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1  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Is cryptocurrency helping to bring peace, TODAY, to North Korea? on: June 12, 2018, 03:33:18 AM
I'm not really trying to make a political statement here.  I've been following the news regarding the summit between North Korea and the United States, and it's remarkable that our countries could be on the verge of a new era of peace.  Regardless of your views on President Trump, I believe that most would agree with me that this is great news for the entire world!  I am sure many challenges lie ahead but challenges are worth undertaking for peace on earth.

I want to call attention to the fact that PotCoin, a cryptocurrency for the legal marijuana industry (I know little about the project except that it's been around since 2014, longer than many), has sponsored Dennis Rodman's travel to North Korea in the past.  He is also in Singapore now thanks to their sponsorship.  Mr. Rodman has been an unofficial emmisary between the United States and North Korea for some time due to his personal relationship with Kim Jong-un.

Here's an interview that was conducted just moments ago with an emotional Dennis Rodman describing his involvement over the years in helping to bring about amazing things: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IS494th_Js4

Thank you PotCoin for your part in helping bring about these historic events!

Bitcoin, other virtual assets, and decentralization can and is creating a better world in so many ways.

Best regards,
Ben
2  Bitcoin / Project Development / FOUNDERS WANTED: FinTech Self Regulatory Organization (FTSRO) on: April 05, 2018, 08:45:15 PM
Hi All,

I just published the following article to BTRIC's blog on Medium.  I wanted to share it on here in full, as it builds on many ideas I've first described in the pages of this forum and is the result of a good amount of discussion among people I've come to know from here.

https://medium.com/btric/could-reasonable-crypto-asset-regulation-actually-benefit-the-ecosystem-638c27622d3f
Could Reasonable Crypto Asset Regulation Actually Benefit the Ecosystem?
I believe the benefits outweigh the costs. Here’s why.

The purpose of this article is to convince you, the crypto asset community, that, if done properly, the right regulatory structure for crypto assets would be a net benefit for the field. I am currently raising a small amount of funding from people that want to be a part of the formation of one such non-profit Self Regulatory Organization (SRO). I believe the time is now to get going on this, and I am willing to put in the time and effort to organize and launch this organization. However, I can’t do it alone.

In terms of convincing people that regulation could actually be good for them, I know I have my work cut out for me here. This is especially true in the cypherpunk realm of cryptocurrency. No one wants to be regulated. I wholeheartedly agree with this, having seen first-hand the deleterious economic effects of excessive regulation. However, please take a few minutes with an open mind to consider the concept I describe, which is a very different approach to traditional regulation.

The Situation Today

Right now, in 2018, the crypto asset field on a global basis is not in a good place. As a transformative technology that will change the world, crypto assets are earning a bad rap. This has manifested itself in a multitude of ways:

  • Banks are increasingly limiting crypto/fiat exchanges, in some cases even closing accounts with all crypto related businesses. I read a case of a blockchain company (not crypto at all) being shut out of their banking relationship.
  • Large platforms such as Google, Twitter, and Facebook are banning advertising of bitcoin, crypto assets, and ICO/ITO related products and services.
  • Regulators all over the world are tightening the screws on crypto asset businesses, making it very hard to build adoption.
  • Regulators are also applying legal requirements unequally to different types of crypto assets, and each regulator seems to have their own definition of what crypto assets are, shockingly defined to be — you guessed it — within their regulatory scope.
  • In order to be a fiat/crypto conversion service, you must comply with the money transmitter requirements of nearly every state. This creates a very high bar to entry for businesses, which slows innovation and reduces competitive forces.
  • Consumers don’t know what to make of crypto assets. Broad-based education to consumers is limited.
  • Know Your Customer and Anti-Money Laundering measures are enforced unevenly, giving a bad reputation to good projects, as well as opening the door for tougher regulations.
  • Fraud in the field is widespread, with heavily pre-mined currencies, ICOs that disappear overnight (with investors funds), and false claims being made all over the space.
  • Poor code — in node daemons, smart contracts, wallets, and exchanges — has led to the loss or theft of hundreds of millions of dollars.
  • The success or failure of many offerings is increasingly based on marketing power, rather than technical or business merit.

