As the dynamics of Cyber Economics accelerate, the increasing adoption of digital resources creates a context where everything is on record, privacy is redefined, our actions are subject to public review and trust effectively becomes the new global currency.
Trust has always been a fundamental value – since time immemorial, trust in people and institutions has always been a pillar of human societies. Mutual acceptance and deeper interaction depend on trust and we cannot operate properly without it.
At its core, trust deeply connects and is compliant with universal law. Benevolence, compatibility and integrity are all enhanced by trust, creating a context where we become free to express our talents naturally and unaffectedly.
When we trust, we are like rivers – we stream love, life, wealth and creativity.
Trust is more relevant to long-term development and compatibility than reputation because of the constancy of the type of affinity it establishes, which can work seeming miracles, to the point that it strains credulity. Reputations can ebb and flow, but genuine trust is unique both in it own right and for the staying power it provides to all human relationships.
But trusting carries the risk of disappointment. We have all experienced the consequences and risks of misguided trust as consequence of our own misjudgements. As is the case with any risk, the risk of disappointment can be managed and is largely mitigated with knowledge. The root cause of mismatches between perceived trust and reality has always been knowledge asymmetry. Sometimes we mislead ourselves to think we know enough to be able to trust; sometimes others incorrectly assume we know more than we really do and construct unrealistic expectations about our realities in their minds. In such cases misguided reliance occurs instead of trust, with increased risk of unforeseen outcomes.
Digital transformation enables trust
As our global community quickly embraces the widespread adoption of the principles of Cyber Economics, information about our lives, our abilities and our true role in society is relentlessly collected through digital resources, kept for virtually unlimited periods of time, and made available for many different purposes.
The amount of information immediately available to society about each of us is unprecedented – each person now has access to more information about everyone else than at any time in history. And that trend will not go away anytime soon.
When you contemplate the combined effect of the technologies that our global society is currently adopting – such as social networks, artificial intelligence, smart connected mobile devices, the Internet of things, the blockchain, biometrics amongst many others – you understand how deep the transformation we are all going through really is. And this process will only accelerate, as new technologies that are still unknown to the population in general quickly become household realities.
Social networks, through interactions and reviews, are quickly becoming vast depositories of information about each of us, promoting and rewarding trust.
Artificial intelligence – through its ability to process vast amounts of data in very short periods of time – promotes trust in the sense that it facilitates validation of profiles, competencies, skills and the overall contribution of each of us to society in general.
Blockchain technology promotes trust through it’s ability to generate and validate such trust by widely distributing and validating information in a way that society as a whole can be reassured of key information and become empowered to act upon it.
When combined into a new holistic context, all of this openly verifiable information empowers us to construct realistic assessments of reality and offer better characterizations of our individual role in the global community. Consequently, we are all becoming so much better at trusting and more likely to be trusted, with uniquely helpful consequences.
Trust becomes currency
By definition, currency is anything inherently scarce and widely accepted in exchange for something we value, which can also be used as a measure and store of such value.
Trust is scarce, we can exchange it for what we value or need, we can measure value in terms of trust and ultimately, because trust is so stable, it is also a wonderful store of value.
In its essence, trust is scarce because it implies compatibility. Not everyone on this planet is compatible with everybody else, and not all products and services are adequate to everyone. As we all gain access to more detailed information about everyone and their exact role in society, we are better able see where to find the exact people, relationships, products and services that are specifically compatible with us and ideally suit our needs, and we are able to source them globally.
Digital resources empower us to find the proverbial needle in a haystack as we come ever closer to pinpoint the ultimate compatible person, product, service that we can trust to perfectly be compatible with our needs and with ourselves.
Our unique capabilities are becoming discoverable to the world at large and over time that gives us the ability to exchange trust for what we need. As time goes by we go through increasing numbers of interactions and more reviews of those interactions become available to the world. Society then becomes aware of our unique characteristics and capabilities, leading to more successful interactions that build our trust capital, that ultimately will be symbolic of our ability to exchange our energy and contribution for what we value at each moment in time.
And because trust is stable, and the information that enables trust can be stored and retrieved indefinitely through digital resources, it is not perishable and can build up over time, thereby becoming a store of individual value.
What is held in trust is nurtured and kept safety – trust is becoming the new global currency.