Why Has the World Gone Blockchain Bonkers?

29 October, 2018
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If you look at Bitcoin as the forerunner of all things blockchain then you get a fairly good idea of just how crazy the world is becoming. The hype around bitcoin (mostly its fluctuating price) has left the forums of crypto nerds and entered family dinner conversations. Bitcoin and its shady uncle blockchain have truly arrived.

Many people know what bitcoin is and have at least heard of blockchain.

However, other cryptocurrencies and blockchain concepts are also moving into the limelight. Ethereum, for example, is designed around smart contracts. This takes us to the term smart contract itself that is frequently used now. Then there’s Litecoin, often listed as the third most popular cryptocurrency and so on and on and on.

The preceding is still just the tip of the blockchain iceberg that stretches down to the murky digital ocean floor. A little dive under the surface will lead you to a whole host of blockchain possibilities. If you do a Google search for anything you can think of plus ‘blockchain’ you will find something.

For one, there’s the potential of blockchain’s use in government that is gaining significant attention now (perhaps because governments are afraid of it). Can blockchain really help solve age-old problems of effective governance? After much struggle, we still live in a world with many despots and substantial corruption.

Then there’s media (our focus here at PUBLIQ). Newspapers have struggled to maintain their traditional role in democratic societies in the digital age. The digital media landscape is brimming with examples of poorly-sourced stories, fake news, and propaganda that is actually financially supported in the marketplace through a click-bait business model.

People used to choose a reputable newspaper over a glossy gossip magazine to be informed citizens. However, in the world of online advertising and marketing people are much more likely to click on a sensational story that can also be misinformation rather than an honest story that can take thought and energy to understand.

In another industry, blockchain is being utilized to authenticate artwork and to help halt the dissemination of forgeries (more on that in another PUBLIQ blog post). Although this application of the technology is still at an early stage if it were to succeed it could revitalize an industry plagued by forgeries.

In fact, most things that involve some kind of agreement or contract can be put onto a blockchain and thus made substantially more trustworthy due to the public ledger aspect of blockchain technology.

From the examples above you may have found a profound common thread through the various blockchain enterprises we explored.

That thread is: Truth.

What connects all things blockchain- (from enthusiastic conversations and heartfelt blog posts to hopeful startups and fully-fledged businesses around the world) is a belief in a technology built on a truth that is shared by its users.

With such an aim it is no surprise that conversations around blockchain have a zealous, even religious, feel to them. Many adherents of blockchain are hoping to solve one of life’s major challenges: How can we be honest in the Information Age?

We also find ourselves asking how to solve this question on a more practical level. How do we prove that something is real or trustworthy? Well, the blockchain approach is to identify the source of something and to put a big digital sign on it saying, "this is the real deal”.

So, with contemporary art or antiques, we will immediately know the location of the original item (how blockchains actually do this on a practical level is the topic of other more technical articles here on PUBLIQ).

What we are seeking here at PUBLIQ is the encouragement and maintenance of truth through the written word. When you write an article on PUBLIQ it is stamped at the precise time it was published and enters our blockchain. Here, your words may as well be etched in marble because they are unchangeable. This will solve conflicts of authorship and originality.

Of course, writers can lie. However, then they will receive a poor reputation and readers will flag their content as potential fake news. Good, honest writing will float to the top and be compensated while malicious and bad writing will sink away.

The preceding is PUBLIQ’s little slice of how blockchain can make the world better. We are not mad but we are crazy about the blockchain.

You can help truth rise to the top and start writing on PUBLIQ’s test platform.