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Metaverse 101: What does it mean for digital assets?
- The metaverse represents any digital environment where people can connect with other digital elements and with each other
- Yield App spoke to four experts in the space about what this means for the future of digital assets and how our reality could change as a result
- The metaverse can be used to create anything, from characters, to property, to new experiences
- Cryptocurrencies will be a key part of the metaverse as a digital means of payment
- Many things are already possible in the metaverse, but it will continue to expand in the coming years, growing into a multiverse full of different metaverses
Some people think the metaverse is just a buzzword that nobody truly understands. Others think it is the future of reality itself. Yield App sat down with some of the metaverse’s leading thinkers to get a sense of how this new world will play out. Here’s what they had to say.
“Listening to a lot of different talks and podcasts, you'll get many different perspectives on what is included in the metaverse and what is excluded,” said MADworld’s Head of Marketing Jordan R. Heathfield, who tries to keep his definition of the metaverse as broad as possible. “It's basically any digital environment where you have a representation of yourself and where you can engage with other elements within that digital environment and other people who are characters within that environment.”
Those could be characters that are represented by people connecting from elsewhere, or it could be characters that are built into that digital environment, said Jordan, speaking via Zoom during one of our Fridays with Yield App live shows.
“I believe that we are actually in the metaverse currently because we are connecting in a digital environment and interacting with each other,” he said. “It may not be a fully immersive digital environment, but it's definitely a kind of offshoot of what the metaverse is.”
Omar Corona, Founder of MetaLabs, also took part in the live show to discuss his vision of the metaverse. “The metaverse is a place in cyberspace, where you can be whoever you want, you can be wherever you want, and you can have whatever you want,” said Omar. “It's a digital universe where, instead of being on the internet, like being on Facebook or being on Instagram, you're actually inside of the internet, where you can have an immersive experience and actually interact with everybody.”
Digital assets in the metaverse
All of the participants in the show believe that, since money is necessary for the metaverse to function, cryptocurrency will play a vital role. “That's how the virtual economy is going to work: through cryptocurrency and NFTs,” said Omar.
He also discussed how one can own real estate in the metaverse in the form of digital assets. “You're able to own part of the metaverse and create an experience based on it,” said Omar, who ultimately believes that digital real estate creates an incentive for the pioneers of the metaverse to get involved at an early stage.
“Taking that real-world element, and being able to translate it into a digital environment gives people an easier way to engage and interact with the metaverse,” added Jordan. “It’s a lot easier to grasp something that you understand tangibly in the real world when you are in a digital world. But, what we could see coming could be just mind-blowing in the future, creating entirely new universes. Whatever the mind is capable of, really.”
Making dreams into reality
For Quoc Bao Ngo, Founder of MyRealityDAO, the metaverse is a virtual world without limitations and boundaries. “We can create anything in your dreams. You can make your dreams into reality. You can realize your dream. In the real world, everything has limitations.” There are physical laws, after all.
“But, in the metaverse, you can create anything,” said Bao, who is particularly interested in the educational aspects of the metaverse. “We can create experiences that people can participate in. If you want to learn about history, you create the scene and can be part of that scene. [People] learn much, much faster, because they are [immersed] in history.”
Håkon Harberg, Co-Founder of WiV Technology, sees the metaverse as the next iteration of the internet. He views it as less Matrix, and more Ready Player One. “We can create real-life characters into an avatar and then experience the world we actually live in, and then at the same time, construct a way to design it the way we really want it to be.”
The purposes of the metaverse
The metaverse has two purposes, according to Håkon. “One of its aims is to bring real-life experience into the internet or into the virtual world,” he said. “And the second is how the gaming economy has disrupted the way we look at finance. The metaverse plays a very important role in this. Everybody can access this world. You don't have to be part of an elite to join a wine club or a Yacht Club.”
Jordan is most interested in the multiverse, which takes existing metaverses and turns them into a singular universe or multiverse. He sees the multiverse as bringing together the arts and creative community, as well as the collector community. In Jordan’s view, any type of intellectual property (IP) can exist within one space—whether it be Japanese anime or cartoon characters. A key part of this are NFTs, which represent pieces of art in different multiverse environments.
Another key element for Jordan is bridging the physical and digital worlds. “Technology can connect artwork that is physical to your NFTs in the digital environment. We have the ability to take physical experiences—like live content or live concerts—and build NFTs around those experiences,” he said.
We’ve got wine. We've got art. We've got real estate. We’ve got concerts. We've got advanced design and graphics. There are so many things happening in the metaverse already, and there is still so much more to come!
For a full video recording of our Fridays with Yield App show on all things metaverse, visit our YouTube channel.