Interview With Lewis Just of The Eco coin Project

ECO coin logo

ECO coin To economically reward environmental action

BitcoinDood: Thanks so much for taking the time to respond to this interview. Could you please tell the readers a little about who you are and your relationship to the ECO coin project?

Lewis Just: My name is Lewis Just and I am the project leader of the ECO coin, which is an initiative of Next Nature. We are a think and design organization based in Amsterdam that stems from a need to explore how technology and nature come together to create our future environment, our Next Nature.

BD:  ECO coin will be a bit different than other cryptocurrencies out there. From what I understand, its main purpose is to help as an incentive based token, to reward individuals for acts of eco freindly actions. The PDF you sent me uses the phrase, “To economically reward environmental action”. Can you expound on this a little more and tell us how a cryptocurrency can be utilized for this purpose?

LJ: Absolutely. When we look at our current economic system is seems that we often reward actions that our terrible for our ecology in order to gain profits, grow business and help a debt-based economy survive. And yet we do very little to truly understand or protect the value of our shared ecology. It seems strange that businesses can make money from cutting down the forest and turning it into a raw material, but citizens are not paid to plant the forest.

Although there are some initiatives (ecosystem services, carbon trading etc.) that try and combat this growing issue they are often top down solutions that rely on bureaucracy and are there to limit the damages done. The ECO coin by contrast is a currency that positively rewards citizens who are actively contributing to a more sustainable world. It is a bottom up approach that we are designing to help catalyze our economy and society to transition to a more ecological one.

We believe that by utilizing blockchain technologies we can make the ECO coin a project that is not owned by one but many. Having the ECO coin as a cryptocurrency also means that the way in which it is created does not need to be the same as the way in which fiat money is created, through the creation of debt. Carrying out sustainably good actions can create it.

BD: You’re planning on partnering with some pretty big names with the likes of Deloitte and Bitonic. Can you talk a little about these organizations and how they will help the advancement of ECO coin?

LJ: Yes, the ECO coin has been an idea of Next Nature for some time now but it is only fairly recently that we have really been transforming the project from a theoretical idea into a practical solution. To do this we feel it’s best to collaborate and find partnerships that fit and we have been fortunate to find these with Deloitte and Bitonic. Both organizations have fantastic people with really hands on knowledge of blockchain technologies and implementation expertise. They will help us to run community experiments to see the strengths and weaknesses of the currency so that we can develop it into the strongest possible form it can be. At Next Nature we really believe that no single party should own the system but that we should all help to bring it to life.

BD: Your white paper states that the coin will be promoted and used at music festivals. This seems like an absolutely brilliant idea and great way to introduce a lot of new people to the use of cryptocurrency. I’ve helped promote rave parties back in the mid 90’s and giving 10,000 plus people instructions on anything can be a bit daunting. What is your vision for this idea and how would it be executed?

LJ: The great thing about music festivals is that they come with amazing communities and the space provides a great context as it has everything you might find in a city (water and energy infrastructure, food and marketplaces, housing etc). The key to making the ECO coin a success at a music festival is to design the system so that festival goers can learn as they go. So the ECO coin will be integrated into RFID wristband tickets meaning everyone already has their ECO coin wallets. Then people can earn and spend throughout the festival when they like. Say you use a digital ticket instead of a paper ticket to enter the festival ground, then you can immediately earn an ECO coin. Attend a lecture or workshop about sustainability and you can earn more ECO coins. Help to keep the festival tidy of plastic cups, earn even more. You can then spend your ECO coins onsite on meat-free food, exclusive digital downloads or if you earn enough ECO coins you can become a V.E.P. Much like a V.I.P but you will reach Very Ecological Person status and gain access to areas of the festival that others can’t. It’s definitely going to be a challenge to execute but we have a great festival onboard (we will be announcing who in the next few weeks so keep following our progress at nextnature.net) so we are optimistic we can make it a success.

BD: One of your plans will be to have approved businesses, festivals, and projects, to earn and use ECO coin. The white paper I read discourages trading to fiat or to other currencies. I’m trying to wrap my head around how this will work. If businesses are accepting ECO coin for goods and services won’t they eventually want to cash out for some other form of fiat or cryptocurrency? I’m imagining some guy renting bicycles at the beach and accepting ECO coin. Once he accrues a good amount of ECO’s he’s going to want to cash those out. How will business owners go about this and will this coin be listed on any of the altcoin exchanges?

