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New Financial Projects Gain Momentum in Period of Political Uncertainty

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Less than a week after a new financial blueprint for Europe was proposed, by a 50-strong group led by Thomas Piketty, another pioneering economic system that aims to reduce inequality has been gaining momentum in London.

On Thursday, December 13, the GoodDollar experiment – an ecosystem that explores how decentralised cryptocurrency and blockchain technology may enable models based on universal basic income (UBI) – received widespread praise at The Next Web’s Hard Fork Decentralized conference.

Following GoodDollar’s official launch, by eToro CEO Yoni Assia at November’s Web Summit 2018 in Lisbon, the project has quickly gathered impetus, attracting support from all over the globe.

GoodDollar Official Announcement – Yoni Assia, Web Summit Lisbon, Nov 07 2018

At a time when many leading economists fear a global financial crisis is looming, both Picketty’s bold blueprint for a fairer Europe – which includes significant levies on multinationals, millionaires and carbon emissions to amass funds to improve poverty, climate change, and other challenges – and GoodDollar are innovative alternatives to traditional financial systems.

GoodDollar’s worldwide interest has accelerated since its introduction, at an event in Berlin in mid-November, of an OpenUBI community, formed to encourage collaboration and discussion around UBI and its technological implementation.

At the Hard Fork Decentralized summit, held at Mindspace, in trendy Shoreditch, in the northeast of the capital, and sponsored by eToro – the social trading platform that has invested $1 million in GoodDollar – the project gained more plaudits.

Ira Ryk-Lakhman, a lawyer with Tadmor – Levy & Co. who is completing a Ph.D. at University College London, has joined GoodDollar because she believes “it is the future”– especially for the humanitarian causes that are close to her heart.

She spoke with passion to around 100 attendees at Mindspace. “According to UN data, upwards of 30 percent of funds allocated to humanitarian aid is lost because of corruption,” Ryk-Lakhman said. “This is mind-blowing. Further, over 80 percent of the funds that are allocated for charities do not make it to the final beneficiaries.”

“The solution is staring us in the face. We need to find something that is not susceptible to corruption or bureaucracy. Technology that does not go through the state but reaches the citizens directly. We already know what the future is: blockchain-based solutions, like GoodDollar, are the way forward. This is because blockchain technology is a public record, it is transparent, and it is immutable. As such, it is not susceptible to corruption and bureaucracy.” 

GoodDollar Interview Series – TheNextWeb 2018 – Ira Ryk-Lakhman, Dec 13, 2018

Ryk-Lakhman said that as GoodDollar, a not-for-profit organisation, is focused on improving wealth inequality it is likely to generate great levels of interest and adoption, crucially.

“Hype alone does not suffice to sustain cryptocurrency or blockchain,” she continued. “You have got to have an application: a practical way that we can utilise this technology in real life. What other way is better to get your coin recognised by the wider public than if you show the positive sides of blockchain, and highlight that it is not necessarily affiliated with speculation but rather with innovation, sustainability and charity?

“Using this technology for social impact will drive adoption, which is key to this industry. Blockchain technology allows us to tackle humanitarian crises and to achieve social impact. In 2019 I believe we will see much more application of blockchain technology to that end.”

Talking heads: Dr. Omri Ross, alongside Yoni Assia and Ira Ryk-Lakhman, discusses the technical aspects of GoodDollar

Later, Yoni Assia – who has been thinking and writing about UBI for over a decade– took part in a panel discussion alongside Ryk-Lakhman, and Dr. Omri Ross, an assistant professor in the Computer Science at the University of Copenhagen. The latter co-wrote the GoodDollar position paper, published in conjunction with the Web Summit launch, with Assia, and is positive about its chances of success.

“I’ve been an academic of blockchain for several years, and when Yoni explained GoodDollar to me I could see it was a good idea,” Ross told the audience at Mindspace. “I have been around a few UBI projects and this one is quite advanced [in terms of technical research]. This is a call to the community to help.”

Good turn out: Around 100 people attended the GoodDollar event at Hard Fork Decentralized

Assia revealed that already “around 30 different partners” have joined the OpenUBI community. “We were super-excited to see that we are not the only ones thinking about this,” he said. “There are super-intelligent people around the world that are looking at the same problems and trying to find various solutions.

