Basically, we’re building a product to facilitate Social Sourcing: The incentivised activation of result driven online virality. This means that the very nature of the product is distributed, and requires to facilitate dynamic aggregation of result-driven ad-hoc social networks. The only way to facilitate such dynamic distributed social aggregation is to have the infrastructure allowing this be distributed itself, so that it does not stand in the way of these ad-hoc network propagations from forming and converging.
I’m guessing you know this, but inventing a global distributed virtual computer which can enable economic value and contractual state machines to operate in a trustless manner in web scale is quite a breakthrough. At 2key, we’re developing a new kind of service — Social Sourcing — which is in essence a form of social contracts, which in turn is a type of smart contract where humans are the players forwarding the state machine, in our case using link sharing. Social Sourcing requires to play out a dynamic state machine processing both information and valueflowing within the human network.
Blockchain enables distributed clients to generate a decentralised computer that can run “programs” in which the clients themselves take part of, and our goal with 2key is to advance the eco system by hot wiring the internet of information (HTTP) with the internet of value (Smart Contracts) so to infuse an economic model into link sharing. Our goal is to transform the human web into a result driven processor, which rewards its human nodes for selectively relaying information online.
Think of the brain, it’s just a highly selective Global Referral Network, with each neuron functioning as a relay node which selectively relays forward information each and every second. There is no base server dictating or facilitating the relays, and even no “master” or “miner” nodes helping out, but simply the nodes themselves function as both clients and servers, giving rise to the mind. We’re trying to generate a similar result-driven machine on a larger scale, out of the human web, with human nodes comprising this web-mind. Human players connect and become active node members using their clients (e.g web-browsers), and these clients must be able to dynamically and independently play out information-value state machines directly with one another. So a technology which facilitates a distributed virtual machine which empowers clients to dynamically connect peer to peer and play out smart contracts using link sharing is required here.
Essentially, without a truly distributed protocol relying only on the clients themselves to dynamically form these auto-tracking referral graphs it will not be possible to actually infuse an economic model into HTTP, since you would otherwise rely on some central server to weave the referral graph together, which would defy a base specification of our solution, which requires to make the protocol inherent to the links, and agnostic to the specific clients/apps which use them or through which these 2key links pass. For this to actually work, we need the links to carry everything onboard with them, so that this “application” can pass seamlessly anywhere online, just as HTTP does.
Think of it this way, there’s currently no application that transcends the web since each application is centrally served and you can only use it if you are in the app. You can’t forward an entire facebook post, with all its functionality, to snapchat, right? because centralised applications are dependent on the specific server which serves them, and the apis which they serve are not seamless with the web — i.e. they’re not automatically compliant and integrated into other apps. You can however send HTTP links anywhere and everywhere online, since the HTTP protocol is intrinsic to the web, and not owned/operated by any central service provider. Likewise, if we were to serve our protocol from a centralised server, it could not be seamlessly embedded into the sheath of the network, and integrating with it would be dependent on installing or otherwise integrating with some specific APIs, software or code, which would mean that we’d then just become another application, and not what we need to be — a distributed social economic network infused into links, which can seamlessly pass through any other application or UX online, facilitated by link sharing alone, affectively fusing an economic model as an integral part of link sharing in the web. Our notion is to have an economic model embedded into link sharing, so that links can become aware from whom and to whom they are shared, and what economic value is ultimately generated from the act of sharing the links. For this to be truly accomplished, the tracking of the web must be migrated from siloed integrations (e.g. pixels) and centralised apis, to some distributed protocol embedded into weblinks themselves..
Why public blockchain?
This is basically a question of centralised vs. decentralised, with several points to it:
We’re building a social economy, where businesses, users, consumers and network service providers come together under one marketplace. This requires to maintain a public token, which is cryptographically secured, to function as the bloodline of the economy, such that there’s a token which is tied to the utility of the economy, so that the economy can be directly optimised to serve its utility. The only available solution to maintain a globally distributed economy with multiple service providers and other interest holders distributed globally is to bank it on a public chain which can maintain economic balances of social and monetary capital in a trustless manner, which can ensure all these parties of interest can collaborate faithfully without a single point of failure or dependence. Dependent central markets are prone to failure, and in economy wide contexts it is required to ensure a distributed nature to the banking system to maintain a healthy distributed marketplace.
If you look at current centralised online market economies like amazon, uber etc.. there’s only one company really at the center, it’s not an actual economy, and all other players get dwarfed to serve its purpose, thereby greatly limiting the ultimate value that these networks can grow to. This stems from a critical market flaw that wasn’t relevant in the centralised web but is becoming relevant now, and that’s the major differences between shares in a for-profit company and tokens in a for-profit economy. When the marketplace is represented by the shares of the centralised controller, the true value growth and interests of the participants cannot be taken into account, so there’s no real network effect in value. But in a distributed economy, the base cryptocurrency can actually represent the profits not just of one company but of multiple for-profit participants, from consumers to companies. Remember, a lone star can shine bright, but a galaxy will shine ever brighter. We are looking to develop an inclusive global economy that multiple for-profit companies can join and take part in, an economy that empowers the peers, rather than a single centralised agent, thus having all participant members on a 1 sum game, all looking to maximise the value of the network.
We see this as the feasible way to establish a strong, viable and highly valuable token economy. Simply put, we believe an actual distributed marketplace with tokens representing everyone’s interest can rise in value much greater than any single centralised company structure. This is why, traditionally, countries’ economies were worth more than any single company. And while we’ve started seeing a handful of globally distributed central companies rise in value more than countries, we believe the future lies in decentralised utility-specific application layers online, building robust utility-specific global economies. The whole current fallback hype to security tokens is just a defence back to charted waters, but the future is in allowing true distributed online economies to rise, and I have no doubt that when the ecosystem matures and stabilises, we’ll see the average market capital of tokenised distributed-networks greatly surpass those of share-backed centralised-companies.
To sum it up, running an app on a private blockchain means, beyond the trust issues, that we would essentially be swaying away from building a multi-company economy (which can ultimately rise in value in aggregate of all its participants) to building just one centralised company in star formation, with all users circling around us.. It has the lure of control, but we believe the end game is to bring forward the highest representation of value, and we believe the path to that is not shares in a single company, but tokens representing shares in all companies bound in common interest to see the same token economy rise.
We’re designing a distributed economic network — and part of the strength of our tokenomics, is that the 2KEY token reflects the profits of all companies offering services in this economy, not just one centralised company. For such an open economy to flourish, is must be based on a public banking structure so that each interest party can faithfully hold their stake in the network, and interact with all other peers from an equal vantage point, which we see as the basis for successfully attracting multiple companies and a global participant base into the network.
Last, private blockchains are just another implementation of centralised backends. They’re very expensive to run and induce non-scalable costs if and when an app depending on them goes viral.. We’re optimising our delivery by utilising the public blockchain for ultimate banking of social and monetary capital, while facilitating the majority of the smart contracts to play out scalabley offchain, but not via a centralised private blockchain served by 2key Ltd, rather by ad-hoc decentralised networks comprised of the clients themselves playing out each social contract.
Thanks for reading!
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Co-Founder, CTO, CIO @ 2key.network