In our own name: Although no one can quite grasp it and many criticize it, a new era of the Internet is beginning with Web3. But what changes, opportunities and risks does this entail? XPLR: MEDIA in Bavaria investigated this in cooperation with 1E9 for the media industry.
by Krischan Lehmann
Devastating eco-tolls, speculative bubbles, hacks and cheats – in the reports of many established media, Web3 and the underlying blockchain technologies are currently not doing particularly well.
The prospects of a new Internet age should at least make media professionals aware: For with Web3, something is coming that will challenge the dominant platform and data economies of large networks. social media, hosts, search engines and e-commerce players. New markets are emerging, new business models, new infrastructure. Is this also a new opportunity for the media industry, which until now had a rather mixed market on the Internet – in terms of commercial success or community development, for example track record must show?
XPLR: MEDIA in Bavaria and 1E9 wanted to get to the bottom of this issue. So we used an old rule of thumb of agile digital product development: “Talk to eight people who know the subject and you’ll discover 80% of all the important aspects of the subject.” However, we wanted to know more and therefore interviewed 16 experts who work in Web3 start-ups or associations, advise companies on this subject, deal with it in a journalistic way or research it in schools and universities. Some of them here are from the 1E9 community.
At the same time, we wanted to know to what extent the subject Web3 had already arrived in the Bavarian media industry. To do this, we sent out a chatbot and interviewed industry insiders. About 200 people attended. The result is a study of about 70 pages which, in our opinion, gives a very good overview of the Web3 construction site at the moment.
Threatening insignificance of established houses, but also opportunities for new business models
Experts surveyed saw the biggest risk for media companies in the threat of irrelevance if they ignore or sleep too long on Web3. Existing advertising business models based on collecting user data, tracking and thus also maximum reach are completely called into question – because Web3 could give users back sovereignty over their data and make tracking impossible.
But there is an opportunity to redistribute the revenue from the digital attention economy – which is currently mostly going to international internet companies. Media could, for example, establish new subscription and community models with NFTs or develop more transparent advertising models. There could be great potential for cost savings and bureaucracy in the area of licensing and rights management, as Web3 creates opportunities for automation through smart contracts.
On Web3, there might be better opportunities for individual creatives and content creators to earn money from their work. DAOs, i.e. Decentralized Autonomous Organizations, could even give rise to completely new forms of media enterprises. But a lot is still in motion, and the development of Web3 is still in its infancy, respondents agreed.
Nevertheless, the advice to the media industry was: take Web3 seriously, experiment in the first projects, collaborate with players in the Web3 space and, above all, bet on the continuous training of your own teams.
You can download the study here:
And to quote Christian Pfeiffer, one of the experts interviewed:
Web3 is the Internet of Possessions – which, however, no one can quite imagine as we have been brought up on the Internet without possessions for the past 20 years. This is why Web3 is today above all a philosophical challenge!
We will gladly accept them in the future.