Despite copping the unofficial nickname “destertedland” from users on Reddit, popular metaverse project Decentraland and competitor Sandbox have pushed back against the widely-circulated allegations that no one is using their platforms.
The controversy began when data from DappRadar was shared by Twitter user 0xShake, who posted a tweet claiming that Decentraland had just 30 Daily Active Users (DAU) despite commanding a hefty US$1.2 billion market cap.
This information quickly became the subject of multiple headlines that looked to load up criticism on the metaverse projects for having such large valuations despite extremely low activity.
Decentraland took to Twitter themselves to dispute such claims, saying that the data from DappRadar only looks at transactions and doesn’t accurately track daily active ‘users’ on the platform.
“Some websites are tracking only specific smart contract transactions but reporting them as daily active users (DAU), which is inaccurate,” Decentraland wrote.
The difference between ‘users’ and ‘transactions’ is actually quite large with the metaverse project claiming that there were 56,697 Monthly Active Users (MAU) in September but just 1,074 interactions with smart contracts.
Decentraland added that more accurate data could be found at DCL Metrics which tracks the daily visitors to the Decentraland metaverse, which is something more akin to the metric of a daily active user. As of today, DCL reports Decentraland having roughly 7000 daily users over the last week.
Two days after Decentraland hit back at criticism on Twitter, Sandbox CEO Arthur Madrid weighed in with his thoughts.
“On chain transactions does not mean users,” he wrote in a disgruntled tweet that provided Sandbox’s own MAU data.
Regardless of actual user activity or how many young gamers want metaverse mansions, the native tokens of the largest metaverse platforms have suffered significantly throughout the recent market crash.
Decentraland’s native token MANA currently trades for US$0.65, down an eye-watering 88.8% from its all-time high of $5.85 on November 25 last year.
Similarly, Sandbox’s SAND token is changing hands for US$0.78, having fallen a particularly brutal 90.6% from its respective all-time-high of $8.40 on the very same day.
Overall, the final consensus is that users want more functionality when it comes to engaging in the metaverse, with a recent study finding the “lack of fun” to be largest barrier to greater adoption of Web3 gaming.
A classic Club Penguin meme sums it up best.