More On: Metaverse
'Anyone who tells you that there is a metaverse that works today is telling you a blatant lie.'
Metaverse project Decentraland is a sandbox where people can buy and sell virtual land, but it isn't exactly full of people. Even though companies betting on a metaverse future have been valued at billions of dollars, they haven't made much progress.
In fact, data aggregator DappRadar says that Ethereum-based world Decentraland only had 38 "active users" over the course of 24 hours. This is a shockingly low number, especially considering that the company has a market cap of a whopping $1.2 billion.
But Decentraland pushed back, saying that "active users" are defined as unique blockchain wallet addresses that interact with its system. According to CoinDesk, this means that users who only log in to chat or talk to other people are not counted.
"DappRadar doesn't track our users; it only tracks people who interact with our contracts," Sam Hamilton, the creative director of Decentraland, told CoinDesk. He also said that on an average day, around 8,000 people use the platform.
Even 8,000 users on a given day is a small number for something that is supposed to be the future of online communities. And if blockchain is the way the project's economy works, it's embarrassing if only a few dozen transactions happen every day.
In short, it's a perfect example of the huge difference between market value and actual users that has been a problem in the Web3 world for years. It could also be a sign that people are losing interest in virtual real estate and other blockchain-related assets, such as cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Decentraland's Twitter account also tried to fix things by saying that in September, "1,074 users interacted with smart contracts" on the platform.
When you look at how much money is going into metaverse platforms like Decentraland, though, none of these numbers really mean much.
And that doesn't look good for the metaverse's future.
Sasha Fleyshman, portfolio manager at digital asset investment firm Arca, told CoinDesk, "Anyone who says there's a metaverse that works today is lying through their teeth."
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