This story’s headline belongs in a time capsule, to be rediscovered in 10 or 20 years. On Tuesday, Diana Ngo reported that ING and other Dutch banks were exploring the use of blockchains.
“Mark Buitenhek of ING told the Dutch media outlet RTL Nieuws that the current payment system has always operated through banks and central banks, which monitor all commands and ensure that operations run smoothly.
“This method has been the same for 30 years, stated Buitenhek. ‘We have spent the last twenty years operating on what we had put down in the seventies and eighties.’"
Thanks in large part to Bitcoin Giving Tuesday, the Bitcoin network crossed the 100,000-transaction threshold twice this past week.
“[Bitcoin Giving Tuesday] encourages the Bitcoin community to give microdonations to organizations that accept Bitcoin. Any amount is welcomed, and Bitcoin Giving Tuesday organizers emphasize that Bitcoin ensures donations will go right to the recipient organization, rather than to an intermediary processor that would take a portion of the money off the top.”
On Monday, Amanda B. Johnson reported about a Reddit bot that operates much like ChangeTip, but the tip’s recipient receives a game rather than 1000 bits or so.
“Reddit user The_Hox announced that his website Eternal Summer Sale has launched a bot which allows users to tip one another, only instead of tipping cryptocurrency, they’re tipping complete games on the popular platform Steam.
“The_Hox kicked off his highly-upvoted post by giving away copies of a game called Hitman: Codename 47.”
On Thursday, William Suberg reported on some of the companies that sent comments to New York’s Benjamin Lawsky regarding his proposed BitLicenses program. The list of companies—with comments posted in full—includes Amazon and Western Union.
“They reveal Western Union calling for all Bitcoin ATM installations to be ratified by Benjamin Lawsky himself, as well as for the company itself to be exempt from the regulations even if it were to deal in digital currencies in future.
“Walmart is vocal about the proposals affecting gift cards and vouchers, while Amazon highlighted the risks posed to its alternative payment methods such as prepaid cards and suggested the ‘definitions’ of virtual currency be made less ‘broad.’”
On Tuesday, William Suberg reported on the kinds of lobbying MasterCard is trying to pull in Australia regarding cryptocurrencies.
“Contrary to transactions made with a MasterCard product, the anonymity of digital currency transactions enables any party to facilitate the purchase of illegal goods or services; to launder money or finance terrorism; and to pursue other activity that introduces consumer and social harm without detection by regulatory or police authority,” Australasia Division President Eddie Grobler said.
Andreas Antonopoulos was on the Joe Rogan Experience again this week.
Otto de Voogd from BTC.ee is having a tough time right now, thanks to Estonian authorities. “Reinterpreting old laws in such a way as to retroactively apply them to new technologies simply means that there is no permissionless innovation in Estonia,” he writes from his new location in the Netherlands. “If you want to innovate in a new technology you must first ask explicit permission from the state and be sure they will not reinterpret an old law, [which] was never intended for it, to this new technology.
This is from last week, but in case you missed it check out the piece on TechCrunch from Loriei Kelly and Matthew McKibbin called “Let’s Make Bitcoin The Biggest Humanitarian Tool The World Has Ever Seen.”
The big news this week in bitcoin markets revolves around that number-of-transactions graph with the twin peaks. More and more bitcoin transactions are happening every week, and this has been a steady trend since mid-June.
Meanwhile, USD exchange volume for the week rose gradually but never cracked the US$5 million mark.
The bitcoin price began and ended the week in the mid-US$370s, and it didn’t fluctuate much throughout the week. “It is nice to see Bitcoin stable for a short stretch of time, even if it is at this low year-over-year level,” Cointelegraph’s analyst Tone Vays wrote earlier this week.
“We are tentatively bullish across all time frames and hope to see US$400 broken in the near future as it rallies to US$450 and perhaps even US$500 into year end.”
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