The Metaverse 3 is coming: How to get your company ready for it through DAOs and Social Tokens
Here is the link to the Notion page of the thesis.
I am interested in new technology trends and business ideas. When looking for a master’s thesis, I always wanted to have a brand-new topic waiting to be discovered. Writing my thesis on this topic gave me great ideas about the current Web 3.0 ecosystem, the metaverse opportunities, existing blockchain implementations, exciting startups, DAOs, tokens, and most importantly, what employees think about these concepts. I did not lose my motivation even for a second during my research. I am proud to announce this summary as the result of my study.
This research focuses on how companies can shape their future management model considering the trends coming together with Web 3.0, the metaverse, and blockchain technologies. In addition to these trends, employee opinion is also very important for employers. Therefore, a survey has been conducted to understand the perspective of people from different industries about the new management model, DAO, and its features.
What do we know so far?
In the past two decades, there have been changes in how people interact with the internet. In the early times of the internet era, the World Wide Web was used only for academic research and communication among colleagues, not for commercial purposes.
With the development of blockchain technology, the barriers between the business world and the technology world have started to fade. Thanks to crypto technologies, people discovered that the WEB can be a decentralized place and started creating companies to do that. The blockchain and current web features guide the world toward integrating websites with artificial intelligence, natural language processing, data mining, temper verification, efficiency, and transparency (Khan et al., 2019).
Metaverse is one of the most exciting terms created in 1992 in the science fiction novel Snow Crash. From the first date the “metaverse” was used, the concept of the term has changed and broadened. The simplified definition for metaverse can be a mixture of virtual places where people can create social connections in various activities such as meetings, games, concerts, trade goods, and services and create avatars that might look as they wish. Metaverse can be accessed by anybody at in anytime with a simple internet connection to discover the miracles where virtual reality (VR) meets with augmented reality (AR) to create a new era of the internet. Metaverse is the leading concept for transforming the internet from Web 2.0 to Web 3.0.
What has been done by big companies so far?
It is not wrong to say that the metaverse topic has become more prevalent in society after the strategic move of Facebook to change its name to “Meta” on Twitter. Facebook believes that the metaverse is essential to this new goal and has been investing in it since 2014. Oculus was acquired for $2 billion in the same year, and Facebook has continued to develop and release new virtual reality products since then.
Like Facebook, Google started its metaverse investments long ago, in 2014 by investing in Magic Leap, a company developing augmented reality technology. Also, in February, it was noticed that YouTube was looking for a Web3 Director with 15 years of product management experience and an understanding of cryptocurrencies, blockchain, consensus mechanisms, NFTs, and other Web3 technologies.
Microsoft is getting ready for the metaverse as well. The most significant movement of Microsoft was the introduction of Microsoft Mesh in 2021. The company launched HoloLens 2 to offer the best experience in Microsoft Mesh. Another investment of Microsoft was in the gaming industry. The acquisition of Activision Blizzard shows that the company is considering the metaverse as an essential area.
Amazon is one of the giant online vendors in the world. On March 15, 2022, Amazon launched AWS Cloud Quest: Cloud Practitioner, a new game to easily teach users how to use Amazon Web Services. Amazon aims to educate people about its core cloud services by taking advantage of the metaverse and offering fundamental implementation areas like workshops.
Apple is joining the race to develop metaverse and blockchain technologies. Apple would like to focus on AR technologies since users can interact with their physical environment rather than on VR, which is limiting users by isolating them from the physical world. Currently, there are already more than 14,000 ARKit applications in their App Store.
Tencent is one of the largest and most influential companies not only in China but also in the World since they own the world’s largest social media platform, WeChat. The company acquired Riot Games, the creator of League of Legends, and invested 330 million dollars in Epic Games. Since Epic Games owns Fornite, one of the best games for future metaverse implementations, this creates a great opportunity.
Tokenization is simply creating digital assets to replace the physical assets of an organization or company in the real world. Almost every purchase can be tokenized, such as art canvases, cars, and even real estate. The tokenization procedure makes it simple for any company with significant assets to generate money via a rapid, effective, and legally compliant approach. There are different kinds of tokens that serve other purposes. These include security, utility, payment, and non-fungible tokens.
Tokens have been used in various industries, from finance to technology, by companies worldwide. The ways of using tokens and tokenization can be without limit. Some examples include advertising, fundraising, authentication, payment of goods and services, creating decentralized exchanges, and more.
