A proposal for a system combining barter,escrow,social networking and proof of work.
After chatting with chaord about an idea we had for an educational certification implementation I became inspired to come up with a system for transferring value I call proof of work certification or powc for short. What powc means is that any piece of work you do as long as it is verified in an accepted manner can then be used to earn a benefit elsewhere. Powc can be as simple as a code hidden in packaging or as difficult as pgp keys and cryptography. The important thing is that the powc is decided by one party to the contract specifying the conditions of redemption.They will lay out what proof they accept that you have completed your side of the bargain.As long as this proof is met the transfer will take place.
Bitcoin does this perfectly using the block chain as the proof of work.It is the premiere digital system for doing so which begins to show the power of the idea. Someone said bitcoin is like burning a field of wheat and taking a photo which you use as currency lol. I propose flipping that idea over and make it so you are not burning fields of wheat but are instead doing something positive such as education. 13 years of school is basically a real world block chain when you think about it!
Imagine this scenario -
You are playing a game on facebook that involves farming and you would would like to get a virtual good such as a chicken that lays eggs faster.There is a course at a local school or online that teaches you how to raise chickens.Upon completing the course the teacher issues a powc.You upload this powc to the farm game on facebook and you receive the chicken that you wanted.This is beneficial to the game because it keeps you playing and progressing.
Now this can also work the other way.You play the farm game a lot and the game can issue you a powc. This certificate can then be used to purchase an item in the physical world,such as a carton of eggs or a discount on your chicken raising course which has been sponsored by the game you play.
Let us pretend you are playing second life and also looking to purchase a house.If your local real estate has advertising in the game and you perform an action that results in you receiving a powc from the virtual real estate this could then be redeemed for a discount when you purchase a house using the actual real estate agent!Advertising in virtual worlds could be more effective using this concept.
I believe the ability to earn virtual goods in such a way is a powerful motivating factor especially for educational purposes. Doing jobs or attending courses which earn you certificates that can be used as proof of work to further your learning,get benefits in virtual worlds or earn you discounts on products is a positive step away from destructive forms of currency . It also promotes companies supporting education which helps to reduce the cost burden involved.Successful virtual game companies will also be able to reach out to the physical world and interact with people in a whole new way.
So this is what I imagine a site using these principles would look like.POWCER.COM
Powcer------->(sounds like 'poker')
When two people agree on an exchange----->Powcer Match!
Edit: Any sort of currency used on the site would be called----->Powcer Chips!
You need to give proof to a certifying agent that you fulfilled your side of the contract before you claim your wanted item,which is a virtual or physical good or service.
A credit can be anything at all virtual or physical.
Powcer.com is a server - client setup using either Diaspora or the Appleseed project http://opensource.appleseedproject.org/
which means everyone owns their own data and the site just organises the connections like a hub.This is the main firehose or river where you can see all the updates from the different groups or categories you choose to follow.Think of it as a wheel with the spokes (spowcs) being the separate categories or groups (see below). It is only the spowcs you follow which show up in your main feed . It is only when you need to purchase powc credits or list your existing powc's that you use the certifying section.
Of course the powc principle can be used anywhere not just on powcer.com Spowc's
Any competing certification company who supports our model would just register with powcer.com as a spowc.Thanks chaord http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1024.msg12600#msg12600