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CityDao - Why is Nobody Talking about this Blockchain on Land?
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What happened on the Ethereum blockchain used to stay there, but recently, a project called CityDao has attempted to put that to the test.
This project is trying to create a space consisting of a digital representation of physical land. What takes the cake is they want to sell it to anyone with an interested wallet and call them “citizen.”
The idea here is they would purchase a piece of land in the real world, which they actually have in Wyoming, and sell the rights of governance to other people. To be a part of the “government” you need to buy a certificate of citizenship, which comes in a form of NFT. This tells us there is a finite number of certificates, meaning they intend to goad the FOMO investors with a sense of urgency.
It does seem the developers want to push the limits on how much they can stir up the crypto community. The problem is, though, blockchain players have seen quite a lot on the Ethereum timeline. To surprise anyone at this point every idea needs to have near-radical implications.
Apparently, having land-based incentives for your purchase isn’t quite radical for today’s standard. In the few months since its inception, CityDao has managed to generate half of its expected user base. They set the target to 10,000 citizens and there have been about 5,000 buyers at the time of this writing. While that’s not a small number, considering how much of a hype monster truck the metaverse is, it’s not moving that quickly.
CityDao - How Does it Work?
CityDao has a lot of interesting mechanics, some of which tend to raise eyebrows at a closer look.
It’s built on a dubious concept, but that’s just what happens when you make big plans on Twitter. The land on the blockchain is linked with a physical plot of land in the real world. Users can buy certificates to become citizens of that land. Note that you wouldn’t own any piece of the land, only the right to vote on what happens on it.
Citizens can vote on policy changes, regulations, and laws on the land. Later, they would also be able to place buildings and structures on that land. This would obviously come with additional costs.
As of now, CityDao has acquired ownership of a plot of land in Wyoming, USA. The state has recognized the organization as a legal LLC and approved of its concept.
CityDao - The Hierarchy
Not all citizens are made equal in the City of Dao. There are three levels of citizenship, each with an upgrade in privileges from the one below.
Already, we can see the direction this is headed - a social hierarchy in a world that’s supposed to be free from all societal obligations of the real one. That’s a heavy dose of contemplation for those who seek an easy getaway from reality.
This is the novice level of the game. As a regular citizen, you get basic voting rights and access to the Discord channel. You’ll also get access to land purchasing in the future when more land is acquired by CityDao.
This is high-class citizenship. Having a Founding Citizen certificate grants you early access to land auctions. That means when fresh land is available, you get to bid for a piece of it before any average citizen. So potentially, a regular citizen may never get to see or buy the land they want.
The first citizen means just that - the very first person who purchased a CityDao certificate. As the name suggests, there is only one of its kind. Being the first citizen you get to name a parcel of land. You can call it anything you want - name after yourself or your loved ones, people would have to refer to the land by that. The First citizen also reaps the benefits of any Founding Citizen.
CityDao - The Costs
Being a part of something as grand as the blockchain city often comes with a price tag. During the initial month, one could grab citizenship for as low as 1ETH (~3,200USD.) a Founding citizenship cost 10 ETH and the First Citizen was auctioned and sold for a little over 6 ETH.
Now, those numbers have changed. Since each of these certificates is an NFT, they are bound to circulate and go up in price.
Founding citizenship now can be yours for 28 ETH (~123,000USD) on OpenSea, an NFT platform that’s supporting the CityDao project.
If you want to become the First Citizen and name the lands, however, it would set you back around 1,200 ETH (~ 5.2 million USD.)
CityDao - Smart Contract
Here’s the most interesting thing about CityDao. The citizenships are tokenized by ERC-1155 instead of the standard ERC-721 for NFTs.
While the ERC-1155 isn’t technically bad, people often forget what it means to own an NFT. It’s more than just bragging rights or artistic confidence - it’s about individualism; it’s about being the only one in the world.
The ERC-721 standard validates each NFT as a single entity. One item for each set of codes. Doing it this way takes up a lot of space on the network, so the ERC-1155 addresses that by grouping tokens together, whether they’re NFTs or fungible. While this increases efficiency, it trivializes the intrinsic value of having a unique NFT in the first place.
There have been, indeed, complaints, but whether the developers will negotiate in the future, we can only wait and see.
As CityDao gains more traction and supporters, these values will only keep going up, and by a lot. The basic citizenship might end up costing an entire pension in a couple of years.
Fortunately for the dreamers, that’s happening very slowly. The number of users is sauntering toward the 10,000 mark at the most comfortable pace. While the entry price is also swelling surely, there’s still plenty of time to consider the pros and cons of such a bold commitment.
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