Reputation in Web3
The infrastructure for capturing self-sovereign reputation in Web3
Establishing the identity and reputation of an entity within a network without a central authority is swiftly turning into a very important requirement in the evolution of decentralized networks.
Reputation is the opinion that is generally held about someone or something. They are generally formed taking attributes and behavior information into account.
Reputation matters because it bears consequences.
In the real world, reputation directly influences social capital, authority status, eligibility, access to opportunities, bargaining power in negotiations, and often the overall economic cost of acquiring trust in our everyday interactions.
While in the digital world, reputation manifests into profiles, hierarchies, tags, and scores that determine the privileges that are granted to users, or the contextual value that users have generated through interactions and contributions within a system.
The World Wide Web has evolved to the point where most significant exchanges and communication rely on it in some way at least partially, if not completely. A few tech giants collect tremendous amounts of data as more and more people connect and interact via their platforms.
The formation of reputation in the digital world is largely based on this data, and users have little to no control over it. Web2 applications when generating reputation models often overlook sensitive aspects of data handling, such as privacy and user consent, thus neglecting the concept of data ownership.
These models are used to control their interactions with the system and a variety of network effects take place in such status-seeking interactions. Access to data between systems is also monetized, and in some cases complete models are exchanged as commodities, all while excluding the users from the process.
Web3 is ushering in a major breakthrough in terms of diversification and deepening of user interactions within various decentralized platforms. It is now reaching beyond asset exchange and starting to look at transactions as a form of data that can be processed and used to generate value for the users.
A good example would be the communities and DAOs that are being created to fulfill the needs of groups to establish their specialized rules of participation, decision-making, and collaborative interaction. But to manifest the true power of communities to create compelling, engaging, sustainable, and intelligent rules of interaction, the data deficit first needs to be overcome. The answer lies in system interoperability, and breaking the barriers of data exchange, while preserving the user's sovereignty over it.
In Web3, applications and platforms should fundamentally be able to conveniently share data, and even reputation models to create a better overall user experience between platforms. Also, users need to be in control of what data is accessible and can be utilized by the said platforms.
Applications can also benefit from such a protocol that allows them to fetch user data from other systems, and at the same time use it to generate results that can be used across systems and blockchains. This adds value to both the models, and the data.