NFT

The Great Crypto Rebranding


The word crypto has many connotations, and not all of them are positive. At worst, crypto is presented as nothing more than empty speculation on tokens that come and go, and have no intrinsic value.

Even among observers who take a more balanced assessment, crypto is still, entirely reasonably, seen as being excessively volatile, removed of regulation or oversight, and lacking clarity as to what its end uses are supposed to be.

However, perceptions are changing, and the process of crypto acceptance, integration and adoption may be accelerated by what appears to be a rebranding process. It’s important to note that, true to the spirit of crypto, any rebrandings that take place are emergent, decentralized occurrences, and the changes that gain traction will do so through being the best fit, rather than through being forced on users.

Crypto to Web3

This is the largest shift of all, encompassing all of the others. Besides Bitcoin, which is unique and stands alone, it seems as though the entire crypto space is being redefined as a new means of operating called web3.

The meaning of web3 is, basically, a decentralized web in which you not only read and create content, but you also have total ownership of everything you create, and of your own online identity, and it’s crypto, or blockchains, that will enable this.

Web3 especially relates to  smart contract  blockchains, of which the leading entity is Ethereum, and brings to mind, at present, DeFi and NFTs, but may come to encompass all aspects of the online experience.

It’s a smart rebranding for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it ties in with something familiar, trusted and integral to modern life, that is using the web, or rather, using web2.

Secondly, it decouples crypto from purely financial connotations. Rather than being risky bets whose purpose is unclear, coins are perceived as functional components of blockchains, and those blockchains are the architecture from which web3 can expand.

Wallets to Profiles

For a user new to crypto and decentralized applications, a prompt to connect a wallet can be distinctly off-putting, for understandable reasons. After all, wallets, generally, contain your money, and even in the familiar world of web2, we are urged to always be cautious around financial transactions.

What’s more, crypto is infamous for scams and shady operators, so it’s no surprise if users become defensive about linking a wallet to an unknown application.

On top of that, if web3 continues to develop and evolve as forecasted, then the term ‘wallet’ will cease to be the most appropriate term to use anyway, sometimes giving the wrong impression as to the purpose of connecting to a site.

Yes, your wallet contains your tokens, both  fungible  and non-fungible, but will those tokens all be primarily financial? In a world where all digital objects can be tokenized, a wide vista of utility emerges, and your wallet comes to function more like a secured window to your digital identity.

Wallets, then, become not simply a container-like tool, but also a personal profile, although that too might not be the most appropriate label. It’s likely that wallets will be an area of increased developer activity, and as new concepts and implementations emerge, the image we have of them might change.

Also, as with the shift from crypto to web3, labels other than wallet will take the emphasis away from finance, and make it clear that blockchain technology brings with it a range of utilities.

NFTs to Digital Objects

The non-fungible token tag has always lacked ease of comprehension, not least due to general unfamiliarity with what exactly fungibility means.

Besides that, there has developed, among some cultural commentators, an instinctive dislike of anything connected to NFTs. Perhaps this should not be surprising, as NFT stories that break through to the mainstream tend to revolve around enormous sums being paid for, on the surface level, cartoon JPEGs of apes and blocky 8-bit art.

What’s overlooked is that the underlying items changing hands are secure, unique digital tokens, that anything can be attached to those tokens, and that the possibilities NFTs can enable are just beginning to open up.

The name NFT itself might stick around, but there should, eventually, be a shift in perception as to what NFTs can actually facilitate.

Are they monkey JPEGs? Sure, some of them.

But, they are also guarantees of provenance, receipts and proofs of ownership, and access passes to networks, communities, DAOs and real-life societies. They are keys that open particular doors; they are stakes in commercial and creative ventures; they are assets in games; they are avatars and digital fashion; and they can hold crucial personal records.

Ultimately, they are ownable data to which the holder has self-custodied access.

The Metaverse

While popular representations of the metaverse involve virtual reality and total immersion, what might actually occur is that on web3, when we connect our wallet/profile, utilize tokens both fungible and non-fungible, and exercise control of our digital identities, then the entire online experience becomes metaversal, regardless of the device through which it is viewed.

Some of that experience might involve VR and AR, but that needn’t be an absolute requisite. Essentially, when we have independent ownership of our digital lives, without the need for centralized intermediaries, then we will be operating on networks akin to a metaverse.

