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Web2 software engineers have benefitted from design standards, mature programming languages, and vulnerability tools to minimize the risks of an attack. Failure to do so can result in a situation similar to my “Equifax Attack: Only a Matter of Time” publication back in 2017.

Those working in Web3 projects find themselves at an exciting stage. Initiatives like bounties and Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) drive new opportunities for these pioneers to explore. Unfortunately, the Web3 landscape is not as mature or defined as earlier phases in the web frontier. Compounding the situation is the risk those challenges impose in a decentralized environment — where exploitation can result in losing a large volume of assets, as well as the time it takes to secure an auditing service for smart contract code and the duration of the audit itself

To help mitigate such risks and provide faster and fairer access to security services, the concept of a TURN token was recently announced at the Ethereum Community Conference (EthCC) in France.

Time-Unit-Representative NFTs, commonly referred to as TURNs, were established as the result of a shared vision for a more secure Web3 that advances the free market economy on Ethereum. 

A TURN token represents a slice of time in an actor’s existence, resulting in a standards-based ERC-721 which represents an amount of time in which a certain service can be provided. As such, the terms, prices, and expectations are written directly into a smart contract as an NFT.

What does this mean for service delivery? It actually provides an opportunity for more service providers to participate and bid for open initiatives. Basic economics concludes that this will benefit both the consumer and the industry providing services.

Let’s look at how Diligence is using TURN in order to try and understand it a little better.

ConsenSys Diligence uses the TURN token concept to market their security audit and risk mitigation services. The Diligence product has been quite successful and currently has an average wait time of six months after a statement of work has been signed.

The TURN NFT allows a purchaser to skip the line in order to receive security audit services in the time specified, rather than waiting for availability.  

So what does this look like from a services-provided perspective?

  • Diligence has determined that 1 TURN is equal to 40 hours of smart contract auditor services.

  • The services are provided over a five-day week @ 8 hours per day.

  • Auction starts at 100,000 DAI per week, but USDC is also an accepted form of payment.

  • The initial drop will be for 8 TURNs.

With this new TURN NFT, Diligence is essentially introducing an open marketplace for buyers and sellers of security auditing services and potentially other time-bound human services.

So what does this mean for the greater market?

The TURN token premise allows workers to market their time and services in an open and free (on-chain) market. Because of the decentralized nature of the underlying design, there will be no hidden characteristics within the agreed-upon terms. This means competitors will be able to see the terms and conditions, resulting in fairer pricing structures to both sides of the relationship.

Additionally, scheduling processes would be open and viewable by anyone, which exposes delayed service-delivery tactics that some providers utilize to justify cheaper rates to their customers. As an example, prior to TURN tokens one might notice the service rate is a fraction of the standard rate but not know that the planned time for this work is off-peak hours and considerably cheaper for the service provider to meet the customer’s expectations.

Furthermore, the TURN token concept allows for new players to enter into markets which they would not be aware of otherwise. This will not only lead to fair pricing from a consumer perspective, but will drive quality in the industry where the service is being provided.

I am pretty sure this is the definition of a “win:win” scenario.

Since 2021, I have been trying to live by the following mission statement, which I feel can apply to any technology professional:

“Focus your time on delivering features/functionality that extends the value of your intellectual property. Leverage frameworks, products, and services for everything else.”

– J. Vester

Twice during my career I was fortunate to work for several small consulting firms. While we managed to stay nearly 100% utilized as an entity, one of our biggest challenges was finding new projects after completing an existing project. It was always tough to compete against the larger consultancies, because they had direct connections with key decision makers in our region.

The TURN token concept allows providers of any size to compete for a given statement of work, which would have benefitted both of my prior employers and likely gained us new clientele and projects that otherwise wouldn’t have been options for us in the past.

TURN tokens adhere to my personal mission statement, because they allow the customer to find the right service provider at the right price. The terms and conditions are fully transparent and viewable by everyone who has an interest. This will naturally lead to a fair pricing structure and realistic milestones and objectives.

Web3 is creating greater opportunities for the individual and TURN could be the catalyst for a vast improvement on how services are established, valued, and delivered. It’s the individual’s “turn” to set the stage, which will eventually lead to a great benefit for service consumers and service providers. You can visit the TURN Marketplace for more information.  

Have a really great day!

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