The Confusion About Web3


Computer Science


Web 3 has gained a lot of attraction in the last few months, especially after Elon Musk tweeted about it. Even though people are talking about Web 3, there has been a lot of confusion related to the idea. Some people are even confusing Web 3 with Metaverse as well. So here we will discuss the origin of the idea of web 3 and why are some not sure about its credibility. <h2><b><center>Web 2 and Web 1</h2></b></center> Before we talk about the idea of Web 3, we need to see what led to the emergence of the idea of web 3. So we will first discuss what are Web 2 and Web 1. Web 1 refers to the first stage of the World Wide Web (www). It is considered to exist between 1990 - 2004. During this period, users could only read the content on the webpage but couldn't interact with it as such. The websites at this time were static. Basically, users could only consume information online. Then came the web 2 era. Web 2 started with the introduction of dynamic websites. Users can make their accounts on these websites, comment on the content, make and edit their posts, etc. This led to a greater amount of interaction between users on the web and led to the emergence of websites like Facebook and MySpace, etc. This is also known as the "read/write" version of the internet. These websites also started generating a lot of revenue by showing advertisements on their platform and collecting user data and selling it to other companies who use the data to draw some conclusions, generally related to their products. <h2><b><center>Web 3</h2></b></center> As stated earlier, in web 2, some companies like Google, Facebook, etc. have a lot more influence than the other companies. They also collect user data and even sell it. Facebook has got into trouble for selling the private data of its users. This got people worried about how these companies use private user data to their advantage (even in the wrong ways). This led to the emergence of the idea of Web 3. The term was coined by the founder of Ethereum in 2014. The main idea of Web 3 is to make a decentralized system where you can do everything on web 3 that you could do on web 2 plus you have the ownership of the data you generate online. This means other companies cannot own your data (at least until you don't provide it yourself). In web 3, you can become shareholders of the websites and can have the say in how the website "works" (basically the protocols that the website follows). This can be done with the use of blockchain technologies like cryptocurrencies and NFTs. <h2><b><center>Why Are Some People Against The Idea?</h2></b></center> Web 3 sounds very promising but has gained a lot of criticism as well. Jack Dorsey, former CEO of Twitter said that some Web 3 companies criticize big tech companies for their influence on the internet but ownership over blockchain networks is not equally distributed but concentrated in the hands of early adopters and venture capitalists. Apart from that Elon Musk finds the idea of Web 3 flawed and "nowhere to be seen".

- Ojas Srivastava, 11:47 PM, 26 Dec, 2021