Some disconnected thoughts around web3, work and learning.

First, tokens have provided an infinite design space for asset design. As @balajis said - “It’s not an “asset class”. It will be all asset classes.

With this also comes an infinite playground for designing incentives.

Tokens can:

  • Represent anything of value
  • Be rightsized for all sizes of contribution
  • Be delivered in more ways

Tokens can direct ownership in a project. They can also provide rights to a voice in project direction, or just access to a community.

Those in turn be reduced to monetary value on an open exchange.

The idea that rewards can be rightsized to an individual node’s contribution to the network. In protocol terms miners are rewarded for validating network transactions - proportional to their computation or individual stake in the protocol.

When you think about this in people networks, you can reward people with your token proportional to whatever contribution they have. Whether it’s using your product, promoting it, or just simply learning about it - you can create an associated token reward.

You can’t do this practically with real equity.

CAC in Web3 is paying users directly to try your product.

On learning specifically - the ‘arrow of progress’ here is clearly pointing to new economic models for funding learning. Ones that reduce the burden on students and recognize learning is positive sum - therefore shouldn’t be taxed. Token rewards just takes this one step further, saying they will be rewarded.

In that sense, ISA’s and learn-to-earn are on the same spectrum.

Communities of all kinds use tokens to incentivize behaviour.

New incentive designs will create new behaviours and means to organize. DAO’s are the label we’ve created for this.

The smaller you get, the more you start to see that tokens are simultaneously a system of reward, but start to become a system of record. (Its almost as if, your compensation = your resume. The value you add is the value you receive - all available transparently.)

It makes everyone a job creator.

A bounty becomes the atomic unit of work.

And while its easy to talk about the potential, the reality is this. Governments have a lot to lose when you disintermediate them from being involved in incentives. And they have a lot of weapons at their disposal.

Tech extrapolates, and its easy to say something is the “future of X”, almost as if it would replace it. No, it will augment it.

(It’s easy to extrapolate the tech into some kind of utopian ideal. The reality is we have to work with each other, and while some countries draw the line on how they will treat citizens that choose to involve themselves in this. (remember, the guns thing).

It’s also important to think of the first and second order effects. Incentive overload. Scams.

Personal: This is also why working on Web3 feels like a huge departure - you are rethinking many things.

Thank you to everyone who has helped shape this thinking. As this space is evolving rapidly, these thoughts will too.

Games are already an incentive design space.