Chamber of Digital Commerce to Hold Blockchain Summit at Georgetown

Bitcoin Magazine
Chamber of Digital Commerce to Hold Blockchain Summit at Georgetown

The Washington D.C.-based trade association The Chamber of Digital Commerce has announced that it will be holding its first blockchain summit at Georgetown University on March 3.

The packed agenda includes panels about smart contracts, banking and financial services, the recently launched Blockchain Alliance and consumer protections, along with talks with some of the blockchain’s biggest thought leaders and two keynotes anchoring the event.

“We are bringing together industry and government to have a thoughtful discussion about the policy challenges regarding blockchain technology,” said Perianne Boring, founder and president of The Chamber of Digital Commerce, in an interview with Bitcoin Magazine . “Understanding the direction of regulation and compliance is a core competency in fintech, and the blockchain ecosystem is no exception. In today’s competitive landscape, company’s legal and compliance teams have to be as innovative and creative as their products and services.”

As the Bitcoin ecosystem continues to develop, interaction with government agencies has become more common. In November 2015, the Department of Justice in San Francisco held an event that brought together individuals from the government and industry to talk about Bitcoin. It is through these discussions that rational planning can be conducted before disasters.

For example, in the aftermath of the Paris terrorist attack, the European Union was looking to crack down on bitcoin because there was a belief that the terrorists had used it to fund the attack. But through continued education between Bitcoin organizations and governments, it has become clear that law enforcement officials can track transactions on the blockchain to help with their investigations.

“Education of law enforcement agencies and regulators is critical to the success of bitcoin and the blockchain,” Jason Weinstein, partner at Steptoe & Johnson and director of the Blockchain Alliance told Bitcoin Magazine . “By educating law enforcement and regulators directly about this technology, we will reduce their fear or anxiety about it, and make government less likely to overreact to it.”

Boring explained that certain members of Congress, individuals from the Federal Trade Commission, and the FBI had already agreed to attend the event, with the expectation that other organizations would also be in attendance. To encourage government officials to come, the Chamber is offering a discount for all government employees.

The main keynote will be from Don Tapscott who joined the Chamber in October 2015. He is a best-selling author who has written about many of the key moments and concepts in the digital age. His keynote will focus on what new innovations are emerging based on blockchain technology and how these might solve some of the biggest problems in the economy and society.

Some of the presenters are Jeff Garzik, co-founder of Bloq and a Core developer; Vitalik Buterin, founder of Ethereum; Jason Weinstein, partner at Steptoe & Johnson and director of the Blockchain Alliance; and Matthew Roszak, founding partner at Tally Capital, along with many others.

“Events like the DC Blockchain Summit are an important part of that overall effort, bringing industry and government together for a productive and positive dialogue,” said Weinstein.

Photo Gtownsfs / Creative Commons

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21 Inc. Introduces Direct Sales and Private Purchases of Its Bitcoin Computer

To follow along with its goal to put “a bitcoin miner in every device and in every hand,” 21 Inc. announced on Thursday that customers could now purchase the 21 Bitcoin Computer on its website with bitcoin.

When a user adds the Bitcoin Computer to his or her cart, they can opt to select “Make Shipping Private,” which gives the user the ability to have the package delivered to a post office box rather than their home address. This ends the need for the user to give his name, though the company admits its need to collect an email address. Further, by paying with bitcoin, the user can keep the transaction nearly private.

“I think we need to move towards a more private Internet over time. It’s not going to happen in one step. Usability is important, and I’m a pragmatist. But if we keep taking steps in the right direction, we can build something better than today,” said Balaji S. Srinivasan, founder and CEO of 21 Inc., in an interview with Bitcoin Magazine talking about the announcement.

The 21 Bitcoin Computer is a development tool to allow developers the ability to create Bitcoin-payable apps, services and devices. The idea is that the hardware mines for bitcoin and then uses those mined bitcoin to do things.

For example, if someone were to build a search engine, rather than flooding the browser with ads, that person could charge 10 bits for a search. By going through the 21 Bitcoin Computer, it would allow for these sorts of apps to be built and for the transactions to be verified.

In its announcement, the founders of 21 said, “our long-term goal is to gradually replace advertising with micropayments from mined bitcoin, to build an Internet where you pay with your power rather than your privacy.”

While bitcoin is not nearly as anonymous as many had originally anticipated, there are multiple ways in which a user can keep his or her identity mostly private. Further, by using an email service such as Hushmail a user would be able to create an email alias specific for this purchase.

The 21 Bitcoin Computer currently is for sale only in the United States; however, the company is preparing to expand to other countries as it expands international support.

21 Inc. came out of stealth mode in March 2015 when it announced that it had raised $116 million in fundraising over multiple rounds from Andreessen Horowitz, Data Collective, Khosla Ventures, RRE Ventures, Yuan Capital, along with Peter Thiel and most notably, Qualcomm Ventures.

Ultimately, the company is working on creating embedded mining environment where everything with a silicon chip also has a bitcoin mining chip in it.

Jacob Cohen Donnelly is a consultant and journalist in the Bitcoin space. He runs a weekly newsletter about bitcoin called Crypto Brief .

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