In short, in many ways, the current crypto asset ecosystem is giving regulators plenty of legitimate concerns to worry about. If your mission was to protect investors, wouldn’t you be concerned about all of the above? I know I would.

Addressing the Problem

Some in the crypto asset community believe that investors are to blame for their loss of funds, and in some ways I agree with that assessment. However, even the smartest investor can be deceived. There is no replacement for doing your own research, of course. However, the many types of fraud, coding issues, regulatory burdens, and disrepute (as evidenced by advertising bans) are and will continue to inflict damage to the good actors, instead of only the bad. Regulators will continue to do their job to protect investors, but in so doing, the risk is very real that they will harm or create unreasonable burdens on innocent projects.

I believe that the best approach to handle this situation is the creation of Self Regulatory Organizations (SROs), which are entities such as FINRA (the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) that are “self-policing” organizations and are recognized by regulators in that capacity. Recently, Gemini blogged about their proposal to create one SRO which they’ve named the Virtual Commodity Association (VCA). I support this effort and in this article I propose the creation of another SRO.

Self Regulatory Organizations for the Crypto Asset Industry

A few months ago, I was strongly advocating for best-practices, voluntary standards that could be used by anyone in their projects to reduce fraud and enhance confidence. I proposed this through my organization, Blockchain Technology Research Innovations Corporation, which is a 501(c)(3) non-profit economic development organization. Because of the rapid evolution of regulations, the negative actions taken against the crypto asset industry by organizations such as banks (closing accounts) and advertising platforms (banning crypto asset ads), I propose to move that work and build upon it into an industry-supported, non-profit SRO.

To achieve this, BTRIC is collecting tax-deductible (disclaimer: talk to your tax advisor) contributions that we will grant towards the creation and initial operations of an SRO, the working name of which is the Financial Technology Self Regulatory Organization (FTSRO).

In several ways FTSRO will be similar to the VCA, and I hope we are able to work together cooperatively in these areas. However, we strongly believe that there should be multiple SROs, not just one or two. Imagine Visa if there was no Mastercard? Or American Express? Or Discover? Alternatives keep everyone honest and prevent exclusionary organizations. FTSRO is focused on being inclusive, not exclusive.

  • Membership open to people, businesses, and decentralized, non-entity projects (such as the Bitcoin Project) that deal in crypto assets of all types, including but not limited to cryptocurrency. By including a wider scope of membership, FTSRO will participate with multiple different regulatory bodies, instead of a singular focus on virtual commodities. FTSRO will seek and build cooperative relationships with CFTC, SEC, Treasury’s OFAC, IRS, state regulators, and associations of state regulators (that often develop shared model frameworks).
  • Ensure that the cost of compliance with any requirements of FTSRO (and, to the extent we’re able, regulatory requirements) is reasonable and does not serve to be a burden that limits innovation and new entry in a field that has so much future growth. After all, if the cost of compliance with an ICO/ITO is nearly that of an IPO, why not just list on a stock exchange? The cost of compliance with FTSRO membership, accreditation, and regulatory requirements — even those for securities tokens — should be a fraction of that cost.
  • Develop accreditation programs for individuals in their competencies, similar to the work being done by the CryptoCurrency Certification Consortium. At the end of the day, we need a pool of professionals with competencies in blockchain code development and evaluation, security auditor, crypto asset classification, ICO/ITO rating and due diligence, crypto asset funds management, and other important functions. To reduce fraud, consumers need to be able to know the difference between a true crypto asset professional and someone that just talks a good game. These accreditations should not be expensive nor overly burdensome. Those that are already experts should be able to easily receive accreditations.
  • Develop cooperative programs between members to ease the burdens of compliance with regulatory requirements. By developing cooperative pools, cost savings and efficiencies can be gained in those areas where it makes sense:
    • Cooperative KYC/AML/CFT programs that better protect consumers and eases burdens on businesses;
    • Best practices frameworks for code evaluation, security audits, incident response and harm mitigation, blockchain resilience, etc.;
    • Crypto asset classification (Determine the legal status of a given crypto asset, such as: currency/virtual commodity, utility token, securities token, collectible, insurance token, etc.);
    • Best practices frameworks for ICO/ITO evaluation and due diligence, building on work such as Spacesuit X;
    • Best practices frameworks for financial and operational security; and
    • Promote the creation of industry-funded investor protection initiatives, such as a Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) focused on crypto assets.
  • In addition to liaison and advocacy to policymakers, implement educational outreach programs intended on informing businesses (such as those currently banning advertisements as well as businesses that could benefit from crypto asset adoption), investors, and consumers about the benefits of crypto assets.
  • Other outreach and educational programs can be focused towards educators, ensuring that software engineers, financial professionals, and others are educated about crypto assets. As the field grows, we will need more crypto asset professionals to support projects, products, and services.
  • Organize initiatives and programs that have yet to be conceived, keeping up with innovation as the field rapidly evolves.

