The week beginning the 20th of May was a mixture of both further regulation and adoption from the world of Blockchain. This week was hailed as International Bitcoin Pizza week, American Express announced plans to follow suit and begin adopting Blockchain technologies into some of its major processes, and finally India announces plans to start taxing income from Cryptocurrencies at to 18%.
All in all the week has had some exciting headlines but take a look at some of our top picked stories from the week and let me know if you think we have missed any.
Monday 21st of May
Simpsons meets Bitcoin
Fans of the Simpsons, mobile games and Cryptos have been all over the forums this week discussing how Blockchain Technologies have finally made their way into Springfield…well not quite, but there has been a mention of Bitcoin in the latest Simpsons game: Tapped Out.
Fans of the popular game will already be aware that The Simpsons games regularly makes references to ongoing mainstream themes but this was the first time a popular cartoon show has braved to mentioned the word Bitcoin in one of their popular games.
The Simpsons Tapped Out is a free game available on all major mobile platform and has added a task called “Crypto Cool” where the objective is to get people to talk about Blockchain technologies without explaining what it actually is. After the player has found 3 people in the game to talk about Blockchain, they are then tasked with getting 3 people to mine Bitcoin
In 2013 and 2014 made references to Bitcoin, as well as predicting popular events like Trumps coming to power in the American Government and other major world events.
The game can be downloaded here.
Tuesday 22nd of May
Kraken donates $1million
On Tuesday major Crypto Exchange Kraken donated $1million to the non-profit Blockchain Advocacy Group in New York City. Kraken also announced plans to match donations made to Coin Center up to the value of $1million to help promote the use and research of Blockchain Technologies.
Coin Center is a not for profit organisation who’s objectives are to educate and support regulations surrounding Blockchain Technologies. The organisation has already been instrumental to publishing research surrounding Blockchain technologies to help governments try and understand how the technology can support current affairs.
It has been speculated that the funds raised from Kraken will aid further research and development within the organisation and potentially help raise awareness for other Blockchain focussed research.
Wednesday 23rd of May
Bank of China implements Blockchain to key charity projects
It’s always great to hear about the world of Blockchain being the catalyst behind major solutions within the world of charity. The Bank of China is planning on utilising Blockchain Technologies as part of their current Poverty Reduction System. The focus for the project is to help increase efficiency and transparency especially in potentially inaccessible areas such as Tibet.
Some key problems the Bank of China has faced is that of record management and transparency of funds. Another key problem is the management of key stakeholders involved in the decision making process. Trying to identify accountability for particular actions has been challenging and the Bank is hoping that the use of Blockchain Technologies can help to reduce the time taken to manage these challenges.
One of the first projects is going to be to upgrade the existing Cloud Based Systems and enhanced the security functions integrated within the software. Later plans are to streamline project management processes to allow for more transparency.
In order to maximise the impact the project is going to have, the Chinese bank is working alongside The Agricultural Bank of China to really understand what aspects of Blockchain Technologies are required to make the project a success.
The project is still on going so watch this space.
Thursday 24th of May
Ashton Kutcher donates Ripple
This week actor of Dude Where My Car and Two and A Half Men, Ashton Kutcher donated $4milllion to Ellen DeGeneres towards her wildlife charity for her 60th birthday. The whole thing happened live on the Ellen DeGeneres Show.
The money was transferred instantly from Ashton Kutchers Ripple account directly to a Ripple account based in Rwanda (where the charity is doing a lot of work). The donation is to help support the funding for a variety of up and coming projects the charity is working on.
This isn’t the first time Ashton Kutcher has promoted a particular brand he has been behind. Previously Kutcher has promoted his support for companies like Uber and Spotify.
The price of Ripple took a big hit last year (as with most other alt coins) and has seen drops of almost 80% since it peaked in January. Could celebrity support be the next milestone for the company?
Friday 25th of May
Goodbye GDAX…hello Coinbase Pro.
Arguably the most known Crypto Exchange and also among the most used, Coinbase has introduced a key of new features into its platform over recent weeks. The platform has moved from a niche areas of the internet where people buy Cryptocurrencies to a Blockchain pioneer.
As part of the new update, Coinbase has announced a rebrand of their popular GDAX platform to the new name of Coinbase Pro.
GDAX is a very popular tool for traders due to the low fees and ease of use. The user interface boasts up to date market information about Cryptocurrencies as well as transparent account information. The new updates however are adding on lot more features. GDAX trades around $380 million of transactions per day.
The new features include; upgraded wallets, portfolio view options and the ability to trade a wider selection of tokens.
GDAX has always been praised for having great UI and the news surrounding the new features has been met with great support. Watch this space for more updates.
That wraps up our week. Other honorable mentions from the week include; Thai Bank joins the R3 consortium, a UK based company has acquired the trademark for the word “Bitcoin” and finally the Alabama Securities Commission (ASC) has begun a huge crack down on scam associated ICOs.
Let me know if you think we missed anything this week and drop me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org
Also published on Medium.