Geography was once the biggest hurdle to sharing talent, knowledge and creativity. In the connected world, borderless communities form quickly and innovate when people with shared interests, even in niche subjects, have a platform to engage with each other.
Around the globe employers must understand the implications and take action.
No More Unpaid Co-creation
In 2010, the blockchain and cryptocurrencies were in their infancy. There simply was no practical method to provide monetary rewards to gamers, en masse, for their efforts in co-creating games. Now that these technologies are established, a model of guaranteed financial rewards for co-creators is possible.
Providing and incentivizing people with genuine economic benefit to do the work they already want to do—co-creating games, for example—will end this unpaid labor. Financial rewards will also increase both the quality and quantity of the work enormously. In addition, stopping the extraction of surplus value from co-creators by corporate players and putting it back into their pockets will lead them to buy more games.
Compare this model to that of social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Their profit comes by exploiting their users’ immaterial labor: hoarding data and selling behavioral information, demographic statistics, and purchasing and web-browsing history.
All forms of contribution to capital—not merely the financial contributions of shareholders—deserve to receive some reward, and blockchain technology will help to ensure it for the games industry. Gamers will receive cryptocurrency for playing and reviewing games, giving feedback to developers, and sharing social content to help promote games they love. It also means developers will be able to access to millions of gamers from the beginning to the end of the creation process. They’ll even be able to license user-generated content, in addition to selling and marketing these games through the platform.
This new model comes ahead of an important transition in the global labor market. There is a wide consensus that AI and advanced technologies will make many traditional jobs and careers obsolete. But new job and careers will also emerge. For some people, this transition may simply provide additional income through, for example, occasionally renting out a room through Airbnb. For others, part-time passions could become full-time careers.
Differing from the current sharing economy, though, the livelihoods of players and developers will offer the means to bypass economic turmoil in their countries of residence.