You can't make the most of web3 with just a cursory overview. That's why platforms to help you dive deep on how you can use the tech to engage with the world are critical. Randy Ginsburg explores the top platforms and communities dedicated to taking web3 education behind the explainer.
In web3, the best way to learn is by doing. Wallets, protocols, and platforms all come with unique learning curves, and without a fair amount of “in-the-field” experimentation, there's a ceiling on how quickly an individual can learn to use these tools. That’s why several organisations have turned their efforts to onboarding and educating new entrants, levelling up their skills, growing supportive communities, and building new projects.
Most people don’t know what web3 is, let alone how to use the underlying technologies on which it’s built. To bridge this gap, Brian Flynn created RabbitHole, a free community for those interested in web3 to learn — and earn — by doing. Users are encouraged to connect their wallets to complete various onchain NFT, DeFi, and DAO-related tasks called “quests.”
Once a task is successfully completed, users are rewarded with a pre-specified amount of cryptocurrency, along with an onchain certificate. As users continue to transact onchain, they can unlock more intensive “quests” with larger rewards. Guides and curated learning paths for each skill can be found on the platform's growing learning hub.
“Web3’s UI/UX leaves a tremendous amount to be desired. Its technical, clunky nature remains the largest speed bump in the road to greater consumer adoption,” writer, angel investor, and Rabbithole user, Tom White tells Culture3. “Via curated opportunities and a slick interface, Rabbithole brings web3 to the curious and meets individuals where they are. This user-first ethos makes the Wild West of web3 a bit less overwhelming.”
Those who prefer to learn through reading may favour Odyssey DAO, a free community made for the sole purpose of educating more people about web3. Built entirely by the community, Odyssey DAO has assembled an extensive collection of learning paths and educational materials, covering everything from web3 basics to how to make the most of decentralised finance. Every article is detailed, well-written, and includes helpful visuals.
“Rabbithole brings web3 to the curious and meets individuals where they are.”
— Tom White, Rabbithole user
Once acquainted with the basics, the best way to learn is through collaboration. Forefront and Protein have established tokenised communities to facilitate growth among a global network of web3-savvy founders, cultural instigators, researchers, and strategists.
Now heading into its fifth cohort — or season —, Protein has since expanded into Protein Agency, a global brand consultancy, and Protein Studios, a 200-member workspace owned entirely by the community. After filling out an application, all accepted members can learn, grow, and earn by collaborating on insight reports, attending events, and socialising IRL in London and Amsterdam for members-only quarterly meetups.
Meanwhile, Forefront is building an information-curation protocol to allow tokenised communities like Protein to thrive. Providing content and cutting-edge analytics, the Forefront community consists primarily of DAO operators and web3 researchers. Rather than filling out an application, anyone can obtain a Forefront membership by purchasing their NFT pass, and access their research.
“Forefront empowers members of the community to build the next generation of social tokens and DAOs,” says Allen Taylor, a Forefront contributor. “It really allows people to get an in-depth understanding of web3 on their own terms.”
Forefront is just one of many communities dedicated to empowering community-owned networks and organisations. Communities like DAO Masters, Seed Club, and Kali DAO are dedicated to building this infrastructure, supporting DAO operators with the tools and resources they need to scale, and developing effective tooling and best practices. While striving for the same goal, each takes an entirely different approach.
Similar to Odyssey, DAO Masters is focused on education. Built entirely by DAO Masters’ contributors, the community has produced and curated a large library of resources to help operators grow, launch, and scale their DAOs. Inspired by other communities seeking to blend their operations with a commercial pillar, the organisation soon plans to branch into DAO consulting.
No web3 community dominates the commercial space in organisation-level education as much as Seed Club. Dubbed as the “‘Y Combinator of Tokenised Communities,’ Seed Club is a DAO that builds and invests in other decentralised organisations. It runs a 12-week accelerator, helping DAOs get ready for capital and community formation milestones while connecting DAO operators to key figures in the web3 ecosystem. The programme concludes with a Demo Day, where DAOs can pitch to over 1,000 prospective contributors community members and investors.
Those communities will benefit from tools like Kali DAO, a no-code, no-lawyer platform to create legally compliant DAOs. Unlike other DAO deployers, which only offer specific services, Kali’s contract features a token, a treasury, and a voting system. The platform was developed entirely by LexDAO, a decentralised legal engineer guild.
“Forefront really allows people to get an in-depth understanding of web3 on their own terms.”
— Allen Taylor, Forefront contributor
The goal of Developer DAO is twofold: to onboard more developers into web3, and then use their newfound skills to build tools and public goods that push the sector forward. Members can join any of the six guilds (community, design and product, development, governance, marketing and business, and writing), contribute to existing projects, or propose a new project.
“I was able to achieve my goal in a fun, gamified way.”
— Maricris, Founder of Women in Web3
Buildspace takes a different route, offering free project-based courses for both beginners and advanced developers. Mostly asynchronous, each project can take 5-10 hours to complete, and members can interact in a Discord server with 20,000 developers from across the globe. With live sessions, dedicated project rooms, and plenty of advice from fellow developers, Buildspace provides a supportive environment where members are encouraged to ask all the questions they need to learn faster.
It was this collaboration and support that made Buildspace such an enjoyable experience for Founder of Women in Web3, Maricris. “Through their Get The F**k Off Localhost (GTFOL) principle, accountability system, and weekly agenda of building, launching, measuring, and learning, I was able to achieve my goal in a fun, gamified way,” she says. “In the next few years, I’d love for them to build an IRL location where way more magic, growth, and fun can happen.”
As for how these communities will evolve, only time will tell. But there’s no question that additional education is needed for web3 to thrive. If the existing engineering boot camp structures are any indication, combining content and “real world” experimentation is a recipe for success.
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