How is the value of the Internet calculated? Is it meaningful to try to calculate it at all? I see the Internet as simply a medium for communication, much like the telegraph, the telephone, the radio, or television. Can one put a value on these media or technologies as well? This is not my field at all, but saying e.g. that the value of a certain medium is the sum of the value of all companies using it feels strange to me.
A lot of triangulation with inherent weaknesses that actually make the estimate extremely conservative (I’d like to be surprised by SAFE far exceeding my expectations, which already are quite high, haha). Here are a few places that speak to the value of the internet, IOT, automation, eRetail, etc.
Much to your point, trying to put a quantitative value on the intangible is like trying to capture a visual representation of the wind–we can only look to its effects, I think, to make tangible our understanding of its power. From an intellectual standpoint I think of this valuation exercise much as I think of microeconomics–a model that breaks but provides a good structure and therefore place to start. I am always looking for new ways to approach the question and iterate and the hypothesis
Like I said, this is not my field, and maybe that’s what makes it easier for me to question the purpose of the whole exercise. A company is hardly “tangible” in the sense that it can be touched, but it has value because people are prepared to pay for its use and the potential profits it can generate. Can we say that about the wind? Sure, e.g. if making use of wind without paying some sort of tax is made a criminal offense. People pay ISPs for access to hardware that lets them access the Internet. I guess we could say that the value of the Internet is the sum of the profits of the ISPs, but does that really make any more sense? Phenomena like the wind or the Internet certainly are valuable to us in the sense that they’re useful. The ability to feel pain is useful. People who are born without it (congenital analgesia) tend to die very quickly. But is calculating the monetary value of pain meaningful? I don’t think so.
Everyone should have this attitude. I love questions! Questioning is great because once we stop learning, we’re no longer living
Well, any entity that generates revenue from wind power is technically supposed to pay taxes, but subsidies and other magical accounting tend to erase that tax liability.
Absolutely! I’m currently working a pharma case (I am a strategy and management consultant by day). Without quantifying the monetary value of pain (or more accurately, the monetary value of pain avoidance) pharmaceutical companies wouldn’t know how to price their products by use case (I.e., target demographic, read: Advil vs. Tramadol). Similarly, every time a consumer or customer (e.g., insurance company or clinic) buys (or refuses to buy) said pain medication, they are ascribing monetary value to pain (avoidance).
The ability to quantify the intangible is the essence of pricing strategy. Price is not objective worth; it is subjective value. One of the things that amazes me about crypto is that it should perfectly function according to Adam Smith’s laissez faire economics, governed by the invisible hand. However, the blatant market manipulation of the crypto markets shows how easily that which would be ideal can and is corrupted. (On a side note it begs the question to what degree should we blame government for poor economic policies and outcomes. Is it just human nature at play? But once again, I digress.)
It’s this curious dynamic that propels us to engage in (theoretical) price discovery–to try and hypothesize what tangible form MAID (and subsequently) Safecoin price will take as an embodiment of the network’s perceived value. The significant role that perception of (as opposed to “real”) value plays in determining not just price but also network viability is the reason why I’m so excited to hear that Maidsafe is beginning to more heavily invest in coordinated marketing efforts.
I would almost believe that the Internet almost cannot be priced going forward.
It has become such a large Supermassive entity and Public utility that numerous people need and use daily that even the United Nations has gone on record as saying that access to the internet is a Human Right.
With MaidSAFE decentralizing it among all of its users; the internet may well be impossible to price and buy for ownership of one or the few.