Why the future of work isn’t online or on-demand, it’s “On-Chain”.

October 23, 2022

As crypto-networks proliferate, there’s going to be an ever-expanding amount of services that can be provisioned forming a crypto equivalent to the gig economy.

Also dubbed “Generalized mining” or “Blockchain mining 2.0, On-Chain work opportunities will unlock a new model for networks to coordinate participation and the contribution of resources.

Why On-Chain Work Opportunities?

For the most part, On-Chain work opportunities enabled by Blockchains didn’t exist in the ‘pre-crypto’ erra, or if they did, took very different forms.

Generally speaking, these types of opportunities require for:

As much of the work and meta-data associated with the work to be On-Chain and/or easily auditable.

Instead of porting existing work opportunities to the Blockchain, these new kinds of On-Chain work create entirely new categories of work and are core the functioning of a given protocol.

Work that won’t be brought On-Chain anytime soon.

Even though On-Chain work has tremendous potential, the reality is that:

Most current forms of what we call ‘work’ can’t or won’t be brought On-Chain.

On-chain work can also be defined by work done in service or support of the core protocol, which is not the same as work done to improve the core protocol itself, e.g: developers contributing code.

Work not qualified to be brought On-Chain includes:

  1. Work for which the quality is subjectively judged.
  2. Work that can needs verification from a 3rd (centralized) party.
  3. Work that needs a high degree of customer support or polished UX.

This rules out many forms of work or jobs that we would consider from the past.

Who will contribute to the On-Chain economy?

1) Specialized Funds

Recently, many specialized crypto funds have sprouted up around this notion of bringing not just financial capital to projects but also help with bringing working & human capital to the networks that they invest in to help bootstrap network effects.

2) Developers

Since many On-Chain activities require technical know-how, Developers are in a prime position to capitalize on these set of opportunities, from core protocol to dApp development and everything in-between.

3) Entrepreneurs & Professionals

Anyone with unique skills or expertise will be able to find a crypto-network to apply their skills to since it’s only a matter of time before more types of value-adding activities get put On-Chain.

Some Examples of On-Chain Earning Opportunities

True **On-Chain **work opportunities are usually denominated in the native token of a given network and are often distributed for contributions linked directly to the core value function of that network.

Here are some examples of On-Chain opportunities that exist today:

  1. Earn LPT as a transcoder on Livepeer (link)
  2. Earn BTC as an dApp developer on blockstack (link)
  3. Earn token-based fees as a relayer using 0x (link) or Dharma (link)
  4. Earn tokens as a storage provider on Filecoin (coming soon) or Sia network (link)
  5. Earn MKR as a keeper on MakerDAO (link)
  6. Earn STEEM or ETH as a writer / curator on Steemit (link) or Cent (link)
  7. Earn REP as a market maker on Augur (link)
  8. Earn NMR for submitting successful predictions on Numerai (link)
  9. Earn tokens as a relayer on a decentralized VPN network like Orchid (coming soon)
  10. Earn tokens for staking tokens as a validator on various networks like Cosmos Network (link).
  11. Earn ETH for running a node on the Ethereum network via Vipnode (link)
  12. Earn BTC for running a Bitcoin node on the Lightning Network (link)

We think this is just the beginning and the next few years will see an explosion in ‘trust minimized’ work opportunities to be brought On-Chain.

Have other On-Chain work opportunities to add?

Submit them here on Github

Thanks to lawson baker for inspiration and feedback for this post!

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