“Has anyone here actually sat down and talked to, had lunch with, a migrant worker?” asks Dr. Craig Wright at the start of Session 3, Session 6 of his The Bitcoin Masterclasses series. There are more of them around than you’d think at all income levels. Even among those without direct experience, many have had to exchange money or send it overseas at some stage and are familiar with the hassles.
Not everything discussed in this session relates directly to remittances, or at least they don’t seem to on the surface. But when you realize that anyone in the world can build services and receive payments for them, opportunities begin to appear.
You can watch the complete The Bitcoin Masterclasses #6, as well as all past seasons, on the CoinGeek YouTube channel.
“We live in the world, and we assume these are the rules we have to play by,” Dr. Wright says. Some of these rules are self-imposed “chains of the mind.” We’ve had Bitcoin technology for over ten years now, but even Bitcoin business models are often still mired in traditional financial thinking.
Micropayments are one example of this. Even when we do think about it, we’re thinking in terms of whole cents (and even these aren’t practical within the legacy financial infrastructure, most of the time). Bitcoin allows transactions involving fractions of a cent, to anywhere in real-time, and without paying fees greater than the transaction itself.
These sorts of payments could be very useful in lower-income countries. As Dr. Wright mentioned in the previous session, high volumes and liquidity are often key to creating new wealth. But even at high volumes, most banks (and even local credit unions) don’t see small payments as profitable or even practical.
Things that enable other things
“We can create things that are slightly profitable, so we can get the things that are… profitable.” You might even create things that aren’t profitable on purpose as a “loss leader” that sells the more profitable product/service.
Many of us have a collection of foreign physical currencies at home, usually in small amounts that aren’t worth exchanging or even remembering to take on your next trip. What if you could pool them all? Or pool them with others? There are several other such leftover amounts scattered throughout the world and opportunities if you can think of something to do with them.
Also, as we’ve mentioned before, KYC (Know Your Customer) regulations have killed off several small-scale localized swapping and selling services (e.g., LocalBitcoins). A more efficient Digital ID network could streamline them.
On-chain atomic swaps, micropayments, ID services, and data access—platforms facilitating these could be useful to millions of people. Multicast addresses in IPv6 allow “subscriptions” to data feeds (which can be blockchain addresses and transactions automated to receive data from IoT devices or other information).
Dr. Wright notes that Digital ID networks are often seen as Orwellian. However, the BSV blockchain makes them much less so by allowing more granular control over what information can be accessed by whom, when, and for how long. Likewise, a blockchain-based digital voting system can verify that an individual has voted and even who they voted for without revealing that information to anyone other than the voter.
You can apply the same principle to any information that needs to be verifiable but also kept restricted: commercial information, health records, academic records, employment references, and proprietary data. Any of these could use a platform that makes it easy for non-technical users.
Done properly, the BSV blockchain allows a world with all the conveniences of the digital age, with the bonus of real-time micropayments, yet without the creeping totalitarianism and privacy intrusions that always seem to come along for the ride.
Watch: BSV can do micropayments, Ethereum cannot
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