Indigenous Australians Making an Embassy in the Metaverse

Indigenous Australians are consolidating their presence in the digital landscape by establishing the First Nations Cultural Embassy in the metaverse.

Oldest Culture Explores Emerging Technologies

Last month, the Sovereign Yidindji Nation from the rainforest region of far north Queensland launched its own digital currency, making it the first indigenous enclave in Australia to enter the cryptosphere.

Now, Dr Vanessa Lee-Ah Met and Bibi Barba – representatives of the Yupungathi Meriam Nation and the Darumbal and Yuin Nations, respectively – have issued a discussion paper seeking support to run the first operations of this pilot project, which aims to position the first peoples of Australia in the metaverse.

Dr Vanessa Lee-Ah Mat, Australian scholar from the Yupungathiand Meriam Nation. Source: Griffiths University

Crypto Can Help to Avoid Past Mistakes

One of the reasons to create a cultural embassy in the metaverse is to impart a sense of sovereignty to indigenous people. So far, Australia is the only Western country that abides by the term Terra Nullius, a legal concept that means “land of no one”, and used by the erstwhile British Empire to colonise Aboriginal lands without treaty or payment.

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Blockchain is about transparency and trust […] With no recognition of cultural significance, land or indigenous culture, there is a risk of repeating the mistakes of the past.

Dr Vanessa Lee-Ah Mat

“Crypto allows us to be part of the conversation again by adopting the newest digital tech,” added Dr Lee-Ah Mat.

The First Nations Cultural Embassy is now in the design phase. It plans to expand across numerous metaverse platforms, such as Decentraland and Sandbox, and the project has already received offers to donate plots of land.

Using Blockchain to Preserve Australian Indigenous Art

Indigenous Australians are not only using crypto to make their voices heard; it’s also about preserving their art and culture with blockchain. This week, Crypto News Australia reported that artists from the Yolngu nation are digitising their work as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in an attempt to create a new source of revenue and also preserve their art for future generations.

José Oramas
Author

José Oramas

José is a journalist and translator with a keen interest in blockchain and cryptocurrencies.

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