“We have opened a group [http://t.me/OpenUBI] and, because GoodDollar is a not-for-profit organisation and there is no competition, we are trying to collaborate. We are now collaborating with around OpenUBI with about 30 different partners.”

Finally, Assia stressed the importance of GoodDollar not being centrally controlled. “We want to build something that will change the world and be as decentralised as bitcoin,” he said. “If it is decentralised then it is potentially unstoppable.

Giving people free money is very powerful. If this works, and we are able to create a system that actually transforms network effect into value, I believe all the rest will fall into place. I think it is a case of if you build the main thing, then everything around it will be built, eventually.”

He added: “We are inviting people to participate – whether it is early adopters, academics, builders, and those who want to help us establish GoodDollar through philanthropy.”

Join GoodDollar. The project needs builders, scientists, and experts in identity, privacy, and financial governance, as well as philanthropists and ambassadors. Email GoodDollar at hello@gooddollar.org, contact us via our social media channels (Twitter and Telegram) or join the OpenUBI movement.

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As Brexit negotiations ensue, how will ongoing uncertainty affect the financial markets?

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The continued disruption could hold significant value to those willing to take advantage of this uncertain period.

Almost half of food manufacturers have said access to new UK markets will form a significant part of their growth strategies, with a further 46% citing export markets.

Technology will also continue to play an ever-increasing role in our daily lives, regardless of a good, bad or no deal Brexit. For investors, a focus on tech could naturally lead to firms like Apple, Facebook or IBM.

Last year, the London Stock Exchange (LSE) said more than two-thirds of the revenues earned by companies listed on its FTSE 100 came from overseas. BHP, for example, is a mining company that earns 100% of its income from international markets. It produces coal, copper, iron ore and petroleum – even if the UK does stop needing quite so much of them, there are plenty of other places that do. Similarly, banking giant HSBC has a branch on most high streets and employs tens of thousands of people in the UK. But despite its huge footprint here, it earns 75% of its revenues from international markets.

BRUSH UP ON BREXIT

It might be surprising but tobacco companies are classed as Brexitproof as are some booze brands – people rarely give up smoking and drinking in a time of crisis. British American and Imperial Tobacco…

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Blockchain project that incentivises people to test for diabetes by handing them cryptocurrency wins first GoodDollar hackathon attended by Israeli ambassador in Rwanda

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The hackathon for reducing global wealth inequality using decentralised technology was won by a prototype for a system that encourages citizens to be checked for diabetes in return for GoodDollar tokens

GoodDollar, a not-for-profit research hub that explores how decentralised cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology may enable models based on universal basic income (UBI) with the central aim of reducing global wealth inequality, held the inaugural Hackinequality event in Tel Aviv on March 14 and 15.

The judging panel, after much debate, agreed that the three-person t2d team – made up of Jesse Medina, Lior Yaffe, and Yaron Shmaria – had done enough to see off competition from the other eight social impact projects.

The team won the US$2,500 first prize, though the money was of secondary importance, with their contribution for social impact by far the more valuable.

Winning for good: t2d, victors in GoodDollar’s inaugural Hackinequality event, celebrate their success alongside the judges and GoodDollar members after 16 hours of fierce competition (photograph credit: Ben Palhov)

Nine teams had 16 hours to work on their projects at the eToro offices in Bnei Brak, and their dedication was commendable. Most of the talented 35 participants – including programmers, analysts, designers, user experience experts, blockchain enthusiasts – burnt the midnight…

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eToro Officially Launches Crypto Trading Platform & Wallet in the U.S.

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Global platform allows U.S. customers from 32 states and U.S. territories to trade 13 cryptoassets with multi-asset trading to arrive in Q1 2020

New York, NY — March 7, 2019— eToro, a global multi-asset trading platform with over 10 million registered users, announced the launch of its platform and cryptoasset wallet in the United States. With the launch, U.S. customers with diverse levels of expertise can leverage eToro to collaborate with one another to find the best cryptoasset trading strategies in an environment rich with unconventional educational tools.

At eToro, you can share your real track record, portfolio, and trades with the community, allowing users to engage with each other on trading ideas that are executed using real dollars. For those new to crypto trading, the community and educational resources introduce users to this new asset class and the risk profiles involved in it.

Yoni Assia, Co-founder & CEO of eToro, said: “For the first time, Americans can collaborate with other crypto traders when making buying and selling decisions. Users can adjust their trading strategies by watching and…

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