A Partnership Worthy of Emulation By Nigerian and other African Entities
Kenya, the East African country dominating tech innovation and financial inclusiveness in Africa recently graduated trainees from its first ever Blockchain Class. An event heralded with true adoption of cryptocurrency as attendees to this event got the opportunity to pay for their lunch using bitcoin at the event venue in Betty’s Place Restaurant.
The graduates completed the DLBRT Blockchain for Business Course held at Strathmore Business School a subsidiary of Strathmore University from March 9th – 30th 2019. This came about after Kenbright Actuarial & Financial Services (KAFS) and Strathmore Risk Management Centre signed an MOU on Blockchain Research and this program was among the first to come about after discussions.
With respect to the laudable move by Strathmore University and Kenbright Actuarial & Financial Services (KAFS) partnership, asides the knowledge the program bequeathed the participants, there are several pointers to take note in what Kenbright Actuarial & Financial Services (KAFS) and Strathmore Risk Management Centre achieved through this training. It’s imperative we zoom our attention in to really capture even the slightest nuance that could be overlooked as non important.
Graduation Ceremony Held in an Unconventional Venue
Topmost, for introductory classes such as this bearing its’ importance, it’s normal to have the celebration of graduation in one of the most grandeur of places which would no doubt be a good PR strategy. But no, the graduation ceremony was held in a less expected place however one which supports Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies. A stark reminder to all who understands the line put your money where your mouth is.
Training Program and Graduation Promoted the Adoption of Cryptocurrency for Small Businesses
As evidenced by the graduation ceremony and training program, small businesses were considered and this serves to promote adoption of cryptocurrency. Reminds me of my resounding investments guide the ripple effect. Trainers were able to pay for food purchases via Bitcoin because Betty’s Place supports bitcoin payment and acceptance.
Brought about International Recognition for Small Businesses
The training and eventual graduation ceremony has put in the spotlight the Betty’s Place as a business organization which supports cryptocurrency in Kenya. Such a PR alone is sure to drive sales from Tourist and real customers.
The Familiar Nigerian Environment
One would wonder why several professional institutions like the Lagos Business School, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria or even the Nigerian Institute of Taxation are yet to seriously roll out programs of these nature and partnering with relevant agencies to drive this movement from the grassroots.
While others may be quick to point out the fact that ICAN in one of its exam diets modelled some of its questions with cryptocurrency and blockchain terminologies, is this all there could be? Even recent executive training masterclass like the Ausso Leadership Academy (ALA) being paraded as the go-to training course for executives in the startup and other industries where we see industry experts come train aspiring industry magnates, is yet to definitively roll out special programs of this nature.
Infusion Lawyers, a Law firm in partnership with Eblockbuzz, a media company already championing the toeing of this line in its recent launch of Blockchain 101 Course for Lawyers. This is coming in a time when Blockchain and its advantages are no longer mere buzzwords. While the Course is accepting Entry Ticket in fiat, it could also allow intending participants to pay in cryptocurrency (BTC, ETH, LTC etc) as a support to the growth of the technology and industry.
A Clarion Call to Action
Current educational institutions who desire to set the pace in Blockchain Education in Nigeria can utilize this opportunity to cement their authority in the space. Simply done by training people or professional in the various aspects of the technology ranging from technological applications to business and economic impacts.
As innovative firms within the industry such as XR Web Network, Jur.io etc, combine various knowledge and technologies in building smarter and innovative businesses, citadels of learning should utilize the opportunity in training and bringing up smarter businessmen and professionals poised to taking who will take their respective nations and the global economy to greater heights.
With the International Financial Reporting Standard IFRS already looking into fashioning cryptocurrency accounting guidelines for accounting for the various aspects of the Blockchain technology notably the use of Tokens, Raising of Funds via Token Sales etc, one would wonder why Professional Institutions in Nigeria are not attempting to finding stable grounds upon which to build on.
While the visible lack of signs could be attributed to the non-acknowledgement of the Government of the day in Nigeria and Africa refusal to give clear direction to the legality of the technology in the Country, there is still room for the knowledge shared to benefit other various sectors or industries in the Continent such as Supply Chain, Remittance, Voting etc.
As other nations of the world grow, it’s expected Africans employ this novel of a technology to build the Africa we can all call home. To say with all pride Africa, My Africa in the words of David Diop.
Facebook’s Libra Project White Paper Is Officially Out: Pushes for the Internet of Money
After months of speculation and a nonofficial statement from the Facebook team after the news break by Bloomberg reports on the rumoured cryptocurrency project secretly being worked, Facebook’s Libra Project White Paper is officially out.
Facebook clearly outlines its mission and vision for the Switzerland registered project.
It’s mission according to the whitepaper reads
“Libra’s mission is to enable a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that empowers billions of people.”
Facebook is clearly ready for another phase of its reign as a social media giant housing more than a quarter of the world’s population. It is home to more than 2 billion users with its aggregated user base for WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook and Messenger.
