North America

Welcome to our weekly roundup of all important blockchain and cryptocurrency news from around the world. Follow the latest developments in the cryptocurrency space continent by continent, country by country.

USA

Facebook creates blockchain director post: Facebook has joined in the blockchain bandwagon by creating a Blockchain Director position that will work on future blockchain applications. The new position will be headed by Evan Chang and a series of development will be undertaken that will be a precursor to blockchain technology integration by the most popular social media channel. Another post, a VP of product blockchain was also recently created by Facebook and Kevin Neil was appointed on the position, formerly Instagram’s VP of product.

The trend follows latest developments in the mammoth Facebook social media empire that usually involve hiring people with powerful skillsets to blockchain positions. It shows that Facebook is at last taking the technology seriously. It seems only a matter of time before Facebook starts implementing blockchain technology within its ecosystem.

YouTube sued for negligence in BitConnect scheme: BitConnect, one of the biggest ponzi schemes to emerge from the crypto community, is cause for a big legal battle. Youtube is also now being sued for millions of dollars considering it ran 70,000 hours of advertisements on BitConnect which netted in thousands of victims.

The founder of the Silver Miller law firm that launched action against BitConnect said:

“The platform allowed BitConnect to reach hundreds of thousands of potential investors, all while YouTube was aware that BitConnect was a scam. As the old saying goes: Sometimes when you lie down with dogs, you get fleas.”

BitConnect offered unrealistic interest rates of around 40% per month with additional 0.25% rates applicable for people who invested more than USD 10,000. BitConnect has so far announced that it will repay all its loans with BCC but that was termed a malicious move as they did so after the announcement by which the coin had lost 99% of its value.

First home sold for Bitcoin in North East United States: The US state of Delaware saw the sale of a luxury home for around BTC 208. This is not just the first home sold in Delaware but the entire North Eastern United States.

The luxury home is on a 4.2-acre plot in Newark, Delaware and more of a mansion than a regular house complete with its own pool, wine cellar and theater. According to the agent who sold the house:

“I sold the Bitcoin house! Not only the first property offering Bitcoin payment support in Delaware, but the entire North East region and one of the only properties in the world. As I continue to scale a growing real estate practice across three, soon five states. I look forward to further disrupting an industry stuck in the 20th century.”

The move shows Bitcoin’s capability of becoming a payment alternative especially when huge sums of money are involved.

Bermuda

Revised banking act to prioritize blockchain startups: Bermudan officials are adopting laws that are in favor of blockchain and fintech companies. The banking act closely follows the ICO bill recently passed by the Bermudan government to help ICOs.

The new banking legislation will create a new class of banks that will work to cater to the needs of blockchain and fintech companies. As of now, the conventional banking setup in Bermuda had been hesitant to get involved in the blockchain space just like everywhere else around the world. The banks also found legal loopholes to create justification for this practice of non-compliance so the new legislation was justified for the progress of cryptocurrencies in this world.

Finance Minister David Burt voted to amend these laws as he was in favor of making Bermuda one of the global blockchain hotspots. He also noted that the lack of banking services for the industry were making things problematic and the change was warranted for crucial development. Burt also helped push the previous ICO regulations that allowed the ministry of finance to approve each ICO that aimed to launch from its shores.

He also created a local blockchain task force to ensure a hospitable environment for the cryptocurrency scene to flourish in Bermuda. An MoU was also signed between Bermuda government and Binance for future cooperation that involved USD 10 million in university blockchain development and USD 5 million investment in local companies.

Canada

Hydro-Quebec issuing new rules for crypto mining on its electricity: Hydro-Quebec and its affected power supply routines have once again made the headlines as the company has issued new guidelines for cryptocurrency mining in the state.

Under the new rules, 500 MW of power will be reserved for cryptocurrency miners with a minimum rate of 1 Canadian penny for the miners. In addition, the company will also be able to shut off electricity for a maximum of 30 hours to the crypto community to adjust the load of customers in a possible shortage situation. The total power generation of Hydro-Quebec is 36,912 MW so only a small percentage is being allotted for miners that will fall way below their expectations from the state.

 

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