Medium vs. Publishing in the Creator’s Economy

For at least half a decade, Medium has felt like a paradise for writers, readers and content creators everywhere. Launched by Twitter founder Evan Williams, Medium was announced as “a new place on the Internet where people [could] share ideas and stories that are longer than 140 characters and not just for friends.” Laden with a significant range of stories — ranging from manifestos to personal tales — Medium quickly built up momentum and became a place for writers to “find the right audience for whatever [they] had to say.”

This ease of access, combined with the ability to quickly and efficiently post content, has made Medium a favourite by many authors and companies seeking a publishing or content marketing platform. However, the company has also been heavily criticised for restricting how writers can monetise and publish their work, despite marketing itself as an open platform., the first instance of a decentralised writing platform, was newly launched in December of 2020. What are the benefits of a decentralised publishing platform and how might its mechanisms change how writers are compensated? As part of our ongoing “vs” series, let’s take a closer look at the business models of both Medium and its new Web3 counterpart, — and highlight how Web3 technology is helping writers to gain better control over their revenue streams.

Medium: an effective message

As a hybrid blog and publishing platform, Medium enables both amateur and professional writers to share their work without any alleged limitations to their content. Currently accounting for over 54 million users and over 100 million users per month, it now sits as a leader in online blogging and publishing. For a decade now, Medium has aimed to host the best articles from various different fields. At the time of writing, the platform is heavily used for both unique and republished content.

Medium’s original mission has been to give writers from any corner of the world the opportunity to publish their writing — obscured only by a soft paywall of $5 a month or $50 a year. If we take into account the site’s current user base and $600 million valuation (including a recent raise of $30 million USD in late 2021), we can see that this model has been met with great success.

Writers on Medium are given the opportunity to freely publish their work on the site — however, those who want to earn money from their content are restricted to the site’s Partner Program. While top writers and publishers can earn upwards of $50,000 per month, those starting out on the platform are likely to see much more meagre earnings (we’re talking closer to $25). Writers are also given bonuses if they reach the platform’s list of top creators, meaning that an author’s success on the site largely hinges on how well they can grow their following and push out consistent content.

The trouble with Medium

While Medium has offered writers, journalists and publications a seemingly more unrestrained platform, it still comes with its fair share of cons.

As is the case with all Web2 platforms, writers no longer own their content once it is published to Medium’s grounds. Should the platform ever decide to delete a user’s work, shut down an account or ban a user from posting, there’s very little wiggle room for them to fight back. Of course, this raises the potential for authors to lose all control over their work and their audience should they land on the wrong side of the platform.

And while the possibility of this happening may be unlikely, this dynamic still highlights the futility that we have previously seen on other large social media platforms, such as Facebook, YouTube and Instagram. In 2018, we also saw Medium abruptly cancel the memberships of 21 of its subscription publisher partners.

Another common complaint about Medium is the number of restrictions associated with the site’s Partner Program. With the Medium Partner Program, writers can make money on the platform using two methods: a) to monetise their work based on total member reading time or b) to earn money by referring users to become paid subscribers. Payments are calculated based on the total time that paid subscribers spend reading articles, as well as on per-month subscriber revenue. This means that only writers with higher member reading times will be paid more generously. 

Another downside to this business model is that only users with paid stories get any sort of promotion on the site. Given that it can be difficult for writers to get enough attention that their work actually makes them any money, it presents an uphill battle for writers to make a sizeable income from publishing on Medium in general.

On top of that, writers on Medium are also not allowed to promote anything inside their paid posts. This means that other forms of monetisation (such as adding links to products, adding affiliate links or embedding subscription forms to grow an online following) are strictly prohibited on the platform. Couple this with the fact that a writer’s posts no longer belong to them once they’re posted on Medium — and we can easily gather that the mechanisms of the site are strictly designed to benefit the platform, not its publishers.

While Medium also promotes itself as a platform that accepts content from all ends of the spectrum, this is also not necessarily true. Authors of content that doesn’t make it to the platform’s front page will find it challenging to gain significant traction on the site — especially those outside of Google or large tech firms (such as YCombinator and Hackernoon), which are responsible for referring the most traffic to the site. It’s also notable that the only SEO control that users have over their work is content-based — making this system largely disadvantageous to those looking to publish work about niche industries or topics. a decentralised counterpart

Launched in 2020 and founded by Denis Nazarov, former partner at venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), Mirror is a DAO that is both built and run by its contributors. cryptocurrency, rather than typical transactions. As a decentralised and crypto-based platform built on the Ethereum blockchain, writers are able to crowdfund their projects by selling them as NFTs. 

When first launched, writers were required to obtain the platform’s native $Write token — which could be earned by partaking in the platform’s “$Write Race”, a weekly contest that helps determine users’ membership. Once users were in possession of the token, they could begin crowdfunding their projects and rallying support from backers. However, in late 2021, Mirror’s team announced that the platform would be open to anyone with an Ethereum address and wallet.

Mirror’s team has also further commented on the benefits of a blockchain-enabled publishing platform: “Through a decentralised, user-owned, crypto-based network, Mirror’s publishing platform revolutionises the way we express, share and monetise our thoughts.” 

Like Medium, Mirror offers an important component to the online publishing world — an engaged community. As noted in one of the company’s official blog posts: “There are many DAOs with vibrant communities and significant treasuries, but they are not recognised as first-class entities by the Web2 ecosystem of creative and developer tools.” As a solution, “Mirror bridges a Web3 entity into Web2 distribution of ideas.”

Since its launch, industry leaders (such as Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin) and a series of successful DAOs have used Mirror to publish their content. One such example of a successful crowdfunding campaign on the platform includes a documentary about the development of Ethereum, where a total of 1036 ETH was raised (the current equivalent of over $2 million USD).

What’s even more notable is the monetisation strategy offered by Mirror. As the platform is built on the Ethereum blockchain, it provides native support for any crypto-native business models around tokens and NFTs. The platform’s Entry Editions feature, for instance, allows for different works to be sold at different price points — all while also allowing writers to sell their work without having to put it behind a paywall.  

Will enable greater ownership and security for writers?

Unlike larger, more commercial platforms like Medium, content on is stored on a decentralised blockchain, rather than a series of company servers. As such, publishers are able to wield greater control and security over their content. Writers who publish their content on the platform also become co-owners of their work, ensuring that contributors’ interests are placed at the forefront of their roadmap. 

