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Building High Value in Web3 Beyond the Hype

Web3 Needs Developers Who See Beyond Their Own Horizon

Article by Sabeen Ali | Edited and Cover Art trewkat 

Web3 is more than just a technological revolution, it’s a socio-economic movement that has the potential to decentralize prosperity and create value for all. It promises to redistribute wealth and opportunity, championing participation, collaboration, and collective ownership in a way traditional systems have failed to do.

This vision of web3 is about creating a balanced ecosystem where value is generated and shared equitably, benefiting a broader spectrum of society. Yet, there is a large group of people who see web3 as an opportunity for making quick profits through token trading, and/or exploiting the proof-of-stake (POS) consensus mechanism. I call these people ‘POS Pirates’.

POS Pirates are characterized by their relentless pursuit of short-term gains in web3; their primary focus is to accumulate as many tokens as possible, often ignoring the underlying value or potential of the projects they invest in. They thrive on exploiting the collective excitement about wanting to propel a decentralized world.

In the context of web3’s future, it is crucial to distinguish between hype and high value. Hype, predominantly fueled by speculation and short-term profit motives, is transient and often misleading. In contrast, high value is anchored in the creation of enduring impact  —  in fostering sustainable growth and genuinely contributing to the decentralization and democratization of wealth and opportunities.

As the web3 space evolves, it’s vital to remain vigilant against these POS Pirates and their short-sighted pursuits, focusing instead on nurturing initiatives that contribute positively to the overarching vision of a decentralized, equitable digital future.

In the realm of web3, the paradigm of value creation and distribution undergoes a fundamental shift. Unlike traditional centralized systems where value is accumulated by a select few, web3 ensures that value is disseminated among the users who actively contribute to and engage with the network. In this landscape, every contribution is valued, whether it is recognized through token incentives or other forms of acknowledgment.

Developers in this space are more than just creators; they assume the role of visionaries shaping a new digital environment. They are tasked with the responsibility and opportunity to build an internet experience that is open, transparent, and fundamentally fairer. Web3, therefore, represents not just a technological evolution but a cultural and economic revolution in how we interact with and contribute to the digital world.

Such a shift requires a collective mindset that values cooperation, collaboration, and a willingness to think beyond individual gain. To create high value as a developer amidst the hype-driven web3 market, here are some best practices that I have observed through my career:

  1. Focus on Real Issues
    Developers should prioritize uncovering authentic issues — user or business pain points — rather than pursuing fleeting trends or immediate profits. Tackling real-world challenges enables the creation of enduring and impactful solutions. Graham Wallas, in The Art of Thought, presents a four-stage creative process, widely cited in idea generation and creativity discussions. This model comprises Preparation, Incubation, Illumination, and Verification stages. Employing this process, or similar frameworks, aids in effectively pinpointing and addressing problems and their solutions.

  2. Focus on Creating Value
    In the Forbes article, 14 Strategies To Balance Profits And Customer Satisfaction the author states, “the goal of every business is to make a profit, but sometimes in the quest for higher earnings, the focus on customer satisfaction may be overlooked.” Instead of creating rapid but superficial applications, prioritize the development of products that are dependable, scalable, and durable. Such an approach fosters sustainable growth, as customers value and appreciate products that offer consistent and long-term value.

  3. Prioritize User Experience
    High-value products prioritize the overall user experience. Strive for intuitive, user-friendly interfaces that enhance productivity and deliver value seamlessly. By focusing on user needs and feedback, developers can create solutions that truly meet user requirements.

  4. Emphasize Long-Term Benefits
    Instead of merely promoting short-term gains, developers should communicate the long-term benefits and value of their products. It is important to highlight the potential for growth, cost savings, increased efficiency, and the overall positive impact that users can expect by using the product. This approach aligns with insights from the Harvard Business Review article, Why Build in Web3” which notes, ‘building on an interoperable infrastructure layer makes it easy for platforms to plug into broader content networks, thereby expanding the scale and types of value they can provide their users.” This underscores the significance of focusing on sustainable, long-term value creation in product development.

  5. Establish Trust and Reliability
    In a market driven by speculation, building trust with users is crucial for sustainable growth. Provide regular updates, bug fixes, and improvements to ensure that your product remains reliable and trustworthy. In my 2014 LinkedIn article titled The Whole Developer, I emphasized the duty of social responsibility, writing that developers are responsible for acting ethically and compassionately, not only within their teams but also across the broader community. This approach is just as applicable as we navigate web3 and will help in building trust and reliability in a market that has suffered reputational damage. Engage in open communication channels to address user concerns and foster a strong connection.

  6. Foster Partnerships and Collaborations
    Develop high-value products by seeking partnerships and collaborations that align with your goals. By combining expertise, resources, and shared vision, developers can create synergies that enhance the value of their products. Building a strong network within the industry can lead to sustainable growth and impactful solutions.

  7. Continuously Adapt and Innovate
    To stay ahead of the hype-driven market, developers must continuously adapt and innovate. Keep an eye on emerging technologies, industry trends, and changing user needs. By staying agile and flexible, developers can ensure their products remain valuable and meet the evolving demands of the market. 

The journey through the web3 landscape is not just about coding or creating; it’s about evolving as a developer and as a person. It’s about being a visionary in a digital world that is constantly changing and growing. As developers, it’s our responsibility to focus on real issues, create value, and prioritize user experience.

We must emphasize long-term benefits over short-term gains, establish trust and reliability, and foster partnerships and collaborations. But it’s not all serious business; innovation can be seriously fun!

Let’s be the developers who not only write lines of code but also write new chapters in the story of digital innovation.

Here’s to creating a web3 world that’s not just about the technology, but about the people behind it — a world where every developer is not just a coder, but a creator of change, a builder of dreams, and a collaborator in our decentralized, equitable future.

Author Bio

Sabeen Ali is an accomplished web3 leader and the Global Head of Developer and Community Experience at ConsenSys, where she oversees a multidisciplinary team focused on building a robust web3 community and developer engagement through initiatives like hackathons and educational programs. She boasts a rich history of partnership with Fortune 500 companies and international organizations, leveraging her expertise to enhance their brand engagement with the developer community, and has developed a network of over 250,000 engineers worldwide. With a Master’s in Organizational Development and a strong commitment to leveraging web3 for social good, Sabeen combines her experience in change management with a passion for empowering developers in the evolving blockchain ecosystem.

Editor and Designer Bio

trewkat is a writer, editor, and designer at BanklessDAO. She’s interested in learning about web3, with a particular focus on how best to communicate this knowledge to others.

BanklessDAO is an education and media engine dedicated to helping individuals achieve financial independence.

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