LJ: Yes, although we cannot stop people from buying and selling the ECO coin we would always promote that you earn them through environmentally good actions. We want to avoid businesses “cashing out” by making sure that internal trading can happen from the other ECO coin businesses. So if the bicycle repairman has many ECO coins he can spend them on employing an urban miner to go and salvage old bike parts. The miner can then spend the ECO coins on locally grown fruit and vegetables and so forth. This idea is borrowed from the Wir Bank, which has a very successful track record of strengthening business ties whilst lowering the amount of cash liquidity a business needs. This is just one idea but we are also looking at other currencies and ways in which you might be able to invest your ECO coins in new green businesses. We also hope that becoming an ECO coin business will carry some reputational value with it. So like B Corporations, the ECO coin stamp will be a marker of a sustainable business or organization.

BD: From what I’m gathering you currently have a proof of concept and the ECO coin itself is not available yet. When can we expect to see an actual working blockchain and completed project? Please feel free to talk about any road map plans as well.

LJ: That’s correct. We are not yet on a blockchain but are, with our partners, exploring the best way to achieve this. There are many ways we can realize the ECO coin on a blockchain but we also want to use the technology when it’s appropriate. Many projects use blockchain technology too early without establishing a great community to use their coin. So our road map for the ECO coin is first focused on testing the currency within a local community (a music festival). Once we understand how to make it efficient and easy to use then we will look to spread the currency to other communities to create an international network of ECO coin users. This will go hand in hand with implementing the coin on a blockchain so that it will become a global cryptocurrency for anyone, anywhere to use.

BD: On the last page of your white paper it talks about the benefits of using the blockchain for the ECO coin token. The paper explains the benefits of blockchain voting, and making it more decentralized and democratic. Are you planning something like what the DASH community is currently doing with voting for projects and the distribution of budget funds? http://dashvotetracker.com/ How will the democratization and decentralization of the blockchain benefit ECO coin and the ECO community in general?

LJ: Exactly that. We see that blockchain technology can facilitate a far more decentralized governance system. Although the project will start with a core team/leadership we want to democratize the system so that everyone using the ECO coins can have a say in its future. We believe that no single party should own the system, but that all partners and users should be able to improve the system. In that sense making the project open source is really important to us.

BD: I remember reading about a very similar project awhile back, and at first I thought this was that project. I’ve always thought this was a novel use of blockchain technology and I love the concept of an incentive based cryptocurrency that helps to better the environment. While researching for this interview, I came across multiple other coins with the same name and ticker symbol, ‘ECO’. It looks like most of these other projects have been abandoned. How will you separate yourselves from the other ECO’s out there?

LJ: For us it’s less about separating ourselves from other projects (actually we are open to collaborate when it makes sense if we are working towards the same goals) and more about making sure that our ECO coin is something that, to stick with the environmental analogies, can grow organically. This means it has to start with making sure there is a community for this currency and that all parties are benefiting from its use. I don’t see a problem with many initiatives exploring this idea of valuing our ecology in tandem, especially when others also share what they learn from their experiments.

BD:  I really appreciate your time in responding to this interview. Is there anything that you would like to add or talk about that hasn’t been covered already?

LJ: If you want to follow our progress on the ECO coin and support our project we welcome you to become a member of the Next Nature Network at nextnature.net/welcome

BD: I ask all my interviews the same last question. Cryptocurrency will likely play a large roll in future society. How do you see cryptocurrency in general being used in the future?

LJ: Personally, I see any technology as a way to achieve some sort of societal goal. So I believe cryptocurrencies certainly have the potential to play a strong role in the future of our society because it can allow us to develop and redesign our monetary system. I think one major success of the Bitcoin and altcoin movement is that it has helped open up the conversation about how and what we value in our society. Euros, Pounds, Yen and Dollars represent one form of value but I believe its far more interesting to have many currencies representing many value systems in the world. This creates not only a more resilient economy, but also a far more diverse economy that people, objects and even plants may one day be a part of.

The Dood would like to thank Lewis Just of The ECO coin Project for taking the time to answer these questions. I’m really looking forward to watching this coin develop and wish the entire ECO coin team the best of luck on this project and all their future endeavors. This is an interesting use of blockchain technology and I’m really looking forward to following this project in the future. Try these links to learn more about ECO coin and to follow their development.

https://www.nextnature.net/projects/ecocoin/

Coming soon: http://ecocoin.com/

On twitter: https://twitter.com/TheECOcoin

 

Press Release: Territorio Bitcoin Promotion & Giveaways

bitcoin giveaway

PRESS RELEASE: Better late than never. I promised Territorio Bitcoin that I’d get this press release out on the 20th and I spaced it. Regardless, these folks do giveaways and promotions all the time, so check them out when you get a chance.My apologies to the fine folks at Territorio Bitcoin, I’ll be doing scheduled Press Release posts now with my blog, so I don’t forget from here on out. If you have a press release for your cryptocurrency related company, message me on twitter, or send an email through my contact page. 