Instead of logging in with a username and password, writers can sign up to Mirror using their Ethereum wallet. This means that they hold full ownership of their account, which will live on an open blockchain as opposed to a centralised database. Anything published on Mirror is also cryptographically signed by users and housed on permanently decentralised storage, meaning that any data is protected from corruption or modification from malicious parties or faulty service providers. Also, because this storage is permanent, the longevity and integrity of any content are ensured via blockchain technology.

What’s even better is that cross-functionality has been introduced to those who do use Medium, Substack or other Web2 publishing platforms — with the added option for writers to import their blogs from other websites with ease. Should writers be hesitant to transfer their work onto a Web3 platform, the outlet has already been created with this transition in mind.

Final thoughts

While Mirror is still a relatively new platform, we’ve already seen several examples of how Web3 platforms are empowering those in creative industries. Audius, as we’ve previously spotlighted, has already helped several musicians sell their work as NFTs and rake in greater profits. Other platforms have also risen to the fore to help writers monetise their work, including Publish0x, Steemit and Bounty0x.

With the goal of helping writers share their stories, securely monetise their work and build a community around their content, Mirror is steadily revolutionising the process of digital publishing. Users have more control over how they monetise their work and more leeway to publish exactly what they want inside their posts.

Like many Web2 platforms, Medium isn’t hesitant to place restrictions on small accounts, ads inside content or content that it doesn’t like. If the platform doesn’t make money, it seems to have no issue with making further changes to make money — even if said changes disadvantage its authors. In a creator’s economy, platforms like Mirror are continuing to show how writers and creators can thrive when they are not beholden to their mediums — and where users can truly read, write and own.

Metaverse Weekly: BAYC Land Sale Rocks Markets, Reverses NFT Volume Collapse

The company behind the very popular Bored Apes Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT line collected an estimated $320 million USD through the minting of Ethereum-based virtual land deeds. 

The land being sold is to be part of a coming BAYC-led metaverse project. 55,000 different land parcels were minted by Yuga Labs and brought to auction.

Example Land Parcels from Otherside Mint – OpenSea

Just the Yuga Labs mint alone has completely reversed the negative trend of volume within the NFT market. 

Struggling NFT Market

New studies have identified that the NFT market as a whole has been struggling for months, with the daily amount of NFT sales plummeting from highs in 2021. From August 2021 until November 2021, the NFT market was posting daily sales routinely near 1.2 million. This was generating an outstanding $500 million – $1 billion in daily sales.

NFT Market Sales – NonFungible

Since the cryptocurrency market peaked in November 2021, NFT sales had ground to a near halt. For a time, sales volume remained elevated on diminishing sales, showcasing the potential NFT value bubble popping in real-time.

Many NFTs that were purchased for millions of dollars just months prior could barely get bids worth even a percentage of the prior NFT’s price.

At its market bottom, daily sales had fallen an estimated 92%. The resurgence in the market came from the Yuga Labs’ virtual land drop that saw ~443,000 total NFT market sales bringing in $1.4 billion in total sales.

Resurgence in NFT Market Volume – NonFungible

Ethereum Slowdown

The land sale itself single-handedly brought Ethereum to a halt, with the Ethereum blockchain posting historically high gas prices. It is important to distinguish that Ethereum never went offline, just because it was far too congested for normal wallet holders to use.

Gas prices on the Ethereum network spiked to over 6,000 GWEI on May 1, quite literally making the blockchain unusable for the majority of the Ethereum ecosystem. This effectively priced out nearly the whole market, with basic transaction fees posting gas fees upwards of $9,000 USD.

Ethereum Gas Charts – ethereumprice

This major slowdown in Ethereum usability prompted Yuga Labs to state on Twitter that it “seems abundantly clear that ApeCoin will need to migrate to its own chain in order to properly scale” and would like to “encourage the DAO to start thinking in this direction”.

Some users attempting to mint BAYC land spent literally thousands of dollars worth of Ether just to have their transactions fail due to the mass congestion. Part of their public statement, Yuga Labs stated publicly that they would take responsibility and pay back users who lost funds attempting to mint land.


With the majority of the cryptocurrency market extending its overall downtrend into its seventh month, NFTs should and are also declining with the broader market. This also includes the recently released ApeCoin which is down from its all time high of $26.70 (-48%) just one week ago.

Whether the BAYC community will actually launch an alternative L1 blockchain network exclusively for BAYC holders remains to be seen. Additionally, gas prices on Ethereum have since normalized once again.

The Ronin Bridge Hack: Recapping Crypto’s Largest Hack Ever

On March 29th, 2022, it was discovered that there had been a significant security breach on the Ronin network. Ronin runs the Ronin Bridge which connects major P2E title Axie Infinity to the Ethereum mainnet.

This breach resulted in the theft of 173,600 Ether and 25.5 million US Dollar Coin. At the time of the hack, this equated to over $600 million USD in value – making the Ronin Bridge hack the single largest hack in crypto history.

Ronin Tweet

How the Hack Occurred

The Ronin network is secured by validators, a set of nodes that verify the state of the blockchain perpetually. The hacker that exploited the network was able to compromise the node keys for four different validators, giving the hacker control over the network itself.

This is essentially a form of 51% attack. A 51% attack is any network attack that is carried out by taking over 51% of the validating nodes on a network, giving the attacker control over the state of the blockchain.

51% Attacks Image credit: Andrew Butler

The Ronin Bridge hacker utilized this concept and was able to verify the removal of over $600 million USD in ETH and USDC.

The funds themselves have largely remained undisturbed in the wallet that was originally used post-hack. A reported $7 million USD was moved through privacy tool Tornado Cash.

Market Effect and Aftermath for Axie Infinity

The cryptocurrency market largely brushed off the hack initially. Axie Infinity’s native token, AXS, did not decline in price substantially on the news. In fact, AXS actually saw a price increase prior to the latest market decline.

AXS Price Action

Axie Infinity delayed the release of Axie Infinity: Origin after the hack was discovered and has since been working diligently to restore the lost funds to the network to pay back initial users who had their money stolen.

As of April 11th, Axie Infinity appears to have successfully identified or already secured funds to replace the $600 million USD. Axie Infinity was able to raise $150 million USD through Binance and other supporting partners. 

Also, Sky Mavis (the company behind the development of Axie Infinity) announced that they would be paying $450 million USD out of pocket to replace funds lost in the hack. It is unclear as to how these funds will be used to restore lost value on the Axie Infinity chain.