The word crypto has many connotations, and not all of them are positive. At worst, crypto is presented as nothing more than empty speculation on tokens that come and go, and have no intrinsic value.

Even among observers who take a more balanced assessment, crypto is still, entirely reasonably, seen as being excessively volatile, removed of regulation or oversight, and lacking clarity as to what its end uses are supposed to be.

However, perceptions are changing, and the process of crypto acceptance, integration and adoption may be accelerated by what appears to be a rebranding process. It’s important to note that, true to the spirit of crypto, any rebrandings that take place are emergent, decentralized occurrences, and the changes that gain traction will do so through being the best fit, rather than through being forced on users.

Crypto to Web3

This is the largest shift of all, encompassing all of the others. Besides Bitcoin, which is unique and stands alone, it seems as though the entire crypto space is being redefined as a new means of operating called web3.

The meaning of web3 is, basically, a decentralized web in which you not only read and create content, but you also have total ownership of everything you create, and of your own online identity, and it’s crypto, or blockchains, that will enable this.

Web3 especially relates to  smart contract  blockchains, of which the leading entity is Ethereum, and brings to mind, at present, DeFi and NFTs, but may come to encompass all aspects of the online experience.

It’s a smart rebranding for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it ties in with something familiar, trusted and integral to modern life, that is using the web, or rather, using web2.

Secondly, it decouples crypto from purely financial connotations. Rather than being risky bets whose purpose is unclear, coins are perceived as functional components of blockchains, and those blockchains are the architecture from which web3 can expand.

Wallets to Profiles

For a user new to crypto and decentralized applications, a prompt to connect a wallet can be distinctly off-putting, for understandable reasons. After all, wallets, generally, contain your money, and even in the familiar world of web2, we are urged to always be cautious around financial transactions.

What’s more, crypto is infamous for scams and shady operators, so it’s no surprise if users become defensive about linking a wallet to an unknown application.

On top of that, if web3 continues to develop and evolve as forecasted, then the term ‘wallet’ will cease to be the most appropriate term to use anyway, sometimes giving the wrong impression as to the purpose of connecting to a site.

Yes, your wallet contains your tokens, both  fungible  and non-fungible, but will those tokens all be primarily financial? In a world where all digital objects can be tokenized, a wide vista of utility emerges, and your wallet comes to function more like a secured window to your digital identity.

Wallets, then, become not simply a container-like tool, but also a personal profile, although that too might not be the most appropriate label. It’s likely that wallets will be an area of increased developer activity, and as new concepts and implementations emerge, the image we have of them might change.

Also, as with the shift from crypto to web3, labels other than wallet will take the emphasis away from finance, and make it clear that blockchain technology brings with it a range of utilities.

NFTs to Digital Objects

The non-fungible token tag has always lacked ease of comprehension, not least due to general unfamiliarity with what exactly fungibility means.

Besides that, there has developed, among some cultural commentators, an instinctive dislike of anything connected to NFTs. Perhaps this should not be surprising, as NFT stories that break through to the mainstream tend to revolve around enormous sums being paid for, on the surface level, cartoon JPEGs of apes and blocky 8-bit art.

What’s overlooked is that the underlying items changing hands are secure, unique digital tokens, that anything can be attached to those tokens, and that the possibilities NFTs can enable are just beginning to open up.

The name NFT itself might stick around, but there should, eventually, be a shift in perception as to what NFTs can actually facilitate.

Are they monkey JPEGs? Sure, some of them.

But, they are also guarantees of provenance, receipts and proofs of ownership, and access passes to networks, communities, DAOs and real-life societies. They are keys that open particular doors; they are stakes in commercial and creative ventures; they are assets in games; they are avatars and digital fashion; and they can hold crucial personal records.

Ultimately, they are ownable data to which the holder has self-custodied access.

The Metaverse

While popular representations of the metaverse involve virtual reality and total immersion, what might actually occur is that on web3, when we connect our wallet/profile, utilize tokens both fungible and non-fungible, and exercise control of our digital identities, then the entire online experience becomes metaversal, regardless of the device through which it is viewed.

Some of that experience might involve VR and AR, but that needn’t be an absolute requisite. Essentially, when we have independent ownership of our digital lives, without the need for centralized intermediaries, then we will be operating on networks akin to a metaverse.



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