Benefits to the Crypto Asset Industry

  • U.S. citizens should not be precluded from participating in ICO/ITOs around the world because the projects have decided that compliance with U.S. standards is overly burdensome. We can streamline compliance with current regulations, as well as promote further streamlining to lawmakers.
  • Legitimate projects should not decide to incorporate and operate in other countries because the U.S. makes it hard to compete. We can ensure that the United States promotes — not prohibits — innovation in our industry. The U.S. should lead the world in building the projects, products, and services that reshape the global economy.
  • Fraudulent projects must be reduced to the extent possible so that promotion, advertising, and adoption of non-fraudulent crypto assets is not slowed. Good projects should be able to be separated from the bad, without expensive or unreasonable regulatory compliance burdens.

Support the Formation of FTSRO

What began as a cypherpunk movement by Satoshi Nakomoto has grown into something bigger: the realization of a restructuring of how financial markets and economic systems operate. To support this continued growth, some self-policing will provide protection against fraud and increase consumer and investor confidence, which will ultimately enhance adoption.

Support the formation of the Financial Technology Self Regulatory Organization by making a contribution toward this purpose to BTRIC. We have established a separate fund to collect contributions towards the formation and organization of FTSRO. Once the organization is formed, we will donate these funds to it. We have also secured the ftsro.org domain name (currently parked), which we will also donate to the organization. We are actively seeking people that want to be part of this organization as a member of its Board or through involvement in the committees that develop and maintain the standards listed.

  • FTSRO Fund — Bitcoin: 3DEUz5roLXYuGZjnA7zyvXZHy7aFMErBqx
  • FTSRO Fund — Ethereum: 0xe7f80b303f10d8bce4e25083c66f12bbe44ebaa3
  • For a receipt to acknowledge your contribution, which is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law (consult your tax advisor), please send an email, signed with the sending address, to donations@btric.org.
  • To make contributions in other cryptocurrencies and/or fiat contributions, please email donations@btric.org and we will take care of it.

Though I know many are opposed to regulations on crypto assets in general, that is not a practical reality in today’s world. Congress has decided that investors and consumers deserve protection, and I agree with that. Carefully designed self-regulatory organizations, such as FTSRO, provide a way to balance the need to be as “light-touch” and inclusive as possible with the important needs of reducing fraud and protecting consumers. In addition, SROs can advance educational and other initiatives that benefit the industry as a whole.

An SRO allows the industry to, in many ways, police itself, which many have discussed the need to do. This proposal provides a framework to moving that forward and I look forward to working with all to form and operate this organization with careful consideration of the issues and values that embody the crypto asset community.

Please reach out to me if you would like to discuss this further. I can be reached on Telegram at https://t.me/BTRICorg.

I am open to everyone's thoughts and ideas.

