KW 23: Journalism platform Civil closes, China working on blockchain platform for steel industry, Uruguay launches first blockchain network for cannabis


Journalism platform Civil closes: Decentralized, blockchain-driven journalism marketplace Civil has closed its doors. Civil was founded in 2016 as one of the first companies to explore the potential for blockchain and cryptocurrency in the media space. The startup’s goal was to allow publishers to establish a trusted newsroom by staking its CVL token, and then users could also spend CVL to reward publishers or stake it to have a say in the governance of the platform. The team and technology behind Civil have been folded into ConsenSys, the New York-based Ethereum incubator which backed Civil. The team will now work on Ethereum-based identity solutions going forward.

China working on blockchain platform for steel industry: China’s main trade association for metals is developing a consortium blockchain to cover the entire steel supply chain. China is the world’s largest producer (51%), as well as the largest consumer of steel. The steel trade association set up the Steel Industry Chain Blockchain Alliance in 2018. Chen Leiming, Vice Chairman and Secretary-General of the China National Association of Metal Material Trade, sees Chinese overcapacity and a lack of coordination within the supply chain as the two primary challenges facing the steel sector. Additionally, Leiming says there’s a lack of coordination between upstream, midstream and downstream players. He suggests using technology such as blockchain to improve productivity and efficiency in the movement of goods.

Uruguay launches first blockchain network for cannabis: A company in Uruguay has decided to launch the world’s first blockchain-based app to allow the tracking of medical cannabis. Uruguay Can is a leading cannabis producer that works on agro-industrial integration projects for medicinal and recreational cannabis. The company’s new platform is built on æternity, a decentralized and scalable blockchain protocol and is set to be put into operation next June and July, just in time for the planting season.

New funding program from Wayra and Telefónica: Telecommunications group Telefonica is starting a cooperation with the innovation hub Wayra and wants to win the support of startups from future technologies such as AI, blockchain, big data and IoT for its activation program. The young companies will be given the opportunity to access Telefonica’s digital platforms. This enables them to test their infrastructure on a global scale and to establish their solutions on the market.

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Bitcoin has reached $10,378 on the crypto exchange despite the recent halving.


BSI presents new blockchain study: Germany’s Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) analyzed and evaluated blockchain applications in order to obtain a comprehensive overview of the security levels in the blockchain ecosystem. According to the BSI, almost all offers tested cannot have an “official security certificate”. According to the IT security agency, most of the blockchain products examined have a high level of security, and no major vulnerabilities have been identified, but there are some fundamental problems. This often includes shared blocks of code between examined products, especially in cases where sophisticated encryption methods are used, as well as a large number of dependencies on external libraries that are available in outdated versions.

Samsung joins Gemini crypto exchange: US crypto exchange Gemini has partnered with technology giant Samsung Electronics for wallet integration. The partnership means US and Canadian customers can use the Samsung Blockchain Wallet in conjunction with Gemini’s mobile application. The partnership is reportedly the first of its kind. Downloadable on Samsung Galaxy phones, the tech giant’s wallet acts as a crypto storage location. A result of the collaboration, the wallet can now connect with the Gemini exchange.


“Using blockchain technology, digital central bank money can be passed on just as securely in virtual space as paper money in real space. Confidence in the intrinsic value of digital money could be created by strictly limiting further issuance. That could be guaranteed with a ‘smart contract’, a kind of electronic watermark, integrated into the blockchain.”
Thomas Mayer, founding director of the Flossbach-von-Storch research institute, has called for the use of blockchain in finance.


Minecraft meets blockchain: Blockchain game technology company Enjin announced that their plugin “EnjinCraft” is now available on the popular video game, Minecraft. According to the announcement made by Enjin, the blockchain plugin will allow players to integrate, trade, and use blockchain gaming items through the servers. This type of integration between the worlds of gaming and blockchain is the first of its kind.

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