Our Thesis


As we stand on the threshold of a digital era, marked by the daily generation of 2.5 quintillion bytes of data according to a report by Domo, we find ourselves in need of a robust infrastructure that can keep pace with the explosive growth of digital content. The traditional systems that served well for physical commerce are found lacking when applied to the new frontier of digital commerce. The Web2 Internet has many problems and doesn't have a clear, organized system to help the rapidly growing digital content economy.

Key Elements of Digital Commerce

To understand the requirements for a flourishing digital content economy, we can look at the essential components of successful selling on a website:
  1. 1.
    Inventory: A place where the product is stored.
  2. 2.
    Product Identification System: Such as SKU, UPC, or GTIN, describe the universal properties and provenance of products.
  3. 3.
    Payment: Systems to support order transactions.
  4. 4.
    Product: The actual item sold to the customer.
These elements must be translated and adapted to the digital content economy, demanding a new set of innovations.

Shortcomings of Web2

Web2's limitations are hindering the growth of the digital content economy:
  • Inefficient Storage: Web2 servers are centralized, without a universal protocol, leading to multiple copies of content, increased cost and reduced performance.
  • Lack of Content Identification System: With every Web2 server defining its own identifiers, exchanging content or verifying content provenance becomes challenging.
  • Expensive Global Payment System: The current setup is not economical for lower-priced goods, and credit card systems are inaccessible in certain regions.
  • Unclear Product Definition: It is hard to define the shipment or products and is also difficult to bundle products or create higher values.

The Promise of Web3

Web3, the next generation of the internet, offers a way forward with significant advantages:
  • Decentralized Storage: The decentralized economy allows more efficient access to content stored on the decentralized storage with a unified URL, reducing costs and enhancing performance.
  • Crypto Payments: By offering alternatives to traditional fiat or credit card systems, crypto payments enable more inclusive transactions, especially for smaller payments.
  • NFTs for Ownership and Distribution: NFTs facilitate the creation, purchase, and ownership of digital licenses, revolutionizing how products are defined and transferred.
However, a crucial piece of the puzzle remains missing: an identification system that defines the provenance of digital content, universal and immutable. This gap makes it hard for us to check if something is real or to know who has the right to sell products and where to find them.

Numbers Protocol: A Universal Content Identification System

Numbers Protocol is designed to fill a significant gap by offering a universal system to identify digital content. This system not only verifies the authenticity of content but also tracks its origin, supporting the growth of the digital world's economy. By utilizing existing standards like IPTC and C2PA, and creating new ones such as EIP-7053, Numbers Protocol ensures the provenance of digital content through immutable records securely housed on the blockchain.
The Numbers network is composed of three key elements that together define the digital content landscape:
  1. 1.
    URL Pointing: Direct links to the storage location of content files ensure accessibility.
  2. 2.
    Immutable Provenance Records: Unalterable logs offer an authoritative history of content origin and changes.
  3. 3.
    Content Verification: Comprehensive mechanisms to authenticate both the content and its entire history.
Numbers Protocol not only enhances content traceability but also augments its accessibility. By ensuring that both the digital content files and their descriptive metadata can be accessed through an open protocol, Numbers opens doors to new opportunities in the digital content future. Content creators and creativity-tool platforms can transform digital content into Web3 assets with ease. This transformation allows for easier monetization through Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), bundling as distinct products, sharing in immersive virtual reality spaces like the Metaverse, or even licensing to sophisticated AI systems. With traceability and provenance securely established, the potential applications of digital content are expanded, enriching both creators and users alike.

Building a Future for Digital Content Economy

The transition from Web2 to Web3 is not just a technological shift but a fundamental rethinking of how we interact with and monetize digital content. With the growing daily influx of data and the clear inadequacies of existing systems, the adoption of new technologies like Numbers Protocol is essential. By embracing Web3 and developing tools that mirror the needs of the new digital economy, we are laying the groundwork for a more equitable, efficient, and thriving digital world. The future of digital content is being built today, and it is our responsibility to ensure it is robust, accessible, and innovative.