The Bitcoin Masterclasses with Dr. Craig Wright

Micropayments and the blockchain economy are useful to everyone: The Bitcoin Masterclasses with Dr. Craig Wright

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Micropayments are useful for government services as well. You can update information instantly, tokenize certain services and assets, recording what everyone has in real-time. In the final session of The Bitcoin Masterclasses season 6, Dr. Craig Wright explains how blockchain builders must think creatively and not be afraid to re-imagine aspects of the government-resident relationship.

He gives the example of tokenized healthcare, where doctor’s appointments could be free (or available at minuscule amounts) for individuals a finite number of times. To prevent overuse or abuse of a healthcare system, they could create disincentives to make many appointments over trivial matters, say by increasing in cost incrementally each time. You could also tokenize appointment availability, allocating a limited number of free/low-cost consultations to everyone.

The above is not necessarily a micropayment solution, but managing the accounting and records side of any service could be.

Blockchain helps with general accounting too. Any individual or business could automate their account-keeping if all purchases, invoices, payments, and depreciation values were recorded on the same ledger. This is especially useful at tax time, even more so if the government demands a full audit.

Dr. Wright notes that in his experience as a forensic auditor, most sole traders and small businesses would end up owing almost no taxes if they actually knew of all the claims they could make and kept track of them with proper records.

Currently, there are ledgers of ownership for major assets like real estate, vehicles, and businesses. What if there was a ledger that included all your property? Your personal or business equipment, right down to a restaurant’s cutlery or perishable items like food. Keeping full records on all these items in real time is cumbersome and costly. However, a blockchain accounting system could keep records of all of them and keep them up to date. Although this kind of accounting also requires resources, this last point could be micropayment-based.

There could be automated arrangements where assets, or access to assets, could be shared across multiple parties. IPv6 multicast alerts could track shared and private assets as well (would you like to receive an alert if someone else uses your passport number? Linking identity to blockchain records can have its advantages in combating identity theft). Aspects of this kind of system exist already, e.g., you get an email if your credit card makes a payment. But everything’s on its own system, and keeping track of them all can be very hard.

In the last part of the session, Dr. Wright breaks the audience into groups to brainstorm more ideas. nChain’s Dr. Owen Vaughan describes meetings he’s had in the Philippines recently, where local representatives were concerned with peace and order and crime reporting. Other meetings in South Africa were about having registers of qualified plumbers and charities tracking inventory/tax records. He mentions another program in Argentina that arranged discounts for single mothers.

Another suggestion is for access to mobile bandwidth, with variations in charges for time, speed, and location. There’s one about having remote access to vehicles and self-driving vehicles without the concern over whether they could be hacked. Tokenized vouchers could exist in place of cash, valid for specific times and items.

As we’ve mentioned before, not all these ideas are groundbreaking, and many exist in some form already. The point of using blockchain is to make it easier and more available to everyone. There are enormous economic benefits in tracking all information on a single (distributed) ledger: openness and accessibility, and the power to record and verify information while keeping it private (Dr. Wright stresses this last point). These are the processes that don’t exist right now, and it’s important to stress how important it is to keep data on a secure blockchain before it’s too late.

The eighth (and final) session of The Bitcoin Masterclasses season 6 begins here. You can watch each session, as well as the entire two-day series and all previous seasons of Bitcoin Masterclass, on CoinGeek’s YouTube channel.

The Bitcoin Masterclasses Workshop: Practical ways to use blockchain & IPv6

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