Decline of Axie Infinity Player Count

The largest effect that the hack has had on Axie Infinity is related directly to its overall usage. The blockchain’s average daily player count has tanked spectacularly post-hack, declining by an estimated 45%.

Axie Infinity Player Count Source: Sky Mavis

Of course, it has been pointed out that the daily user count on Axie Infinity has been decreasing for an extended period of time, tracing back to the December 2021 peak. Since then, millions of users have failed to interact with the chain.


The Ronin Bridge hack was a big loss for the P2E and blockchain gaming sectors. Axie Infinity is a leading metaverse/gaming project, responsible for a large percentage of the sector’s overall growth.

The hack also depicts another prime example of the vulnerability that certain bridge networks have. Bridges connect blockchains together and facilitate the transfer of data and information between otherwise isolated networks.

Though bridges have a growing importance as infrastructure within the crypto-economy, major security faults have led to two of the biggest hacks ever: the Solana wormhole hack and now the Ronin bridge hack.

The Top 5 Things We Enjoyed About Metaverse Fashion Week

Within the last week, news has been abuzz with spectators’ accounts about Decentraland’s inaugural Metaverse Fashion Week. In fact, it’s safe to say that no other digital fashion event has ever received so much industry attention, making it one for the books.

As the metaverse and NFTs are continuously becoming a regular part of our everyday vocabulary, we’re likely to see more events become digitised and show a capacity to bring both industry leaders and global communities together. Both industry leaders and the general public have now seen greater evidence of a bridging gap between digital and physical commerce.

We’ve put together a quick recap on the top 5 things we enjoyed about the very first Metaverse Fashion Week. We’ll also touch on how these highlights are setting a precursor for future events in fashion, gaming and the metaverse as a whole.

The lineup

At least 70 brands were present at this year’s Metaverse Fashion Week, with names both big and small on the list. Larger brands were able to reach larger and more diverse audiences, while smaller brands were able to see increased exposure through the digital event.

Names including Dolce and Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger, Philipp Plein, Forever 21, Hugo, Selfridges and Estée Lauder all used Decentraland’s reserved land plot to sell both physical and digital products and wearables. Other, lesser-known brands such as Auroboros and Etro also made significant headlines.

Has this changed the game of fashion? Absolutely. As brands continue to pay attention to technological shifts, it appears that many more are and will continue to invest in the metaverse. Not only did MVFW offer selling opportunities for brands — attendees were also able to access further brand exposure through virtual afterparties, interviews, runway shows and performances inside Decentraland.

In all, the expansiveness of the event allowed for multiple experiences and an excellent opportunity for revenue generation. In fact, according to one survey conducted by Virtue Worldwide, 94% of global respondents reported foreseeing digital fashion becoming mainstream and one in three respondents say they already own a digital fashion item.

New ways to release clothing

Brands were able to explore new ways to sell their inventory and engage with consumers at Metaverse Fashion Week, allowing the concepts of both physical and digital wearables to converge. Through Boson Protocol’s technology, brands weren’t just able to advertise their physical pieces to consumers — they were also able to sell them as tokenised NFTs. This meant that singular assets purchased at the event combined both NFT wearables for Decentraland avatars and physical products that could be redeemed at actual storefronts.

According to Gigi Graziosi Casimiro, head of Metaverse Fashion Week: “MVFW is important because it connects many parts of a bigger engine in the fashion industry. This event allows brands to explore new possibilities for their creation and communication with customers. We are essentially building a stronger fashion community in Decentraland that allows people to express art beyond physical limitations.”

Photo by © David Esser –

In all, Metaverse Fashion Week has set an important precedent for the future of fashion consumption. As avatars and digital personas become more integrated into our everyday online activity, so will the items that fill their inventory. The concept that NFTs can come packed with underlying utilities is also likely to change our understanding of purchasing, giving both physical and digital items an experience component as well. 

Justin Banon, co-founder of Boson Protocol, has noted the importance of allowing digital and physical elements to be represented by NFTs. “What we are seeing is physical and digital items becoming ‘digiphysical’ — digital tied to physical,” he says. He refers to this new approach as “physical and digital experimental commerce.”

Easy access portal

Attendees of Metaverse Fashion Week had two option to enter the event — either using their Ethereum wallets, or as a guest. Luckily, both options were quite simple and streamlined. Unlike other metaverse-based events, the majority of attendees reported being able to enter Metaverse Fashion Week with ease.

As scepticism and cynicism still surround the concepts of blockchain technology and the metaverse — especially within the gaming community — an easy access portal was likely very crucial to MVFW’s success. And as far as we can tell, Decentraland nailed it. Given that these are early days, we’re of the opinion that not requiring every attendee to use a wallet or be crypto-savvy just yet was probably the right approach.

Overall ease of access

As the saying goes, the best things in life come for free. Unlike our vision of typical fashion weeks (which are usually only attended by the industry’s most elite figures), Metaverse Fashion Week was free for anyone across the world to access. That meant that no tickets, guest lists or money were required to attend. Also, given that it wasn’t held in a fixed, physical location, the event was also able to run around the clock — meaning that attendees from every time zone were able to jump in on the action and that the event was able to host a global community.

Not only did this approach increase the overall headcount — it was also notable in that it made fashion (namely higher-end fashion brands) more accessible to a wider user base. 

Sam Hamilton, creative director at the Decentraland Foundation, spoke about the accessibility and global scale of the event: “The Chinese community is building stuff and the Japanese community, too. What you said about not being the same as traditional fashion weeks, we are building a brand new world here and we have the chance to make things better if we can. So it’s important to follow some things that happen in the traditional world, but also push the boundaries.”

Is it possible that taking elitism out of fashion events will change how brands are able and willing to monetise? It’s certainly worth keeping an eye on.

Gaming references

Okay, sure — we had a bit of a penchant for the Mario-themed house we spotted while browsing the event. While it might have been a small easter egg, we’re hoping it’s a precursor that future events of a similar nature will come packed with more incentive structures and a more gamified approach.

Metaverse Fashion Week has been a formidable trailblazer for the fashion industry — but as things still stand, it’s still the gaming industry that is leading the way into the metaverse. Even Big Tech platforms are touting gaming as the leader in our shift towards Web3. Following their acquisition of game publisher Activision Blizzard, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has been quoted in a recent statement: “Gaming is the most dynamic and exciting category in entertainment across all platforms today and will play a key role in the development of metaverse platforms.”

