What is Web3?

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Web3 is a decentralized network of distributed applications governed democratically and developed by a diverse coalition to empower individual ownership. In short- Web3 is the future of the internet. If that answer left you with more questions than answers, don’t sweat it- this is the perfect article for you.
Over the past few years, blockchain has gained enormous traction as a functional tool and a sound investment. Maybe you’re thinking it’s time to get on board, maybe you’re wondering if you’ve missed the boat- no worries there- we’ll make some more room on the ship.

A quick note before we dive in- this article assumes that you understand what blockchain and Web2 are. If you don’t, this video from Forbes is a pretty good 2-minute tutorial on blockchain, and this Investopedia entry is as good as any Web2 definition. If terms like hash, proof of work, and node are part of your everyday understanding and vocabulary, welcome to Upstate Interactive’s Web3 Primer.

In a 2020 Deloitte survey that polled nearly 1,500 senior executives across 14 countries, 55% of respondents noted that “blockchain technology has become a critical priority for their organizations in 2019.” On top of that, 83% of respondents feared that their, “organization or project would lose a competitive advantage,” if they did not adopt blockchain tech. It’s indisputable that a deep understanding of blockchain capabilities and technology will be critical for the future of business development. Web3 is a conduit for non-specialists to interact with and build on the blockchain. It’s the connective tissue that allows an easy entry, so you don’t have to know how to code or trade to enjoy the benefits of this emergent technology.

You saw our short, sweet, and (if I don’t say so myself) appropriately bullish definition above, but unsurprisingly, the devil is in the details. With so many potentially earth-shaping and paradigm-shifting questions at play with the future of a distributed internet, we should probably lay out a quick foundation just to make sure we’re speaking the same language.

Why do we need Web 3?

After two decades of what seemed like a boundless expansion on the internet, the past 5–10 years, we’ve all watched as the online experience has shrunk. Spaces of expression, communication, and education have been commodified, walled off, and outright sold. Menacing in the corner of this contraction is a distinct lack of trust for other online actors as bots (both real and accused), deepfake tech, and notably, fake news becomes content we have to cope with daily. Even if you’re the kind of person, who reads the Terms of Service for a social media platform, the rules of how the site operates and the data it collects are still obscure. These features push us further from control over our data, our connectivity, and our wallets.

Web3 builds on open-source protocols. This means the rules of the road are clear and permitted for anyone to follow. Because they build on blockchain networks- the sites are radically transparent, and transparency provides less incentive for businesses to leverage user data for profit. Everything is exposed and on the table.

Imagine what small companies, individual operators, and collectives could do with autonomy over their data stack. If an apple farmer has a harvest that somehow surpasses local output, they will have full enough agency over their data to monetize and drive a second stream of income. Music listeners could band together to form influencer collectives instead of relying on algorithms that synthesize millions of listeners. Long haul truckers and logistics enterprises would be able to leverage their efficiencies, and local banks and credit unions could give individuals better insights into community trends.

Protecting Yourself on Web3

Cryptocurrency and the blockchain stand to be a major driving factor in the technology of the future. However this popularity has attracted an element of cybercrime. There are several tools internet users should use to increase their online protection. One of these tools is SaferNet.

SaferNet is the perfect solution to the cybersecurity issues that individuals, families, and businesses face today. It not only connects every device using a secure, 24/7 always on, military grade VPN, but it also stops outside cyberthreats, malware and viruses as well. On SaferNet, all users are protected anywhere in the world, all the time, on any cellular or Wi-Fi network. In addition to SaferNet’s VPN and cyber protection, it also offers a range of employee or parental/family internet controls including internet filtering, monitoring, scheduling, and blocking access to websites or even entire website categories

Typically, a user would need 3 separate services for a VPN, Malware Protection, and Internet Controls; SaferNet offers all 3 features in one service. SaferNet truly is an endpoint security presence that can be implemented in minutes around the world, on phones, laptops, tablets, and computers at an economical price point that caters to all internet users. SaferNet guarantees a smooth setup and installation process that takes only minutes, and an easily accessible control hub for you to monitor all your employee’s or family members devices; including activity, time spent online, and threats blocked.

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