Intergenerational Dynamics: A Manifesto

Text Zine
Published 06 Jul 2023

During the bull cycle of 2021 the community of new internet builders positioned itself as a rebellious teenager: slamming the principles and so-called achievements of its parents (Web2) while deeply nostalgic for the uncorrupted world of its grandparents (Web1). Web3’s admiration of Web1 has exploded through a wave of open-source projects draped in webcore aesthetics. Every second DAO is discussing a Whole Earth Catalog reinvention, early Steve Jobs quotes stream endlessly on Crypto Twitter, and there are enough whitepapers citing or straight-up rewriting “The Hacker Manifesto” for a yearlong read—to say nothing of the surge in threads dedicated to ASCII art and fandom or the overlooked creative potential of Unicode.

Web3’s allegiance with Web1 is, among other things, a means of distancing itself and the evils of Web2 (with the exception of Tumblr and Soundcloud—these platforms are amnestied). From its core to its scammy edges, this rejection has defined the movement thus far. But if Web3 is to grow up, it will need to grow out of both idolatry and iconoclasm. Speaking of the past only in absolutes only robs us of the self-reflexivity necessary for the movement to rise to its fullest potential.

Every teenager steps into adulthood when they encounter their first challenges and start to think for themselves rather than in spite of the previous generation. A Web3 with a fully developed frontal lobe will own its mistakes and lessons, as well as bear markets, flakey participation, fallen coins, and rigid regulators. How will future generations think of the blockchain when it’s no longer a shiny new toy? The answer depends on how we think about it today.

P.S. The idea of a physical artifact about and by blockchain builders might not seem especially on brand. Printed matter, however, retains the same sense of immutability and requires precision and intention when deployed (i.e. sent to the printer.) The print issue of ZINE is a meta take on the perpetuity of the digital annals.

  1. Change everything without the attitude that everything needs change.
  2. Embrace experimentation. We are building from scratch.
  3. Check facts, backgrounds, and Etherscan.
  4. Put it onchain.
  5. Use anonymity responsibly.
  6. Curate even if there is no audience.
  7. Use references and always cite them.
  8. Become a reference for someone else.
  9. .com is dead. Experiment with what goes after your dot.
  10. Build your own hardware.
  11. If you are an artist, learn how to code.
  12. If you are an engineer, learn the history of fashion.
  13. Open source your processes, both technical and creative.
  14. Transactional attitudes will not create change for the better. Build relationships.
  15. Fuck TL;DR. Read longform.

ZINE - A Manifesto

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