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Forkast.News

Forkast.News is a digital media platform that covers stories about emerging technology at the intersection of business, economy and politics. From Asia, to the world.

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April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

Vitalik Buterin: Ethereum 2.0 promises better privacy, scalability in 2020

Smart-contract platform Ethereum’s new version is set to operate on a Proof of Stake system that may be released in 2020 according to Andrew Keys, co-founder of ConsenSys Capital. Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum explained that Ethereum 2.0 will provide added capacity for users through sharding and scaling, privacy features and more alongside the new Proof of Stake system.

How Hedera Hashgraph’s decentralized tracker could stop censorship in coronavirus reporting

Distributed ledger technology could be used by front-line health care responders dealing with the coronavirus epidemic to submit information in real-time around the world regardless of censorship. HashLog, a dashboard designed to publicly track coronavirus developments via distributed public ledger Hedera Hashgraph, could mitigate political influence involved in spreading information, according to Hedera Hashgraph cofounder and CEO Mance Harmon.

Digital commerce leader ‘gravely concerned’ over U.S. losing edge in tech, global reserves

The Chamber of Digital Commerce is “gravely concerned” about how the U.S. Government is addressing technological challenges and opportunities posed by blockchain according to founder and president Perianne Boring. The U.S. could be ceding technological leadership as well as the dollar’s reserve currency status to other nations including China if it does not revamp policies toward emerging blockchain innovation.

January 2020

China’s blockchain vision focuses on efficiency, not cryptocurrency

The Chinese government has identified blockchain technology development as an issue of national importance, along with other emerging technologies such as AI, deep learning and IoT. President Xi Jinping has outlined the importance of blockchain technology to China’s industrial maturity, urging continued development so China can lead the way in defining international standards.

December 2019

Chainlink among top crypto performers in October—Fintech Advisory Services report

The Fintech Advisory Services monthly report details the main crypto-metrics and indicators for the past month: News, Market Performance, Networks, Mining Activity, Public Sentiment, and Academic Publications. The report also covers the latest “Hot Topics” in the crypto space. This month: Facebook’s Libra, Telegram’s TON, China’s CBDC, and quantum computing.

November 2019

October 2019

Making it Rain in Bahrain – Joseph Dallago talks Cryptocurrency in the Middle East

What is the world of cryptocurrency like in the Middle East? How does it differ from other markets, and what challenges and opportunities arise from dealing with the industry in that region? Forkast.News Editor-in-Chief Angie Lau sits down with Joseph Dallago, Co-Founder and CEO of Rain, the first Bahrain-based digital currency exchange, in order to […]

September 2019

LISTEN: What are the Rules of Insider Trading When it Comes to Crypto?

The world of insider trading as relates to cryptocurrency — what are the rules that govern trading crypto, in the eyes of the SEC, CFTC, and the like? Forkast.News Editor-in-Chief, Angie Lau sits down with attorney and partner, Jason Gottlieb, at NY-based Morrison Cohen law firm to discover the in’s and out’s of trading. Listen […]

LISTEN: Private vs Public Blockchain: Why Enterprises Need Both

Listen to the podcast In its genesis, blockchain was designed with the intention of it being a decentralized peer-to-peer network. However, these networks can either require permission by a controlling entity (a private blockchain) or be truly permissionless and everyone can make modifications (a public blockchain). But when it comes to enterprises and businesses, which […]

August 2019

BOE Governor Says Global Digital Currency Should Replace the US Dollar – Rabobank’s Michael Every Breaks It Down

In this last week, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney made waves in the crypto industry by espousing, as a pillar of traditional banking, an alternative to the very system he heads. At a speech in the U.S., Carney put forward the idea of a “synthetic hegemony currency” – in other words, a central bank-banked […]

LISTEN: Could the Global Economy Push Bitcoin to an Inflection Point?

In this episode of Word on the Block, Editor-in-Chief Angie Lau sits down with Kevin Kelly of Delphi Digital to explore the recent trends in the market has seen for Bitcoin given monetary policy. Kelly recently published a piece, The Perfect Storm for Bitcoin. Is the global macroeconomic environment creating an opportune moment for cryptocurrency? […]

Blockchain for Bananas? Why Technology Will Transform Food Traceability and Supply Chain

Blockchain is a revolutionary technology that has the potential to be a complete game-changer for many industries, including supply chain. With the rise of globalization, supply chains are now much more complex than ever before in history. Consequently, the time is ripe for a disruption of this process; blockchain is one possible instigating factor. With distributed […]

LISTEN: U.S., Lithuania, and International Regulators Discuss the Potential and Need for Cooperation in Governing Cryptocurrency (Part II)

Key Highlights The inherent differences in policy that result from country-specific priorities and demands lead to opportunities for arbitrage across borders. It is in the interest of all parties involved to prevent this from happening, even if that means compromising on certain rules. The input of drastically different nations on their experiences with regulating cryptocurrency […]

Paris Blockchain Week Summit (Part I) — Leading Financial Regulators Shed Light on the Universal Struggle to Regulate Cryptocurrency

