A nonprofit initiative that leverages decentralized finance as a means to offer a digital income for its users has announced that people have now claimed more than 14 million of its tokens.
According to a Wednesday announcement, the universal basic income, or UBI, project from GoodDollar has reached more than 40,000 people from 180 countries since it launched in September. The project reported that more than half of the participants were claiming its reserve-based token, G$, every day. 14 million tokens have been claimed so far.
The project mints its G$ tokens through interest generated by third-party permissionless protocols from a basket of crypto assets. Individuals and corporate supporters receive market-rate yield payouts in G$, and a daily amount is set aside for distribution as digital UBI for GoodDollar participants.
Yoni Assia, founder and CEO of eToro and founder of GoodDollar, said that conditions under the global pandemic have accelerated an interest in digital assets among millennials:
“We see a new influx of people who are hungry to participate in the markets, and adopt new financial innovations,” said Assia. “GoodDollar expands financial literacy and access to markets, while providing a digital basic income to fuel its own digital economy."
In general, the concept of UBI would allow lawmakers, or some other authority, to offer citizens a monthly stipend to cover basic needs. Former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang was a big proponent of the idea, proposing that all eligible United States residents receive $1,000 every month.
Users can’t use G$ tokens in the same way as fiat yet, but they can exchange them for online services through Facebook Marketplace in addition to certain educational classes. The project added that it believes people are "hungry to adopt complementary currencies" and receive a financial education:
“Although at an early stage in its lifecycle, all signs point towards GoodDollar demonstrating that a digital basic income can work at scale, while effecting positive change on a global level.”
Strong support exists for universal basic income, and there are indications that cryptocurrencies could be an effective delivery system for such funds. A survey from the University of Oxford found that 71% of Europeans support the idea of universal basic income, while Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey recently donated $5 million toward Yang’s efforts to establish UBI for U.S. residents.