Blockchain technology is in the boom right now for the anarchists, geeks, and corporate executives. They believe that blockchain is the future technology for many industries. Though a diversity of peers and ideas is an excellent opportunity for the development of blockchain technology, many still fail to comprehend the intention and original design of the technology.
After the global financial breakdown in 2008, Satoshi Nakamoto launched Bitcoin, whose chief goal was to bring a change in the traditional financial transactions. Initially, only the founder of bitcoin and some other crypto-anarchists understood the potential of blockchain technology on how it was disrupting the current basic financial transaction system. However, when Ethereum was launched in 2015, many realised that this technology could do wonders in the future.
Centralised firms dominate Today’s internet likes Google, Facebook, and Amazon. But, many analysts in this field believe that the core design and economic drivers in the blockchain technology can establish a decentralised future for the people.
Existing affairs in the corporate world
The blockchain ecosystem has already been taken over by the traditional corporates, financial institutions and FinTech startups. Their goal is to use the technology to maximise profits by cutting operating costs and building new monopolistic empires.
A group of 80 largest financial and banking institutions have joined hands to develop a private financial blockchain platform, which shall stay entirely under their control. Also, 500 companies are looking forward to forming an enterprise alliance to work with Ethereum and pursue their duty to maximise profits for shareholders. Moreover, Central banks of countries like China, Russia, Canada, England, Singapore and Denmark, are discovering and developing ways to issue independent cryptocurrency by maintaining full control.
The primary business model of corporations
In the era of users’ data and information, the fundamental business model of corporations is to capture, monopolise and privatise data. Whereas other business models include creating artificial scarcity by restricting access and repackaging and selling that data in various ways. For example, big companies like Google and Facebook generate profits from all the above business models. Also, at a fundamental level, these business models are the same for any companies handling a database.
Taking a step forward, these databases are being used to train machine learning and artificial intelligence. So, the monopolisation of data will provide tremendous superior advantages resulting in further centralisation and more solid growth in wealth and power.
Well, even after having these benefits, the reasons corporations are passionate about pursuing blockchain technology are,
- To automate business operations and transactions
- To significantly slice the human labour costs
- Further, monopolise data and market share
- Finally, increase profits for shareholders
The corporations and banks are working on private blockchain as to control the data and keep the source code completely private. Well, this move shall definitely work, but only for quite some time. This is because, people, on the hand, want the information to be free and transparent. And, the public blockchain-based protocol will certainly outpace every private system.
For example, a real estate agent involved in the listing portal and property data will first create a private blockchain system for his country to store data and run closed-source decentralised applications (Dapps). He will then be creating features which can facilitate real estate agents, lawyer, buyers and sellers to communicate and make transactions. Further, he’ll form associations with other companies to develop private blockchains for managing stuff like land and property titles.
Meanwhile, a lone coder creates and develops a public blockchain protocol which stores all property data and with free and universal access. Most importantly, the coder develops open-source smart contracts which enable buyers and sellers to transact securely and also transfer land or property deeds with just one click. The developer charges a minimal, no-profit fee to cover the computational expense. So, basically, anyone can use and access this protocol freely, without any registration or permission. Therefore, in simple terms, public blockchains are not owned by anybody, not controlled by anybody and can never be shut as well.
The result is a blockchain commons. It is a universal common resource which renders old businesses outdated and guides a new foundation paradigm to create value for all of mankind.
Designing a new value model
If you are willing to change the present world using blockchain, then it’s not about building a startup, but it is to create an open protocol. During the initial phase of the internet, groups were competing to develop an open communication protocol. However, most of them faded away, and only a few remained firm on the internet today. For example, the protocols that power the internet today are TCP/IP, DNS, HTTP, etc.
The above protocols are universal and free to access. The blockchain technology too is precisely like the early days of the internet. In today’s world, there are several projects to develop standard protocols for decentralised storage, law, messaging, governance, insurance, finance, and real estate. So once all these protocols are in place, one can imagine a future where all the data is free, public and universal. And, where wealth and power is a distributed common resource.
What changes can the public blockchain-based protocols bring?
- Instead of countless insurance companies which work differently, there will be only one universal decentralised insurance protocol.
- Instead of a thousand social media networks with each company having their separate user data, there will be a single universal decentralised social graph protocol.
- The business competition will reduce to zero. Since all the data will be free and universal, there won’t arise any questions regarding competition.
- Companies finding ways to grow their profits will become redundant, and the ones focusing on services to satisfy their customers will flourish.
Well, the future is all about a series of probabilities, which means that anything can happen from time to time. However, the blockchain technology (public) has remained unstoppable from the very beginning and is expected to have a significant space in the future world.