Best regards,
Ben
3  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-18] Reuters - G20 watchdog ... holds fire on cryptocurrencies on: March 18, 2018, 09:11:27 PM
Excerpt:
Quote
The Financial Stability Board (FSB), which coordinates financial regulation for the Group of 20 Economies, also resisted calls from some G20 members to regulate cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

G20 watchdog focuses on rules review, holds fire on cryptocurrencies
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-g20-regulations-carney/g20-watchdog-focuses-on-rules-review-holds-fire-on-cryptocurrencies-idUSKBN1GU0SF
4  Bitcoin / Project Development / Winklevoss Brothers propose Virtual Commodity Association (self-regulatory org.) on: March 15, 2018, 05:47:12 PM
Hi All,

I have been posting for some time about the need to develop, as an industry, voluntary standards to evaluate cryptocurrencies, tokens, crypto service providers, etc.  My purpose in bringing this up to the community on here was to see if there would be some consensus around developing such standards.  I've received several statements supporting the need to do this with respect to ICO/ITOs, to help root out the fraud/scams, etc.  Also received much positive support regarding KYC/AML standardization because currently, handing over KYC information to ICOs that are failing at over 50% rate, is not the best approach.  At some point, unscrupulous actors will look at your identity as a marketable asset.  In other cases, hacks could obtain access to this highly personal information.

I also believe somewhat separate, but interrelated standards, applied to various segments of the crypto asset ecosystem (security standards, financial management standards, etc.) would be useful in demonstrating to regulators that the crypto asset field is doing something about the unique issues created by this new asset class.

Earlier this week, Gemini posted a proposal to go further, and create a self-regulatory organization for cryptocurrency.  It specifically excludes securities tokens from its scope, but their blog entry is here for your review:

A Proposal for a Self-Regulatory Organization for the U.S. Virtual Currency Industry
https://gemini.com/blog/a-proposal-for-a-self-regulatory-organization-for-the-u-s-virtual-currency-industry/

For your information, a self-regulatory organization, SRO, is an entity that is recognized by the SEC/CFTC as having some independent rulemaking authority over their members in self-regulating their scope of membership.  An example of this is FINRA, which regulates the equities market (and some of the futures markets as well I believe).  The thing you probably don't want is to be subject to FINRA's jurisdiction, so if SRO's are now on the table, the industry should strongly consider the creation of one or more SROs.

My question to this board is, what do you think of the proposal on Gemini's blog, or about SROs in general?  Do you believe it goes far enough?  Too far?

I am asking this question because I've been examining these aspects of the crypto asset community for some time and believed this bridge would eventually be reached.  I was hoping to get support for voluntary standards that would help to minimize the fraud in the space, but now it seems that things have become more urgent.

Please let me know your thoughts on here or you can PM me or contact on Telegram.

Best regards,
Ben
5  Other / Serious discussion / Charity Projects with Crypto on: February 23, 2018, 05:37:19 PM
Hi All,

I am responding in here to a topic that was started in the Ivory Tower because I don't yet have the rank to post in there, but it is a topic that is interesting to me and that I think I have some meaningful contributions I could make.  If this is not allowed, please let me know and I won't do it again - but I looked and didn't see any rule against it as far as I can tell.

The in there has the same subject, here's the link: Charity Projects with Crypto

Quote from: TucoRamirez
What if someone developed a so-called Charity token, where in every donor was rewarded with some tokens. Then we could find some use cases for these tokens (first thing that comes to mind is something similar to airline miles, or loyalty points) which can be redeemed with various partner organizations. Does anyone think something like this has any potential?

I wanted to let you know that I've been working on something along these lines in my organization as one of the projects that we're incubating and launching, and explain a little bit about where we're at.  My organization is just getting off the ground, but this is one of the first projects we're going to launch.

The project has a working name of "Bitcoin for Good".  The goal of the project is two-fold: first, to raise funds for charities, and second, to increase adoption of Bitcoin in the non-profit organization market segment.  I believe that crypto assets are a particularly well suited in the charity space for donations because many charities are international in nature and Bitcoin and other cryptos transcend national boundaries.  In addition, organizations that have operations around the world, or that respond in disaster relief contexts, could really benefit from Bitcoin's ability to be transferred quickly anywhere on the planet.  So these are two powerful features that would encourage adoption of cryptocurrency by charities.

