Bankim Chandra is Director & CEO of Dotsquares. Always committed to innovative solutions and mentoring the next generation in the industry.

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When Tim Berners-Lee and colleagues developed upon the work started by ARPANET with TCP/IP, they gave us back in 1990 the basis of the modern internet that we see today. As with all life-changing technologies, this was developed further, and by 1999, “Web 2.0” was a term that was becoming common usage. Web 2.0 heralded the participative web and social web, where user-generated content, ease of use and participatory and interoperability became prominent. This saw the rise of compatibility with other products and devices to give a cohesive experience and more power to the web. This compatibility has been accelerated by the need for more information to be stored in machine-readable formats. We now have the first discussions around Web3 taking place, but what will this mean for the global business landscape and future iterations of the web?

Essentially Web3 focuses now on peer-to-peer interactions and a fully integrated and networked commerce infrastructure, which, in turn, will be a societal driver. Web3 is intended for large enterprises through applications that benefit from blockchain-enabled technologies and the benefits derived from social and gaming business models.

Let’s take a dive into the differences and the benefits we might expect.

In previous iterations of the web, we have seen a largely centralized infrastructure. This was for a number of reasons, as the internet grew to what we have today and was focused on allowing readers to be writers as well. One of the key premises of Web3 is to give any participant their own power and control away from a centralized experience.

Another of the core concepts of the new web is blockchain, both for business and social. We all know about blockchain now, but this allows users to “own” their own data, their identity and the content and algorithms that drive the blockchain. Essentially users could almost be viewed as shareholders through their ownership of the tokens or cryptocurrency behind that node. This, by nature, sees the internet move steadily away from the centralized concepts that its forbearers were built upon. Blockchains can form the basis of interoperability. Additionally, the leveraging of smart contracts, stored securely on a public ledger, allows parties to remain anonymous, but still with full regulatory compliance. Web3 will facilitate trading, record storage, supply chain automation and copyright protection and will enable the Internet of Things (IoT) to be freed from its shackles.

In the future, businesses and organizations are going to be able to take advantage of this decentralized landscape in several ways:

• With Web3, the frameworks and architecture involved are an inherent part of its decentralized security protocols.

• Instead of several monoliths dominating the market space, governance is distributed to stakeholders or governance token holders.

• Instead of these monoliths “owning” customer data, it now becomes part of the blockchain and is validated by those in the immediate chain.

• Content now becomes user-owned and free from the restrictions that held it back in the previous Web 2.0.

• With content and data now being user-owned, they have the opportunity to monetize. Using blockchain will verify and validate payments.

• Where previous user interfaces would be governed by a strict set of rules and conventions, now we find apps are decentralized. This centralization is now more focused on the delivery of marketplaces and different services.

• User authentication now takes the form of a private key that unlocks access to the owner’s records on a blockchain with the appropriate private key.

• The financial element is managed by smart contracts and established blockchain protocols.

• As a natural extension, cryptocurrency has emerged to replace traditional currencies.

The issues that could hold back the emergence and adoption of Web3 are going to center around governance and control. Will large enterprises, some of whom have enjoyed a near data monopoly, be willing to cede their positions? Some believe that the inherent imbalance we have at the moment will remain, in that users will not own their content but that it will become the property of a cabal of venture capitalists and investors, thus solidifying a guise of central control.

Another element entering the equation is the adoption of headless architecture, with back-end systems being able to separate from front-end and interdependent systems. This allows multichannel solutions to be adopted, helping businesses not be limited by any content management system (CMS). And it allows content to be distributed easily without recoding. Already, companies are showcasing these possibilities and the advantages that they can bring.

Some quick ways to prepare for the possible change and rise of Web3 might be to investigate the bigger players emerging in the blockchain marketplace, namely ethereum and bitcoin. Understanding the ways immersive media is going to change content marketing will also help you understand the possibilities at play here.

Web3 can be summed up as a platform developed by users for users. It aims to let users own their own data and verification processes. It will remain to be seen how these are entrenched once adopted—and how resistance from existing stakeholders is managed.


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