Digital ID in the metaverse offers another avenue towards a reputation-based social credit system: perspective
The World Economic Forum (WEF) publishes a report suggesting that people will be able to benefit socially and economically based on the reputation they’ve built via their digital ID in the metaverse.
This section slides into something that looks like a social credit system where economic and social benefits are awarded based on the achievements (or behaviors) linked to an individual’s digital identity in the metaverse:
“In addition to facilitating provision of unique and immutable identities, blockchain technology, via tokenized digital IDs, represents an opportunity to provide digital property rights and data ownership to the ID holder.
“This would allow the individual to build up their reputation and benefit socially and economically from the development and achievements of their identity in the metaverse, while maintaining ownership of personal data.”
A digital identity stores your credentials and keeps a record of your behavior, including what you share on social media, the websites you visit, your credit history, health status, and your smartphone’s geolocation, among many other data points.
According to a WEF insight report on digital identity from 2018, “This digital identity determines what products, services and information we can access – or, conversely, what is closed off to us.”
The same concept would apply to digital identity in the metaverse.
The latest WEF report on the social implications of the metaverse also implies that providing a digital ID in the metaverse would contribute to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16.9 to provide legal identity for all.
According to the report, “The metaverse may offer a new means of providing identities to those who do not currently exist in ID systems and serve as a potential pathway towards inclusive access to educational, financial and other services.”
On the topic of anonymity, the report adds, “In digital worlds, different experiences may call for different approaches to digital identity. In some applications, such as media and entertainment, anonymous or pseudonymous identities may be suitable, whereas banking, education or work-related experiences may require legal identification.”
However, “It is important to consider that anonymous identities can increase the risk of malicious behavior. This risk may be mitigated by promoting a trust network, which allows individuals to request trusted digital IDs and proof exchange protocols to exchange proof of identity in a privacy-preserving way.”
Earlier this year, the WEF and Accenture published a briefing paper entitled “Interoperability in the Metaverse” highlighting that digital identity would be a key component in the coming metaverse.
“Digital identity is the nexus to an interoperable metaverse,” the report reads, adding, “It enables accountability and the capacity to traverse worlds with minimal friction.”
Speaking at the WEF Annual Meeting in Davos in January, UAE Deputy Minister of Cabinet Affairs for Strategic Affairs Huda Al Hashimi, said that the unelected globalists were excited about “fostering passporting” in the metaverse.
“Fostering passporting — this is when we talk about global interoperability, and the amount of scalability will happen when we actually do support regulations and standards in that sphere,” said Al Hashimi at the WEF’s “How to Build a Metaverse for All” press conference.
At the same time, Al Hashimi spoke of wanting to “democratize adoption” of the metaverse but also wanting it “to be equitable.”
However, not everyone will be created equal in the metaverse; your digital identity will determine where you can go, what you can access, and what you can own or purchase based on your reputation with the powers that be.
In fact, the WEF’s “Reimagining Digital ID” insight report for June 2023 confirms what we at The Sociable and countless others have been warning about for years — that digital ID is exclusionary by its very nature, that digital ID can be used as surveillance tool to coerce individuals into modifying their behavior, that digital ID is a prerequisite to the issuance of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), and a whole lot more.
According to the report, “the greatest risks arising from digital ID are exclusion, marginalization and oppression,” and that “requiring any form of ID risks exacerbating fundamental social, political and economic challenges as conditional access of any kind always creates the possibility of discrimination and exclusion.”
The WEF report on the Social Implications of the Metaverse says that anonymity allows bad actors to conduct malicious or illegal activity while advocating for “trade-offs to data privacy that must be considered, as well as complications related to cybercrime, financial crime and other abuse.”
But how else do powerful public-private entities create a system of social credit without connecting your digital identity with your fully traceable and programmable digital money?