With measurable real estate, an Ethereum-based cryptocurrency and spaces for multiplayer gaming, Decentraland has already solidified its efforts to make the metaverse platform a space for gamers in Web3. To further develop its approach to gameplay, the platform has also invested in a company called Decentral Games — where players can play to earn and even gain access to custom wearables. Will we see a similar concept be replicated in the next big digital event? Let’s wait and see.

Check out our walkthrough

If you didn’t get the chance, be sure to check out our video walkthrough of Metaverse Fashion week! Here, we covered more highlights and our favourite parts.

A Quick Take on Decentraland’s Metaverse Fashion Week

This weekend, our team jumped into this year’s first Metaverse Fashion Week — a four-day event held inside popular blockchain-powered platform Decentraland. Over the course of the event, 60 brands showcased new clothing collections through a series of digital runway shows, after-parties, pop-up shops and more. Players were even given the opportunity to try on digital wearables using their avatars.

Let’s highlight what we experienced in this year’s Metaverse Fashion Week — including some pros, cons and highlights about the overall experience. We’ll also cover what the success of the event might spell for the fashion industry and future virtual events.

In a nutshell

In all, Metaverse Fashion Week was a great way for various brands to showcase new designs, experience greater exposure and explore new ways to combine both physical and digital wearables into singular purchases. 

A large host of brands, artists and designers participated in the event — with names ranging from Estée Lauder to Dolce and Gabbana to Selfridges and Forever 21. Some brands even purchased real estate within Decentraland’s ecosystem, using their space to debut their new flagship stores. 

Other brands, such as Tommy Hilfiger, showcased physical products as tokenised NFTs — meaning that users who purchased any wearables in the metaverse could also redeem corresponding physical items inside actual, real-world storefronts. This new convergence of physical and digital purchasing was enabled by the technology of Boson Protocol — a company that’s currently looking to create a new trading ecosystem for Web3 through its decentralised infrastructure.

Just like real-world fashion events, Metaverse Fashion Week was also brought to life by celebrity attendees and online performances. For example, future-savvy, electronic artist Grimes closed the virtual display of digital fashion brand Auroboros with her own DJ set — all with her avatar dressed in a custom bodysuit wearable.

To make purchases inside the event, users simply had to load their Ethereum wallets. However, the event was free for all to attend — with those not coming equipped with a wallet still able to attend as a guest.

Some of the good and bad

Those who reported attending Metaverse Fashion Week have claimed that connecting their wallets was generally easy and seamless. Each area was also visually appealing and engaging — with digital wearables, promotional visuals and other displays programmatically inserted into each space.

One of the biggest caveats reported by several attendees was the lack of proper graphics support. We’re not the only ones who experienced regular glitching and lagging throughout our time inside the event — with the display sometimes bugging out each time we switched rooms or locations. With that being said, however, better motion tracking, network advances and improvements in latency should allow us to see refinements made in other metaverse events down the road.

Also, due to the surplus of levels and obstacles inside the event spaces (such as stairs, lifts and ramps), we also noted the potential for gamification that the creators of MVFW missed the mark on a little. Seeing fashion brands explore new ways to offer products has been exciting — but it would also be nice to see Decentraland provide players with better incentive structures in future events of a similar nature.

Is this the start of a metaverse event boom?

Whether Metaverse Fashion Week was easy to traverse or not, one thing is clear: that it will likely be the first of many community events inside the metaverse, let alone inside the fashion world. Unlike the case with real-life fashion weeks, planning an event inside of a digital ecosystem has enabled a new way for anyone to attend — regardless of their status, association or location.

When commenting on making Decentraland a more inclusive and accessible platform, Sam Hamilton, Decentraland Foundation’s creative director, has aptly described it as a “virtual social world for anyone, anywhere.” Moreover, he’s commented on MVFW’s potential as a game-changer for the fashion universe, claiming that it has “levelled up the playing field for the world of fashion and decreased the limitations.” 

As was the case in the early days of Web1 and Web2, it will take some time for user experiences to improve in Web3. However, the potential for more accessible, profitable and innovative opportunities has surely been illuminated by the model of Metaverse Fashion Week — and if they haven’t already, now is a great time for brands to start paying better attention to what they can do in the metaverse.

Check out our walkthrough video

If you didn’t make it to this year’s Metaverse Fashion Week, we put together this video covering our walkthrough inside the event. Check it out here:

For more updates on future Web3 and gaming events, be sure to keep reading gmw3.

NFTs: A Token of Gratitude

NFT projects are often tarred by the same brush. Since the meteoric rise in 2021, NFTs are usually seen through the materialistic gaze; the imagery created is designed to be used as a profile picture across social media and forums. The push-in PFP images, along with a wealthy community bankrolling new projects certainly shape a world where many are paying for exclusivity, clout, and opportunity. 

For some, the hyper-popular NFT projects such as Bored Ape Yacht Club, Meebits, and CryptoPunks are the equivalent of a verified blue tick. But among the noise of floor prices skyrocketing and celebrity tradings, there are creators and entrepreneurs using NFT technology for the good of the world and our society. These creators are taking NFTs far beyond the visuals.

In a Time of Crisis

We cannot look at this shift of using NFTs for good without examining their use in the current humanitarian crisis happening in Ukraine. As the invasion of Ukraine by Russia rocked the globe, many were left wondering how they could send aid towards those losing their homes, identity, and history. The war, understandably, has created volatility in global financial markets, with fiat (traditional) currencies taking a hit.

One of the first projects launched to aid those in Ukraine came from a collaboration between Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and the digital artist Trippy Labs. Together they minted 10,000 NFTs of the Ukrainian national flag on the Ethereum network. This project, to date, has raised over $6.7 million to support the military of Ukraine. Elsewhere, 500 Ukrainian artists have gathered together to launch the Holy Water NFT project, funds from which will be used to support the people of Ukraine.

There are many projects being launched across the world which aim to bring financial support to those in desperate need. Cryptocurrencies, alongside the NFT sphere, are enabling those in Ukraine to take in donations not set against the turbulent fiat markets. Since tweeting out their crypto wallet addresses, the Ukrainian government, through Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov, has received nearly $40 million in crypto donations, along with many NFTs which can be sold on secondary markets to raise further capital.

Supporting Equality

Artist Yam Karkai, principle creator of the World of Women (WoW) NFT project, says this about her work: “The mission of my art was always to showcase women, put them in the spotlight, and bring more diversity into the space.” The World of Women project sought to focus on women within the traditionally male dominant industry. 