The essence of the project is to provide an "Amazon Smile" like experience for donors.  For those that aren't familiar with Amazon's charity effort, Amazon Smile is a program that allows Amazon.com shoppers to opt-in to any charity of their choosing (using the IRS master file in the U.S. and I believe similar registries in Canada and Europe).  Amazon then donates 0.5% of the shopper's purchases to that charity.  The charity does not need to register in advance with Amazon, all they need is 501(c)(3) status and to be listed on GuideStar, which is a repository for charity information.  They've given tens of millions to charities through this seemingly small 0.5%.  So, our project, Bitcoin for Good would do the same, only it would make the payments to charities in Bitcoin.  The project will distribute paper wallets that contain the contributions.  We're going to do it in a secure way (still thinking about how to best accomplish this, probably two mailings to separate the public and private keys), of course.  But the overall benefit to the crypto ecosystem is gaining adoption in a segment of the economy that has some unique benefits to be gained from crypto use.  The average person on the street never, or hardly ever, has a need to send money half way around the world.  But charities do it every day, and it can be difficult to accomplish from a logistical perspective, especially during times of crisis.  Cryptocurrency is, in my view, a tailor-made solution for that problem.  Currently, some charities literally stage cash in strategic locations around the world which is very expensive to store and protect.  This could reduce the need to do that while actually making response times faster.  Once we have this project implemented we will also be producing integrations for various shopping cart platforms and reaching out to large Internet retailers.  I know that some retailers would be very inclined to implement a program like this if it was "turnkey" for them.  They don't have the resources that Amazon does so it's difficult for them to enable customer-directed giving in the same form, so that's where Bitcoin for Good can be a benefit.

We have some other ideas for disaster relief using cryptocurrency but this is the first project in our incubator program.  The other ones are more complicated, but I believe that in a heavy disaster scenario the ability to distribute mass amounts of cryptocurrency to individuals has huge potential.  In areas that suffer huge natural disasters, one of the top priorities today is to restore cell service.  After the hurricanes last summer in the Caribbean, many areas remained without electricity (many still are, in fact), but wireless service was restored quickly.  In areas where banking infrastructure is down for weeks, cryptocurrency can be a perfect solution allowing people to be able to purchase what they need to repair their homes / eat / etc.  The current FEMA solution of distributing prepaid debit cards has a big drawback when disasters have destroyed POS terminals and/or landline service isn't working (as many of those terminals still use landline or non-wireless internet).  But moving to cryptocurrency transactions, that can be bought and sold from each other through smartphones, is a great way to help people get what they need to begin the process of recovering from a disaster.  I think your idea to reward donors with some type of coin that they could redeem with partners is a great idea, it's an extra incentive for donating, and I know many retail/online partners that would offer benefits in exchange for publicity about their participation in the program (corporate responsibility).

Also, to your point about crypto people being charitable, I believe that there's many that have been very generous which is a really great thing about this field.  Not everyone can give like the Pineapple Fund did, for example, but there are certainly people that come together to donate to causes or organizations they believe in which is outstanding.  More of those stories will be highlighted and featured to counter the "Bitcoin is used to commit crimes" BS.  The spreading of FUD in that way by the legacy interests won't stop Bitcoin and other crypto assets, but positive stories can only help counter that as well as grab people's interest enough to help adoption.  That's what I'm working to do -- projects that benefit the whole field (and by extension, civilization as a whole).

Best regards,
Ben
6  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / ATTN: U.S. Persons/Businesses in Bitcoin/crypto, please pay attention on: January 28, 2018, 06:42:59 PM
Hi All,

I am writing this message because I want to draw your attention to a very important issue that the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency industry as a whole is going to have to confront in the near future: regulation in the U.S. marketplace.