Prizes totalling up to 850 euros

Territorio Bitcoin celebrates is second anniversary with four raffles

On 19 January 2017 Territorio Bitcoin, the reference for information on Bitcoin, Blockchain and Fintech in Spain, has turned two. To commemorate this anniversary, the digital platform is organizing four raffles totalling 850 euros for the winners.

Madrid, 19 January 2017

The managers of Territorio Bitcoin will announce on 20 February the names of the winners. To take part in the contest, web surfers must log into the raffle platform Easy Promos and sign up to each raffle through this link.

The 2nd anniversary awards of Territorio Bitcoin are sponsored by four entities:

BTC.COM develops several Bitcoin products and services, such as mining hardware, mining pools, and Android and iOS applications. This promotion will have three prizes: a €200 wallet, a €150 wallet, and a €100 wallet.

Feelcapital is a platform for personalized guidance on hedge funds. The first-ever Europe-regulated robotic guidance company will deliver the winner a 1-year account for its hedge fund platform, valued at €150, completely for free.

TicrThing develops a gadget (TicrThing) indicating the price of Bitcoin at any time. The winner of this raffle will get this gadget, customized with the logos of TicrThing and Territorio Bitcoin. It is valued at €150.

Wirex provides a hybrid solution for personal banking. It is the first company to combine speed and flexibility in blockchain finances. A Wirex Mastercard card, loaded with €30, and a virtual Wirex Visa card with €30, are the prizes.

Territorio Bitcoin runs promotions all year long, with a large influx of participants. Through its weekly newsletter, it provides up-to-date information about the Bitcoin ecosystem.

For more information:

Óscar Domínguez   territoriobitcoin@gmail.com

Link

LINK: Video & tutorial on trading the head and shoulders pattern.

Technical analysis of charts can sometimes be very helpful to traders. There are many different patterns or trends that appear in stock and cryptocurrency charts. Understanding these patterns and recognizing them can help give the investor an edge.

Nothing is 100% when speculating on price, but this is a simple tool, many investors use to watch the price and speculate on its next likely position.

http://www.investopedia.com/articles/technical/121201.asp

Interview With Sam Patterson From OpenBazaar

OpenBazaar Marketplace logo

OpenBazaar is an open source decentralized marketplace.

BitcoinDood – Thanks for taking the time to do this interview. I was really excited about getting the opportunity to talk to someone from your organization. This has been a project that I’ve followed for some time now. Could you please take a moment to tell us who you are and your relationship to the OpenBazaar project?

Sam Patterson – I’m Sam Patterson, a co-founder of OB1, the company that develops OpenBazaar.

BitcoinDood – OpenBazaar is a decentralized peer to peer marketplace. Could you explain a little about what that means and how it works?

Sam Patterson – Most online commerce today is done by using centralized marketplaces, owned by huge companies. Those marketplaces take a cut of every transaction, they collect the data of buyers and sellers, and they place restrictions on what can be bought or sold. OpenBazaar is different; it’s a marketplace that isn’t controlled by a company or any central organization. It’s a decentralized marketplace, meaning it’s a collection of people running the software and connecting directly to each other in order to buy and sell. Engaging in trade directly means there are no middleman to charge fees, collect data, or censor transactions.

BitcoinDood – I have to admit, when I first signed on I was almost a little nervous and not really sure what to expect. Thoughts of the darknet filled my head, and I was hoping The Dood wouldn’t end up on yet another Government watch list for just being curious… LOL half kidding… Yet I was really surprised to find a fairly tame marketplace, with very little controversial content if any. OpenBazaar is a marketplace not much different from say Ebay or even Overstock for that matter. I found everything from clothing, bumper stickers, to food products and honey. I don’t know why I expected it to be a little more say “Underground” is this a common misconception of OpenBazaar?

Sam Patterson – OpenBazaar started as a fork of the “Dark Market” hackathon entry in 2014, and many still have a misconception that OpenBazaar is an underground or darknet marketplace. OpenBazaar has always been about making trade free for everyone, not focusing on any type of trade or community. We believe that the benefits of a free and permissionless trade platform are significant and should be available to everyone.

BitcoinDood – So this is another really cool opensource software project.Can you tell us a little about the development, the number of people involved, and how the decision making process works?

Sam Patterson – Since OpenBazaar began in April 2014 it’s been open source and community driven. The number of contributors has fluctuated, but there are several dozen people around the world who have submitted code and hundreds who have tested, opened issues, and submitted bug reports. The majority of the work has been done by the developers working for OB1, the company founded in order to hire dedicated developers to build the platform. Our project leader, Brian Hoffman, has been leading the development since he started the project initially.

BitcoinDood – OpenBazaar bills itself as a decentralized network for peer to peer commerce online.There are no fees and there are no restrictions. Without fees, how does the project fund itself?

