The story of ‘Luosha Haishi’ will eventually be forgotten, but the blockchain can preserve the truth forever.
While the story of 'Luosha Haishi' may fade, blockchain ensures eternal truth.
Under the impact of the data flood, how long can those passionate voices last? Will we soon forget these voices, and even find it difficult to distinguish the beauty and ugliness of things, gradually sinking in the whirlpool of narratives? We need a tool to mark and record those shocking events.
Author/ Weng Hao, Co-founder of Wai Bo Sanguan
01. Starting with “Luosha Hai Market”
I heard that Dao Lang’s new song “Luosha Hai Market” has surpassed 8 billion views. It’s like every person on Earth has listened to it once. I contributed two plays as well. But I have to admit, the song itself didn’t captivate me as much as I expected. However, the story in the lyrics is another matter.
In Pu Songling’s original work, he vividly describes a story of the Luosha Kingdom, which is the opposite of the Dragon Kingdom. There is also a warrior named Ma Ji who travels across the sea, experiencing the changing fortunes of two kingdoms and ultimately choosing to return to his homeland. The people of this Luosha Kingdom have a unique aesthetic—they believe that ugliness is beauty. In other words, this is a world where everything is turned upside down.
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Although the story sounds absurd, it is not uncommon in our real world. In this era of increasingly impetuous social atmosphere, every time I see a popular singer on variety shows who is cute and shy, but wears strange costumes and sings bizarre songs at their own concerts, I am completely puzzled.
Many videos and articles interpret “Luosha Hai Market” as Dao Lang’s “attack” on the big shots in the music industry. Yes, his lyrics are sharp and direct. But in my opinion, the reason why this song has resonated so strongly is because it touches the hearts of the masses. 99% of the hardworking masses find their own voice in this song and, in their own way, unanimously approve of it. Those who are busy with life and work for their families may not have a say on mainstream platforms or in the spotlight, but their feelings, experiences, and efforts are the foundation of society. “Luosha Hai Market” provides a voice for these people, a melody that resonates with them.
As for that 1% of the “elites,” they are undoubtedly disturbed by the message in this song. Because they realize that their values do not completely align with the masses. They may be accustomed to looking down on people from a high place, but this song reminds them that true power comes from the general public.
In the upcoming era, in music, art, and even in life, genuine emotions and resonance are far more powerful than superficial titles and positions.
02. Wisdom of the Masses
“The masses need elites to lead,” this narrative is regarded as a standard by many who consider themselves elite. But is this the truth? Does human progress rely on a few “geniuses” rather than the general public?
In 2004, James Surowiecki wrote “The Wisdom of Crowds.” Instead of using flowery language, he used real examples to tell us that under certain conditions, the judgment of the masses may even surpass that of experts. One frequently cited story is about a public event where people guessed the weight of a bull.
The story took place in 1906 when Francis Galton, a famous statistician and Charles Darwin’s cousin from England, visited a rural market. At the market, there was a contest that invited the public to guess the weight of a displayed bull. Participants had to pay a fee, then write down their guesses, and the person with the closest guess would win a prize.
Galton was curious about this event and decided to analyze it. He collected all the guesses, hoping to use this experiment to verify the “stupidity of the masses.” However, when he calculated the average of all the guesses, he was surprised to find that this average (1208 pounds) was very close to the actual weight of the bull (1198 pounds). His experiment to “verify the stupidity of the masses” ended up becoming irrefutable evidence that overturned this judgment.
On the other hand, I have to mention the book that is often cited as a negative example of the ignorance of the masses, “The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind.” Just the title itself is like an invisible hammer, smashing against those “ordinary” people who try to express their opinions. But in fact, the crowds described in the book are actually groups that have been brainwashed by specific narratives.
For example, in “The Crowd,” there is an example of two little girls drowning in the River Seine that was reported in the newspaper. Many eyewitnesses claimed to recognize these two children, and all the testimonies seemed highly consistent, to the point where the pretrial judge signed the death certificate without hesitation. However, on the eve of the funeral, it was suddenly discovered that the two girls who were believed to be dead were actually alive. Due to the media’s guidance, there was a collective misjudgment from ordinary people to professionals.
The infamous Goebbels once said: “A lie told once remains a lie, but a lie told a thousand times becomes the truth.” However, if the lie is repeated a thousand times without allowing others to debunk it, many people will treat it as the truth. But if there is a lack of public platforms that allow critical thinkers to speak up, how can we debunk the lies?
Once the narrative power is highly controlled, most people in such a group will lose their original personalities. They can no longer think independently, but go with the flow and unconsciously dominate. These are typical characteristics of group psychology. Their behavior precisely illustrates a fact: when individuals lose critical thinking and become followers of the crowd, they can easily become the “herd”.
