Forbes partner ICO Civil failed to raise $8 Million

ICOFailOfTheWEEK:

Forbes partner ICO Civil failed to raise $8 Million! Just 10 days ago Matt Coolidge, founder of journalism platform The Civil Media Company announced a cooperation with Forbes media giant. The collaboration was a “milestone for the block chain-based journalism,” said Coolidge on Medium.

The joy, however, was only of short duration. The blockchain startup www.Civil.co failed to reach the $8 million soft cap and canceled the ICO. Seems to be the end of the days when promoters simply had to hint at collaborations with established companies to impress investors.

Civil CEO Matthew Iles said it was probably too complicated to buy tokens. However, there were more problems as it was not clear why blockchain would be used. ICO projects fail all the time, of course.

But Civil’s stumble is particularly notable because the platform recently grabbed headlines due to its partnership with the two mainstream media organisations. Obviously ICO investors becoming more selective in general. First signs that we are back to a kind of normal.

Source: www.BTC-Echo.de, CCN.com 

#16 Blockchains with a #ReturnOnSociety

Why Blockchain matters!

Blockchain is a digital ledger that records transactions or other data over time. A blockchain can be designed to be operated by a group of companies or individuals together such that no single entity controls the system or its data.

It offers a way for people who do not know each other to create a record of who owns what, that will compel the assent of everyone concerned.

What does that mean for real life? At the moment we hear a lot about Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. It made blockchain technology famous.

My personal focus goes well beyond Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies towards blockchain use cases which serve the needs of people; which create an added value for the society, a #ReturnOnSociety

Where will we see blockchains in real life?

Health:

The blockchain can be used to create a type of universal record for patients with a timestamp, a library that enables data retrieval across diverse databases. This will become valuable as precision medicine and the explosion of data, sensors, wearables proceeds.  Take Medical Data Management

MedRec, one prototype using blockchains, is intended to improve electronical medical records and allow patients’ records to be accessed securely by any provider who needs it solving the waste of time, money and duplication in procedures, confusion and sometimes even life-threatening issue of records being distributed across many different facilities and providers.

Medicare fraud caused more than $30 million in losses in the United States in 2016, and blockchain-based systems could help minimize it. In addition, it could reduce admin costs for billing by eliminating the need for intermediaries with automated activities and more efficient processing.

#ReturnOnSociety: focusing on better health care for people

Finance:

The most mature plans for using blockchains aim to cut costs for financial institutions in tasks such as settling transactions involving bonds or other financial instruments. Which means in future we will be able to transfer money from A to B only over the blockchain without knowing A who B is and B who A is. We will trust in the blockchain technology to make that transfers happen. We trust the technology. And here I am very convinced. We will see banking systems on blockchain.

Peculium.io is a French based ICO. The idea is to manage people´s savinges with the help of Artificial Intelligence. It is a revolutionary savings platform developed specifically to benefit from managing a superior cryptocurrency portfolio with the help of artificial intelligence based decision making. It shall assist people with a smaller income to still allow for growth of the savings they put at the bank. In this case it will be Peculium.io. Definitely a type of innovative social banking.

Hada-dBank Islamic banking is another very nice example of a way to introduce sharing economy into financial sector.

There are two basic principles in Islamic banking. One is the sharing of profit and loss; and two, significantly, the prohibition of the collection and payment of interest by lenders and investors. Collecting interest or “Riba” is not permitted under Islamic law. In the case of profit, both the bank and its customer share in a pre-agreed proportion. In the case of a loss, all financial losses will then be borne by the lender. In addition to this, Islamic bank cannot create debt without goods and services to back it (i.e. physical assets including machinery, equipment, and inventory). Hence savings, deposits and investments with our Hada-DBankwill be backed by physical assets such as precious metals and gemstones. This project has a clear #ReturnOnSociety.

#ReturnOnSociety: focusing on making crypto world safer.

Humanitarian:

There are several very nice initiatives on Charity, Refugee registry and UN Programmes.

BCharity (Article) has the idea is to collect funds for less privileged people, ICO will soon be launched. Another example is refugee camps in Kenya and Myanmar using a blockchain to help residents establish a financial identity through their dealings with aid agencies.

#ReturnOnSociety: focusing on making banking fairer.

Security:

Blockchains can also be used to create so called distributed contracts which can be used for keeping track of Internet of Things devices, which were the main weapons used in a DDoS attack, and hence it can be seen as a step towards making the internet a secure place for everyone. I am cofounder of the initiative HackerTracker, we work with crypto and cyber security experts to make ICOs and crypto world less vulnerable.

#ReturnOnSociety: focusing on making crypto world safer.

Energy:

I personally was involved in energy blockchain. It is possible to register not only currencies but any units on the blockchain. In the energy sector it can be kilowatt. There are several ICOs focusing on developing energy blockchains which will distribute energy but not rely on the services of utility companies but only on the blockchain technology it self.

KWHCoin has an approach of linking green energy in form of kWh (kiloWatt hours = unit for energy) with their KWHCoin. The idea is to make 1kWH = 1 KWHCoin

#ReturnOnSociety: supporting green energy to fight global warming

Decentralisation:

Internet giants like Google and Facebook contributed to a total centralised cyber world. Startups like Blockstack want to change that. They plan to release software, based on blockchain, that will enable your regular browser to explore a parallel universe to the Web where users have more control of their data.

