Cincinnati could have a big impact on the next version of the web, according to organizers of a convention later this month. MidwestCon will bring together designers, artists, and entrepreneurs to discuss the digital future. DisruptArt CEO Rob Richardson says Cincinnati’s pool of talent makes it the ideal location to develop the next generation of business and art.

“If you’re NFT curious; if you’re wondering; if you think it’s a scam, a fraud — we want you to come out and learn and experience it,” Richardson says. “We’re going to have a fashion show, we’re going to have a musical performance. All these creatives, they’re all leveraging this power of NFT, the Web3 technology, and a lot of them are based right here.”

He compares skepticism about Web3 — as known as Web 3.0 — to social media. “There were a lot of people that were saying ‘This is not going to be media; no one is going to pay attention to this. This is not how people will consume news.’ The same things are being said about art and entertainment and for the same reasons, they’re wrong. It’s about understanding consumer behavior.”

Richardson says Cincinnati is perfect for Web3, given the local concentration of marketing and creative expertise. “This new technology has the opportunity to open so many doors. And when we embrace it — I’m not going to say ‘if’ — when we embrace it, we can be a leader. It doesn’t just live on the West Coast; it doesn’t just live on the East Coast; it doesn’t just live in Miami.”

The convention will be at the Art Academy of Cincinnati, Aug. 12-14. Entry is free for kids 16 and younger.

Cincinnati has hosted another event called Midwestcon. The Cincinnati Fantasy Group’s sci-fi game event was first started in 1950, but has been dormant since 2019.



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