Launched in July 2021, WoW released 10,000 uniquely generated NFTs with a floor price of 0.07ETH – around $203 currently. Since then the project has had artwork featured with auction house Christies in London, as well as support from high profile celebrities. This has raised that originally low floor price to around 9ETH – around $26,300 currently. Throughout the campaign, WoW has donated over $250,000 to women’s charities, including She’s The First and Too Young to Wed.

Elsewhere, female creators are releasing highly successful NFT campaigns which aim to heighten awareness of women’s rights in various areas. Boss Beauties champions female empowerment, selling out the entire collection in just one hour after the initial minting. A subsequent campaign was released recently, in partnership with the United Nations for International Women’s Day 2022. The new collection featured inspiring women from throughout history. Included in the NFTs were; Frida Kahlo, Maya Angelou, among others. Proceeds from the charity sale were donated to fund scholarships for women and girls.

While progress is being made within the NFT space to further equality, ‘It’s Nice That’ notes that the art movement is distinctly white, leaving many black and ethnic creators without a voice. Aiming to tackle this issue is illustrator Aurelia Durand, in collaboration with The Black Arts Project. Together, the team has created a 10,000 strong collection celebrating those of African descent and African diaspora. 

The collection will benefit important black causes “from grassroots to the metaverse” and champion equality. In discussion with It’s Nice That, Anthony Gibbs, founder of The Black Arts Project, believes the creative space “isn’t welcoming to black people” and “this is even reflected in the fact that NFTs with white complexions are selling for more than those with darker complexions”.

It’s Our World too

It’s no secret that the planet is rapidly sliding into a climate crisis. And many would argue that NFTs and cryptocurrency are accelerating this issue, despite positive steps in Proof of Stake. Some creators are hoping to tip the scales in the other direction, or at the very least use NFTs to boost awareness of the environmental issues at hand. The priority is leaning towards using NFTs as tokens to represent conservation efforts worldwide.

If you choose to be a Nemus guardian, you’ll own an NFT image that acts as a token representing a portion of the Amazon rainforest. Of course, you don’t own the slice of land itself, but your money does aid and benefit indigenous people living within the rainforest, while also creating a protective border to prevent deforestation. The project’s most expensive option rewards the buyer with “diamond rarity’ artwork, representing 81 hectares of land which locks in approximately 28k tonnes of carbon.

Sticking with the lungs of the Earth, the Woodies project also sold 10,000 NFTs which can be used as PFPs. The project raised 73.824ETH – currently $223,961 – and this money trained 1,600+ farmers and planted over 837,000 across sub-Saharan Africa, which results in over 30,000 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide being sequestered over twenty years.

Utilising blockchain gaming and NFTs are Purple Penguin, a project which aims to “revolutionise climate conservation”. Working with Project Ark, Purple Penguins has created carbon-neutral NFTs by minting them on the Polygon network, which is known for its low fees and low energy approach to blockchain programming. The funds raised from the NFTs and their blockchain gaming platform AntARTica will go directly to charities conserving the climate and wildlife in the southern hemisphere.

In its very early stages is the project Good Cactus Frens which aims to sell NFTs to raise money for Charity Water, an organisation that provides clean drinking water to those in need. While this project has barely left the ground, it’s admirable to see more of these concepts brought to the fore.

What’s the Next Step?

Ultimately, NFTs and blockchain generally, have a trifecta of issues that taint even the noblest of causes with a daub of darkness. Dubbed by many as the “trilemma’ these flaws in the technology will, until solved, frequently hold back the effectiveness of goodwill campaigns and projects. The trilemma breaks down thus: 

Decentralisation – Blockchain technology needs to further distance itself from centralised companies, giving equality to all users.

Security – Each blockchain must have better than ironclad defence to malicious attacks, phishing scams, and hacks.

Scalability – Blockchains need to be able to handle large volumes of transactions at speed and without fault while reducing the costs of fees to the user.

It’s the second and third points that could hamper progress for charitable causes. Without being able to guarantee the security of their patrons, fewer people will be willing to take a chance and invest their money. This lack of security can be seen in two ways; vulnerable blockchains open to hacks and bad actors who could set up a charitable fund only to ‘rug pull’ buyers and disappear with a bounty of cash into the anonymity of blockchain. A way to combat this issue is for groups to doxx themselves and bring down that curtain that hides their identities, which would go some way to setting potential investors at ease.

Image © Shutterstock- Hi My Name is Jacco

We can’t forget the issues of scalability, though. Currently, there’s a dilemma occurring and its name is Ethereum. Ethereum is the blockchain daddy right now. Only Bitcoin is close in computing power and market dominance. But Ethereum is both an energy hog and a money sink. Gas fees are still outrageous and the number of nodes needed to compute the algorithm burns through energy.

On the flip side, Ethereum is popular, reasonably secure, and reliable. This makes it an appealing place to launch goodwill projects, despite the inherent flaws described above. A balance will hopefully soon be struck allowing for environmental conservation without the impact of the blockchain counteracting it.

Can Blockchain Better the Planet?

In short, yes it can. Eventually. The unrestricted movement of funds due to cryptocurrency can hugely benefit charitable causes, particularly when avoiding the ups and downs of fiat currency. However, the problems crypto faces, as explained above, are not the only issues. The biggest perhaps, is adoption.

Image © Shutterstock – Vit-Mar

While there are now millions of people who hold a cryptocurrency wallet, many of these users will own several wallets, due to crypto compatibility, while many of them will remain empty. Until governments begin proper legislation discussions and adopt crypto as an alternative to traditional currencies, it’s hard to imagine crypto being welcomed by society as a whole, meaning these NFT projects are ultimately being sold to an incredibly small market.

The world of crypto and, by extension, NFTs is riddled with jargon and instructions many would find obscure. Once this issue has been overcome, the wider public will be more accepting and open to supporting charitable NFT projects, which would also help in breaking down the current climate of non-utility PFP projects.

How do Blockchain Platforms Differ?

A quick glance at the largest cryptocurrency tokens reveals a host of diverse offerings, each with markedly different approaches when it comes to their underlying use of blockchain. From those that focus on being investment vehicles to others that specialize in hosting distributed applications, how exactly do these blockchains differ in their approach?


