Every successful Web3 project has a strong community behind it. If you ever took a moment to explore Crypto Twitter, or even an NFT Discord channel, your head might spin by the threads of "Gm", "WAGMI", "HODL", and "Wen mint?" lingo. To an outsider looking in, this might not feel all that inclusive to novice Web3 users, but to community members, their bond is the driving force behind a project's success.
For every new wave of cultural and technological change comes a reimagined definition of community. As the world transitions from the centralized Web2 paradigm to the emerging world of Web3, communities are redefining themselves in the process. Communities are reimagining how they organize, what they do, and how individuals can benefit as a result of this shift.
In traditional Web2 communities, the topic of discussion usually revolves around a product that has already been built, with a slew of influencers promoting this product. In Web3, a community is established way before a project is even launched. Building a community first is a powerful strategy that brings control back to the users, which is the polar opposite of Web2.
The Web2 vs. Web3 Community Structure
On traditional Web2 platforms, a great product begins with a revolutionary idea. Take Facebook for example. Mark Zuckerberg's early social media platform spread like wildfire throughout his Ivy League campus. Zuckerberg was a visionary who found a lack of connection among his peers and invented Facebook as a solution. Facebook was one of the foundations of Web2, and introduced an era of scalability. The few platforms that dominate the Web2 era owe their success to the relentless pursuit of attaining more users, data, attention, and engagement. The founders cared less about how harmful their engagement or attention tactics were, and focused more on outshining their rivals. Users expressed their concern with the amount of data that was exploited through the use of these social platforms, and the detrimental content the younger generations were exposed to. In response to these outcries, Facebook and other platforms continued to focus on more attention-grabbing tactics as the years went on. Web2 is not without its achievements though, communities exist within these platforms that enable users from anywhere in the world to share thoughts, moments, and ideas with one another. Even though users are powerless against the deeply surveillanced Web2 platforms, friendships and online communities are built without any boundaries. The value of this feature for some Web2 platforms enabled the spread of the crypto community. Reddit, Discord, Twitter, and even Telegram offer self-sovereign features that allow crypto enthusiasts to establish community spaces, rules, moderators, and even sub-groups, to spread awareness about the new age of the internet.
In Web3, the product cycle does a complete 360°. The common values shared between many Web3 projects and early adopters are decentralization, the elimination of intermediaries, and bringing control back to the user. Web3 founders are redefining what it means to turn a revolutionary idea into a successful project. And they do this by building a strong community foundation before a product is even built.
Members of a Web3 community share similar interests, goals, and engage in constant interactions between their founders and other members. Community members get to rest behind their true internet identities and avatars, while getting rewarded for interacting with a project early on. The idea of putting the "community first", is uncommon in the Web2 ecosystem. While having a community is often an afterthought, and sometimes not even considered by Big Tech founders, for Web3 it is the core of its foundation. If members of a community feel like their founders aren't delivering on their promises, the foundation of that project weakens. To avoid this, true founders put multiple incentives in place to engage their community, add value to their brand, and actively respond to their community's concerns and requests.
How Web3 Values and Rewards Community Members
To enable community members to be the champions of their Web3 project, founders show appreciation to their community in several ways. For starters, they will send airdrops to early adopters that indicate a promise of delivery for the final project. By airdropping digital assets, founders put the community first, by retaining their members and keeping them engaged while they build. The community in return advocates for the product on different social platforms, leading to more exposure for the project.
Project founders also invest in community managers or moderators (usually on Discord), because they know how pivotal peer-to-peer engagement is. Discords usually run 24 hours a day, cater to members all over the world, and host special in-house events and giveaways. Because Discord runs like an instant message platform (that has pre-set rules), community moderators are imperative to ensure all questions and concerns are answered, and ensure a safe environment for all members.
Furthermore, one of the fundamental differences between Web2 and Web3 communities is the idea of ownership. By owning a stake, token, or an NFT, associated with the project and joining its community, an outsider looking in may perceive this as a signal of strength and use this to measure the project’s value. In theory, rewarded members who are invested in the health of the community are incentivized in order to engage more, and contribute to the cause. There is a negative effect to this element, meaning that greedy members can sometimes create artificial hype around a project and inflate the price of its products. This can be detrimental if the holders with the most shares decide to sell their shares at a high price, and devalue the project. There are, however, options for community members to contribute to the future of a project, and have a say in its rules and direction. We call them DAOs.
The Importance of DAOs
Simply put, a DAO (short for Decentralized Autonomous Organization), is where members who share a stake in a project's native token have the right to vote on the governance of that project's protocol. DAOs have no central governing authority, and all members work together to act in the best interest of the protocol. This gives community members who contributed to the project, the opportunity to shape its future. Once a vote is cast, smart contracts are in place to execute the outcome of these decisions on the blockchain, and these agreements are available to view by the public.
Chain DAO is a prime example of how members of the community can influence the direction of Chain’s native protocol token. The Chain DAO is made up of native token holders who control the protocol, as well as the various decentralized applications developed by Chain. The Chain DAO also controls the token's treasury and can vote for delegates to represent them on Chain Governance.
Finally, Chain established a Constitution that includes a set of community-adopted rules and regulations that ensure a fair, safe, and transparent decentralized environment governed by its users. The creation of DAOs guarantees holders a seat at the table and immortalizes their conditions and policies on the blockchain, through the use of smart contracts.
Chain is a blockchain infrastructure solution company that has been on a mission to enable a smarter and more connected economy since 2014. Chain offers builders in the Web3 industry services that help streamline the process of developing, and maintaining their blockchain infrastructures. Chain implements a SaaS model for its products that addresses the complexities of overall blockchain management. Chain offers a variety of products such as Ledger, Cloud, and NFTs as a service. Companies who choose to utilize Chain’s services will be able to free up resources for developers and cut costs so that clients can focus on their own products and customer experience. Learn more: https://chain.com.
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