Here is a recent, brief article that goes over a joint op-ed that was in the Wall Street Journal the other day:

SEC, CFTC Chiefs Eye Closer Crypto Scrutiny
https://www.coindesk.com/sec-cftc-chiefs-eye-closer-scrutiny-of-us-cryptocurrency-industry/

I have a good amount of experience dealing with Federal regulators and I can tell you that I am growing concerned by what I'm observing in a subtle shift in the writings and speeches of key officials at the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission toward crypto over the past 6-9 months.  Long story short, at this point, I expect that a rulemaking or at the very least an ANPR (advance notice of proposed rulemaking) will begin this year.  It's definitely called for in some form considering the ICO scams and hacks that have taken place, but we need to make sure they don't go too far and I am beginning to see that as a real risk!

My view: Cryptocurrency represents a true paradigm shift that could improve humanity in many ways.  I do not want this to be regulated such that only financial institutions and securities brokerages are able to deal in cryptocurrency.  In theory, regulations requiring bank-level supervisory obligations, or even limiting it to chartered banks or FINRA securities businesses, could be imposed on the creation of any units of cryptocurrency (i.e. ICO/ITOs and mining).  If the end result of the coming regulations is that only banks can issue cryptocurrency, what have we really gained?  I believe that level of regulation would kill innovation in what is a rapidly emerging but still (in the grand scheme of things) tiny, cottage industry.  Of course, I know that Bitcoin cannot truly be "controlled".  However, the wrong level of regulation could effectively make it very difficult to innovate at the current rate.  You are seeing some of this happen around the world, in South Korea, for example.

We as an industry need to get out in front of this to ensure that regulations will not stifle innovation.  This is really not about Bitcoin vs Bcash vs Ethereum vs 1500 other cryptos.  This is something that we should all be working together on.  If we don't get involved in this process and shape the regulations, the industry will be forced to deal with regulations that are shaped by others.  I've seen first hand how damaging that can be to businesses.

Coin Center is a non-profit advocacy organization that is doing great work in this area.  But I have to be honest with you, the financial services lobby (traditional banks/brokerages) is extremely powerful, and they're woke to the potential of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.  They are very much on the other side of this issue.  We will need more voices at the table, this is a big deal if it goes the wrong way.

My organization, BTRIC, is launching right now and one of our big focuses is to advocate for policies that are light-touch, common sense, and enable -- rather than stifle -- innovation.  We look forward to working with Coin Center and others to make sure our field is not regulated to death.  We have plans for outreach and advocacy that will work with state regulators (feedback from State governments are given the utmost attention by the regulators) to ensure that innovation is not stifled.  Our organization is doing other things too in working with regulators to promote economic development in FinTech, but right now I see the coming regulations as a big challenge we need to focus on.  If handled right, it could be a great opportunity.

I am reaching out to ask for your support in helping to get our organization off the ground so that we can make sure we're at the table with the regulators protecting innovation.  You can contribute to our Founding Donor fundraiser in many cryptos (and fiat) on our website at https://www.btric.org.  If you want to use a "collection jar" for Bitcoin, our address is 1btricdjXr4uAFnxPULmzpXmaVWnP25o6.  Donations are tax-deductible, I can get you a receipt if you use the checkout on our site or if you email us at donations@btric.org.

If anyone would like to reach out to discuss this further (in a less public setting), please reach out to me here, on Twitter, or on Telegram.  Please pass this message along to anyone you think would have an interest in getting involved, either as a contributor or as part of the team we're building.  I look forward to working together with you.

Best regards,
Ben
7  Bitcoin / Project Development / Silos are Made for Grain: How Emerging Technology Enables a More Honest Society on: January 11, 2018, 10:03:10 PM
Hi All,

Here's an article I wrote today about how cryptocurrency, including Bitcoin, can help level the playing field in monetization of user created content (i.e. YouTube videos, etc.).  It also discusses decentralization of services such as Twitter, Facebook, and search engines.  All possible through peer to peer, distributed ledger technology.  Thank you Satoshi!

