The metaverse is one of the most trending topics at the moment and brands (and influencers) all over the world are looking to get involved.
Nike has filed a handful of trademark applications, declaring its intention to sell virtual branded sneakers and apparel.
Disney CEO Bob Chopek said that the company plans to build its own metaverse by connecting the physical and digital worlds.
Snoop Dogg is building his mansion in The Sandbox metaverse.
Along with the excitement that comes from the potential of the metaverse, there also comes a raft of unknowns. To gain a better understanding of potential, risks and opportunities presented by the metaverse, we will be interviewing web 3.0 leaders to get their insights.
JUSTIN BANON FROM BOSON PROTOCOL
Boson Protocol enables a decentralized commerce ecosystem where all participants share in the value they create. They automate digital to physical redemptions with minimized arbitration, using NFTs encoded with game theory. Boson Protocol as a vision to enable a decentralized commerce ecosystem by funding and enabling the development of a stack of specialist applications to disrupt, demonopolize and democratize commerce.
1. WHAT ONE THING ARE YOU MOST EXCITED BY WHEN IT COMES TO THE POTENTIAL OF THE METAVERSE?
The metaverse has huge potential for connecting people with each other and for connecting brands with their customers in ways that have not previously existed - but we only start to see its true potential realised if it is built in an open, decentralized way.
People get distracted by whether VR is just around the corner. In our opinion, that is not going to be universal quite yet, but the more important thing is that we lay the foundations for virtual worlds in which people are able to interact socially and economically without Big Tech acting as controllers, gatekeepers or extractionary intermediaries.
The move to the metaverse has been hastened by the recent travel situation and it is very exciting to envisage a world where we can interact with individuals and businesses in a much more immersive way than is currently possible. Boson Protocol enables anyone to sell physical products in the metaverse - and the blurring of boundaries between the physical and digital world is going to be one of the key narratives in our immediate future.
2. IN YOUR VIEW, WHAT IS THE MAIN RISK OF THE METAVERSE?
We currently live in a world where our digital interactions are totally dominated by the tech giants, who extract value out of us at every opportunity. The Web3 ecosystem gives us the tools to change this - and while we believe that there is room in the metaverse for every type of organization, from the largest to the smallest, we also believe that one type or size of company should not win at the expense of everyone else.
Web3 allows people to own their own assets independently of a game environment or a virtual world and to retain control of their own data. As we spend an increasing amount of time in the digital realm, it becomes more important than ever that it is not controlled by a single entity. This is why we have become founder members of the Open Metaverse DAO.
3. WHAT IS ONE TIP YOU WOULD SHARE WITH ESTABLISHED ORGANISATIONS LOOKING TO LEVERAGE THE METAVERSE?
This is a generational opportunity to create innovative and memorable commerce experiences that can create new, lasting brand relationships with digital citizens. In my opinion, the brands that go down the route of selling their merchandise in a way that is not tied to one platform - in other words, leveraging the full potential of Web3 to create NFTs that have an independent and interoperable value - will be the ones that win out in the longer term, as these products will have the greatest enduring value.
4. WHAT DOES THE METAVERSE LANDSCAPE LOOK LIKE IN 12 MONTHS?
In technology, things tend to move slowly, then quickly. We are now in the phase where everything is moving very quickly, and we have already seen the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, ASICS, Nike and Gucci entering the space.
The metaverse is already moving beyond its origins in gaming to attract a much more diverse demographic, who are going there to meet their friends, have meetings, shop and fully explore the potential of these new worlds, and I’d expect this trend to accelerate over the next year.