Key Highlights From a regulatory standpoint, there is ample reason for governments and institutions to be interested in the cryptosphere. Giles Ward references how it stands to pose “investor protection and market integrity risks.” Marius Jurgilas, Board Member of the Bank of Lithuania, thinks about the potential for blockchain technology to be used in the […]

July 2019

So Many Blockchain Platforms… Is One Better Than Two? NEO and Ontology to Launch Interoperability Platform in Q4

This week, NEO, an open-source blockchain platform based in China, announced “a partnership to build an open cross-chain platform and establish the foundation for next-gen Internet.” Both NEO and Ontology were founded by Da Hongfei and Erik Zhang.  Interoperability is significant in world of blockchain because the future of the distributed web lies in the ability […]

LISTEN: Can Taiwan Be Silicon Valley Without the Price Tag? Jason Hsu, Taiwan Congressman, is Optimistic

Taiwan faces an existential threat. It is a nation that is dependent on exports, but like other developed nations, recognizes that in order to survive, it needs to champion high-technology industries as labor-intensive industries leave for nations with cheaper workforces like Vietnam or China. Could blockchain and cryptocurrency be part of the answer? Jason Hsu […]

Blockchain Crop Insurance Big Boost For Farmers in Sri Lanka

LONDON — Aon, one of the world’s largest insurance companies, has teamed up with respected charity Oxfam and blockchain start-up Etherisc to deliver blockchain crop insurance policies to small farmers in Sri Lanka. “Farmers in Sri Lanka represent a third of the workforce and account for almost 20 percent of the economy. Yet, very few […]

Geco.One Launches IEO, Promising To Make Crypto Trading Easier and Safer

TALLINN, Estonia – Innovative trading platform Geco.one launched its Initial Exchange Offering (IEO) today. Geco.one is novel because lets users invest with a professional cryptocurrency trader. Any user can select a trader on the platform and let that trader manage their assets. The trader combines the assets with their own trades. The company says since […]

June 2019

Taiwan Releases STO Guidance — Now What?

Taiwan’s Financial Supervisory Committee (FSC) has recently released guidance on STO rules. What does this mean for the regulation in Taiwan, particularly as it emerges as a hub for blockchain growth and development? Angie Lau, Editor-in-Chief of Forkast.News sits down with Sam Reynolds to learn more. Read the related piece from Sam Reynolds: Innovation versus […]

Telecom Giants Collaborate On Blockchain Settlements Platform

Greenwood Village, Colorado — Many of the world’s largest telecoms will team-up to launch a blockchain-based platform to make contracting and payments between themselves faster and cheaper. Known as the Communications Blockchain Network (CBN), it will go live in the coming months. Currently, 11 carriers have agreed to join: A1 Telekom Austria, China Telecom Global, […]

Facebook’s Libra Gets Rough Reception From U.S. Congress

Facebook’s proposed cryptocurrency faced strong political headwinds from U.S. lawmakers. Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters, chair of the House Financial Services Committee, demanded Facebook stop development of Libra, the cryptocurrency the company unveiled on Tuesday. “Given the company’s troubled past, I am requesting that Facebook agree to a moratorium on any movement forward on developing a […]

American Corporate Giants Use Blockchain To Make Drugs Safer

Armonk, NY — IBM, KPMG, Merck, and Walmart have been picked by the United States Food and Drug Administration to develop a blockchain system to improve drug safety. The four corporate giants will work together on a solution to track and trace some prescription medicines and vaccines as they move through the supply chain. Each company […]

Facebook Unveils Libra – A Cryptocurrency With Big Goals

Facebook today unveiled its long rumored cryptocurrency, which will be known as Libra, and you won’t need a Facebook account to use it. That’s because Facebook says it wants to help those without bank accounts. “Libra holds the potential to provide billions of people around the world with access to a more inclusive, more open […]

Capital Flees Crisis Hit Hong Kong, Crypto Among Safe Havens

Hong Kong – The fallout from a controversial extradition bill proposed by Hong Kong’s pro-China Chief Executive Carrie Lam has reportedly triggered capital flight and Bitcoin trading at a premium in the city. Massive demonstrations against the bill, including one that saw an estimated 2 million of Hong Kong’s 7.5 million people march on Sunday, […]

Students Create Canada’s First Blockchain Diplomas

Calgary — The Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) will be the first post-secondary institution in Canada to issue digital diplomas through blockchain. More than 4,800 graduating students in SAIT’s Class of 2019 will receive blockchain-based documents along with their traditional parchments. Fittingly, the idea was inspired by a group of students. “Last year we […]

Legal & General Launches World’s First Blockchain Reinsurance Platform

Legal & General, Britain’s largest manager of corporate pensions, today announced the launch of the first reinsurance platform driven by blockchain. Known as ‘estua-re,’ it will initially be used to handle bulk annuities, which involve L&G taking over companies’ defined benefit or final salary pension schemes. “We believe that blockchain is uniquely suited to the […]

