEO of OST Jason Goldberg says, “In web 3.0, with tokenization, [current] models will be disrupted by decentralization models that attribute value realization to end users who make valuable contributions, and to apps that support a more fair distribution of value. Today, millions of computers have extra unused storage capacity, for example. With tokenization, individuals and businesses could rent out their excess capacity safely and securely via blockchain technology, enabling Airbnb-like models to emerge for storage and sharing.”
Rewarding Content Creators Correctly
“As we transition into this next phase of digital innovation,” says Daniel Taylor, CEO BlocSide Sports LTD, “Blockchain is furthering the benefit from a system of micro-payments based on content consumption. Take for example Twitch, where thousands of creators stream their content free of charge. In order to help these creators monetize the value of their content, Twitch has leveraged the concept of virtual tipping through the introduction of a virtual good known as Bits.”
With internet users as concerned about their privacy as they are irritated by intrusive banner ads, the landscape of social media is shifting as well. Blockchain platforms like Minds, “built on a foundation of democracy, transparency, privacy, and internet freedom,” are gaining in popularity. Users can operate in an anonymous environment without fear of their data being leaked to a third party–and they’re incentivized to add content through cryptocurrency.
Verasity is next-generation video technology company, enhanced with proprietary blockchain technology. “Traditionally,” says David Orman, CEO, “mainstream ad-funded video platforms like YouTube pay the people who create content from advertising money generated on the platform… This means some creators who work hard to make and upload content don’t really receive any money at all. So what we’re doing with Verasity is changing the model.”
As the first video platform to feature a cryptocurrency wallet integrated into the video player, video owners can either accept donations, turn on pay-per-view, or allow subscriptions. Not only can content flourish this way, but content creators can be fairly compensated as well.
Not everyone is convinced of blockchains possibilities. Some call it the new “BitTorrent,” or label it “a passing fad.” But for the occasional pessimist who remains unimpressed, there are ten bright-eyed blockchain fans singing its praises.
Is blockchain over-hyped? Perhaps. Only time will tell. But did you imagine running a business, buying a car, or purchasing property online 20 years ago? (If you’re old enough to remember.)
“Blockchain today is similar to Intranets in the 1990s,” says Loudon Owen, Chair and CEO of DLT Labs. “As more and more entities and individuals make blockchain a central component of their business and social networks, the infrastructure that supports public and permissioned blockchains will merge into the common fabric of the global public internet, and become invisible much like the plumbing of the internet is to us today.”