Sam Patterson – Originally the project solely consisted of volunteers. Eventually Brian Hoffman, Washington Sanchez and I decided that we wanted to form a company to hire dedicated developers and build OpenBazaar properly. We formed OB1 and obtained venture capital investment. As of the end of 2016 we’ve raised $4 million in venture capital. OB1 will offer value-added services to OpenBazaar users in the future in order to make money, but will never change the software to force users to pay fees.

BitcoinDood – So to go back to my earlier statement about not knowing what to expect the first time I logged on. OpenBazaar encourages an open market without any restrictions yet when I logged onto the client I was surprised to see how tame the listings actually were. Are there any restrictions on what users can post? How does the marketplace maintain such a “wholesome” environment without any restrictions? I was really surprised at how professional, and mainstream the offers I found on your platform were.

Sam Patterson – There are no restrictions on what a user can post. We encourage users to list their items as NSFW if applicable, and in the software there are tools to block other users if they offer items that you don’t like or they are harassing you. Most people just want a platform where they can buy and sell without fees and other restrictions while using Bitcoin, and OpenBazaar is the only place to do that right now.

BitcoinDood – Currently you can only make purchases with bitcoin? Are there any plans to add other cryptocurrencies down the road?

Sam Patterson – In the latest release we added ShapeShift integration, which allows users to spend a variety of cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin is the core currency because it’s the most widely used cryptocurrency and has all the necessary features (such as multisignature transaction).

BitcoinDood – I’ve loved everything about OpenBazaar so far. I have to say though the software wasn’t the easiest to get working. I run an OpenSuse laptop and had to do a bit of tweaking to get it running on my machine, but hey that’s linux, and that’s almost the norm for linux users. I did however try to install the software on a Windows10 PC at work and to my surprise also ran into some difficulties with the install. When I did a google search I discovered I wasn’t the only one. Is there an effort underway to make the install process a little easier? Granted once the client is installed and running it certainly is worth the effort.

Sam Patterson – Getting peer-to-peer software to install and connect correctly across all operating systems and network configurations has proven difficult. We’ve tried to make the process simpler and more reliable, but we’re aware it doesn’t work properly for all users. Fortunately, the 2.0 version of the software (to be released this year) makes substantial improvements in installation and reliability. Our community is very helpful and if you have a problem, feel free to join our Slack group and ask for help.

BitcoinDood – From what I gather, vendors are kept honest through the use of moderators. Could you explain a little how the moderation system works? Can anyone become a moderator and are the moderators rewarded in some way?

Sam Patterson – Moderators are a third party that both buyer and seller agree to in order to use an escrow system. Using 2-of-3 multisig all three parties have a key to the funds, but two of those parties must agree in order for the funds to be released. Normally the buyer and seller agree and they release the funds when the transaction is completed, but if there is a dispute then the moderator is notified. They talk to the parties and determine how to resolve the dispute, then join with the winning party to release funds to them. Anyone can become a moderator; it’s an open marketplace. Moderators are rewarded by receiving a percentage of the overall transaction when they resolve a dispute.

BitcoinDood – Thank you so much for your time in answering these questions. Is there anything you want to add, or any special news you would like to share that hasn’t already been covered?

Sam Patterson – OpenBazaar costs nothing to try out so we encourage anyone interested in Bitcoin or decentralized technologies to test it out and let us know what they think. The 2.0 version of the software is being built on IPFS, which will allow stores to be visible even when they are offline, and includes many other major improvements. To follow along with the development of the software, check out our blog.

Bloggers note: IPFS stands for InterPlanetary File System A peer-to-peer hypermedia protocol. TechCrunch wrote an interesting article about it here.

BitcoinDood – I ask all my interviews the same last question. Could you share any thoughts or predictions of where you see bitcoin and cryptocurrency going in the future? If I handed you a working crystal ball, what do you think we would see?

Sam Patterson – Permissionless money and permissionless trade are concepts too powerful to not gain traction over the coming years. In countries with devaluation or demonetization of currency, Bitcoin will become an increasingly popular alternative, leading to the adoption of platforms such as OpenBazaar to facilitate use of the currency. Even in countries with stable currencies we’ll see more use of Bitcoin and OpenBazaar because of the increasing growth of the digital economy and diminishing importance of where digital workers physically reside.

Thanks to Sam Patterson for taking the time to talk about this truly interesting project. You can find out more about OpenBazaar and download the software on their website:

https://openbazaar.org/

OpenBazaar GitHub

OpenBazaar on Reddit.

OpenBazaar on Twitter

Special thanks to the OpenBazaar Twitter folks for helping to put this interview together. Much appreciated! Thanks also to Sam Patterson for sharing the OpenBazaar story with me and my readers. Your time is greatly appreciated.