We’re starting to embrace our status as your favorite thought leader’s favorite thought leader. We happen to know at least a few of you, our Highest Order Readers, wield a great deal of influence in your respective Twitter spaces. And we’ve seen some of our more out-there ideas pop-up on your timelines — uncredited, of course. Look, we’re not bitter. To our considerably oversized egos, ’tis but a flesh wound. Still, we’re thinking it might be time to double down on our questionable habit of rebranding crypto concepts in our own image. What better way to stake our claim to an idea than by assigning it an acronym so asinine, only we could’ve coined it?
Without further ado, we’d like to introduce: DUMaaS. It stands for Decentralized-User-Management-as-a-Service, and it’s a fitting title for the VCs who are so blood-thirstily lusting after this emerging industry. We’ve been lowkey teasing the DUMaaS reveal for a while now, in our discussions of online identity and the problems it faces on the blockchain. And, indeed, DUMaaS is the perfect term for the increasingly frequent attempts at using web3 to solve them.
Decentralized-User-Management-as-a-Service is an industry we define as: developing software to enable communities to provide individuals with support to manage their individual and collective legal identities online. (Now throw a ‘permissionless’ or ‘ownership’ in there somewhere and Guy Oseary will throw you a couple M’s, guaranteed.)
DUMaaS is a response to the fact that large technology companies have abused their data silos by means of negligent profiteering. It’s also a response to the emergence of a decentralized cloud internet powered by blockchain and other web3 technologies. Given the complex nature of the private public key system, the need to run scripts, and a bunch of other technical shit I don’t have the bandwith to go into here, we believe it’ll be incredibly important for a community-oriented system to arise, allowing consumers to share and distribute risk so they can access the full benefits of decentralized technology without needing to be technophiles themselves.
In theory, DUMaaS could also service the need for accountability in managing the 1:1 relationship between an individual’s IRL self and their Internet identity. An ideal DUMaaS platform would provide reputation-backed KYC by allowing, essentially, self-moderation. A series of decentralized communities supported by the platform would be empowered to establish their own rules for governance and membership, with the capability to remove bad actors or reform them to comply. The reputation of the community as a whole would be displayed public, while individual actors retain the right to remain anonymous online, held accountable by those they trust, in private.
And, if entire communities decided to tank their reputations (looking at you, every other subreddit) their collective reputation would be signaled to others, and their members could be identified pseudonymously and avoided. By utilizing an established range like Dunbar’s number, communities could remain small and intimate enough for the reputation management to be effective in maintaining appropriate behaviors of individuals online.
Of course, that’s just our proposed solution. Other DUMaaS attempts include scanning eyeballs, handing our biometric data off to robots, and talking a big game without proposing any solution whatsoever. Personally, we prefer our own. Only because we’re egotists, though. Or because we want to avoid the technofascist fiefdom every sci-fi writer and their mothers predicted for our future, but hey. Why listen to us? I mean, just look at our track record.