With the Libra’s project cryptocurrency dubbed the Globalcoin, Facebook is going to have an impact in the cryptosphere coupled with the influence of the founding members such as Coinbase, Visa, Spotify, Mastercard, Uber, Paypal, and others who have invested about $10million each into the project.
Facebook wants to make Libra the evolution of Paypal with the wish that it will be simpler to establish, easier to use as a payment means with fewer transaction fees, more accessible to the unbanked, more flexible and durable through decentralisation.
In its Libra document, Facebook writes:
“Success will mean that a person working abroad has a fast and simple way to send money to family back home, and a college student can pay their rent as easily as they can buy a coffee.”
Alongside Libra network, Facebook is also launching Calibra, a subsidiary company that will handle the transactions and protect users privacy. The goal of Calibra is “to provide financial services that will let people access and participate in the Libra network,” and it will be readily available in Messenger and WhatsApp and also as a standalone app.
The control of the Libra network will not be solely Facebook’s duty since it is decentralized to include all the 28 founding members. It is the association’s duty commonly referred to as “Libra Association” to promote the open-sourced Libra blockchain and also sign up businesses to accept Libra for payment. It rests upon them to recruit more founding members as Facebook says it wants to reach 100 members before the official launch of Libra.
The unit of the Libra cryptocurrency is Libra just like the unit of a dollar is cent. Libra is represented by a three wavy horizontal line Unicode character ≋ like the dollar is represented by $ or the naira by #. The value of a Libra is meant to stay largely stable since it is a stable coin. Its stability will make it be a good medium of exchange, as merchants can be confident as they will be assured they won’t be paid a Libra today that will be lesser than the amount tomorrow.
Block.one Launches a Social Media App, “Voice”
Block.one, the firm behind EOS, on 1st June 2019 announced that it is introducing a blockchain-based social media, Voice, that will bring alignment and transparency to social media users. This was made open at the company’s June 1 event at the DC Armory in Washington, DC. which drew about 300 attendees who included industry influencers, developers, investors, media and members of the community.
Block.one claimed that “Social media is fundamentally broken and is in need of a complete overhaul.” Noting that Voice will be launched on EOS public blockchain and therefore is a more transparent social media platform for the world. And hence, the value of good content gets circulated right back into sustaining the community, not corporate bottom lines as it will return to users. Voice is then meant to cultivate creation, sharing, discovery, and promotion of contents by real users, not bots and fake accounts just like on Facebook or Twitter and users will directly benefit from their ideas and engagement on the platform.
Voice will be on the public blockchain of EOS and it will allow for alignment and transparency – no hidden algorithms nor invisible interests.
Brendan Blumer, CEO of Block.one, who opened the company’s June 1 event at the DC Armory in Washington, D.C. with the announcement of Voice said that “the truth is, current social media platforms are designed to use their users.” However, pertaining to Voice, he said, “just look at the business model. Our content. Our data. Our attention. These are all incredibly valuable things. But right now, it’s the platform, not the user, that reaps the reward. By design, they run by auctioning our information to advertisers, pocketing the profit, and flooding our feeds with hidden agendas dictated by the highest bidder. Voice changes that.”
Is Block.one Capable of this Social Media Revolution?
Block.one is well positioned to lead this social media revolution because its first product, EOSIO, was a global initiative to build a more scalable, secure and flexible blockchain framework that enable people to reimagine, rebuild and restore trust in the systems enterprises. Its success with EOS has led to it offering early backers a huge returns for their investment. And notably, the numerous networks built on the EOSIO software are consistently the most used public blockchain platforms in the world, accounting for upwards of 70% of all blockchain activity. For example, Everipedia and Galaxy Digital LP are such networks that utilized EOSIO network. Security, privacy and ease-of-use will always be critical in Block.one’s projects.
Bitcoin Pizza Day, We’ve Come a Long Way
Pizza is well known all over the world the juicy cheesy meal has won many a heart. Bitcoin, on the other hand, is also breaking boundaries. The story of Bitcoin Pizza Day begins on May 22, 2010. It isn’t just a story of how one man bought a pizza for 10000 Bitcoin, it is a story of Bitcoin adoption.
Nine years ago, Laszlo Hanyecz traded 10,000 BTC for Pizza and has since been known as the Bitcoin Pizza guy. At that time one BTC was less than a dollar, but today, it is worth over a $7,000. Laszlo Hanyecz had announced on the bitcointalk forum that he was willing to pay 10,000 Bitcoins for the delivery of two Papa John’s pizzas. He wrote on the platform,
“I’ll pay 10,000 bitcoins for a couple of pizzas.. like maybe 2 large ones so I have some left over for the next day.”
At that time, all Hanyecz, a software engineer from Florida wanted was to get Pizza in exchange of BTC. Pretty soon, a British man took up Hanyecz’s offer. He offered to get the two pizzas for him at the price of $25 a piece. It was quite a bargain because at that time 10,000 Bitcoins were worth around $41. Nine months after exchanging his BTC for Pizza, Bitcoin became equal with the U.S. dollar, which means the two pizzas were now worth $10,000. Today, the price of one BTC is worth $7918.69 as at the time of writing.