DAO is a blockchain-based management system that allows people to coordinate and manage themselves through a set of self-executing rules deployed on a public blockchain and independent of central control (Hassan, S. & De Filippi, P., 2021). In other words, an entity with a DAO structure does not have decision-makers such as the board of directors, senior management members, or CEO. Since nobody supervises the decision mechanism, the members make joint decisions and work collectively. According to the smart contract of the DAO, a certain ratio of the members should vote during the decisions to change the existing smart contract or add a new rule to it.
Traditional Companies vs. DAO
It would be easier to understand if we make a comparison the traditional big companies and the new DAOs in the same industry, offering similar values to their clients.
Spotify vs. Moda DAO
Spotify is one of the internet’s most prevalent streaming music services, with 433 million individuals, including 188 million customers, spread over 183 regions. Just like every intermediary in all sectors, there is a blockchain solution that creates a rival for Spotify: Moda DAO.
Moda DAO is a decentralized technology, management, and economics for the Web3 audio market. They introduced a peer-to-peer system that eliminates the middleman, in this case, Spotify. They introduced the MODA token because the big technology companies in the music industry make so much money over the artists and only pay a tiny portion to the actual creators.
It can be expected that some artists will start working with DAOs like Moda DAO instead of Spotify in the future because working with DAOs allows them to make more money and connect with their fans directly.
Airbnb vs. DTravel
Airbnb has changed the travel industry significantly by offering travelers to stay in private homes rather than hotels. Airbnb is one of the world’s most well-known and popular vacation rental platforms, with more than 4 million hosts and 6 million active listings worldwide. Like Spotify, Airbnb also acts as a middleman. It is a win-win situation for the hosts as they will get to make some extra money on the side while sharing their home with others from all over the world. However, they could make much more money if they directly rent their property to travelers. DTravel already knows that and offers this solution with the features of DAO.
The difference from Spotify is that Airbnb is not just a middleman for money transactions but also a trusted entity between both sides. The host or the traveler knows that their money is safe, and even if there is a problem, Airbnb will help them to solve it. The trust mechanism of DTravel works differently Every transaction made through the platform will be stored on the decentralized blockchain. According to DTravel if there is a problem the DAO community and voted policies will resolve the dispute if this fails.
The Employee Survey
60 people from different industries completed the survey to understand:
- What do they think about their autonomy in their working environment?
- Do they need approvals even if it is not necessary to complete their daily tasks?
- Would they want to work for a DAO?
- What do they think about implementing a DAO on a department/company scale?
- Do they think their industry is suitable for DAOs?
The hypotheses we have tested in this survey are as follows:
- H0: Employees feel free to express their creative ideas when they do not need to get approval from their managers, regardless of their industry.
- H0: People think that the implementation of DAO should be in a department instead of the whole company, regardless of their industry.
- H0: Employees in all of the sectors think a DAO would be better than the traditional one in their industry/company.
Conclusion & Findings
According to the results, we did not reject any hypothesis and came up with the results as follows:
- Most of the participants believe that they deal with a lot of unnecessary approval processes and these processes can be automized easily.
- Most people think implementing DAOs on a departmental scale is better than doing it for the whole company. This statement is also supported according to deep internet research about DAOs. Managing a company as a DAO has so many adverse and unpredictable effects. For example, if a company is operated with a smart contract, the token holders can decide every employee’s salary, working hours, and even their working style.
- Many employees are willing to work for a company that does not have any hierarchy. However, most people do not want to work for a company managed by a community. This situation raises the question: How can we combine the best parts of the DAO and the traditional management method?
- One of the most important findings for companies is that most respondents think they deal with many processes that can be automized quickly. Using a DAO structure in departments with many simple approval processes will be an intelligent move for increasing efficiency and decreasing costs.
- Companies in the software industry seem more suitable for DAO and token implementations because their products and services are entirely digital. The survey results also support that the software industry seems better for blockchain implementation than other industries; however, there are not enough findings to prove this statistically.
In conclusion, Web 3.0 and its features are inevitable for all industries, companies, and employees. At some point in the future, using these features will be necessary for all businesses connected to the internet. The metaverse and blockchain technologies, like DAOs and tokens, will continue to shape future working environments.
- Khan, A. G., Zahid, A. H., Hussain, M., Farooq, M., Riaz, U., & Alam, T. M. (2019). A journey of web and blockchain towards the industry 4.0: An overview.2019 International Conference on Innovative Computing (ICIC). https://doi.org/10.1109/icic48496.2019.8966700
- Hassan, S., & De Filippi, P. (2021). Decentralized Autonomous Organization. Internet Policy Review, 10(2). https://doi.org/10.14763/2021.2.1556