By John Sarson, CEO |Sarson Funds, Inc

Changes are coming that will make our experience online better in many ways. This is happening quickly and is a result of the explosive growth of “Web3” . 

Web3 is exploding

According to our research at Sarson Funds, community groups and businesses are being birthed on Web3 worldwide at a rate of over 300 hundred communities per day. There are already over 300,000 thousand such groups that have been built on the Ethereum blockchain alone, and this number does not include the massive amount of NFT communities, like the one shown above, that are being launched daily.

Web3 communities are being built around artists, sports teams, gaming communities, professional networks, private companies, and everything in between.

So, what’s Web3? Here is my simple explanation:

Web 1.0:          You visited a website to learn about product or see some data.

Web 2.0:           You visited a website to buy a product or perhaps to host photos.

Web 3.0:          You will visit a website that connects to your “Digital Identity”.

What’s your Digital Identity? Well, right now it could be any combination of your cryptocurrency holdings, social profiles, art collections, groups, medical records, contracts or anything else you choose to have in it. As you add dimensions to your Digital Identity (say a new set of preferences for recording your favorite sports teams) you can take comfort in knowing that this data can’t be misused or lost by a third-party tech company that is collecting it. Your data is not stored on the application that you connected with; it’s not even stored on your own computer.   Despite it feeling like your digital identity lives in your internet browser window with you, it actually is safely stored on dozens of independent yet coordinating blockchains.  

In the same way that Bitcoin takes power away from banks and governments and returns control to its users, Web3 uses the same technology to take back control of our personal information from big tech companies. This is a very positive development for users.

The blockchains themselves, in addition to offering nearly impenetrable security, offer features and functions geared toward specific use cases. High-speed blockchains for high-speed applications, ultra-flexible blockchains (like Ethereum) for more common applications.

With Web3, your Digital Identity is completely in your control, accessible only to you and to those applications to which you give permission. This is all made possible through the scientific breakthrough Blockchain Technology, which is the same technology behind Bitcoin.

In the future, thanks to Web3, users won’t need to sign into a website or a social platform. Instead, we will just connect. All of our data comes with us from one platform to the next. To the doctor’s office, the car dealership, our favorite gaming platform or metaverse, we grant each platform the permissions that we decide they need to have in order to provide us with the service we are requesting, and grant them no additional permissions! When we leave the platform or service, our personal data comes with us, leaving nothing with the vendor to lose, misuse or sell to the highest bidder.

Web3 will greatly benefit companies that use this new technology correctly. Many companies see this clearly and we have seen web3 communities launch from iconic brands already such as Starbucks, Nike, and even America’s favorite gas station meat stick snack Slim Jim! 

How will Web3 benefit companies?

As a Web3 company, a company is able to execute any business process that a Web2 company could (such as selling lessons or subscriptions) but can bypass traditional payment rails (and their associated feeds) while doing so and will also be able to issue digital certificates of membership, certification level, professional vertical or other segmenting criteria to its customers as NFTs.  Only holders with the correct credential (NFT) will be able to access certain sections of business’ online content or attend certain events. This does not need to be limited to online events only. The process works just as well for IRL (in real life) events. Already tech savvy entertainers are issuing digital tickets to their fans as NFTs.  

Besides using NFTs to structure communities and manage membership roles, being a Web3 company (which requires being connected to your customer’s crypto wallet) allows the business to reward its users with custom token giveaways for passing a test or referring a friend or any other promotion that the company dreams up.  Being a Web3 enabled company or community allows for novel ways of building and maintaining active membership communities while delivering more value for users

Whether we like it or not, we are spending more and more of our lives online. In this “Post-Covid-Post-Economic-Era” in which we all live, being online makes sense.  It brings us closer and can bring us joy and connection. If you have ever shared a funny video with a friend or a relative, you are guilty of sharing digital joy. And of course, we are all seeking ways to deepen our connection with one another. Paradoxically the same technology that connects us, is now leaving many internet users longing for deeper connections.  In a meaningful way, Web3 is helping to solve for this.

Disclosures: Not investment advice. Talk with your financial advisor before making any investment decisions or have them contact Sarson Funds directly at [email protected]