I've recently read something that captures a core philosophy of the web in general. We start with tools (like databases, utility software, etc) and build on top of those tools to create services (social media, SaaS software, search engines, cloud services, etc).
When you move from a tooling space to a services space, you start to concern yourself with 'state', and he who owns the most state wins. As you mentioned, our private data, user behavior, interactions...that's all state. And companies that capture the most state incrementally and disproportionately grow to become monopolies.
We started with a decentralized web, and hello, we're more centralized than ever.
The Blockchain (which is functionally a database, sometimes preconfigured with its own computer, like the Ethereum Virtual machine) allows state to become open, and therefore not centralized. This will allow the idea of composability (one of the fundamental principles of the web) to fourish.
We're just getting started. I don't know what Web3 will eventually shape up to look like, but it's brimming with potential.
It's looking at a snapshot of today's broken, MVP-stage blockchain and making generalized statements about the future.
As much of our world has become digitally-relevant, we've seen a need to make digital-native representations of the world, and currency is merely one of them.
The internet is fundamentally decentralized, but the applications built on it undermine that philosophy (they are centralized). Blockchain - and web3 - is a gambit towards returning the internet to its original DNA.
I know we're as a stratified species, may have some reluctance about the notion of anarchy, and I'm not even sold on absolute anarchy, but there are aspects of our lives that could do with decentralizing trust.
Perhaps, instead of thinking about what the blockchain looks like today, if we asked ourselves 'what would things look like if we didn't need so many middlemen in the chain', we might find specific instances where Blockchain anc Blockchain-like technology is an improvement on the status quo.
I appreciate the writing style, and I also acknowledge the need to create a main antagonist (here, obviously, Facebook).
Generally, the 'walled garden of apps' is the AOL of 2021. That includes every single application that closes you off from the web while handling your data opaquely.
As @Florian mentioned, all this is the liminal phase between web 2.0 and web 3.0, a decentralized internet with monetization native to the web, identity and security also baked in and less central control of 'nodes'.
Still, very long way to go. I think that, if you can manage it, you should commit some part of your time to playing a role in web3. It seems like something that will be rewarding - and not just financially.
One thing that truly fascinates me about the Tiktok algorithm is that it's only one of several algorithms that behave this way, but people have such a visceral response to it.
Some of it, I think, is PR (an example of Eugene Wei's Remains of the Day article that extolled it to the point of being magic, much to my skepticism). It's possible that the 'For You' label makes it more obvious, a suggestive peek behind the curtain, as if to let you know, hey, you're directly responsible for this algorithm.
Touch it, pet it, feed it - the Tiktok feed is your tagamotchi.