Turning Good Into Gold with Cryptocurrency

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In the 17th Century, the Dutch East India Company pioneered several financial innovations that helped lay the foundations of modern financial system. This dubious corporate superpower made finance more transparent and accessible by issuing stocks and bonds to the general public and in doing so, laid the foundations of modern capitalism.

These days, stocks and bonds seem simple, perhaps even a little dull. But in the Early Modern Period, they were an instrument of financial revolution, enabling private ownership, secondary trading and corporate profit-sharing. Investors who kept an open mind stood to benefit greatly, but they benefited mainly from the exploitation of others, thousands of miles away in the colonies.

Now a new breed of entrepreneurs and technologists are reforming this financial model with blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. Participation in conventional asset markets is being reframed by a wave of innovation. By removing friction and middle men, blockchain facilitates a new kind of participation in markets — one that goes beyond betting on the movement of prices to give participants genuine ‘skin in the game’.

It’s time to break with convention

Today, stock market convention dictates that company profit equals investor profit. Societal value seemingly has no place in this crude equation. On a positive note, the concept of social impact investing has emerged in recent years, even benefiting from a generous wave of funds, but it remains a fringe movement.

Ananas is here to change that. We are pioneering a new financial model for charities that builds upon token economies facilitated by blockchain technology, one that’s dismantling the age-old dichotomy of investment for personal gain and supporting for societal good. We are aligning your personal financial interests with the interests of society.

Ananas is not a simple charity. We don’t need to depend on just altruism to create social good. Nor do we have to compromise on our charitable goal to please shareholders. We don’t need to be for-profit in order to build an economy that creates value for both its participants and society on the whole.

Anacoin and a new token model

The token economy is a game-changer for entrepreneurs, investors and society at large. For background context on this, check out the great articles here ( by Balaji S. Srinivasan) and here (by Vinny Lingham). We’ve also shared some thoughts on ethics in the crypto space here.

Economy, society, and the environment are all interconnected. Existential imbalance is a risk when goals aren’t aligned. The mission to fight climate change is an example of a crucial threat to deal with, despite an absence of an external enemy, facilitated by imbalance of goals. The same could be said about societal division and the mission we’re igniting.

Token economies are fundamentally different to traditional capital markets, in that you can have a supply and demand effect between an ‘open’ and ‘private’ (token) economy. This is especially true when the supply of coins is pre-minted (and limited), and there is incentive to keep a circulation of coins within a private economy as is in Anacoin’s case: as the private ecosystem grows both organically due to network effects, and systematically as the domains content become wider and richer, the internal circulation and external demand grows. This makes sure we can grow the pie for everyoneand grow the total value of the system at the same time. Meritocracy is the new standard.

Ananas will be a unique ecosystem. Driven by a private economy, its communities are ‘polycentrically governed’, and goals across participants, consumers, and infrastructure are aligned with the higher goal of reclaiming and developing knowledge most personal to us. A celebration of all the diverse narratives of our culture.

This is your ticket to join this mission and build something truly great. It is first and foremost a utility token, multi-functional on the Ananas platform. It gives you the right to participate in governing, nurturing, and steering the direction of the platform and communities.

One way to prevent the obvious danger of creating a relation between capital and power, is a ‘staking’ mechanism. Basically a safety deposit for users, as they engage with the platform in a potentially impactful manner. Two interesting consequences I want to highlight:

  1. Participants can, and will be encouraged to do so, to both ‘HODL’ andnurture the system at the same time.
  2. The power and influence generally associated with wealth is subverted: increasing stakes and bounties above all exposes you to more scrutiny of users.

Just let that sink in.

Moving on: Our ecosystem aims to provide a rich diversity in ways to participate (again, like a little society). For example, one can focus on the many roles in communities and its governance, or specialise in one of the plethora of domains and methods to improve the content.

We *need* this

Subjective knowledge is a common and shared resource, like pasture or drinking water. In contrast, though, it can’t deplete. Instead, irresponsible over-consumption will lead it to deteriorate. It’s just human nature: exposure to ideas and perspectives close to the heart, almost invariably leads to change in beliefs, in one direction or another.

When your beliefs change, so will the beliefs you communicate. Communication tends to get messy. In the information age, humans are fundamentally hyper-connected, so our infrastructure needs to be decentralised to guard against self-reinforcing loops and echo chambers — to allow nuances and diversities most deserving to be heard, to actually be heard.

Some might recognise the Tragedy of the Commons illustrated in the above. The late Nobel economist Elinor Ostrom would likely agree, and recognise our mission attempts to realise her vision for solving the classic socio-economic dilemma. In fact, Ananas is designed fully in accordance to her proposed solution to the age-old problem.

Turning good into gold: a paradigm shift for non-profits

Our ecosystem and its infrastructure have a clear purpose: to create a societal value that translates into monetary value.

Ananas will be like a little society. Safely nurtured in a private ecosystem, with value exchange sensibly optimised for the private ecosystem’s growth, but fruits it yields will be freely accessible to all.

We’re doing more than turning gold into good by re-distributing donations and investment flows. We’re closing the loop by turning good into gold, tooaligning the interests of individuals and society. This paradigm shift, made possible by innovations driven by tokens and blockchain, has implications for the entire nonprofit sector. We’re talking about a new financial model for charities, enabling them to build their operations on a sustainable footing.

Angel investor and future thinker Hampus Jakobsson has argued that, “ambitious startups are damaged by monetization” and indeed, monetizing the Ananas platform feels trivial, since there are enough ‘conventional’ profit-seeking institutions that would benefit — media corporations, journalists, universities, religious institutions, and more.

Just as a president doesn’t aim to get rich from the economic growth of the country over which they preside, a foundation doesn’t have to be for-profit to be able to create a thriving token economy for its participants. A correct token model cuts you a piece of the ecosystem’s pie, not the foundation or company’s.

Ultimately, the Ananas community and token holders will be active participants in exploring possibilities and driving development. Like Wikipedia and Quora, Ananas has the potential to become a central resource of subjective knowledge, used by everyone for free, without ads, supported fully sustainably by its the token economy. In addition to the growing networks of people and content, research and testing will further push the platform’s utility value. It’s only a matter of time to translate it to financial value. Into a wealth, distributed to the source of the utility value to begin with: the participants.

After all, it’s ultimately all just an exchange of value.

Help us help you help everyone

Tokens aren’t conventional shares. 
Participants aren’t conventional shareholders. 
Token economies aren’t conventional markets. 
Participating in token economies isn’t conventional investment.

Models like Anacoin’s will push the crypto space beyond the get-rich-quick dominated puberty phrase, and mature its promise to revolutionise society for the better. I sincerely hope to see more projects taking token economy & ecosystem design more seriously.

Buying Anacoin isn’t not about tapping into corporate profit, but ecosystem growth and improved content quality. We are reconceptualising investment, challenging the very notion of what it means to ‘invest’ — participation should be the right word.

Because above all tokens should confer you the right to invest your efforts, which is what should be the biggest determinant of return — otherwise it would be stable and mostly used as a security. And no one wants that.

This is the real promise of cryptocurrency, distributed ledger technology, and Anacoin: to allow people to create, and participate in, a fair economy that all involved parties benefit from. (Except for the conventional systems long outdated of course)

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This article was created in association with Ananas, who are building a platform that allows every community to map and make accessible their own beliefs, powered by advanced data science and cryptocurrency. 

Edward Playfair