What major problem could potentially be resolved with a network city and how?
This blog post is part of the CityDAO contest for offering the best problem that can be solved with network cities.
The best general use case for network cities is building real life censorship resistance networks.
I’ll start from a specific example and will than generalize the idea.
Law of Return as censorship resistant mechanism
Israel, the place I live in, is probably the first network state in the world. It was formed in 1948 after World War II and the Holocaust, when Jews were prosecuted based on their ethnicity and believes. This has pushed Jews to seek for their own sovereign state. In 1950, after Israel was born, the Law of Return was passed, which gave Jews all over the world, at any given time, the right to receive an Israeli citizenship and return to Israel.
(This rule was subject to major debate as it discriminates against other citizens of Israel like Arabs and Druze, but I will ignore this point as it ignites a big, different debate).
The Law of Return created a censorship resistant network for Jews that lives until today - if you’re a Jew currently living in country X, and being prosecuted for it, you can always use the Law of Return to come back to Israel.
This law was used excessively and is still being used until today (for example many French Jews returned to Israel in the past 20 years).
The Law of Return created a censorship resistant network for Jews around the world. It is anchored with physical land in Israel, but also uses a distributed population hubs of Jews around the world that helps other Jews. We’ve created a censorship resistant network, based on the fact that history tried to censor us.
Network cities as censorship resistant entities
We can take this real life censorship resistant property and generalize it to other areas other than religion.
Just recently, abortions were banned in at least 10 states in the US. What if we can create a network city that is based on the idea that abortions are legitimate and are a given right?
This network can become a virtual entity that serves as a insurance policy to every woman that might get censored and is fearful (censorship in the sense that some woman want to have an abortion but she can’t). Just like the Rule of Return, the network city citizenship will provide her with an exit card - to exit her censoring society and move somewhere else.
We can generalize the idea of the network city around any set of values that certain communities have (where the community values is currently a subset in one or many nation states), but might some day be a subject to extreme censorship based on its values. Minority communities are a great first example.
Network cities can be fully virtual with no physical land backing, or can have one hub of physical backing with distributed citizens set (like Israel). This models will enable people to keep their set of believes and values, whilst having an insurance, or some kind of exit plan in case they gets censored.
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