WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
There are many that hope Web 3.0 will be a decentralised censor free internet, but that’s unlikely to be the case, so Dorsey is now looking ahead to Web 5.0.
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Just as many people, awesome tech nerds mostly let’s face it, are getting used to the idea of Web 3.0 which is only just starting to make its mark on the world, complete with its blockchain, crytpo, NFT’s, tokens, and the metaverse tech stacks, in a new interview Jack Dorsey is already looking ahead. In fact he’s looking so far ahead he’s skipping Web 4.0 and has gone straight to Web 5.0, and bearing in mind that each iteration of the web takes 10 to 20 years to come to fruition this is his vision for what the web should look like in the year 2040 and beyond.
Jack Dorsey’s beef with Web 3 has never been a secret. In his view, Web 3 – blockchain boosters’ dream of a censorship-resistant, privacy-focused internet of the future – has become just as problematic as the Web 2 which preceded it.
Now, he’s out with an alternative.
Learn more about the current Web 3.0 technologies
At CoinDesk’s Consensus Festival in Texas TBD – the bitcoin focused subsidiary of Dorsey’s Block (SQ) company – announced its new vision for a decentralized internet layer on Friday. Its name? Web 5.
TBD explained its pitch for Web 5 like this: “Identity and personal data have become the property of third parties. Web 5 brings decentralized identity and data storage to individuals’ applications. It lets devs focus on creating delightful user experiences, while returning ownership of data and identity to individuals.”
While the new project from TBD was announced Friday, it is still under open-source development and does not have an official release date.
A play on the Web 3 moniker embraced in other corners of the blockchain space, Web 5 is built on the idea that incumbent “decentralized internet” contenders are going about things the wrong way.
Appearing at a Consensus panel clad in a black and bitcoin-yellow tracksuit emblazoned with the numeral 5, TBD lead Mike Brock explained that Web 5 – in addition to being “two better than Web 3” – would beat out incumbent models by abandoning their blockchain-centric approaches to a censorship-free, identity-focused web experience.
“This is really a conversation about what technologies are built to purpose, and I don’t think that renting block space, in all cases, is a really good idea for decentralized applications,” Brock said.
He continued: “I think what we’re pushing forward with Web 5 – and I admit it’s a provocative challenge to a lot of the assumptions about what it means to decentralize the internet – really actually is back to basics. We already have technologies that effectively decentralize. I mean, BitTorrent exists, Tor exists, [etc].”
Web 5’s monetary layer will be built on the foundation of Bitcoin. This is unsurprising, given Dorsey’s outspoken Bitcoin “maximalism.” The other technologies underpinning Web 5 are borrowed from myriad areas of cryptography and computer science.
Web 5, like Web 3, will enable users to interact with one another without intermediaries. This, in theory, means no threat from government censors or centralized service outages, among other supposed advantages.
Similar to other attempts to create a decentralized layer on top of the web, Web 5 will also aim to provide users with a “decentralized identity” allowing them to seamlessly move from application to application without needing to explicitly log in, and user data, rather than getting stored with third-party products and services, will be controlled by users in their own data wallets and only be exposed with their permission.
And while that might all sound interesting, personally I think their pitch needs work and their idea, while credible, needs more substance so we’ll see how this new trend unfurls over the next few years …