A primer on micro income streams — Part 2
From Part 1 — We define micro income streams as any repeated payment on a small value scale from a fraction of a cent to several dollars, that you earn as a result of online interactions or services. These earnings are transacted in the form of cryptocurrencies, enabled by blockchain technology.
Micro income streams can come from doing all the things you would normally do already, but using a platform that is building on blockchain and integrating cryptocurrency. You can earn streams passively in this way, or seek more streams through actively participating on more platforms.
Here’s some examples…
Social network interactions
Including posting content, commenting/ liking/getting likes/interactions on social media. Every interaction could earn a micro payment, as a participant on the social network you are bringing value to it, and without users interacting with each other there would be no network, and no value.
EOS is launching Voice, a new social network like Facebook or Instagram, which rewards participants. Other entrants into this space are new platforms Minds, with over 2.5 million registered users, and Revolution Populi, headed by Yale professor David Gelernter and Goldman Sachs veteran Rob Rosenthal.
Either new platforms like these will over time disrupt and replace older models like Facebook (as Facebook did to MySpace) or the incumbents will be forced to adopt the new paradigm and offer the same value to participants.
There are indicators this is already in motion behind the scenes. Facebook’s Libra currency could be seen as an indication they are moving early to react to evolving competition, and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is a strong supporter of Bitcoin and crypto payments.
“One of the biggest problems emerging in technology is the monopolization of the internet by big tech — companies that have consolidated near-total control over our technologies. They collect vast amounts of information about us that they sell for profit and leverage to build greater market share, and acquire or bulldoze rivals at an alarming rate.”
- Dominic Williams, founder of Dfinity
Viewing ads on web browsers and social media apps
Advertising revenue for digital platforms with large global networks is worth tens to hundreds of billions of dollars annually. Ads are pushed into social media feeds, before and during videos, all over websites, everywhere online.
New generation blockchain platforms like Brave browser allow users to be part of the revenue model, receiving micro income through using the platform and opting into being shown targeted ads.
This gives advertisers greater engagement with potential customers, and users a much better experience.
Tracking and personal data opt-ins
People’s movements online, and even physically through GPS on mobile devices, are tracked constantly. This information is used by digital platforms to drive targeted advertising and internal product enhancements, and also sold to third parties to use in their own ways.
Users give away their daily usage and behavioural data as a matter of course, it’s built into the platforms we all use, and there’s been very limited options to opt out of them in the existing network platforms. Facebook and Google know a lot more about us than we might imagine, and all this data and information is monetised.
The growing realisation that the digital data we create is a commodity to be bought and sold will drive the growth of data as currency.
WGSN — Datanomics Report
Decentralised platforms return ownership of this data back to users by letting them opt into data sharing and privacy settings, yet another way of including participants in platform revenue in the form of micro incomes.
With the growth of IoT, smart devices and vehicle computers, new micro income streams are possible by actively sharing data. An example of this is Streamr, creators of a global marketplace of real time data streams that anyone can join.
Cryptocurrency originated out of digital currencies and items within the world of online gaming. Gamers have been transacting peer to peer with in-game digital currencies for a long time. Now in-game value can be transferred out of these online worlds as well. Rewards for achievements, creations, and interactions have real world value.
Enjin is a leader in this area, partnering with some of the largest games and communities known globally, and building new value creation possibilities. With the rise of platforms like Twitch helping gamers generate their own audiences and followings, and the huge potential of e-Sports, the potential for micro income streams from online gaming has a bright future.
Professional network interactions, replies, referrals
Centralised professional networks like LinkedIn have lucrative revenue models based around facilitating broader network linkages, curated networks, messaging and career advancement tools.
Decentralised versions being built remove the middleman and enable peer to peer incentivised interactions. For example, a user could be paid to accept an email from a job seeker, pass on a referral to a corporate colleague, and more.
Sharing HD storage / CPU power on cloud networks
Decentralised versions of DropBox, WeTransfer or Google Drive are bringing a new model of peer to peer file storage and transfer, where users can rent out spare hard drive space or CPU power in a trustless and encoded format. Files are sharded and split across the network, potentially enabling the spare HD space and operating power of millions of individuals, instead of centralised warehouses of single company hosted servers.
Storj and Golem are two leading projects in this space, envisioning increased capabilities for individuals and corporations using a global cloud computer. By joining into the network as a provider, users can earn a background micro income stream while also being part of a lower cost set of solutions.
Digital product tests/surveys, the gig economy
Software company A/B testing, product development or service surveys and other customer feedback driven protocols are already ways to earn value online. New platforms that enable frictionless and scalable access for companies and individuals to participate in these activities and use cryptocurrencies as the medium of exchange, will play an integral part in rapid iteration and improvement in software across fields from AI to AR and digital marketplace products.
The gig economy is a similar sector which is ripe for evolution through blockchain and cryptocurrency. Platforms like StormX are building new ways to earn income streams, no matter where in the world you are. This holds great promise for developing economies as well as developed ones.
The future is evolved network monetisation.
We are building alongside an online network evolution and payment adoption trend, by developing a first to market micro income stream investment platform to aggregate, stabilise and amplify the value of micro incomes for anybody, anywhere. All in the background of your everyday life.
This is investing, for digital native generations.