While it is easy to make speculations as to why Hanyecz was willing to part with his digital currencies for Pizza, we cannot deny that he has made a contribution to adoption. It is important to note that the Bitcoin Pizza story is the first known real-world bitcoin transaction. Hanyecz claims that buying the pizza helped legitimize BTC. And although he doesn’t think about how wealthy he could have been if he had held onto his coins he doesn’t regret it. He claims that he is proud to have been a backer of Bitcoin and a proponent of its use in the real world.
Today, Bitcoin use has exceed pizza purchase. Bitcoin and other altcoins can be used for varied purposes. A lot of businesses have adopted digital currencies as a means of transacting since the Bitcoin boom of 2017. You can now purchase a house with bitcoin and even receive your salary in Bitcoin. Today, May 22 has been named Bitcoin Pizza Day. In celebration of the day, crypto companies such as Huobi are celebrating Bitcoin pizza day with special offerings for their users.
Can you spend 10,000 BTC on Pizza? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.
Do Crypto Movies Really Educate?
Cryptocurrencies have come to stay and have found a way into the entertainment industry. Since the inception of Bitcoin in 2009, getting cryptocurrencies to go mainstream has been the aim of crypto and blockchain enthusiasts. A huge breakthrough has been made over the years with Bitcoin finding its way into the Merriam Webster Scrabble dictionary. Asides this, a couple of businesses now accept bitcoin. The importance of the media in creating awareness cannot be overemphasized. Now, the question revolves around whether crypto related movies have any positive impact on adoption or awareness.
A lot of documentaries have been made on cryptocurrencies since the inception of Bitcoin. The movie ‘Banking on Bitcoin’ is a documentary released in 2014 which explains the disruption bitcoin can bring into the financial system. The great thing about these movies is that they spend time educating people on different aspects of cryptocurrency. “Bitcoin in Uganda – Empowering people” is a 5 minutes crypto documentary created in 2018. This documentary shows the real power of cryptocurrency in remittances and cross-border transactions.
While most of these crypto movies are not mainstream, they do a lot in explaining the power of digital currencies. These documentaries chose different aspects of digital currency and focus on revealing more details about them. In fact, Bitcoin Big Bang, a 104-minute screen piece gives details on the Mt.Gox hack. The story focuses on the arrest of Mark Karpales, the CEO of Mt. Gox in Tokyo after the exchange was hacked and about 850,000 Bitcoins was reportedly stolen. The importance of documentaries such as this cannot be overemphasized
Going Mainstream Media With Crypto
Although there are a lot of low budget documentaries on cryptocurrency, high budget movies are beginning to spring up. ‘Deep Web’, a documentary about Ross Ulbricht trial on Silk Road had a budget of about $80,000 which was raised through Kickstarter. TV Shows such as Billions have episodes dedicated to cryptocurrency.
In fact, Dope is one of the first movies to accept Bitcoin. The movie which had a budget of $7,000,000 was the first movie to accept Bitcoin, this was due to a partnership between GoCoin, Lionsgate and Movie Tickets. Partnerships such as these go a long way to push crypto education mainstream. Also Hollywood blockbuster, ‘Crypto’ was released in April 2019, however, it was a movie about money laundering which involves crypto.
Is Crypto the Big Bad Wolf
As more movies begin to talk about cryptocurrency, the question remains if these movies are for crypto education or just on the move to portray crypto in a bad light. Crypto, the movie which features Beau Knapp and Kurt Russel promises to be a movie about digital currencies or is it? While many have praised the movie for the talent of the actors, a lot of persons are not so pleased with the script with many accusing it of scaring people away from Bitcoin.
Typical of every money laundering or compliance movie, the Russians are always the bad guys. However, does this movie portray crypto as a means of payment which is secure and fast or is it just an easy way for laundering money? While Hollywood still has a long way to go in crypto education and awareness, they must be praised for paying attention to details. From the representation of Ledger’s Nano in Billions to Crypto featuring images of a cryptocurrency exchange called Cryptocurrency market, progress is being made. However, anyone looking for cryptocurrency education will do well not to rely totally on these Hollywood movies.
This is why we have decided at Cryptotvplus to take it a step further at educating the populace on Crypto, its impact and what the future holds. Cryptotvplus will be reeling out interesting short movies bothering on crypto where anyone whether you understand the intricacies of cryptocurrencies or not will not only be educated but also become more than a spectator by participating in this revolutionary shift in the evolution of money and global finance. More on this in my next piece.
What topics or areas in Crypto would you like to see a short film done? Do you have any title in mind? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.
Regulation News2 days ago
We Will Not allow Digital Asset Service Providers to Operate in the Shadows — US Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin
FEATURED4 days ago
You Can’t Regulate Crypto, You are doomed to fail, John McAfee tells the US Government
FEATURED5 days ago
Addis Ababa to host the Africa Fintech Summit
Regulation News23 hours ago
Libra: Big Tech shouldn’t be given more Power over Public infrastructure like the Financial System.- Senator Sherrod Brown