Blockchain Bites: BitLicense Feedback, Digital Yuan Trial and How US Bills Could Threaten Privacy

China will trial its digital yuan with a mega food retailer, U.S. bills are seriously threatening online privacy and an a16z alum is launching a venture firm focused on distributed tech. Here’s the story: Trial PlanChina wants to trial its digital yuan with online food seller Meituan-Dianping as well as another two Tencent-backed companies. The Beijing-based company has held talks with the research wing at the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) over trialling the digital yuan on its platform, according to sources speaking to Bloomberg. The exact details of the collaboration are not yet…

CoinDesk’s Policy on Coronavirus and Blockchain Week NYC

As we all look ahead to Consensus 2020 and Blockchain Week NYC, we wanted to share the following updates with you regarding the recent spread of the COVID-19 virus.  As of today, CoinDesk is moving forward as planned with Consensus 2020 and Blockchain Week NYC, but we will be monitoring the situation on a daily basis between now and May 8.  We have over 60 speakers confirmed in our great lineup, including Kevin Werbach from the Wharton School, the influential economist Carlota Perez and Chris Burniske from Placeholder. There are…

On EOS Blockchain, Vote Buying Is Business as Usual

Buying votes is a big no-no in traditional democracies, but on the world’s eighth-largest blockchain it’s become an accepted way of doing business. A new service makes it easier for EOS block producers, the nodes elected by holders of the cryptocurrency to validate transactions on the network, to share their block rewards with those who voted for them. The service, known as Genpool, was introduced this month by GenerEOS, which itself is a block producer candidate.  Back when EOSIO, the software powering the $3.7 billion EOS chain, was just an…

JPEG on the Blockchain: Image Format Creator Believes Tech Can Fight Copyright Theft

The organization that created the popular JPEG picture format believes blockchain could be used to verify images as well as flag fakes and image theft. The Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) said blockchain has “great potential” as the basis of a system that would use a combination of encryption, hash signatures and watermarking in an image’s metadata to protect copyright, Digital Trends reported Thursday. The system could have advantages over existing verification models, JPEG said at a recent meeting in Sydney, Australia. Instead of signing up for a particular program,…

Blockchain Bills Are Advancing in the New York State Senate – Here’s Why

ALBANY, N.Y. — The New York State Senate will be considering two bills that would bolster the use and development of blockchain tech in the Empire State. The first bill, S4142, would recognize blockchain-based records and contracts as electronic signatures under state law, giving them legal clout. The second, S6037A, would add “distributed ledger technology” developers to the Excelsior Jobs Program, which comes with tax credits. Introduced by Senator Diane Savino (D-23) and approved by the Internet and Technology Committee, which she chairs, after a hearing Tuesday, the bills next…

Mastercard and Ripple’s Xpring Join Industry Group to Promote Blockchain Education

Mastercard has joined a working group that supports blockchain education and research in universities around the world. Blockchain accelerator MouseBelt announced Tuesday it has welcomed 11 founding members into its Blockchain Education Alliance. In addition to the card network, the new members include the innovation arms of payments startup Ripple and crypto exchange Binance; and representatives from Neo, KuCoin and ethereum scaling solution Matic Network. They will join the 13 companies, including Stellar, TRON and Wanchain, that became part of the alliance when it was announced in October. The Blockchain…

ChainUP Launches EXUP, An Independent Brand of Blockchain Financial Derivatives

ChainUP has launched EXUP a new financial derivatives technology platform for digital assets to empower the blockchain financial ecosystem. 14th February, 2020, Singapore – On February 11, ChainUP, a leading global blockchain technology service provider, officially launched EXUP, an independent brand of blockchain financial derivatives, creating a new financial derivatives technology platform for digital assets. EXUP is committed to providing customers with secure, stable and efficient blockchain financial derivatives services. Its highly stable and reliable matching engine has been created to [em]power the financial ecosystem on blockchain, through a distributed…

Vermont Turns to Home-Grown Blockchain Company to Track Hemp With Ethereum

Vermont regulators will track hemp production on the ethereum mainnet in partnership with cannabis supply chain blockchain startup Trace.  The five-year deal, announced Monday by Vermont’s Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (VAAFM), is a production-ready solution for every level of the hemp trade, said Trace CEO Josh Decatur. Beginning in March, farmers and processors will begin putting all associated crop data into the Trace system, which runs on ethereum. It is one of the first times a state regulatory agency has decided to run with the ethereum mainnet, Decatur…

IBM Blockchain VP: Every Dollar Spent on Blockchain Yields $15 on Cloud

Enterprise blockchain is a catalyst for further spending at Big Blue, according to Jerry Cuomo, IBM’s vice president of blockchain technologies. “It is driving additional spend,” Cuomo said. “When you look at the direct attribution of the actual dollars spent on blockchain, we are seeing that for every dollar spent, $15 is spent on other cloud services.” The back-of-the-envelope math offers a revealing glimpse into the storied tech company’s current thinking on blockchain. Cuomo’s revenue figure comes as IBM works to bring enterprise blockchain closer into the company’s sprawling cloud…

Paystand Raises $20M to Be Blockchain-Based ‘Venmo’ for Commercial Payments

Paystand, a platform using blockchain technology to automate commercial payments, has raised $20 million in Series B funding. Backing the round are a number of VC firms including DNX Ventures, Battery Ventures, Epic Ventures, Commerce Ventures and Wildcat Ventures. Existing investors Leap Global Partners and BlueRun Ventures also took part. Paystand aims to makes complex commercial transactions and payments “as easy and fast for enterprises as Venmo has done for basic consumer-to-consumer transactions,” according to a press release on Thursday. The firm’s service is based on a blockchain network that…