📝 Web3 Field Notes #32 - Paris, Bitcoin & Europe's Web4
Bitcoin as a USD reserve asset, Europe's focus on "Web4", Warner Bros NFT stunt, BMW Motorrad's new metaverse, Binance layoffs, Bloomberg and Bitcoin, top charts & more.
Hey, it’s Marc. I write about Bitcoin, Web3, and brands. ✌️ Welcome to another issue of my obsessively curated field notes to help you filter out the noise.
⏱️ Reading time: 4 min
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“If you look at the value of our dollar, how it depreciated in the last two months and how it appreciated over the last five years… an international crypto product can really transcend that.” – Larry Fink, CEO BlackRock
📚 Key Reads
Value accrual: Should protocols make money? ByLink
The evolution of loyalty: Unlocked by Web3. By Co:Create. Link
Co-creation & user generated products. By Chase Chapman. (audio) Link
Rethinking the legitimacy in DAOs. Link
IP-NFTs: A use case of how NFTs could help to revolutionize IP. Link
Onchain towns. Link
🚨 What caught my eyes
✨ Web3 + NFTs
The European Commission announced a litany of projects it wants to pursue to advance Web4 adoption (yes, “Web4”) over the next several years. It mentioned no specifics as to what blockchain technology would be used. Don’t be confused by "Web4" though: For most, the thesis stands that core technologies of Web3 (blockchain), the metaverse (AR/VR, virtual worlds, etc.) and advanced computing (AI) are converging at scale. Naming comes later. Link
Lens protocol, one of the most widely used Web3 “social graphs” (the thing on which Web3 social apps will be built on) announced Lens V2. It improves scalability and user experience.1 This is the backdrop for an internet-scale shift in the social media landscape, with a battle between Twitter and threads and new protocols like Farcaster and Mastodon.
Serotonin, one of the leading Web3 marketing agencies, announced a partnership with Spindl for enhanced on-chain attribution and measurement for the Web3 marketing stack. This is significant as this will make Serotonin one of the market leaders in Web3 marketing analytics among Addressable and Absolute Labs.
Warner Bros announced a NFT and AR-based movie experience with its upcoming movie “The Flash”. I would rate this as a “mediocre” experiment, not more. We’ve had “digital collectibles” and “2D digital cards” since 20 years. And Web3 is used as a “marketing” term - users don’t actually own anything.2 This needs to be better. Link
BMW Motorrad has launched MetaRide, a virtual reality platform where users can experience riding the new BMW CE 02 electric motorcycle and engage with the brand. While these initiatives are much-needed experiments, it remains to be seen who will actually use them. Eventually, user engagement and revenue contribution will be key. Link
Coinbase launched its layer 2 mainnet “Base”. Link
Coinbase entered the Web3 messaging space by enabling wallet-to-wallet messaging within the Coinbase wallet app. Link
🌎 Crypto & Macro
US Presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. announced plan to back the US dollar with Bitcoin. However, I wouldn't give too much weight to that just yet. A lot needs to fall in place to make this happen. Besides that, rumors are that the current Biden administration is actively working against cryptocurrencies (cf. Operation Choke Point 2.0). On top of that, assuming that about 5-10% of Americans own Bitcoin and have an interest in its value increasing, this could be a legitimate strategy to win voters. Link
The Ethereum Community Conference is taking place in Paris this week. Notable was Vitalik Buterin’s speech, who talked about account abstraction.
Ethereum account abstraction is a feature that was introduced in Ethereum 2.0 and allows to build better and easier to use wallets to greatly enhance user experience. Improving the onboarding flow and UX of wallets will be key for Web3 mass adoption.
Bloomberg Intelligence unveiled the “Crypto Ecosystem Fundamentals Dashboard”, stating that the team is planning to expand coverage beyond the “two assets that we considered to be institutional-grade quality (BTC, ETH) to a wider proof-of-stake (PoS) ecosystem”. Slowly but surely, crypto is turning into an asset class. Link
Binance lays off over 1’000 employees, WSJ reports. So far, almost every major crypto company has gone through a round of layoffs in the last two years. Link
Futureverse – a combination of 11 different companies using AI, metaverse, and blockchain technologies – raised $54M from investors that included Ripple Labs. Link
Meta releases Llama 2, its open-source LLM with double the context length, for free for research and commercial use, and expands its Microsoft partnership. This is a huge step forward for AI and open source. It gives the devs the power to do whatever they want with the code, and is the opposite approach of OpenAI or Google. Link
OpenAI has released the “Code Interpreter” plugin for ChatGPT. It allows users, for example, to review smart contracts in much more detail. Link
Apple tests ‘Apple GPT,’ and develops generative AI tools to catch OpenAI. Link
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🐦 Tweet of the week
📈 Top charts to share with friend
🎨 Artwork: “Yamabushi's Horizons”, by Richard Nadler
The main change brought with the second version of Lens is "Open Actions," a feature that enables the execution of any external smart contract action directly from Lens’ content posts. For example, with this feature, users can mint NFTs on an OpenSea contract directly from Lens' published content.