#ReturnOnSociety: getting your personal data back, making data management more fair

And more:

And there are 1000s of applications possible like putting the land registry on blockchain to make it safer. Writing ideas on blockchain to help inventors proving that an idea came to their mind at a certain time.

And have a look at Blockchainforscience.com which postulates a new way how scientific publications are stored, and a new way of research is funded: not only a report at the end of a project but continuous publication and also funding!

Such a rich world of blockchain

use cases for #ReturnOnSociety

Let´s make it happen!

 

#3 Energy blockchain – does it make sense?

Blockchain technology receives a lot of media attention these days with promises made that it will revolutionise many sectors. Blockchain is the backbone of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum.

As blockchain was developed as an offshoot from the financial sector, it makes sense to compare the possible applications in the energy sector to those developed from the financial sector.

The use of blockchain could remove the need for banks as middle men. Accounts would be based on the distributed ledger, and the transaction would be securely recorded. This would reduce costs and increase transparency.

The energy sector however has a different concept of “middle men”. In many transactions, a physical delivery of gas or electricity is made. As you can see the system is highly complex:

It involves various market participants between buyer and seller, including transmission system operators (TSOs), exchanges, central counterparts, and clearing houses. These may be involved in:

– operating critical transportation / transmission infrastructure; or

– reducing the risk of counterparty default.

Regarding infrastructure, this would be required even under a blockchain and smart contract regime. Assuming that TSOs are “middle men”, in order to be removed either buyer or seller would need to own the linking infrastructure.

Regarding default, such “middle men” are designed to reduce transaction risk. As blockchain seeks to remove third parties to reduce transaction risk, it could be argued that no significant benefit is to be gained through replacing such third parties by using blockchain.

In light of these factors, two questions are key to considering the value of implementing blockchain in the energy sector:

– Who do you want to remove from the transaction? e.g. facilitator, transporter, exchange operator, clearing house

– Why? e.g. reduction of cost, risk, other?

The answers to these should be considered in that the success of blockchain lies in its specific ability to:

– reliably and securely record transactions; and

– automatically execute transaction-specific clauses.

Considerations in implementing blockchain

Certain energy transactions lend themselves well to justify the use of blockchain, such as the trade of Renewable Energy Certificates or Guarantees of Origin, whereby:

– the administrative infrastructure is currently designed to ensure a reliable register of transactions and the prevention of double counting; and

– transactions are separate to the trade of actual electricity, so that there is no (direct) physical delivery component, i.e. the transaction is entirely virtual.

Other transactions are however more complex, such as those requiring the physical delivery of energy. These may currently rely on administrative infrastructure designed to reduce risk, negating any significant benefit which blockchain could offer.

Furthermore, these require physical input from the contracting parties or third parties, potentially undermining the benefit of automatic execution and/or the security of the system.

Takeaways

• As demonstrated by some of the pilot projects, wholesale electricity and gas trading may lend itself to a shift towards blockchain technology.

• Unlike many other physical goods, gas and electricity transport is to a great extent already controlled remotely. Smart contracts could enable the automatic execution of a gas delivery from one party to another.

• Payment could be made automatically by transferring a fiat currency held in escrow or a cryptocurrency. This would significantly reduce the risk of buyer default, and only upon full payment would the title to the gas be transferred.

• Using a framework agreement, blockchain could reduce transaction times, costs and the risk of payment default, and reduce the need for insurance and credit guarantees. Transaction data could be automatically reported, facilitating regulatory compliance and offering market price tranparency.

• This system could be coupled with the automatic matching of gas supply and demand across various timeframes, allowing for highly efficient and low cost electricity gas markets.

• The adoption of blockchain and smart contracts by various sectors appears to be gaining momentum. This is likely to continue.

• Blockchain is a technology still in its infancy and there are no clear trends or limits as to how it could be used in the energy sector. There are many pilot projects which are currently exploring various uses.

• The initial use for blockchain in the energy sector will likely be process optimisation, involving the automation of simple and standard internal processes.

• There are however several takeaways from a legal review of the benefit of blockchain in its current form, in particular smart contracts

– smart contracts are self executing, however cannot replace paper contracts and require a conventional legal framework to have legal effect;

– smart contracts appear to work best when a contract is entirely virtual, rather than requiring physical inputs or deliveries; and

– consideration must be given whether removing the third party from a transaction is of actual benefit in terms of increasing efficiency and reducing costs and risk.

• In testing and implementing a blockchain system, one needs to consider the type (public, consortium or closed), as well as whether one should develop the blockchain internally or outsource it to a blockchain service provider.

• Even where large companies could absorb the risk associated with internally- performed smart contracts, it would need to consider matters such as:

– whether blockchain would be implemented for a core (high risk) or non-core (low risk) business area;

– the degree of control it has over the blockchain;

– data privacy issues the balance between encryption and transparency;

– IP rights over the data (held by the company or the service provider);

– performance assurances from and liability of the service provider;

– the appropriate jurisdiction;

– regulatory compliance obligations; and

– an exit strategy(e.g.data migration assistance).

Source: Andreas Gunst and Kenneth Wallace-Mueller from from DLA Piper