Ever since Facebook changed its name to Meta, the idea of the Metaverse has captivated the public’s imagination. As companies rush to be the first to build it, they promise it will be a world reminiscent of movies like “Ready Player One”. Critics, on the other hand, have been quick to point out that the Metaverse doesn’t exist and won’t anytime soon. Fortunately, projects like Topia are already bringing the Metaverse to its users while the other two sides miss the point
Ever since it was first introduced by American author Neal Stephenson’s science-fiction novel “Snow Crash” in 1992, the Metaverse has remained difficult to define. In the novel, the Metaverse is a successor of the internet, operating as a virtual world that users can access via portable VR terminals. In this network, users enjoyed a level of freedom that the traditional internet didn’t, bringing services traditionally associated with the physical world into it.
This idea of the Metaverse has been the most prevalent when it comes to discussing the development of technology. Sure, some can say VR is a must or not, while others disagree on the bells and whistles… but in essence, the Metaverse is the addition of complexity to the existing internet, removing the barrier of “physicality” that has limited it. When taking this into consideration, Metaverses like the one developed by Topia are actually a Metaverse… One of the many that can exist.
While other companies have focused on developing “the Metaverse”, Topia is looking to create “a new space to work and play together”. With this purpose in mind, the LA-based startup has developed a browser-based platform that allows users to create public and private communities (known as worlds), interconnecting all of them. With this in mind, it is not surprising that social media pioneers like Reddit’s co-founder Alexis Ohanian are supporting it.
As a fully community-led platform, Topia has developed a variety of features designed to provide as much flexibility as possible to its users. These include the creation and customization of digital community centers, the hosting of custom-made events, virtual offices for remote teams, virtual field trips for remote education, and much more.
Back on June 24th, Topia was the official Metaverse host for BLOND:ISH’s performance during NFT.NYC. During the events, in-person and virtual guests were able to enjoy the music of one of the world’s most popular DJs, all while gaining access to unique NFTs.
Creativity through NFTs is another value at the core of Topia. Not only does the Metaverse host many communities and galleries around them, but it has also introduced a means for creators to profit from their art. This is possible by selling their art via the unique Topia Scene Marketplace and by earning rewards depending on the popularity of their scenes.
Event organizers can also generate profit by bringing people together, with Topia paying them up to 15% of the platform’s revenue and an additional commission of up to 30% on all purchases. A referral program is also in place, increasing the number of ways in which users can generate profit while helping the community grow.
While Topia makes use of blockchain through NFTs and is working on helping develop the Web3 of the future, there is a catch: Topia doesn’t use crypto. Unlike Metaverses like The Sandbox or Decentraland, Topia makes use of US dollars and traditional payment methods to operate. This could certainly be seen as a negative by many crypto enthusiasts but in the end, makes adoption and integration of the platform easier.
With Metaverse projects continuing to rush to build what will become “The Metaverse”, the future is still uncertain for the industry. However, projects like Topia are showing that building a Metaverse is possible without relying on futuristic tech. By focusing on interaction, creativity, and freedom of choice, small Metaverses can bring true value to people around the world… Today.