Silos are Made for Grain: How Emerging Technology Enables a More Honest Society
https://medium.com/btric/silos-are-made-for-grain-how-emerging-technology-enables-a-more-honest-society-796a79201fc6

Best regards,
Ben
8  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / How Blockchain Technology Took Over My Life on: January 07, 2018, 08:59:48 PM
Article I wrote today:

How Blockchain Technology Took Over My Life - BTRIC

A look back at how I came to know — and love — blockchain and other emerging technology and embrace the Decentralization Revolution.

https://medium.com/btric/how-blockchain-technology-took-over-my-life-22c554d8f414

Thanks for reading!
9  Other / Meta / Question about announcement threads on: January 04, 2018, 11:23:08 PM
Hi all,

I have a couple of questions about announcement threads before I go post something and make a mess of it, lol.

1. Are announcement posts editable later, as information changes?  By this I mean the first post in a thread?  If so, why do people "reserve" the second and sometimes third posts of the same thread?

2. I am about to announce a project that has a fundraising element (you could think of it as an ICO though it's actually a charity, "Initial Donor Offering", not an investment offering).  We also need to announce a request for members to join our team as staff/contractors.  Would the best way to do this be via two threads, i.e. one under "altcoin announcements" (the one with the donation campaign), and a second thread under "project management" (where we are recruiting a several different competencies to join our team)?  I don't want to run afoul of the rules.

Also, these posts will be done not from this account but from an organizational account that is a Copper Member (paid the fee).  Does that have any bearing on editability of posts and such?

Thanks very much for your assistance.  I searched the forums and couldn't find answers to these questions, so I appreciate any information on them.

Best regards,
Ben
10  Bitcoin / Project Development / Question: "Bitcoin" trademark on: October 12, 2017, 05:07:38 PM
Given the considerable opportunity for FUD surrounding the "Bitcoin" name if a fork were to attempt to assume the use of it, has any entity registered "Bitcoin" as a trademark?

I found this from 2015 (a trademark application turned down): http://www.newsbtc.com/2015/03/03/us-application-bitcoin-trademark-turned/

Excerpt:
Quote
The trademarking of Bitcoin and related products is not a new thing in the industry. The Bitcoin Foundation has previously reported that there are at least 35 marks alone in the US that contains the word Bitcoin in it. At the same time, the non-official Bitcoin advocacy group also opposed the idea of trademarking the digital currency.

“It is a generic term like the terms used for other currencies such as “dollar”, “euro,” “yen,” etc,” it had stated. “The Foundation is committed to doing what it can to protect the term “BITCOIN” for public use.”

I see the argument of the Bitcoin Foundation that the word "bitcoin" is a generic term.  Have they considered obtaining a written determination from the USPTO that specifically recognizes it as a generic term, so that it would never be able to be trademarked "stand-alone"?  In the alternative, they could actually consider trademarking it and then granting an unlimited rights license to Bitcoin Core.  These actions could give the Foundation a better ability to protect the mark, as they indicate they are committed to.

Without a written determination that USPTO considers the term generic, I could see a successful legal argument be made that bitcoin is a distinctive "brand" of currency vis-a-vis Disney Dollars.  Unless the Foundation is carefully monitoring trademark applications, something could slip by.
11  Bitcoin / Press / [2017-10-02] Goldman Shuns JPMorgan's Dimon - Plans Bitcoin Trading Operation on: October 02, 2017, 06:31:52 PM
Excerpt:
Quote
While JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said he "would fire" any employee found trading Bitcoin, Goldman Sachs' leadership is embracing reality as WSJ reports the bank is weighing a new trading operation dedicated to bitcoin and other digital currencies.

Source:
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-10-02/goldman-shuns-jpmorgans-dimon-plans-bitcoin-trading-operation

Referenced article (WSJ paywall, unfortunately):
https://www.wsj.com/articles/goldman-sachs-explores-a-new-world-trading-bitcoin-1506959128
12  Bitcoin / Press / [2017-09-25] Wichita Eagle This US Senate candidate accepts donations in bitcoin on: September 25, 2017, 10:20:00 PM
Excerpt:
Quote
Austin Petersen is running for U.S. Senate in Missouri as the “opt out” candidate: He firmly believes Americans should be able to forgo any government service or program they don’t want, whether it’s Social Security or Obamacare.

