The Crypto space and blockchain technology, in general, are growing fast. Most newcomers get attracted to it when they see the growth in price in many Cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin being the most well-known and dominant. In other words, most people come for the money, as they see that many of these assets outperform any other type of investment. However, many of us soon recognize that there is a lot more value in this technology than just their use as an investment, or as a better form of Money (see my other post on this).
One of the most promising applications is the use of this technology as a tool to help build communities (networks) of trustworthy people centered around common interests, in a way that their interest can be verified. The verification relies on something called “proof of HODL”. Yep, not a typo, there’s a fun story behind the term “HODL”, but for practical purposes, it means to “hold something indefinitely”. In our case, the person would hodl a crypto token (such as Bitcoin) in a designated wallet to show that they believe in the project associated with that token by keeping it there. Note that this can be a very small nominal amount and they wouldn’t necessarily need to buy it, but they could earn it by performing a specific task (other mechanisms exist too). What I am doing right now is an example of the latter. I am writing a description of the concept that Freehold advocates for, in order to get rewarded in a token which I hodl. One can imagine doing the same for new or existing communities, such as people that work in Nanoscience (my field of work) for which we create a $Nano token. People could get rewarded in $Nano for a variety of reasons, such as contributing opinions, publishing articles, building tools, etc. In that way, the $Nano accrued and the length of time they are hodled could be a verifiable measure of the reputation of that person in the community. The same person can be part of various communities and their collective hodled tokens can be a representation of their interests and personality.
At a time when misinformation threatens to tear apart our society, we cannot afford not to consider the benefits of a technology like this one, which will allow growing communities with valuable content, generated by verifiably trustworthy individuals. This movement is still in its infancy, and the tools are just being built, but I believe it can transform the way our communities organize and the way we build trust. You can learn more and contribute at Freehold.