Sharing an excellent opinion piece & thorough technical analysis of “Web3” and all the hype around it, by Moxie Marlinspike, the father of Signal messenger. Like we say in Poland, “If you don’t know what’s going on, it’s likely about money”.

In all fairness, this supposedly noble goal of building something fresh and liberating is rotten before Web3 even took off. Look closely, and all you’ll find is banal and boring human greed. This has nothing to do with humanism and progressive ideas which brought us Web1.

Blockchain has been frequently called a solution in search of a problem. But it seems worse than that. More and more, it itself becomes a problem. Lofty promises of blockchain and crypto saving humanity have not materialized. What we got instead, is a pile of cow dung covered by hungry flies. Criminals, white-collar crooks, money launderers, racketeers, investment bankers, they all just love it, while it is causing real and acute problems. Horrendous waste of energy, racket-as-a-service platform for ransomware gangs, completely unregulated space for all sorts of scams and get-rich-quick schemes, to name just a few.

Obviously, it is not because blockchain or cryptocurrencies are somehow inherently evil. They’re a tool to human creativity, like any other tool. Only they got captured by the deadly combo of capitalism: lotta money, zero law. Welcome to the new wild wild west of finance, all the while senile dinosaurs currently occupying our parliaments remain oblivious. They’re busy elsewhere. Either with “culture wars” (The Liberals) or with stealing money left and right (The Conservatives) or just too dumb to understand anything of the world around them (The Dumb Middle).

Here’s one such excellent opinion piece:

“To the overwhelming majority of us in the software engineering profession who live closest to the metal, we see blockchain as a technology that barely works and whose use cases are vanishingly small and niche. Blockchains are a solution in search of a problem, but in the meantime we’re expected to pre-invest in “tokens” […]

The venture capitalist class sees crypto in a vastly different and largely incommensurate way. At its core their profession is simply about one thing: returning money to their LPs. Crypto offers an genuinely exciting new financial tool for that purpose, arbitraging securities regulation. […]

If there is any innovation in crypto assets it’s not in software engineering, but in financial engineering. We’ve created a new financial product like an option contract on a startup potentially building something real, but in case they don’t you can always exercise it early by simply dumping the stock on the public to cash out completely untethered to the company’s success. You don’t need to file a S-1 or have a coherent prospectus about attracting customers or business or revenue. Hell, the company doesn’t even have to have a business model at all, and in fact the best performing crypto assets are the ones that literally don’t do anything at all. They just need to tell a good story.”

All in all, an excellent lunch-time reading :-)