Even the most casual follower of technology will be familiar with Bitcoin, which for many might also be practically synonymous with cryptocurrencies in general. That’s reflected in the fact that other cryptocurrencies are commonly grouped together as “altcoins” versus the monolith that is Bitcoin.

Its popularity stems partly from its first-mover advantage. Its journey to becoming by far the largest cryptocurrency started with its release in 2009. Developed by a mysterious person or group known as Satoshi Nakamoto, the currency is well known for its significant price fluctuations (topping out at around $69,000 in November 2021) as well as its pioneering use of blockchain technology.

While we won’t dive too deep into the specifics of how blockchains work, in the case of Bitcoin the work of joining together the eponymous, unalterable blocks is done via a process known as mining. To ensure that new data is permanently stored on the blockchain, computers on the network compete to solve increasingly complex mathematical problems. The miner who successfully solves the problem is then given Bitcoin as a reward. The chance of winning is directly correlated to the amount of work that can be done on the problem – hence the emergence of gigantic Bitcoin farms in areas where energy prices are low.

Bitcoin’s prominence means many of the negative headlines regarding blockchain technology (such as its outsized impact on the environment) involve the cryptocurrency in some way. It’s also recently been the centre of controversy after the nation of El Salvador adopted it as legal tender – a move the IMF condemned.

Hot and Cold Crypto Wallets


Where Bitcoin is focused on digital currency, Ethereum sets itself apart by virtue of its programmable nature. The open-source platform has become well known for its support of decentralized applications, smart contracts, NFTs (non-fungible tokens), as well as the ubiquitous cryptocurrencies.

That’s all accomplishable thanks to the fact that Ethereum is a so-called “Turing Complete” blockchain. What that means is that it can be coded to perform any task required of it via decentralized applications (dapps). Dapps include things like games and exchanges, all running securely on the blockchain. As a result, they gain all the security and uptime benefits of the technology – with all their code and data hosted, secured and verified by computers on a distributed network.

Then there are smart contracts, programs deployed on the blockchain that automatically execute agreements based on the rules that are coded into them. Thanks to that, they can be used as infallible intermediaries for executing transactions, ensuring that everyone involved is certain of the outcome once the prerequisite conditions are met. Ethereum is also well known for powering NFTs (non-fungible tokens), which use the blockchain to confer proof-of-ownership onto digital items such as digital art, video game items, music and much more besides. The principle is much the same as cryptocurrency, only an NFT points to a unique asset, while any given unit of cryptocurrency is identical.

Like Bitcoin, Ethereum only functions thanks to the energy-intensive process of mining – as they share the consensus mechanism known as “proof-of-work”. However, the platform is currently planning a raft of upgrades to move to another form of validation known as proof-of-stake. The platform is hoping that will solve scalability problems hampering its dapps. Currently, Ethereum can only handle somewhere between 15-45 transactions per second. To ensure that transactions get through such a congested system, exorbitant transaction or gas fees have to be paid by users. With upcoming upgrades the blockchain is targeting 100,000 transactions per second, meaning those associated fees should fall.


Like Ethereum, Solana is a generalist blockchain, supporting cryptocurrencies, decentralized applications, smart contacts and NFTs. It was founded in 2017 and is operated by the open-source Solana Foundation based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Solana’s blockchain emphasizes throughput – with transactions-per-second around 2500 compared to Ethereum’s 30. It achieves this via a process known as proof-of-history, whereby every transaction is given a cryptographic timestamp. That ensures there is a verifiable sequence of transactions without requiring the work of every node to validate it, meaning less computing power is required and lower gas fees have to be paid.

Unlike Ethereum and Bitcoin, however, it utilizes a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. That sees users staking cryptocurrency to become validators. They are then randomly chosen to create new blocks as well as check and confirm blocks created by others. The tokens they have staked can be taken away if they approve fraudulent transactions, incentivising them to validate correctly – at which point they receive tokens and the transaction fees within a block.


Finally, South Korea-based Terra was founded in 2018 by Do Kwon and Daniel Shin. The Terra blockchain specializes in facilitating so-called “stablecoins”. These are cryptocurrencies that track the price of real-world fiat currencies. The blockchain supports two main complementary types of cryptocurrency tokens known as Terra and Luna respectively. The Terra tokens are pegged to the price of real-world currencies (TerraUSD being pegged to the United States Dollar). 

That’s achieved thanks to the Luna token, which serves to stabilize the price of Terra stablecoins. Users must “burn” Luna to mint Terra and vice versa. The system algorithmically incentivises one process over the other to keep the currency stable. While the price of Terra is maintained, as the use of the blockchain grows the price of Luna increases.

In line with all this, the Terra network touts its decentralized finance (DeFi) credentials, a movement to remove third parties from financial transactions. As such it supports decentralized applications including decentralized savings protocol Anchor


Even in the relatively early days in which we live, the inherent flexibility of blockchain technology has resulted in a broad swathe of use cases. While the blockchains we have discussed are leading the market at present, disruptors with pioneering new approaches to using the technology can be expected to join the pantheon at any time – with services like Chainlink’s oracle platform being just one potential bet.

All You Need to Know About Blockchain

Blockchain. While you may think the term has reached maximum saturation, expect it to become even more inescapable over the next few years as more and more solutions are built on top of it – be they dapps, DAOs or NFTs. Which makes understanding exactly what blockchain technology is on a fundamental level fairly crucial. Speaking of…

What is a Blockchain?

A blockchain is fundamentally a digital ledger that records information and stores it securely, verifying its authenticity through cryptography. Crucially, the work of updating the blockchain is a shared endeavour, carried out by computers across a network. That means a blockchain can be a secure and authentic record while remaining decentralized.

As you may be able to tell from the name, blockchains consist of “blocks” of data, joined together in a chronological chain that tracks precisely where assets are moving to and coming from. Once a block is created, it cannot be removed or altered, meaning that its position in the chain (as well as the date and order of transactions it contains) is permanently recorded. 

The physical hardware running the software of any given blockchain are referred to as nodes. Their responsibilities range from the aforementioned validation of transactions and setting the state of the blockchain to serving as the endpoints that enable users to actually access applications on the network.

Of course, as a decentralized network, users need to be incentivized to maintain the blockchain. That is usually financial, in the form of newly created cryptocurrency or from transaction fees paid by other users. These “gas fees” pay for miners to use their hardware to create the new block necessary.

