My daughter and I were playing Connect4 today, though she really isn't very good at it and I beat her most of the time. At this point, she doesn't really have much of a competitive spirit of course, nor does she care much about the actual rules of the game, she just wants to play. I think that this is going to be a large part of the tokenization of the future, young people just doing what they have been doing anyway.
Gaming by near definition is already tokenized in some way, whether it be the collecting of Pokemon or the collecting of arbitrary points in tennis to track who is winning, the points are what is played for. This is why when a digital experience is designed for point scoring in some way, it is called gamified.
What is going to be interesting in the blockchain and especially on Steem realms of gaming, is that the points of one game can have value in another, meaning that a player is not bound to the game itself, because the tokens earned on one can be applied to another. This sets up much more complex ecosystems, and even if the tokens themselves do not have any other value than for playing within games, it means that the better one is at one game, the more possibility on others.
This means that the in game currencies will work much like fiat purchases, without ever having to go to fiat. One can essentially play to earn gaming tokens and then use those tokens to buy products as well as own future experience within the ecosystem.
What will be interesting is that games could work much like Steem and allow players to stake and take ownership over some parts of the system, which adds new dynamics and gamification to the experience that they might not have had before. On top of this, gaming teams could set up their own localized tokenized experiences within the larger gaming ecosystem and have microeconomies running that empower themselves, their users and create new revenue streams.
For example, imagine a popular and successful CS:GO team developing and running training servers for up and coming players who pay to get educated. Through the tokenization of the experience, a whole range of activities can be tracked and factored as well as potential for shares on future earnings and of course, the laying of bets.
I think SMTs would be a great token medium for supporting these types of communities and as they are configured more and more accurately, they will be instrumental in developing trackable economies, players and all kinds of things including advertising and sponsorship values. It is actually kind of cool to think that rather than relying solely on the gaming companies, ad hoc tokenization by individuals can leverage already built solutions and create a host of internal micro sub-economies including private ownership, without having to change the umbrella service.
Of course, it isn't only gaming that can be tokenized and just like how Facebook has spawned a million new companies and revenue streams that leverage the Facebook community, SMTs will become their own new streams with one core difference.
The difference is that essentially any company that earns on Facebook can be demonetized by having the access to the protocols revoked, the independence of SMTs that connect to the Steem blockchain means that as long as the blockchain ticks over, they own their experience. Of course, they have to have some resources in order to do so, but they are available for purchase at any time.
On Steem, an SMT business can't be demonetized by Steem itself and no matter what it does, it doesn't have an effect on other SMTs or the blockchain. It is a unit that works on Steem, but the experience it creates and owns is its own, success and failure. This sets up a fantastic opportunity for businesses of all kinds to explore and as the toolkit builds to ease the process, I think many communities will give SMTs a go and as some find a modicum of success, more will attempt the same.
The future of the internet is near certainly going toward tokenization and "pay to play" even if the pay is through earning from the internet itself by investing time and effort. The question of the future is just how it is going to be achieved at scale and how it is going to manage things like speed, distribution and borderless transactions. It is likely going to get very messy when there are tens of thousands of tokens with earning potential criss-crossing the world, moving sideways through experiences and vertically through industries with rule sets that vary heavily.
I see that even though it is going this way and the large corporations are wanting to own it all, the way the internet itself functions means that the distributed ledgers and the innovations to come will mean that individuals will continually find ways to chip away at their foundation in multiple ways. This process will make an increasing number of people aware of what is possible which drives adoption and further innovation and at a global level, it is going to be uncontrollable from a central position because whenever it gets cornered, it can fork in a new direction.
It is going to make for some interesting times ahead as the centralized world tries to connect the dots while the number of dots keeps expanding exponentially. I do not know the technicalities, but I wonder just how many SMTs Steem can hold, and how much information can be processed at a global level with each token following a different set of rules and aimed at a different subset of the community.
Times change, the digital world of tokens is coming.
[ a Steem original ]