GameStop and Twitter are both a mirage and an iceberg – but don’t try to tweet this. Not because you don’t own the tweet (because you don’t own it), but because the only true expression Twitter as a platform can deliver is to unlock the ugly truth on the internet yourself. Or as Elon Musk recently tweeted:
In retrospect, it was inevitable
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 29, 2021
Let me explain.
Amidst Robinhood ceasing trading for its supposed users, Jack Dorsey has spoken about the decentralization of Twitter and social media in general. Apart from a few enthusiasts, the word “decentralization” corresponds to the syntactic ambien. But don’t fall asleep yet. I promise I won’t tell you to buy Bitcoin (BTC), but I will tell you why you should be able to own a part of the next Twitter and Robinhood. First, let’s say what we all clearly feel.
Connected: The GameStop saga shows legacy funding is rigged, and DeFi is the answer
Decentralization has started
There’s something … in the air. There is a tangible electricity. A levy is about to burst – not a literal one, but a symbolic one that has kept the flow of progress and equality from flowing into far too many areas of our world. Power has always been held by the few, and in all of these areas the equality of power is now at stake.
People are starting to move from centralized to decentralized models of power, from the few who have all power to the many who share in it. If that dam bursts, there will be a massive shift in which everyone involved becomes more powerful while the most powerful of us become less. A leak has already started. It is the beginning of the new strength.
Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms, authors of the bestseller New Power: How power works in our hyperconnected world – and how it works for you, describe the situation in a 2014 article:
“Old power works like a currency. It is held by a few. Once won, it is jealously guarded and the mighty have a sizeable supply of it to spend. It’s closed, inaccessible, and driver-controlled. It is downloaded and captured. New energy works differently than electricity. It is made by many. It’s open, participatory and peer-driven. It will be uploaded and distributed. Like water or electricity, it is strongest when it rises. The goal with renewed strength is not to hoard it, but to channel it. “
The new force of the 21st century
While the classic top-down force model or tree or pyramid model has been around since at least Aristotle, the 21st century has moved in the direction of a radically different one. We saw it in the invention of the internet, in political movements like the Tea Party or Black Lives Matter, in the Me Too movement, in open source software, in collective knowledge projects like Wikipedia and of course in the invention of Bitcoin (BTC ) and blockchain. What may be most interesting, however, is that the universe itself, the human brain, art, and our natural ecosystems are similar to decentralized networks. More importantly, they don’t resemble top-down power models.
Heimans and Timms continue in their book:
“Those who build and manage huge platforms that are run with renewed vigor have become our new elites. These leaders often use the language of the crowd – “Share,” “Open,” “Connected” – but their actions can tell a different story. Think Facebook, the new energy platform that most of us know best. For all these likes and smileys that we create with what the company calls our “Power to Share”, the two billion Facebook users do not receive a share of the enormous economic value that the platform creates. Nor can one say how it is governed. And not looking into the algorithm that has been shown to affect our moods, self-esteem, and even some choices. Far from the paradise of organic free roaming that the early internet pioneers envisioned, there is a growing sense that we live in a world of equity farms where a small number of large platforms have fenced off the daily activities and harvested for their own benefit Billions. “
Robinhood and Twitter – and especially the internet design that made their business models possible – are centralized and need to be overthrown. They promote old power and, on the contrary, market themselves. This is where the mirage meets the iceberg. However, after the turbulent 2020, people seem to have had enough. The cat is out of the pocket, so to speak.
The cultural and technological changes
What was once theory has now become a reality. The network model is real and ironically requires a new home as it is currently operated on a pyramid.
The internet is operated by central servers belonging to central units. All of our human data output is controlled, manipulated, examined, sold and used to influence our behavior and to create as much value as possible for a small group of people. This is just like that, whether or not big tech giants want to admit it. Users are products, not customers. In the case of Robinhood, which is ceasing trading GameStop and other stocks, its free services are now indicating that user trading data is the real money maker by selling it to hedge funds. On social media platforms, they sell our data to advertisers and sometimes political campaigns – or worse.
Where is this taking us?
Right now we have millions of people desperately looking for new platforms where they can control their own digital identity, control their own data, and even benefit from and control the platform. Fortunately, this new promise of power, where democracy meets libertarianism, already exists.
From the bitcoin model, which was developed for peer-to-peer value transfer, to the decentralized exchange of digital assets that only work with code, to decentralized platforms for financial stakes, with which users can literally control the rules of the platform – none of them have a central function, unity in control – the future is bright.
But it is not enough.
Everyday apps that we use on our phones still work on old energy infrastructure. They all use central servers and company issued IDs (the average person is around 70), and they all have companies that own all of the data generated by their products / customers. That needs to change.
New Internet or Web 3.0 is building a new infrastructure and new roads on which data can be transmitted and stored. By removing central servers, issuing Internet IDs through public blockchains rather than corporations, and choosing how their data is stored, applications are becoming part of the new power movement. With the decentralized Internet, the popular adage “If it’s free, you are the product” may finally be proven untrue. As? Because Web 3.0 is a global movement, not a company.
This is how the internet should always be: a huge, decentralized intelligent network that nobody controls, like our universe, our brain, our oceans and now our cultural movements. Decentralized social media are already under development. Decentralized versions of Twitter, LinkedIn and WhatsApp are in the works.
2021 is the beginning of the end for the old power of the internet. In my opinion, it couldn’t have arrived soon enough.
This article does not contain any investment recommendations or recommendations. Every step of investing and trading involves risk and readers should conduct their own research in making their decision.
The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed here are the sole rights of the author and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.
Donald Bullers The company has over 10 years of experience in technology, from vice president of digital marketing to founding Tuum Technologies. With an interest in digital identity and Web 3.0, he leads several teams that use Elastos technology to develop software for a completely decentralized Internet.