Visa Launches Swift Payments Killer Using Blockchain

SAN FRANCISCO — Credit card giant Visa has launched its blockchain-powered business-to-business payments service B2B Connect. B2B Connect can now be used by businesses seeking to make payments to 30 markets, with 90 more expected to be added by the end of this year. To start, it’s available for B2B transactions of $15,000 and up, which […]

US Government’s Massive Archive Explores Blockchain

Washington, DC — The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), the agency tasked with preserving the U.S. government’s colossal archive of historical records, wants to use more blockchain. Of immediate interest to NARA, verifying tamper-free versions of documents to guard against deep-fake videos, which are created by machine-learning algorithms that can manipulate images and audio […]

Big Brewer Invests in Blockchain to Help Small Business

Minneapolis, MN – The world’s biggest brewer is increasing its stake in a blockchain trailblazer helping some of the world’s smallest businesses. Anheuser-Busch InBev announced today it boosted its Series A investment in Minnesota-based BanQu (pronounced Bank-You), a blockchain startup working to help entrepreneurs and small-business owners, most in the Third World. Exact terms of […]

First Big European Football Club Takes Cryptocurrency

LISBON — Portuguese champions Benfica are the first major European football team to accept cryptocurrency. Fans can now use crypto to purchase tickets and merchandise directly from the club. “We recognize that many of our supporters are now digital users first, so we want to be ahead of the curve when it comes to adopting […]

Blockchain Voting Pioneer Voatz Scores Series A Funding

BOSTON — Blockchain voting platform Voatz announced today it raised $7 million in Series A funding, including backing from Medici Ventures, the subsidiary of Overstock.com created to boost blockchain. “Voting is a great application of blockchain technology,” said Medici Ventures President Jonathan Johnson. “Many of the key issues facing the world today cannot be addressed until we have […]

Facebook’s Foray Into Crypto: How It All Began

Adding Blockchain Faces to Facebook: the Acquihire of Chainspace Facebook hired the founding team of Chainspace in Feburary 2019. Chainspace is a blockchain startup developing new technology to scale and speed up the execution of smart contracts on the Ethereum platform. The social media giant seems to be more interested in acquiring Chainspace’s talent than […]

Facebook to Launch Cryptocurrency?

Reports say Facebook will announce its rumored cryptocurrency sometime in June, and will allow employees working on the project to take their salary in it. Facebook appointed former PayPal executive David Marcus last year to explore opportunities with blockchain. Insiders say Marcus has focused on a digital currency, which users will be able to store, […]

US Insurance Giants Team Up on Big Blockchain Solution

American insurance giants State Farm and USAA want to use blockchain to speed up auto claims.  They’re focusing on the last part of the claims process called subrogation. Subrogation is the legal right that allows one party (e.g., your insurance company) to make a payment that is actually owed by another party (e.g., the other […]

Blockchain’s “Voice” Takes on Facebook

Move over Facebook, a new kid is on the block. Voice, a new blockchain-based social media platform, will launch promising users more control over their posts and photos. “The truth is, current social media platforms are designed to use their users,” said Brendan Blumer, CEO of Block.one.  “By design, they run by auctioning our information […]

May 2019

What is Proof of Stake?

Introduction The blockchain revolution is happening so fast, that it too is being revolutionized. Until now, the de facto mechanism to reach consensus on distributed ledgers has been Proof of Work (PoW), in which computers compete to solve fictitious mathematical problems. However, this system wastes a lot of energy and computer power. But now a […]

Caroline Malcolm, OECD’s Head of Blockchain Policy Center, on International Blockchain Regulation

Key Highlights The regulatory challenge is in how to balance proactively supporting blockchain development while defining the ways in which the regulatory body should protect against downsides Traditional approaches in thinking about regulation from a national level will not be enough; national systems need to work well together and move towards harmonization, even if it’s […]

LISTEN: Blockchain and its Potential for Social Impact with UNICEF

Key Highlights As of December 2018, UNICEF has invested into six blockchain companies in five countries UNICEF now accepts cryptocurrency donations and allows donors to easily mine cryptocurrency just by visiting their donation site Across UNICEF’s projects, blockchain technology is being used to improve traceability of donations and to better track outcomes of donated funds […]

LISTEN: Are We Ready for Cryptocurrencies as an Alternative Asset Class?

Key Highlights As a non-sovereign, decentralized, and digitally native asset, Bitcoin has a strong value proposition to hedge against any risk of a major currency devaluation Cryptocurrency is censorship-resistant; it’s accessible to everyone, and anyone can acquire it, making it powerful for long-term wealth storage for both companies and individual Quantitative easing and the Federal […]

Can Cryptocurrencies Restore Japan’s Former Economic Glory?

Key Highlights Introducing digital currencies would allow countries like Japan to incentivize economic behavior, such as putting greater spending power in peoples’ hands Japan’s demographics make it an interesting test case: given its shrinking population and risk-averse culture, what is the balance between harnessing innovative technology like blockchain? Japan currently taxes cryptocurrency gains at 55% […]