Lock in some gains before going Metaverse

In his monthly crypto tech column, Israeli serial entrepreneur Ariel Shapira covers emerging technologies within the crypto, decentralized finance (DeFi) and blockchain space, as well as their roles in shaping the economy of the 21st century.

The impending Metaverse dominates crypto headlines as analysts almost obsessively race to predict what innovations the new digital world will bring. Facebook’s rebranding to Meta seems to be the tip of the iceberg, as Microsoft — and some other Big Tech companies — announce their plans to integrate into the Metaverse.

The hype around the Metaverse is only natural. There’s no question the humans of the future will spend more of their time than some would care to admit wearing a VR headset. But the keyword here is future — most Metaverse developments are building a digital world for which the vast majority of humans won’t have use for many years to come. It’s important to save energy and attention for the developments coming out of mainstream crypto/DeFi because they are already massively transforming economic incentives.

Take Ripple (XRP), which was sued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for allegedly offering an illegal securities offering through sales of its cryptocurrency token, XRP. The company that steered the advantages of blockchain away from the “let’s overthrow the banks” crowd to the “let’s work with them” crowd has come a long way from the days in which many thought a Federal lawsuit would be the last nail in the coffin of crypto as an industry, recently having taken an upper hand in the lawsuit. Several thousand miles south of the United States, Bitcoin (BTC) has become the focal point of a city in El Salvador.

Government collaboration

As Ripple makes headway in nudging the United States toward greater crypto openness, countries ranging from Germany to Singapore are pushing crypto regulation forward. Of course, there’s also the high-profile case of El Salvador adopting Bitcoin as legal tender as the prime example of a country experimenting with crypto to attempt to innovate its path out of financial ruin. Other countries, too, are taking steps to leverage blockchain to their advantage.

The Philippines government is actively partnering with a company called Oz Finance to offer economic opportunities through special economic zones (ecozones). The idea is to empower individuals and companies to operate virtually or physically in tax-free, privacy-protected, decentralized application (DApp)-friendly zones powered by Oz’s utility token TOTOz.

Blockchain is becoming so intertwined with the average person’s life that universities such as Harvard and MIT are offering courses in blockchain, showing how the world is shifting towards mainstream adoption even among academics.

While it’s constantly expanding, the blockchain industry as a whole only has so many resources to deploy at a given moment, especially with developer shortages across the globe. As such, it’s important to keep things in perspective and pay attention to initiatives improving the financial lives of average people here, in this physical world, before we all ape into the Metaverse with the rest of the Degens.

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Ariel Shapira is a father, entrepreneur, speaker, cyclist and serves as founder and CEO of Social-Wisdom, a consulting agency working with Israeli startups and helping them to establish connections with international markets.