No coins selectedWorldcoin is an open-source protocol created to help everyone gain access to the global economy. It is designed to be decentralized, which means that ultimately its oversight and decision-making will rest with its user community. As a cryptocurrency that was created based on the co-founders’ AI experiences, Worldcoin’s objective has a strong focus on AI. Self-described as a digital identity protocol aiming to support humanity in the age of AI, Worldcoin aims to build a decentralized proof-of-personhood solution. The people and organizations that support Worldcoin are developing the tools that work together to help it achieve its mission, including:

World ID – A privacy-preserving digital identity designed to help solve important identity-based challenges, including proving an individual’s unique personality.

Worldcoin Token – The first token to be distributed globally and free of charge, to all humans, both for their usefulness and for future management, just because they are unique.

World App – A self-custodial app that enables global payments, purchases and transfers using the Worldcoin token, digital assets and traditional currencies.

Proof-of-personhood is based on the idea that because AI is going to create an abundance of creations but also high volumes of spam, the need to prove that someone is a unique real person — instead of a bot or another real person — becomes increasingly critical.  Worldcoin plans to distribute a special piece of hardware called the Orb around the world for anyone to scan their iris and get an ID via an app. Worldcoin says it uses privacy-preserving technology and plans to decentralize the governance of the protocol over time. 

Why Is Worldcoin Important? 

Worldcoin and many earlier proof-of-personhood protocols try to solve a few pressing issues in the real world. They include the following: 

  1. Centralized proof-of-personhood systemsMany identification systems are reliant on centralized governments and are controlled by centralized entities. These centralized entities face a myriad of challenges including data privacy and sometimes limited accessibility.

  1. Spamming and AI-generated content  – As AI becomes more capable of creating digital content that’s increasingly indistinguishable from human creations, it’s necessary to have a way to tell if certain content is created by a real human or AI. Having a proof-of-personhood solution can make it easier to resolve bot-generated spam, a problem that troubles many platforms and users.

How Does Worldcoin Work? 

There are several key components of Worldcoin; a World ID, WLD tokens, the World App. A World ID is an ID that’s issued to one real person and used as proof of his or her personhood. A Worldcoin token is issued to the network’s participants. Both are accessed through the World App that users can download on their phones. The way Worldcoin works is that users generate a private and public key with their World App.

Users go to an Orb located nearby to have their iris scanned by the device to be verified as a real and unique human. This means that the iris scan must be of a real human and cannot be the same as another verified human. Once verified, users will have an Orb-verified World ID. Around two million Orb-verified World IDs have been created as of July 2023 and the project aims to increase the number of Orbs to 1,500 over the next few months in more than 35 cities around the world. Worldcoin Users in some countries can already receive Worldcoin tokens, or WLD.

Who Is in Charge of Worldcoin? 

Worldcoin’s goal of building a decentralized proof-of-personhood solution means that its governance should ultimately be decentralized. The initial development of the protocol, however, was developed by a team of developers at a Delaware corporation headquartered in San Francisco, California called Tools for Humanity (TFH). With a German subsidiary, TFH conducted multi-year beta testing of the protocol and developed the Orb and the World App. 

A non-profit organization called the Worldcoin Foundation was set up in 2022 to scale the network as a public utility and build it toward decentralized governance. The Worldcoin Foundation is currently governed by a board with three directors alongside additional advisors and uses a 4-of-6 multi-signature wallet to take any action related to Worldcoin’s smart contracts. Ultimately, the Worldcoin protocol aims to be governed by its community with the foundation playing a limited role. 

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