Blockchain Scalability

Consensus Mechanisms

All of this is only possible thanks to consensus mechanisms that ensure every node agrees. Depending on the specific mechanism (such as proof-of-work or proof-of-stake), a blockchain grows via a process known as mining or validating. 

Proof-of-work mining involves computers on the network competing to solve increasingly complex mathematical problems in order to securely add new blocks onto the blockchain. Winning the race is a game of chance, but your odds are significantly improved the beefier your hardware, meaning mining is an energy-intensive affair. The miner who succeeds in creating the block is given new tokens – as well as the transaction fees contained within the block.

Proof-of-stake validation, meanwhile, sees users depositing cryptocurrency to become validators in a process known as staking. They are then randomly chosen to create new blocks as well as check and confirm blocks created by others. Once a block is validated, the validator then gets tokens and the transaction fees within. The tokens they have staked can be taken away in the event they approve fraudulent transactions.

In both cases, new transactions are verified and recorded without the interference of one central authority. Proof-of-stake is viewed as a greener solution for blockchain construction, with Ethereum being one example of blockchain targeting a move from proof-of-work. It also helps solve another of the problems plaguing the technology: scalability. Ethereum can only handle somewhere between 15-45 transactions per second – with upcoming upgrades the blockchain is targeting 100,000 transactions per second.

Why use Blockchains?

With all that in mind, you might be wondering why you would go to the trouble of doing all that just to produce a ledger – hardly the most groundbreaking of technologies. The key innovation that makes blockchain such an intriguing technology, however, is the fact that it is decentralized. What that breeds is trust. With data stored and synchronized across the network, immutably, users can be assured that everything they need is present and correct – all without the interference of a third party taking its own cut.

This fact enables a number of exciting possibilities, perhaps chief among them smart contracts. Essentially programs stored on the blockchain, their immutable nature means that they are guaranteed to execute whenever the conditions programmed into them are met. That means they can be used to automate agreements, again without relying on a third-party arbiter.

Smart contracts can be used to power everything from games to decentralized finance applications, but one of the most exciting possibilities is their use in oracles. Oracles connect reality to the blockchain by using off-chain data, perhaps from a real-world sensor, to trigger events. A prominent example is Chainlink, which allows users to connect smart contracts to real-world information such as weather data – in turn enabling parametric insurance that reimburses farmers for reduced crop yields caused by drought after a weather sensor detects low levels of rain.

Who are the Big Players?

In terms of name recognition, Bitcoin is certainly the best-known blockchain, thanks to the precipitous rise of its eponymous cryptocurrency. Since launching in 2009, its pioneering approach has seen it become far and away the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.

For possibilities on the blockchain other than cryptocurrency, however, Ethereum has proved to be the most popular. Having launched in 2015, it has made its way to being the second-largest by capitalization on the back of its smart contracts, decentralized applications and non-fungible tokens. Open source, the blockchain refers to itself as “programmable”, with a dedicated programming language for writing smart contracts known as Solidity.

Among the also-rans, the largest blockchain to have implemented the previously discussed proof-of-stake consensus mechanism is Cardano. Then there’s Solana, the USP of which is its use of proof-of-history to increase throughput – with transactions-per-second currently hovering around 2500. Proof-of-history sees every transaction given a cryptographic timestamp to produce a verifiable sequence of transactions that doesn’t require every node to agree, resulting in less computing power being required.


Now you understand what a blockchain is, it’s well worth diving deeper into some of the many possibilities the technology enables. Take a look at some of our other resources to find out more about NFTs, virtual land and blockchain gaming, to name but a few!

Overcoming the Ethereum Blockchain Trilemma

As the use cases of blockchain technology have ballooned in recent times (with everything from NFTs to oracles), a significant problem has emerged with protocols such as Ethereum. The high demand for making transactions on the blockchain has led to the gas fees which are necessary to power them becoming increasingly expensive. At the same time, the algorithms that must be performed to add to the blockchain are proving wasteful and slow. In short, blockchains have a major throughput problem – one that could even scupper the arrival of Web3. So just what is being done about it?

The Blockchain Trilemma

Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of the Ethereum blockchain, has postulated a so-called “blockchain trilemma” that means developers have to make trade-offs between decentralization, scalability and security – without being able to deliver all three at the same time. In its current incarnation, Ethereum is arguably prioritizing the latter two.

The long-awaited Ethereum 2.0 is a response to these concerns but has been in gestation for so long (since 2014!) that even its name has been deprecated. The ideas behind the upgrade are to make Ethereum simultaneously more scalable (with an ambition of supporting thousands of transactions per second), secure, and sustainable – all while still remaining decentralized.

As it currently stands, Ethereum nodes (the computers powering the blockchain) struggle to handle the transactions per second required. It may surprise you to learn that Ethereum can only handle somewhere between 15-45 transactions per second – severely limiting what decentralized applications are capable of. To remedy that, Ethereum wants to increase the number of nodes rather than increasing the size of nodes (which would restrict access to only those with the most powerful and expensive computers).

Vitalik Buterin - Ethereum
Vitalik Buterin – Ethereum


Let’s take a closer look at the technology behind the Ethereum upgrades. One of its major innovations is moving the way it validates transactions from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake. The former involves miners solving complex mathematical problems in order to add new blocks onto the chain – which as we mentioned before is slow and expensive. Proof-of-stake instead sees users staking cryptocurrency to become validators. They are then randomly chosen to create new blocks as well as check and confirm blocks created by others.

You’ll remember that Buterin’s trilemma means that decentralization should suffer at the expense of security and scalability. But Ethereum is betting on the power of proof-of-stake to allow it to overcome that problem. That’s because proof-of-stake ensures that the barriers to entry are low. Users are able to stake the ETH token to become validators who process transactions and create new blocks on the chain – something far easier to get into versus the mining that currently secures the network.

Shard Chains and Rollups

Along with the proof-of-stake upgrades is another crucial feature for scalability: shard chains. The idea is to help Ethereum process more transactions and store data more efficiently by creating new chains known as shards. 

Those shards are part of efforts to simultaneously preserve the golden goose of Web3 – decentralization. Stakers will be randomly assigned to validate the shard chains, which are planned to number 64 in total. The shard chains will only require validators to store and run data for the shard they are validating, rather than the whole network – making becoming a validator more accessible and less hardware-intensive.

The initial plan is to have the shard chains only provide data to the network, being incapable of handling transactions. The key to using them to boost throughput is via technology known as rollups. These allow transactions to be executed outside the main Ethereum chain, before being resubmitted alongside cryptographic proof – essentially taking computation off-chain while the data stays on.

