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Metacity hopes to increase quality of life, content creators’ value

Mark Parker



St. Pete Catalyst Publisher Joe Hamilton gave a presentation on Metacity during Wednesday's St. Pete Pitch Night. Photo: Mark Parker.

While the panel of judges deliberated on a winner for the final St. Pete Pitch Night of 2021, the audience heard a special presentation titled “How I Freaking Built This.”

Kim Vogel, co-manager and VP of entrepreneurial advancement at the Greenhouse, led the discussion with St. Pete Catalyst Publisher Joe Hamilton. Hamilton is a co-founder of the St. Petersburg Group and Head of Network for Metacity – the presentation’s focus.

Metacity is a next-generation Web3 social operating system that overlays a physical city. Hamilton described Web3 – the latest iteration of the internet – as using blockchain technology to activate an underlying philosophy of decentralization.

“Blockchain is a technology that enables data sharing in a secure way across large groups of people,” explained Hamilton. “What that unlocks, amongst other things, is the decentralization of value where creators of all types can operate without large ‘middlemen’ platforms grabbing 40 to 100% of the revenue”

Hamilton used YouTube as an example of the old way of doing things, where creators upload their content to the site, build an audience, and earn advertising revenue through the platform which takes 40% of the earnings. Now savvy creators utilize web3 services to connect directly with their audience to sell subscriptions, NFTs and other goods while retaining 97.5% or more of their earnings.

Cryptocurrency allows for frictionless transactions across the internet without a centralized platform imposing rules and fees, greatly freeing people to exchange value with each other. 

According to Hamilton, a key facet of Metacity was the vacuum it fills between the neighborhood platforms like NextDoor and the national platforms like Facebook, where connections are aligned around peer groups with similar ideologies.

He sees it as a matter of spending too much time in one mindset. “If you listen to Buccaneers AM radio for eight hours a day, seven days a week, the first Atlanta fan you see – there might be a fight.  Similarly, if you spend all of your social media time on the national platforms, you’re essentially existing in a silo of national ideology.”

Hamilton said Metacity can resurrect the civic mindset lost to big social media platforms by pulling people back into their civic community.

When asked how he would generate revenue, Hamilton jokingly responded that he is a founder – “I don’t care about revenue, I just care about building cool stuff.”

Hamilton broke Metacity’s revenue streams into three categories: citizen revenue, platform revenue and treasury revenue. He said the most exciting of the three is citizen revenue, embodied by the decentralized Web3 mindset.

“For example, we’ll give every local artist a free gallery in the Metacity where they can display their art, build a fanbase and sell NFTs. Our goal is for the artist, or any creator, to keep 97.5% of the value. That’s a significantly lower cost of operating for many artists, solopreneurs and small business which will help keep alive the unique businesses that give our city a lot of its character,” he explained.

At the heart of the Metacity will be Catalyst news, which Hamilton calls the “core gravity” for the platform.

Hamilton plans an initial coin offering of the Metacity currency, Fluents, in Q2 of 2022.

“I don’t think he sleeps at night,” said Vogel to the crowd. “I think he just stays up and thinks of all these things. It’s just mind-blowing Joe.”

Hamilton said he hopes to help save local news and bring communities together through Metacity. However, the ultimate goal is to leverage social media’s efficiency and specificity of delivering great ideas to enhance our lives in the physical cities in which we live.

“If we can use the Metacity as connective tissue to bring these ideas up, circulate them, improve them and send them back down to the physical city, we can improve our communities and our lives significantly,” Hamilton concluded.

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