Web3: The New Phase of the Internet
Over the last year or so, there have been so many buzzwords making their rounds on the internet. One of these that comes to mind immediately is, of course, the metaverse. However, there is an exciting new internet concept in town. Experts are calling it Web 3.0 or Web3.
Web3 is considered to be the next big internet revolution. It reflects the progress of the world progression from Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 to the next phase.
As years have gone by, we have noticed the internet has become freer and more independent than ever before, in many aspects. Think about it. In the early 2000s, a select few content creators largely dominated the internet. The rest of the users were simply consumers. But then came Web 2.0 – the way we know the internet now. With this new accessibility to the web, more and more users started to become creators. Many of these content creators became big players in the industry.
The internet that we have today is broken in many ways. As much as we have the freedom to create, we do not have any control over our data as consumers. Even 30 years deep into the adoption of the internet, our data is still stored and managed by a few central entities.
This raises issues of trust and power. How do you know that the organizations that store and control your data are ethical? But this is not the only area where our current internet system falls short. To solve the many issues that Web 2.0 encounters, there is a need for a newer version of the internet. This is where Web3 comes in.
What is Web 3?
Tim Berners-Lee created the world wide web in 1989. This was the first time multiple computers had interconnected with each other, and people went online. This was Web 1.0. Then came Web 2.0, the internet as we know it now. It is the world of social media and search engines. But after using this version of the internet for some time, people have now become aware of the regular privacy violations being instigated by the tech giants.
Facebook, in particular, has been the poster child of misusing its users’ information for political and advertising purposes. While Web 2.0 is exciting as it is, a lot of people are now tired of these privacy breaches. Our data, nowadays, is more controlled by these tech giants than even by ourselves. And now, thanks to the man behind Ethereum, Gavin Wood, we have the revolutionary concept of Web3.
Web3 is a concept of the internet that contains decentralized apps. These apps run on the blockchain infrastructure. Anyone can participate in them without revealing their data.
Web3 contains the following three main elements:
- Decentralized data
- Edge computing
- Artificial intelligence
How Does it Work?
As mentioned earlier, Web3 is essentially made up of decentralized apps that run on the blockchain. These apps allow everyone to enter and participate without giving up their data. Anyone who is on the network has permission to use the service. There is no central entity that can block or deny you access to these apps. This allows users to carry out payments using different cryptocurrencies on the blockchains. Anyone can tokenize anything on Web3, whether it is a meme or a piece of art.
For example, let’s talk about the gaming industry. Gamers often complain about the many bugs that developers leave in their favorite video games. They are often, also, not happy with new updates. With Web3, gamers can invest in the game itself. They can vote on how things should and can be changed to make for a better gaming experience.
Another area that is going to experience massive growth due to Web3 is that of non-fungible tokens.
How Does Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Fit into all of This?
Blockchain seems to be the main driving force in the creation of this new form of the internet. Blockchain technology has reinvented the way we store our data. It has provided us with a way to manage and control our data collectively. Bitcoin and other crypto coins work through the blockchain, as well. But there is a lot more to cryptocurrency and blockchains.
Most of Web3’s digital assets are built using Ethereum’s technology. Ethereum rewards its users for maintaining its networks. Blockchain will be the backbone of Web3. It is going to define the backend of the Web3 infrastructure. Users will be able to make transactions safely over it. It will introduce a kind of a top layer over the current internet.
What that means is that it will allow two or more people who do not trust each other to carry out transactions and reach an agreement over the internet. You can think of Web3 as simply a set of protocols that fall under blockchain technology. It will reinvent the way we carry out financial transactions over the internet, making them safer and more secure while also protecting our privacy.
Further reading: Cryptocurrency for Beginners: Key Concepts You Need to Know
Why is Everyone Talking about Web3?
The idea of Web3 is understandably interesting to many people. Its supporters are calling it a bold new future that will provide the user with full control over their data. There are only a select few companies that control the flow of our data across the web today. With the decentralized network, the control will come to the user, rather than a big organization.
On Web3, the users will not simply be the content creators, but they will also be in charge of the platforms where they share their content. This concept brings power to the common man rather than a billion-dollar company. Needless to say, this excites many people. They are tired of the misinformation and the regular privacy breaches connected to their data.
Why Some People are Criticizing Web3
Some prominent tech industry names are skeptical of Web3. They suggest that Web3 is promising more than it can offer. The popularity of Web3 mainly rests on the concept of blockchains. However, many critics say that the goals that Web3 is trying to achieve do not need to rely on blockchain for their achievement.
Many people, including Elon Musk, think that the Web3 concept is more of a “marketing buzzword” than a real concept.Recently, Jack Dorsey of Twitter came under fire for claiming that Web3 would be no different from today’s internet in terms of control provided to the user. He stated that it would ultimately be a centralized entity with simply “a different label.”
According to him, the venture capitalists who are already putting their money into the creation of Web3 are the ones who will control and own it.
Conclusion – Are the Critics Right?
With Web3, there are a lot of problems that we still need to address. It is still a fairly new concept, and no one knows whether the critics are right or wrong. Many cryptocurrency enthusiasts are backing the idea of free internet with complete user control. And while everyone loves the idea of full autonomy, the question still exists as to how achievable that truly is.
The truth is, when it comes to new and innovative concepts like this one, there are always scammers out there. They want to make a quick buck at the expense of others. But then, many talented people support this idea. Plus, despite its problems, Web3 still offers a lot of potentials. Whether it is too unrealistic is something that we will have to wait and find out about.
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