Going back to your example with AirBnb and Uber, one of the things they provide is a standard for identity and reputation. How can you get decentralized payments with bitcoin, while still having this other problem of identity, rating, and consistency of the experience? How do you combine those two things together?
We’re already seeing some interesting experiments in that particular area, for example using escrow services as moderators between seller and buyer. That’s a voluntary involvement of the third party that you can select.
We can see that building into arbitration and mediation systems that are operated through smart contracts.
Other thing to realize is, that one of the things that they solve through their reputation systems, is Sybil attacks. They solve the issue of someone creating a bunch of fake accounts and switching to a different account every time they get a bad rating. That’s a problem.
Well, there’s system that solves Sybil attacks. It’s called proof-of-work, and we use it in Bitcoin. Now we’re seeing the development of proof-of-stake systems to solve Sybil attacks, where you can stake money for or against the reputation without it being identified.
An anonymous reputation, but with money staked behind it, that does not allow you to easily just switch out of it. If you damage that reputation, it has a direct financial cost to you.
This is the innovation being created by asking: “How can we do this without using identity? How can we do this while still remaining anonymous? How can we do this without exploiting the data of individuals?”
The answer starts with: “If only we had programmable money…” Oh, wait! We already have programmable money! If you do not have it already, what are you waiting for?