Community is at the heart of our civilization. Nowadays, our communities are becoming more and more digital.
The idea of a metaverse is that our online lives will one day evolve into a fully digital reality that we all share. This shared virtual world would be built on top of the blockchain, and it would allow people to create new kinds of social spaces and experiences.
We have already seen some early experiments in this direction, with projects like Next Earth, which allows users to trade virtual land and build resources on a digital replicate of Earth. There are also many other projects exploring similar ideas for video games, social media, and other applications.
In this article, you’ll learn about building communities within these metaverse platforms themselves. These communities can be very important for individuals and society as a whole, but they will only thrive if they have good governance structures in place.
Why should we care about community in the metaverse?
The internet has given us unprecedented amounts of information at our fingertips, but it has not done much to improve our ability to cooperate with each other or solve collective problems together.
A lot of the work that must be done in order for society as a whole to prosper gets neglected, because it is too hard or costly for small groups of people to do on their own.
It is easier now than ever before to connect with others around the world, but despite these connections, there still isn’t enough coordination across the globe for us to solve big problems collectively (like climate change).
Our online interactions tend instead towards selfishness: we spend most time communicating with people who agree with us politically; we share content from news sources that confirm our beliefs; we watch shows produced by companies whose products we already use; and so on.
This is where the metaverse comes in: It’s a way to build more meaningful, peer-to-peer connections. With no central authority governing content in a decentralized metaverse, we can finally create and consume content based on our own interests, rather than any centralized agenda.
Building a community
Building a community is hard, but it’s worth it, as the whole purpose of having friends and family members in your life is to share experiences with them. And yet we often fail to do this because of time or money constraints.
With online communities, you don’t need to worry about these problems. You can create an online space for yourself where you can talk to others about anything that interests you. This kind of community will only thrive if people feel comfortable contributing and participating in a meaningful way.
In order for this type of community to work well, there are some fundamental principles that must be respected:
- People should feel safe participating in the community
- They should not have their personal data shared and monetized without their consent
- There should be clear rules for what types of behavior are acceptable and what kinds aren’t
- There needs to be some kind of governance structure so that people know how decisions get made within the community
- The people involved in building and maintaining the community also need to be trusted by those using it
It is important that people who participate in building a metaverse platform also maintain a regular presence on it. The most successful platforms today started out small and slowly grew over time through word-of-mouth recommendations from early adopters until eventually becoming mainstream.
All of these principles are put into practice by Next Earth, a decentralized metaverse governed by its users.
Benefitting from community
A metaverse can have many positive applications, from environmental contributions to fostering creativity. But here let’s focus on just one: helping us build stronger communities.
This is because building a strong online community is about more than just virtual reality headsets. It’s about building trusted relationships, owning your own data, and maintaining control of your virtual self.
Virtual worlds like Next Earth also provide extensive community rewards for active users. Engaged users earn instant rewards for helping others, inviting members, and even simply chatting in a Discord server. In this way, users can benefit from community, even without financial commitment.
Ultimately, to benefit from community, it’s crucial to be an active participant, not just a passive observer.