Opinion | Do n’t forget the “initial intention” of the blockchain, we have widely adopted “always”

Author Tyler Monahan is the founder and CEO of the blockchain wallet MyCrypto. Previously, she founded MyEtherWallet. She likes the fast-changing and iterative development of the blockchain field and looks forward to leading the decentralized future with easy-to-use products. Starting with a simple paper wallet generator, Taylor has expanded the scope and functional settings of MyCrypto to create a talented and resonating team that meets new challenges every day.

When the Internet was an emerging technology, there were many uncertainties. At that time, many people thought it would be meaningless. Obviously, they were wrong. Today, the Internet has become very important, becoming an indispensable necessity in people's lives.

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Image source: pixabay

The internet enables us to connect with each other globally, and with it, we can buy anything we want, or access everything we want to see, with just one click. However, the Internet has also brought many unsatisfactory developments.

The Internet enables centralized institutions and large companies to monitor and profit from people. It has spawned a new business model that annihilates humanity in humans and treats people as tools to obtain data one by one to achieve advertising purposes.

No matter what intent and purpose the blockchain is used for, it is itself an emerging technology. As with the new technologies that have appeared before, it has a lot of uncertainty and even some really smart people will encounter it. We don't yet know whether they are right or wrong. Blockchain can achieve some very valuable use cases, but it can also be used maliciously. Just because the emergence of blockchain technology does not mean that it can immediately create value for individuals, or create as many benefits as the Internet, nor does it mean that it will bring as many harms as the Internet. We have a responsibility to ensure that we are moving in the right direction.

Transparent properties of the blockchain

Any address that is personal to you can completely undermine your financial privacy. Once an address is tied to your identity information, all transactions going in and out of that address will also be associated with you, and anyone can investigate further for more information.

With a small mistake, you can fully expose your history, your preferences, your balance, everything you have.

The security responsibility of the blockchain lies with itself

Once your private key is lost, your funds are lost. Unfortunately, if you lose your private key, no company, bank, or other entity can help you. It is your responsibility to prevent yourself from being hacked, scammed, careless, your computer burned out, or anything that could cause your private key to be lost.

Blockchain decentralization, data is permanently stored and cannot be tampered with

Any transaction you make on the blockchain is immutable. Whether you send a transaction to the wrong address or add an extra zero to the amount sent, once the transaction is sent, it cannot be reversed. No Bitcoin or Ethereum customer service center can help you freeze your account or reverse transactions.

At this point, you might think, "Why use a blockchain then?" "Blockchain is meaningless!" "It has so many flaws!"

I understand the source of this emotion, but you see, this technology can do better than any other technology, even more than the Internet.

It is important to understand what a blockchain is suitable for, what it is not suitable for, how it should be used, and what is not possible. We need to set realistic expectations about what we want to achieve with this technology, and avoid falling victim to our own expectations and misunderstandings. What we need is a correct decentralization. This decentralization has its real purpose, not just decentralization for decentralization.

Let's go back and see how the Internet has become as productive as it is now. The origins of the Internet can be traced back to the 1960s, when the US Department of Defense's Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (or ARPANET) attempted to send a simple message from one computer to another.

However, it was not until 1991, 30 years later, that the World Wide Web, as we know it, began to emerge. With such a simple core principle, the Internet has developed into a complex and powerful ecosystem that no other technology can replace.

Similarly, blockchain has another simple core principle: trust decentralization. Bitcoin was born because banks and centralized institutions used our funds and data for their own purposes. We have been trusting centralized institutions with little success, and now this trust can be distributed to you, me, and thousands of people. We have been given a powerful technology, a technology that involves and empowers individuals.

Blockchain transparency makes us vulnerable. Because of decentralization, no entity is responsible for the loss. At the same time, transaction irreversibility and immutability seem to be obvious weaknesses of the blockchain. On the contrary, this is its biggest advantage.

Transparency is the key to trust. Without it, our trust is easily betrayed. In fact, our trust is being betrayed. Because there is no single point of attack, the decentralized nature of the blockchain provides more security, it cannot be blocked by centralized entities, and it has the characteristics of anti-censorship. The immutability of the blockchain provides data integrity and security, and can resist external tampering.

Unfortunately, "blockchain" is often used as a cover by some people. Those centralized institutions that have used our trust have begun to use the blockchain to cover up the fact that they are making profits, while leaving the core concept of the blockchain behind.

Similar to the Internet, blockchain can also be used for multiple purposes, good, bad, evil, and more. It is like a double-edged sword, which can be used to both supervise and control people and to check and balance those who supervise and exercise power.

Blockchain allows centralized institutions and large companies to continue to control us. It can also achieve fair governance and human tolerance by listening to our voices, allowing us to participate and occupy a certain position.

If the blockchain is built on the masses and its philosophy is to decentralize trust, then it is powerful and can empower the masses.

The greater the power, the greater the responsibility. Now, we are the ones who decide the future direction of the blockchain. We are the ones who exercise our right to trust. This depends on our goals and expectations for the blockchain. The foundation of decentralization is people.

Transparency is a gift from blockchain technology. We must make good use of this gift to hold the authorities accountable for their actions. We should also take responsibility to ensure that the gift's internal philosophy is intact when it is used.

The success of blockchain should not be measured by the market capitalization of the market or the number of people using it. Keep in mind that the development of blockchain is still in its infancy. Instead, we must measure its success based on its use case. If the blockchain can one day grow and grow like the Internet, but people have less power than they do now, then this technology will not succeed and it will fail.