North America

Welcome to another weekly blockchain news roundup from around the world. Here, we present to you all the latest Bitcoin news, continent by continent and country by country.

USA

Columbia University Investigating the Future of Blockchain in Journalism: The University of Columbia is reportedly studying blockchain technology and its impact on Journalism. According to a recent article from the institution’s Journalism Review titled ‘Blockchain in Journalism: Promise and Practice,’ various aspects of the new technology on the field were discussed in a recent panel discussion.

The panel at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism in the University discussed various ways through which the technology is impacting the world including changing journalism, its practice, and consumption. The Tow Center regularly discusses new technology and its impacts on journalism itself.

The panel consisted of important players in the blockchain and journalism sector including Civil Foundation CEO Vivian Schiller, ZigZag podcaster Manoush Zomorodi, Columbia researcher Eran Tromer, Forbes head of Product & Tech Salah Zalatimo, New York Times researcher Nellie Bowles, and Po.et CEO Jarrod Dicker.

Coinbase Lists Stablecoin: Coinbase, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the USA has announced the listing of a new USD stablecoin (USDC) in their system. The coin was initially launched by Circle but now Coinbase itself is listed as a co-founder. This is the first stablecoin listed on the Coinbase platform and only the 7th cryptocurrency introduced on the platform after Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum Classic, Litecoin, and 0x.

Coinbase has been doing a lot of acquisitions recently to appeal to the unique needs of the US consumer as the SEC clamps down hard on several aspects of cryptocurrency trading in the country.

CNBC’s Brian Kelly Predicts Investment Bull Run for Bitcoin in 2019: CNBC’s popular news personality Brian Kelly has predicted an early investment bull run for Bitcoin in 2019. His viewpoint was made after Fidelity Investments, one of the largest asset managers in the country worth $7.2 trillion was reportedly considering moving towards cryptocurrencies.

Kelly believes that soon enough, mainstream brokers and other investors could be brought into the cryptocurrency scene, thus, triggering a healthy bull run in the sector.

SEC Monitoring Innovation in DLT and Offering Advice: The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)’s FinHub is using a new form on its website to request meetings and gather advice regarding compliance with the regulator’s rules.

According to the SEC, the new form will help companies and blockchain startups to get all the appropriate information to tailor their services accordingly and remain in compliance with the regulations set by it.

According to the SEC:

“The FinHub provides a central point of focus for our efforts to monitor and engage on innovations in the securities markets that hold promise, but which also require a flexible, prompt regulatory response to executing our mission.”

SEC has also played a shady game before that irritated blockchain and cryptocurrency players by setting up a fake ICO website called Howeycoins whose ‘buy now’ button led to an educational program detailing the pitfalls of cryptocurrency and ICO investment. Much of the information on the website was similar to that of an ICO and the chairman himself justified this exercise as “Educative”.

Security Tokens Offerings (STOs) Could Replace ICOs in the USA: While ICOs are heavily scrutinized by the regulators due to their lack of operational resemblance to securities, Securities Token Offerings (STOs) may be seen as a viable alternative to ICOs in the country.

While STOs will offer cryptocurrency tokens to investors, and since they are a security token, they will give the appropriate share of the company to token holders and thus guarantee equity and even announce dividends on profits.

Canada

Bank to Use Blockchain Technology to Simplify Transactions: The National Bank of Canada is implementing a new DLT-based system to simplify banking transactions and remove inefficiencies in the process.

According to a recent press release from the bank, it has formed a partnership with CGI and blockchain-based startup Skuchain to use smart contracts to replace the lengthy email-based features of the current system.

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