Blockchain Capital runs Worldcoin with $115 million

Blockchain Capital runs Worldcoin with 5 million

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Worldcoin, an ambitious crypto project co-founded by OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, has received a significant financial boost with its latest round of funding.

On May 25, the technology company behind Worldcoin, Tools for Humanity, announced an influx of $115 million in Series C funding led by Blockchain Capital, marking a crucial step in the project’s journey.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 1
Source: ICO drops on Twitter

The latest round of funding follows a successful $100 million raise to a valuation of $3 billion by March 2022, and testifies to Worldcoin’s continued appeal despite the ongoing crypto bear market.

The recent funding announcement marks a pivotal moment for the project, with the funds ready to advance a number of initiatives, notably a new solution to the weakened bulwark of CAPTCHA tests against the relentless onslaught of AI-powered bots.

Bots have always been the bane of blockchain and cryptocurrency projects. Tools for Humanity hopes to stem this tide, borrowing from the success of similar endeavors like Civic.

Blockchain Capital General Partner Spencer Bogart says the lion’s share of this new funding will go towards bot detection, research and development, and expansion of the Worldcoin project and the World app.

The crypto venture’s belief in Worldcoin’s vision is shared by famous investors such as a16z Crypto, Bain Capital Crypto and Distributed Global.

The vision and the journey

Founded by Sam Altman, co-founder and CEO of OpenAI, and backed by a team of veterans from renowned firms such as Electric Coin Company, Revolut, Uber, Block, Twitter and Apple.

Worldcoin aims to establish a radical new model for global wealth distribution similar to a universal basic income (UBI). UBI is a social security system where all citizens receive regular money regardless of income or employment status. It is versatile, unconditional and consistent.

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Worldcoin operates on the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain and is centered around two core components: the Worldcoin token and the World ID.

The Worldcoin token is the digital currency to be distributed to users worldwide. World ID, meanwhile, is a unique digital identity linked to each user, secured and verified through a biometric process.

This identity verification is performed using a unique device known as the Orb. The Orb scans the user’s iris to confirm their identity and confirm that they are a unique, living human being – a process known as proof of personhood. This check prevents one person from claiming multiple shares of the Worldcoin token and ensures fair distribution.

Controversies and concerns

Despite the grand vision of Worldcoin, the implementation of its unique identity verification method has created a storm of controversy.

Just the idea of ​​a tech company amassing a database of biometric data from billions of people around the world naturally rings alarm bells for privacy advocates.

Worldcoin defends its approach by emphasizing that the actual iris images are destroyed after verification, and the iris codes, which cannot be reverse engineered, are the only data retained.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 2
Source: WorldCoin on Twitter

Yet these assurances have done little to allay concerns, primarily due to a persistent distrust of technology companies’ handling of personal data.

Influential voices, such as whistleblower Edward Snowden, have expressed skepticism. Such public scrutiny poses a significant hurdle for Worldcoin, as it struggles not only to prove the security of its technology, but also to build trust with potential users who are wary of the increasing encroachment of technology on their personal lives.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 3
Source: Edward Snowden on Twitter

In addition, there are also fears around regulatory acceptance. With strict data protection regulations such as the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Worldcoin may face challenges on a jurisdictional basis.

This risk becomes even more significant considering recent trends with countries such as China and India taking a hard line against cryptocurrencies.

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While Worldcoin’s ambitious vision is laudable, the road is strewn with significant challenges. Navigating these concerns while maintaining user trust will be critical to the project’s future success.

How did society react?

The conversation around Worldcoin on social media is burning with mixed opinions. It is a melting pot of criticism, praise and predictions.

Spencer Bogart, a partner at Blockchain Capital and a key player in the latest funding round, conducted an in-depth analysis of Worldcoin.

Initially, he admitted that he saw Worldcoin as a “dystopian Orwellian nightmare” due to the mix of hardware, biometrics, crypto and AI – components that naturally induce dystopian images. After extensive exploration, however, the perspective changed dramatically.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 4
Source: Spencer Bogart on Twitter

Bogart emphasized that Worldcoin has innovatively tackled the age-old sybil problem with its World ID, which he hails as a “privacy-preserving primitive for the internet”.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 5
Source: Spencer Bogart on Twitter

Despite praising the Worldcoin team for solving difficult problems, Bogart acknowledged the challenges ahead and encouraged openness and open criticism.

Conversely, some Twitter users have unleashed a wave of criticism against Worldcoin. One user dismissed Worldcoin outright, calling it a “shitcoin” and expressing unwavering support for Bitcoin.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 6
Source: Peter McCormack on Twitter

Similarly, another user expressed his concern over the significant funding that Worldcoin has received.

Blockchain Capital powers Worldcoin with $115m - 7
Source: Gabor Gurbacs on Twitter

The harshest criticism comes from a user who predicts that Worldcoin will be the “biggest dump-the-premine-on-retail in history.” They claim the project is a carefully crafted scam, set to exploit the social justice angle to sell tokens worldwide.

Blockchain Capital runs Worldcoin with $115m - 8
Source: Bit Paine on Twitter

Impact on the crypto space: a double-edged sword

While Worldcoin’s path is undoubtedly groundbreaking, its unique proposition may have positive and negative consequences for the crypto landscape.

The experiment of intertwining biometric identification and blockchain technology is commendable and may inspire a new wave of crypto projects. However, potential pitfalls await.

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The effects could be far-reaching if the implementation of proof of personality stumbles. If Worldcoin fails to manage the vast biometric data it collects responsibly and securely, it could result in a breach with serious implications, given the sensitive and personal nature of this data.

Such a failure could foster distrust in similar projects that aim to integrate biometric identification into the blockchain, and push the blockchain community to reconsider the wisdom of linking real identity to crypto transactions.

On the economic side, Worldcoin’s attempt to deliver a universal basic income could reshape economic systems and lay the foundation for a truly global, inclusive financial network. But it also involves risk.

For example, the value of the Worldcoin token must remain stable to provide a reliable universal basic income. However, as with any cryptocurrency, it is subject to market volatility, and any significant fluctuation in value can directly affect those who depend on it for income.

Furthermore, by creating and distributing a new token globally, Worldcoin can contribute to an already fragmented cryptocurrency ecosystem.

This fragmentation can lead to compatibility issues between cryptocurrencies and their respective blockchain networks, potentially hindering the wider use of crypto.

Finally, given the cross-border nature of Worldcoin’s mission, the project may face regulatory hurdles. Countries with strict cryptocurrency regulations may not be receptive to a project like Worldcoin, potentially limiting its reach and impact.

In essence, Worldcoin’s journey symbolizes the broader crypto journey – a complex interweaving of enormous potential and significant risk. And when the project sails into uncharted waters, it carries the weight of these two aspects. Whether it soars or stumbles, the journey will leave an indelible mark on the crypto ecosystem.

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