This is a real email that a buyer received this morning, showing they earned $326.75 in rewards for buying a $60 rare record.

At the heart of what makes Public Market different is a belief that the value in a commercial exchange should flow between the buyer and the seller, not be captured by an intermediary. Our vision is for a public, open, decentralized eCommerce infrastructure that enables this flow of value.

A key mechanism of that value sharing is rewards. When you visit our newly-launched storefront and click on any item, you see two other numbers in addition to the price, both connected to rewards.

This post gives an overview of just what those numbers mean.

What are Buyer Rewards on Public Market?

Rewards are the way buyers get…

This holiday season, we’re betting on the power of crypto to provide real value to mainstream shoppers

We announced Public Market earlier this year with a very big mission: to end the era of extractive eCommerce monopolies. Since then, we’ve shared our beliefs around decentralized network effects and why many of today’s tech giants are more vulnerable to disruption than they seem.

At the end of the day, however, theories and ideas don’t topple monopolies: markets do. Specifically, market options that allow consumers to make different choices and receive more value.

For that reason, we couldn’t be more excited to announce the public launch of Public Market’s flagship storefront, just in time for Cyber Monday and the…

Photo by Aaron Mello on Unsplash

At the heart of the Public Market protocol lies a concept that runs directly counter to today’s eCommerce marketplace models: open inventory information. In closed ecosystems like Amazon and eBay, inventory data is proprietary and leveraged to extract rent and exert price control. In Public Market’s open ecosystem, inventory data is public and shared across any storefront built on top of the protocol. Whereas closed inventory creates competitive moats and leads to less competition and higher prices, open inventory obliterates competitive moats and creates new incentives for competition that drives down prices.

What’s old is new again: marketplace models in…

Via Unsplash

“Decentralization” is one of the most important and, at the same time, most abused concepts in the crypto space.

On the one hand, decentralization is shorthand for a variety of properties that stand in stark contrast to the monopolies that central banks have on our money and that the tech giants have on our data and online activity. On the other, the word is thrown around totemically, meaning too much and nothing at all — all at once.

Our team believes two things when it comes to decentralization.

First, we believe that teams should articulate why decentralization matters in the…

Today, Public Market takes an important step in its journey to build a global open protocol for eCommerce. This morning we opened up access to our flagship storefront for the first cohort of users and influencers in our early access program.

This marks a key moment for us. In addition to being the first time real users get to interact with software we’ve spent more than a year building, it represents a transition from theory to practice.

In the long run, if we do our job well, the vast majority of users who interact with a storefront built on the…

8 Risk Factors Determining Internet Giants’ Vulnerability to Decentralization

Crypto is caught today between two opposite — and, in my view, equally wrong — narratives about the prospects of decentralization to transform the business landscape. On the one hand, the dreamers believe in the inevitable decentralization of everything. On the other, the cynics argue that consumers don’t care about decentralization and will stick with the services they already use. As so often is the case, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

In my last piece, “The Future Of Network Effects: Tokenization and the End of Extraction,” I looked at 1) the outsized role network effects businesses play in…

How businesses built around network effects are about to undergo a radical transformation that will impact us all

In the first of this two part series, I argue that the network effects of tomorrow will often be built around decentralized tokenized ecosystems in which there is no distinction between network participants and network owners. This transformation will occur because tokenized ecosystems can capture the value of the network for participants without the economic rent extraction (fees and data) that is characteristic of centralized network effect platforms — resulting in better outcomes for everyone. …

Last week, I shared a number of interesting stats about the eCommerce industry as a whole and Amazon’s dominance in particular. One of the conclusions of the post was that the industry features a monopolized middleman (Amazon) whose core growth is driven by a “bunch of unhappy sellers.”

This week, we’re delving into the story behind the idea those unhappy sellers. And too paraphrase Levar Burton’s famous line…“you don’t have to take [our] word for it.”

Between A Rock And A Hard Place

Amazon’s Seller Forums — the place on Amazon’s website where sellers can go to ask and answer questions that support one another — are…

Public Market is motivated by a relatively simple belief set:

First, we believe that fair and open commercial exchange is a bedrock of human society.

Second, we believe that the “e” in eCommerce fundamentally downplays the size of the market opportunity: online commerce is increasingly eating offline commerce and is simply becoming the way that goods are bought and sold.

Third, we believe that the value of fair and open commerce has been fundamentally compromised by centralized, private monopoly marketplaces who are warping markets to their own benefit.

Fourth, we believe that the underlying architecture of marketplace commerce can be…

To really go to the moon, we’re going to need consumer scale.

New products, platforms and protocols break into the consumer mainstream when the average user engages based on the benefit of the service (i.e. faster, cheaper, better) without being forced to care about the enabling technology. To date, the users of decentralized blockchain applications have been primarily those with a pre-existing interest in the space. That may be about to change.

A common skepticism of the blockchain space is that it is a technology in search of use cases, in which the hype and speculation exceed applicability.

For some, like Metastable investor Naval Ravikant, the lack of broad consumer usage of…

KJ Erickson

Entrepreneur building the future of commission-free eCommerce at Stanford / Oxford/ Y Combinator. Founder, Abundance Labs & Simbi. Tweets @Kjer

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