It’s no secret that the internet has changed our lives in many, many ways, in such a short space of time. Entertainment, communication, and shopping are some of the more well-known ways the internet has shaped the way we live, but there are plenty of others too.
One of the areas where the web has created a lot of opportunities is in the world of education. Barely twenty years ago getting an education involved taking a (probably expensive) real-life course or at the very least buying a bunch of books.
Nowadays, there are plenty of platforms where users can take a course and learn new skills from the comfort of their own home. It’s a big leap forward, but it still has downsides. These platforms can be expensive, and the creators of the educational content that we love are often underpaid and undervalued.
It’s time to change things up, and build a new way of sharing educational content that benefits both publishers and consumers.
Of all the ways to do this, blockchain technology is turning out to be one of the most promising. Before we look at how that’s going to work, let’s run through the pros and cons of online education.
The ups and downs of e-Learning
The positive aspects of getting educated online are hard to ignore. For example, compared to traditional methods it’s insanely convenient. Instead of taking a chunk of time out of your day to travel to a far-off location, you can learn from anywhere with an internet connection.
Taking a programming course while on your lunch break is something that would have been a complete fantasy only a generation ago. Thanks to the internet it’s far easier to gain new skills in your free time.
The range of courses and educational content available online is also mind-blowing. YouTube alone contains in-depth, entertaining educational videos on just about any topic you can imagine and has over a billion users. No matter how niche your interests, you can find a course on them in seconds.
There’s a lot here to celebrate, and these are all reasons why the global e-learning market is predicted to surpass $200 billion by 2024. Unfortunately, the world of online education isn’t without a few flaws. To make matters even more frustrating, most of them are completely avoidable.
For example, online courses cost money. They’re generally run by centralized platforms who want to make a profit. There might be nothing inherently wrong with that, but it means you have to pay extra. Oh, and you have to cover the earnings of the content creators, too.
Another downside to online learning is the way these content creators are underpaid. Often, the hosting platforms like educational sites, YouTube, and social media take a large cut of the profits. This leaves the creator of the content with little to show for their efforts.
The result? They might stop doing what they love, depriving us all of their expertise and valuable educational resources. If they stick at it, they might have to find another job to make ends meet, so the quality and amount they produce will be lower.
So how can we solve this problem?
One of the biggest problems with educational platforms online right now is how centralized they are. That’s why fees are high, and why content creators don’t get the money they deserve — because platform owners take big chunks of their profit.
If it were possible to decentralize the process, so content creators and educators could sell their resources to users directly, it could be done far more cheaply.
This is where blockchain comes in. It’s designed to support decentralized systems without the need for a third party.
Companies like AC3 believe this is the key to a fairer and more affordable online education marketplace for everyone.
Users of the platform will be able to use its own crypto token – AC3 – to purchase courses and materials in all kinds of areas, from graphic design through to programming. They’ll buy these directly from their creators, and they’ll receive all the payment.
It’s also more secure, thanks to blockchain’s transparent and corruption-resistant design. And it allows content creators to avoid paying the often extortionate fees demanded by payment platforms like PayPal and Stripe.
AC3’s utilization of the blockchain can provide a way for online educations to build more intimate and rewarding relationships with their followers, and make a living doing what they love. Their audience can expect cheaper and better materials and access to life-changing educational materials at the click of a mouse.