Therefore, in my previous discussion on “Data Resonance: Reconstructing the Trust System”, I emphasized the importance of social diversity. The wisdom contained in groups formed by individuals with independent thinking and critical abilities is immeasurable. On the contrary, groups manipulated by a single narrative are often the true “herd”.
03. The Power of Narratives
Sitting on the couch, holding a cup of hot coffee, looking at the scrolling information flow on the mobile phone screen. Google search results, AI answers from ChatGPT, friends’ shares on Facebook, mainstream media such as CNN, Associated Press, and Reuters continuously feed me the “colorful” world. Without hesitation, I believe, “This is the real world.” But is it really?
To understand the power behind this, we first need to look at the giants who control these sources of information.
Current mainstream internet media:
- Google’s founders, Larry LianGuaige and Sergey Brin
- Facebook’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg
- YouTube’s CEO, Susan Wojcicki
- Instagram’s CEO, Adam Mosseri
Turning to traditional media:
- Rupert Murdoch, owner of FOXNews and The Times
- Jeff Zucker, CEO of CNN
- Julius Reuter, founder of Reuters
- Moses Yale Beach, founder of the Associated Press
- Charles-Louis Havas, founder of Agence France-Presse
- And then there are Hollywood film companies:
- Marcus Loew of MGM
- The Warner Brothers
- The Coen Brothers of Columbia Pictures
Of course, we cannot ignore the recent attention-grabbing figures like Sam Altman of OpenAI and World Coin. AI is likely to dominate the narrative power in the future.
To some extent, this group holds the narrative power of the world.
Not long ago, former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd launched a national petition against Murdoch-controlled News Corp in Australia. It garnered over 500,000 signatures, pointing out the media empire’s manipulation of public opinion and suppression of reports that do not serve its interests. When the government has unfavorable comments about this multinational corporation, all the local newspapers controlled by News Corp will launch attacks on the front page. The truth, or rather our understanding of the truth, is often shaped by this small group of institutions and individuals.
I want to say, the next time you see a news or story, you might ask yourself, “Is this true?” We should all pursue the truth, rather than accepting the narratives provided by others.
04, Guardians of the Truth
In the era of capital and big data, we, the 99% majority, face a challenge: how to dig out a grain of truth from the ocean of information that engulfs us? Although everyone has independent eyes, how can our vision avoid being obscured by the powerful shadows of capital and data on this vast virtual beach?
Along with this challenge, another question arises: how should we preserve this grain of truth?
This reminds me of the lyrics of the singer Dao Lang, which are full of challenges to the times. However, under the impact of the data flood, how long can that passionate voice last? Or will we forget these voices in the near future, and even find it difficult to distinguish the beauty and ugliness of things, gradually sinking into the vortex of narratives?
In this era, the lighthouse of truth is so important. We need a tool that not only helps us filter and interpret information, but also marks and records those shocking events. This tool should be able to counter the manipulation of narratives and provide us with a choice to hear the voices of the masses.
What capabilities should this tool possess?
- Timestamp and verification: Whenever you encounter a piece of news or rumor, this tool will give the information a timestamp and verification mechanism to confirm its source and validity, just like putting a quality assurance label on it.
- Immutability: Imagine that once a piece of information is recognized by a critical mass of people, it will become like a milestone in history, indestructible and enduring.
- Distributed storage and decentralization: This system can ensure that everyone holds a part of the information, ensuring that it is not controlled or tampered with by any single entity, increasing the credibility of the information.
- Transparency and openness: This technology can ensure that everyone can openly and freely view and verify information, so that the truth is no longer concealed or manipulated by any party.
Most importantly, anyone can access this network and store information with timestamps. This is the charm of blockchain, and it is what I would like to call the “truth network”. Here, everyone with independent thinking ability can critically challenge and record every phenomenon, pursue the truth, and guard our history.
For example, when you see a news headline proclaiming “Chocolate can help with weight loss!” you can’t help but wonder, “Is it true?” If there is such a tool, various independent studies can be aggregated on the blockchain, allowing the general public with critical thinking to directly view all the research related to this statement, understand the truth behind it, and ultimately make their own independent judgments and gradually converge into a consensus among the group.
Finding the truth is by no means an easy task. Relying solely on superficial smartphone browsing and casually watching videos, the truth often becomes distant from us. The responsibility to maintain the truth falls on each of us, and it requires our deep thinking. Whenever we start to question, verify, or share information, we are actually adding value to the network of truth.
Finally, I want to ask you a simple question: Are you willing to store a piece of truth?