An Economy that Doesn't Provide Jobs: isn't.
One easy way to tell that we are within the infant stages of crypto is that essentially zero jobs are being provided to the people. Despite all the grandstanding & peacocking about overwhelming the entire legacy economy and bringing central banking to it's knees, crypto has a hundred times more scams and rug-pulls being cranked out than it does legitimate projects. It's not hard to see why mainstream citizens of the world would look at it from the outside with huge skepticism.
Jobs that are provided by crypto:
- Blogging on Hive.
I mean... if there are more than this, be sure to comment below so I can take them into consideration. The first thing that comes to mind would be play-to-earn games on the blockchain. Unfortunately, there's no such thing as play-to-earn games (yet). Obviously this depends on one's definition of what play-to-earn really means, and there are a couple different variables here to note.
The first variable is pay-to-win.
As far as I know, every play-to-earn game out there uses NFTs to represent collectibles. You can't play the game without the collectibles. Thus, the game is pay to win. There's really very little wiggle room around this fact.
In fact, blockchain 'play-to-earn' games are actually pay-to-win games on steroids. In a normal CCG like Magic The Gathering, you might expect to pay a couple hundred dollars for a really good deck. Crypto takes this to an entirely new level where someone might be willing to spend a couple thousand dollars on a single card. And then you play the game and earn 10 cents playing the game and we call it 'play-to-earn'. It's absurd.
The second variable is compensation.
How much money does one need to make before we call it a job? This actually varies from country to country. One can't be a professional at something unless they can actually pay their bills with it. However, bills are cheaper in a country like Nigeria compared to USA. In USA, you can't call the thing a job unless you're making like $10 an hour. In Nigeria you might be able to get away with something like $2 an hour and it would still be worth it. I'm suddenly reminded of the slightly offensive phrase "Chinese Gold Farmer" back from my World of Warcraft addiction.
Definition of a job:
But I'm not here to define what play-to-earn means. And I'm not here to rip on any particular project (Splinterlands is doing good work). In order to know if we are providing jobs to the people, we have to define what a job actually is. The definition may change a bit with crypto considering many people are going to be their own boss and choosing their own hours, working for a network rather than a corporation.
- A job pays enough to handle the bills (hopefully more).
- A job doesn't require an upfront investment (only MLMs require this).
- A job provides value to the employer.
I'm trying to think of more things, but honestly these are the three big ones. This is enough criteria to rule out every other "job" on crypto that isn't "developer" or "blogging on Hive".
Blogging on Hive is not the actual job.
The real job is networking and making connections and building trust with other people. However, this often manifests itself through the blogging frontend. Still, we must admit that all one actually needs to do on Hive to make money is to get people to click the button that gives them money. It's a highly subjective (and often political) process. Still, it's better than what everyone else is offering.
Blogging is unsustainable.
Obviously everyone can't be a blogger. The world doesn't want or need that many bloggers. A society needs people working on a thousand things at once for the economy to actually work. We can think of blogging as the testnet on Hive (or other networks that actually figure out how to build the infrastructure to provide the jobs). Looking at Hive... again we are way ahead of the game even though we are still on the pilot episode. Show me another network that's offering a job. I'd love to check it out.
Get paid to ______.
This is a term that used to get thrown around a lot; not so much anymore. Creating job markets is a very difficult thing to do, and even more so in a decentralized atmosphere. The goal is to create as many jobs as possible for the least amount of experience required. Easier said then done.
Lowering the bar of "development".
I believe one of the big breakthroughs in crypto will be lowering this bar to a level that is much more tenable to the average person. My focus is on gaming, so my examples are centered around that area, but surely there are other ways to go about this.
Making development easier across flat architecture.
Building the skeleton of a game requires those hardcore development skills, but building the skins and the frontend of the game can be outsourced to the community. Graphics can be turned into NFTs and be owned/rewarded by the entity that created them. Again, this does require technical skills, but also it's a completely different subset of skills which allow more people to jump on board in a decentralized fashion and get paid for their work.
Building campaigns and mods.
Even once a game is fully playable, that doesn't mean that development is over. People beat the game. It gets boring. They lose interest. There are a lot of sandboxes out there that lack any kind of direction and expect the user to be creative and just come up with their own thing. The problem with this is that many gamers don't like sandboxes. They want a goal and a defined path.
A sandbox can be turned into something that has more direction by the gamers themselves. Entire genres of gaming have been created (MOBA) in random map editors by users who work for free. Imagine how much content would be created if they were getting paid. Easily ten times if not a hundred times as much.
In fact I'm playing a mod of Factorio right now that is absolutely mindblowing (Space Exploration). It's insane how much content can be created in a sandbox like this or Minecraft or whatever else. It is by far the most challenging game I have ever played by exponential margins (even compared to vanilla Factorio).
In regular Factorio, you build a factory that processes several raw resources into various products that are then consumed for their purpose or used in other product. In this Space Exploration mod (that's been developed for three years now), you can set up bases on other planets (and build in orbit). It's a complete overhaul of the game that completely changes it. It almost feels like a completely different game at this point.
The only reason I bring any of this up is that it perfectly showcases how much work can get done by third-party developers working outside the system. Crypto is perfectly aligned with this kind of development. If Factorio (or any other sandbox game) was integrated with crypto in a meaningful way the level of content being created by the game's community would be astronomical. This is the kind of thing we need to be shooting for on Hive. The players themselves need to also be the developers of the game (and get paid fairly for their work).
The enthusiast factor
People work much harder on projects they actually care about (and for less money, if necessary). Some of the best inventions were created by enthusiasts. For example, the mountain bike was created by biking enthusiast. Many of things people create aren't going to get created in some corporate board-room with suits throwing ideas around the table trying to make a profit. The real innovation comes from citizens that actually care about the thing they are working on (and making money off of it is a secondary objective). You know you've made it when your hobby becomes your job.
Crypto will eventually empower enthusiast communities to operate at their highest level while actually getting paid for their work. Just look at all the cool open-source stuff that's been created with little to no financial incentive. Linux was created for free, and we use it to run the entire Internet. Imagine what happens when we monetize open-source development completely and allow people to work on the projects that they actually care about. The level of value that gets generated from that tipping point is going to be immeasurable.
We say crypto is going to 'disrupt' & overturn the entire economy and revolutionize the world. Cool story, bro. Where are the jobs? Does this new innovative economy work by people living paycheck to paycheck being expected to invest in something that has a 99% chance to be a scam or failure? Hm, yeah, that's not how economies work.
It's funny because I do fully believe that crypto will takeover in all the ways that are being claimed. However, that's not possible until we offer jobs to the masses that pay more than what they are currently being offered (or at least have better perks like being your own boss and choosing your own hours).
Expecting poor people to invest in the world's most risk-on asset and then telling them that's how they will be saved from imperialism... wow, what a scam. Truly it amazes me what Bitcoin maximalists tell themselves on a daily basis.
At the end of the day, the vast majority of the population has nothing left to risk. This legacy economy is on life support. The middle class vanished. The only way to fix the situation is to offer zero-risk jobs that provide more value to the network is paid to individual 'employees'. This is how an economy works, and it surprises me that so many people around here can't see it, instead opting gamble in the world's riskiest online casino and pretending like this is a sustainable practice. All in good time, I suppose. Keep grinding.
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