NFTs As A Solution For The Housing Crisis?
As a genderfluid gamer and crypto enthusiast, my twitter feed is generally broken up in to two communities: crypto people, and queer gamers.
Of the crypto people, there are generally two types of folks. There are those who are primarily into crypto for the investment opportunities, and those who see the profound social impact the technology can have. And of course, most people have some presence in each of those two camps, but the folks spending most of their time and energy talking about the social stuff are my favorite people to follow.
Of the queer gamers there are also generally two types of folks. There are those who see opportunities that crypto presents and are actively engaged in it. And there are those who are so vehemently anti-capitalist that they don’t see the power of blockchain to facilitate many of the social changes they actually want to see in the world. There seems to be far more of the later than the former, at least in my feeds.
So, this article is intended for the later type of people in the queer group. For those anarchists, communists, and leftists who want to see a better world for everyone, but haven’t yet been introduced to what blockchain can do outside of the price speculating or big money art NFTs that typically make the mainstream news around Bitcoin and Ethereum.
I’m going to give just one example of how NFTs and crypto can be used to potentially solve a problem that has been on my mind lately, that of providing adequate housing for all members of society.
For the sake of this discussion, we won’t consider the environmental impacts of NFTs or the high transaction fees of the Ethereum network. There are blockchains that have already solved this problem and are feeless, carbon neutral, or both. Hive, where you are reading this right now, is a perfect example.
Commercial Ownership of Residential Land is Evil
I’ve come to the conclusion lately that commercial ownership of residential land is one of the more insidious forms of evil in our current society.
The natural reaction to this realization from both tenants and landlords alike would be, “Ok. So then where are all of these people supposed to live if there aren’t rental properties?”
Of course, the answer is that home ownership becomes an attainable goal for all people. There are plenty of vacant homes available to mitigate the housing crisis. The problem isn’t one of supply, it’s one of centralized ownership.
But what about communities like apartment buildings or apartment complexes that operate under a common management and are owned by a corporation that manages many of these properties? How would an individual unit look if it were to be owned by an individual, and what motivation would they have to contribute to the overall maintenance of the property that is used by many? Those are good questions.
Crypto Fixes This
The answer is a bit utopian, but that’s what we’re doing here. We’re looking optimistically into the future, so bear with me. Let’s consider that a given property would operate as a co-op of sorts.
**NFTs could be each person’s key to their property. **The NFT would be a unique proof of ownership of the property as well as literally being the key to an electronic physical lock on the home, limiting access to the owner.
NFTs are more than just subjectively good or bad overpriced art. They are unique pieces of computer code that cannot be duplicated, and can have myriad functional applications. Unlocking online content is one that is currently being explored. Unlocking a physical location would be just as simple.
So, rather than being artwork that burns down the rainforest, NFTs are both proof of ownership and keys to access property you own in our scenario. Pretty cool, eh?
But this doesn’t completely solve the issue of a centralized entity acquiring many of these individual NFTs for individual units, and then having ownership over the whole. All that does is create fancy keys. This is where DAOs come in.
DAOs Make Property Management Companies Obsolete
DAOs, or Decentralized Autonomous Organizations, are organizations whose rules are dictated by an impartial and decentralized computer program. A DAO exists outside of the ownership of any entity, and would provide the structure for our little co-op. The DAO could limit the acquisition of the NFT keys mentioned above such that no entity could acquire a large share of them, and thus accumulate power. The foundation of decentralization is prohibiting anyone from having a large share.
The NFTs mentioned above would also be the key to unlock voting rights to make changes to the DAO. The DAO then governs many of the functions of our co-op that don’t need direct and frequent human interaction such as the scheduling of landscapers, the paying of the trash company, and much, much more.
Again, pretty cool. But, what about the people who are worried that the “lazy” folks would allow their unit to fall into a state of disrepair and thus create safety issues, quality of life issues, and property value problems for everyone else? Again, crypto solves this problem.
Governance Tokens For All (according to labor, of course)
When someone votes in the DAO for changes to the community, their vote can be weighted according to how many governance tokens they possess. These tokens would be the cryptocurrency of the community and would be earned proportionate to the amount of work an individual puts in to the community.
Want to plant a community garden and tend to it? Cool, here’s some tokens. Taking out the trash for the little old lady next door? Cool, here’s some tokens. Enriching the community through labor would be incentivized. You’d have more tokens, and a stronger weighted vote for changes to the DAO.
A Path To A Utopian Society
It sounds utopian, and it is. There’s a lot of social change that needs to happen for something like the above scenario to play out, but the technology and the resources are there. It’s just a matter of educating the proletariat.
This technology can have such a profound impact on the quality of life and the level of abundance had by the working class, that it is in the best interests of existing power structures to keep people unaware of it, or antagonistic to it by highlighting the unsavory things that are byproducts of an emerging technology finding its way.
NFTs and crypto are so much more than rich people’s money hobbies, and the emergence of new types of communities and social governance is already happening in gaming communities right now.
In time, politicians, bankers, and lawyers will all be obsolete. So, you bet your ass they are very happy every time someone derides NFTs as being an environmental disaster or something only rich people do. And hopefully now, you know better.
I have to close this article with a big thanks to @taskmaster4450 for consistently putting out content that sparks my imagination and makes me optimistic for a decentralized future to come.
Did you find this post useful or informative? I'd be grateful for an upvote and a follow. I am a genderfluid personal trainer with more than a decade of coaching experience who has owned 2 gyms (once voted best in my city), and coached myself and others to multiple powerlifting records. I'm also a nerd and I post about Fitness, Food, Gaming, Crypto, Lifestyle, and LGBTQ issues. (yeah, it's a mixed bag)