What were you doing before Web3?
Before Web3, I was writing, working in publishing, and working in travel and tourism.
These have always been my three major areas of focus. I’ve always been a story teller, a traveler, and a lover of the written word – so it makes sense I keep returning to these three.
How did you get into Web3?
An anthropology class in 2008 at the University of Hawaii introduced me to the concept of digital money. I observed as the crypto space grew.
However, when I saw NFTs, it immediately hit me that these would have astounding implications in many areas of society. In particular, I could clearly see how authors, publishers, and the travel industry might utilize this technology to build a better experience for all involved.
What was your first crypto or NFT project?
Sadly for my bank accounts, my observations were only observations until 2017 when I purchased my first Litecoin for around $50.
My first NFT came in 2020 when I bought into the Doctor Who, World’s Apart trading card game. I’m still involved with both projects as a participant – mainly because they have great communities.
How would you explain what you do to someone outside of Web3?
I publish a magazine about the next iteration of the internet using the tools of the next iteration of the internet.
Vagobond Magazine is published on blockchain and can be read from multiple web3 platforms.
We aim to educate the public about the power of web3, to give voice to those who are making the leap from an old way of doing things to a new way of doing things.
And to highlight the people, communities, projects, and founders that are pioneering a new way forward.
Which creator or thought leader do you enjoy learning from?
In the old world mode, I have a lot of admiration for Richard Branson and Ray Dalio. In the web3 world, I admire Danny Tang, Amanda Terry, and Bill Tai – the founders of the NFT project On Chain Monkey.
They have put a focus on doing good and innovating into new ways of using web3 technology for that purpose.
What is the biggest highlight of your career so far?
Honestly, the highlights of my career have all been when a writers, editors, or artists have surprised me with shoutouts that thank me for encouraging them, jump starting their career, or giving them the confidence boost to make a career change.
This has happened several times recently and is far more fulfilling than the traditional success metrics of wealth, fame, or influence – but of course, those things are good to have too.
What tech or crypto trend are you watching this year?
I believe blockchain publishing is poised to be the rocket that takes web3 to the masses.
Whether it is through the publishing of books, music, videos, online content, or periodicals like Vagobond Magazine – the publishing industry is on the verge of being disrupted in a big way.
In terms of crypto – I won’t be surprised if my old friend Litecoin suddenly emerges as a key player in the nascent ordinals movement.
What advice would you give someone starting out in Web3?
Get a hardware wallet, get comfortable with it, and become familiar with practicing the essentials of self-custody security.
It has become really obvious over the last decade or so that we cannot trust our financial future to banks, startups, or governments.
I’m not saying those institutions don’t have important roles to play in our society, but people need to stop being so reliant upon them for protecting their wealth, assets, or life’s work.
If you could do a TEDtalk on any topic, what would it be?
I’d love to give a TED talk on the essential ingredient that builds success for all manner of communities.
Autonomy. If you can’t take care of yourself and you don’t have the tools to provide the things you and your closest friends and family need, how can you expect a larger community to fill that role?
The entire ethos of web3 is about giving ourselves (and everyone) the tools to be autonomous.
The surprising side-effect of that autonomy has been the amazing community that we’ve all found in every aspect of the web3 universe. Autonomy builds community and it always has.
What is the one thing you would bring if you were stuck on a deserted Island?
A tattered paper copy of James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake. I’m pretty sure that even if I were there for years, I wouldn’t completely understand it.
If I died before that, it would probably be a relief to stop trying to understand it.
POW stands for “Proof of Work.” It is a new feature article series in The Mega Maxi to highlight the savviest builders in the Web3 space.