So naturally, Petersen is giving supporters a chance to “opt out” of using cash or credit cards to make donations to his campaign. Instead they can donate using the virtual currency bitcoin.

“You get a choice,” Petersen said in an interview. “Opt out of the U.S. dollar.”

In reality, a payment processor linked to his campaign’s website instantly converts any bitcoin donations into dollars to simplify campaign finance reporting. But for Petersen, a former Libertarian presidential candidate who’s running for U.S. Senate in Missouri as a Republican, enabling bitcoin donations carries symbolic power. It’s all part of walking the walk on deregulation.

http://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article175311331.html
13  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Don't you just love the vibe going on right now? on: September 17, 2017, 11:04:08 PM
Everyone is talking about Bitcoin, blockchain, cryptocurrency, and all the rest.  It's been all over the financial news I follow (not crypto-specific).  It's making waves in all kind of circles.  People are really starting to get it!

It's exciting to hear others validate blockchain as a transformative technology -- perhaps the most amazing in the past 50 years!  It's amazing to hear people predicting the value of BTC to reach absolutely astounding amounts -- comparing the total amount of currency in the world and extrapolating that sum on the ~21,000,000 BTC that will be created.  I'm not really sure I believe those price forecasts, but I absolutely believe the sky is the limit and that people are really starting to realize the power of these technologies to transform our world.

It's such a great feeling!
14  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Fear. on: September 12, 2017, 06:35:55 PM
Considering all the other things he's said about Bitcoin over the years...

They're (establishment) scared of the power of Bitcoin.  Lashing out.

    DIMON: BITCOIN IS A "FRAUD"; "WORSE THAN TULIP BULBS"
    DIMON: BITCOIN WILL EVENTUALLY BLOW UP
    DIMON: BITCOIN WON'T END WELL
    DIMON: WOULD FIRE ANY TRADER TRADING BITCOIN FOR BEING STUPID

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-09-12/bitcoin-tumbles-after-jamie-dimon-calls-it-fraud-would-fire-anyone-trading-it
15  Bitcoin / Project Development / What is the most effective method to communicate a new blockchain offering? on: September 10, 2017, 01:45:02 AM
Hi All,

I am in the advanced planning and initial implementation stages of a concept that I consider to be very promising and something that will fill a needed niche in the bitcoin and wider cryptocurrency ecosystem.  Frankly, I should have done it years ago when I first messed around with BTC -- but as I've told some of you, I didn't think bitcoin would ever become what it has without it first being regulated out of existence.

While I'm kicking myself about that now, I've made plans to refocus efforts on this new venture.  I currently run a business in the project management and IT services field, but I'm preparing to focus significant portions of my time onto this new venture, because I believe that BTC and related technologies truly have the potential to reshape the world, and that's something I want to be a part of.

My questions for the community...

What is the best way to announce this venture, when it is ready?  Obviously website, announcements here and in the coin media, a white paper that describes the concept (which is not a "traditional ICO" though it may launch one at some point).  What else?  Contact some Legendary people by PM and engage them in a dialog?

Any suggestions to make the most effective presentation possible for the concept?  I strongly believe in what BTC enables in terms of societal betterment, and want to do what I can -- using my skills toward these goals.  To me, this would bring a more satisfying life than my current business of writing government grant proposals, RFP responses, and implementing the awards.  I would rather empower people and businesses than governments.

I also want to ensure that the concept gets a fair shake and serious consideration by those that may want to participate in it, through its initial roll out, leadership and governance structure, as well as for the end-users we will be working with.

I have some ideas about how to accomplish all of the above, so I'm really just seeking any other opinions that people may have about successes and challenges that they have seen encountered in these presentations.

Thank you for any thoughts or advice either on here or through PM.  I am very excited about this concept and can't wait to be able to share it with you all!
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