All upgrades combined, Ethereum is targeting 100,000 transactions per second – an exponential increase on what it currently achieves. In terms of delivering these upgrades, however, Ethereum is taking a slow approach – opting to roll out improvements over time. The proof-of-stake element, in the form of the Beacon Chain, shipped in December 2020. Actually merging it with the main Ethereum Network is scheduled for 2022, while shard chains are targeted for release in 2023.

Outside of Ethereum

Despite its popularity, Ethereum is of course far from the only blockchain, and others are attempting to solve the problem of throughput and scalability in different ways. Sidechains are one prominent example, a practice whereby a blockchain is linked to another, allowing tokens to move between the two. Liquid Network, for instance, pairs with Bitcoin as the main chain. It works by enabling users to send coins to an output address on the main chain, at which point coins will show up in Liquid Network instead. After their business is done, assets can be moved back onto the main chain.

Solving the blockchain trilemma is continuing to prove a very difficult task – but only once it is achieved does the full potential of Web3 have any chance of being unlocked. What is clear is that no one approach will suffice – and even in combination, estimated speeds remain a tiny fraction of what we are used to in traditional computing.

How Oracles Connect Reality to the Blockchain

Trust makes the world go round. From the trust you place in an online retailer to deliver your order to the collective faith we have that our currencies are worth something. But just because we believe something will happen doesn’t make it so. Many believe that exposing yourself to scams and fraud is just the cost of doing business, but what if instead of agreements relying on trust between individuals, there was a way to ensure that something happened when certain conditions were met?

Enter oracles, technology that serves as a bridge between reality and the blockchain. As such, they are constructed from both on-chain smart contracts (essentially programs built on the blockchain) and off-chain hardware capable of updating the data available to the smart contract, such as a sensor.

Photo by © stockphoto-graf –

What are Smart Contracts?

To understand how they work, it’s first necessary to explain the on-chain part of the oracle: the smart contract. The key draw of smart contracts is that they are tamper-proof programs, unfailingly executing once the conditions built into them have been met. That’s because they exist on a blockchain, most commonly Ethereum, with programs written in the programming language Solidity.

“Smart” contract is actually somewhat of a misnomer. They don’t make any decisions of their own, instead, following the rules built into them to automatically execute an agreement. In the case of oracles, those rules are reliant on data input by the off-chain part of the technology. Oracles, then, are methods of connecting external systems to digital smart contracts, feeding them data of any type that the smart contract needs to understand before executing. That execution can authorize a transaction, but it can also issue an NFT, for instance.

To illustrate the possibilities of oracles, let’s use one of the leading oracle networks as an example. Chainlink’s services allow users to connect smart contracts on any blockchain to real-world information such as price feeds, weather data or off-chain computation. Think of them as an application programming interface to the real world.

In order to motivate nodes to provide accurate data, those wishing to create nodes must stake Chainlink’s LINK token into a smart contract, with LINK also being used to pay for services on the network.

Chainlink itself decides what data sources it offers. The company has formed partnerships with a number of dataset owners such as independent news organization the Associated Press, which has made its economic, sports and race call datasets available via a Chainlink node. That data can in turn be used to trigger a trade when a company’s quarterly financials are released, for instance.

A lot of the excitement around oracles stems from their possible uses in decentralized finance (DeFi) applications, such as insurance. Imagine farmers being reimbursed automatically for reduced crop yields caused by drought after a weather sensor detects low levels of rain, for instance. That’s one of the possibilities inspiring its use of Google Cloud’s Public Datasets Program and the weather and climate data contained within.

Chainlink’s oracles secure over $75bn of crypto assets as of December 2021. Indeed, 2021 proved to be a bumper year for the service and oracles in general, with a total of 772 oracle networks in Q4 2021 compared to 139 in Q4 2020. That’s led to over 1.1bn off-chain data points being delivered on-chain.

Types of Oracle

It’s worth distinguishing between a few different types of oracle which are specialized for different purposes. Inbound or input oracles are the kind we have already discussed, in that they bring real-world data to the blockchain. There also exist outbound or output oracles that can bring blockchain data to the real world, informing physical items that an event took place on-chain. That might be useful for triggering a physical smart lock once a cryptocurrency payment has been made, for instance.

There is also a difference between hardware and software oracles. The latter will deliver data from digital sources such as price data, while the former interfaces with physical sensors such as a thermometer. Finally, there are cross-chain oracles that are capable of exchanging information between blockchains, enabling information from one to trigger an action on another.

The Oracle Problem

Significant hurdles remain before oracles go truly mainstream, though, not least the issue of bad data. Whether that’s from a malfunctioning sensor or malicious actor, bad data can find its way onto the blockchain. Possible solutions lie in having multiple sources and cross-validation, though if an oracle service is able to limit the sources available, that becomes less useful. 

In the absence of regulation, there are also significant questions about the extent to which the actions of smart contracts should be considered final. That exact issue led to the splintering of the Ethereum blockchain into Ethereum and Ethereum Classic after users exploited a poorly secured smart contract to drain the decentralized autonomous organization investment group known as The DAO of funds. Once Ethereum realised what had happened, its developers decided to undo its actions, creating a split between those who believed that the actions of a smart contract should be taken as writ and those that didn’t.

The Possibilities

Assuming those hurdles are overcome, the possible use cases for oracles and smart contracts, in general, are vast. Issuing or editing NFTs automatically is one exciting avenue of exploration. Imagine an oracle that takes information in from a fitness tracker and issues rewards based on the number of steps you’ve taken. In another direction, services such as Betswap have emerged using oracles to power decentralized betting exchanges. For businesses, meanwhile, there is interest in using oracles in quality control and counterfeit reduction – as with IBM’s partnership with Sonoco which tracks temperature-controlled pharmaceuticals through the supply chain.

One of the most revolutionary uses might come in the form of parametric insurance. While not a new idea in itself, the emergence of oracles has led to a new approach to insurance that doesn’t require loss assessment. Instead, an oracle could pay out a pre-agreed sum based entirely on data from real-world sensors.

Oracles are an important step towards integrating the outside world with blockchain technology As tamper-proof, traceable systems, they provide a secure and irreversible way of moving off-chain data on-chain – the tricky part is verifying that data in the first place. Overcome that, and oracles could eventually replace the third-party arbiters that today have so much control over transactions.