Blockchain This Week – El Salvador’s Bitcoin City, India To Ban Crypto?, Millions for Digital Land, “NFT” Is The Word of The Year

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El Salvador To Build Bitcoin City With $1B Bitcoin Bond

El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele announced his plans to build a Bitcoin City funded by a $1 billion Bitcoin Bond, a tokenized financial instrument developed by Blockstream and issued by Bitfinex Securities. This city located along the Gulf of Fonseca near a volcano would be carbon neutral, powered by geothermal sources. Of the one billion, $500 million would go to support this new tax-free city, and the rest would be invested to buy more Bitcoin, the president said.

El Salvador’s USD Bonds Fall Amid IMF’s Repudiation 

Nayib Bukele’s Bitcoin Bond announcement caused a significant drop in El Salvador’s USD-denominated bonds. It also thwarted the International Monetary Fund (IMF)’s efforts to establish a relationship with the country. The IMF also issued a warning against using Bitcoin as legal tender and urged the nation to strengthen its regulation and supervision.

India Mulls Over Crypto Ban

Creating a fresh wave of panic among the Indian crypto investors and firms is a bill included in the legislative agenda for the Indian parliament’s winter session that begins next week. This proposed legislation seeks to ban all private cryptocurrencies. In response, Indian crypto businesses have formed associations to lobby the government to regulate the crypto instead of its outright ban.

Japanese Consortium to Issue Digital Yen

Digital Currency Forum, a consortium of 74 Japanese firms, plans to issue a digital yen by the end of 2022, according to a white paper released this week. It is considering a digital currency model that is similar to how bank deposits work to ensure stability.

Millions of Dollars for Digital Land

First, Tokens.com announced that it had acquired a 6,090 square feet, 116 parcel estate in the heart of the Fashion Street district within Decentraland via its subsidiary, Metaverse Group, for 618,000 MANA valued close to $2.43 million. Capping it off, a plot of land in Axie Infinity, a metaverse pet training game, was sold for 550 Ether worth around $2.5 million. 

Last Mile Internet Facilitated by Blockchain

The global telecom operator, World Mobile Group, is building last mile connectivity infrastructure to get several people from Zanzibar online for the first time. They plan to use radio spectrums that don’t require licensing and connect to multiple air nodes to create a mesh network. Private entities will operate the air nodes that they can buy, paying about $7,000. They can recoup their investment by rewards in the form of World Mobile Token (WMT), the operator’s native crypto.

Ontology and bloXmove Partner for DIDs

Ontology, a public blockchain focused on decentralized identity(DID), is collaborating with mobility blockchain platform bloXmove to accelerate the development of DIDs. bloXmove will use the Ontology blockchain to allow people to have one identifier to share across multiple transportation apps.

Martha Stewart Cooks up Thanksgiving NFTs

Martha Stewart, the American businesswoman, writer, and television personality, has launched a Thanksgiving themed Martha Fresh Mint NFT collection on OpenSea. The NFTs include an animated “The First Thanksgiving ‘remembering 1994” and a variety of images that appeared in Stewart’s magazine Martha Stewart Living. The collection ranges from $100 to $1,000.

Christie’s X OpenSea

One of the most prominent auction houses, Christie’s, announced its NFT collection, Christie’s X OpenSea, in collaboration with online NFT marketplace, OpenSea. The NFT auction will be open for browsing from Dec 1 to 3 and bidding from Dec 4 to 7. It will feature digital art from various artists, including Andre O’Shea, Krista Kim, and Joshua Davis.

ConstitutionDAO Winding Down

After a short, albeit memorable stint, a community driven attempt to buy a copy of one of the first edition US Constitution is winding down. ConstitutionDAO’s core team chose to shut down and are giving the investors exit options. Those who have put in their money can either redeem their $PEOPLE token for Ether at a ratio of 1,000,000:1 or choose to hold them for investing in future projects at their own discretion.

DuneDAO Buys Dune Manuscript

ConstitutionDAO is inspiring scores of similar crowdfunding efforts, DuneDAO being one of them. DuneDAO raised over $700,000 to purchase a copy of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s manuscript of the unfinished film adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic novel, Dune. Though the final sale price was $3 million, DuneDAO won the auction, thanks to an investor Soban Saqib who gave the rest of the sum.

Krause House DAO Aims To Buy NBA Franchise

Named after the late Chicago Bulls general manager, Jerry Krause, this DAO, Krause House, is looking to buy an NBA franchise. In the last couple of weeks, this group of around 2,000 members has managed to raise close to 1000 Ether, worth over $4 million in an NFT sale.

UK Watchdog To Train Against Crypto Abetted Terrorism 

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) intends to train its staff to spot crypto related money laundering and terrorism financing. It has put out a contract worth £500,000 to hire external consultants to help with the training.

Regal Accepts Crypto

Movie theater chain Regal is accepting bitcoin, ether, litecoin, dogecoin, USD coin, LINK, BAT, among others, as payment for tickets. It has partnered with the digital payments facilitator, Flexa.

Mercado Libre Offers Crypto Trade

Mercado Libre, one of the largest e-commerce companies in Latin America, said it would allow the users in Brazil to buy, sell, and hold crypto. It, however, has not disclosed any details regarding the firm that it is partnering with for the custodian services.

Coinbase Acquires BRD

Crypto exchange Coinbase has acquired self-custody wallet experts firm BRD for an undisclosed amount. Following this news, the price of Bread, BRD’s native token, shot up by close to 600%, from $0.16 to $1.51 in a matter of hours. 

Binance Rebuilding Wallet To Handle Doge Issue

Crypto exchange Binance is rebuilding its wallet to address a technical issue that caused several erroneous dogecoin transactions and user accounts to be frozen. This announcement led to a squabble between the self-proclaimed “Dogefather,” Elon Musk, and Binance CEO, Changpeng “CZ” Zhao.

BlockFi To Charge for ETH Withdrawals

Crypto firm BlockFi is stopping free withdrawals of Ether starting December 1. It announced that the increasing gas fees on the Ethereum network are hindering its intent to continue allowing its customers to withdraw Ether for free.

Ripple Works on Palau’s CBDC

The island nation Republic of Palau has chosen crypto payments company Ripple as its partner to develop a CBDC. Ripple will explore a strategy and use cases for the country’s digital currency.

Citi To Hire 100 People for Crypto Division

Citigroup is looking to hire 100 people to grow its digital assets group. This team will engage with Citi’s stakeholders and provide expertise on how different Citi businesses could use blockchain and digital assets.

South China Morning Post’s NFT Whitepaper

Hong Kong based South China Morning Post (SCMP) has released a white paper delineating its NFT metadata standard named Artifact. SCMP aims to use these standards to build its new historical NFT collection on Flow blockchain. The white paper also describes a governance structure and outlines a dedicated marketplace for the sale of these NFTs.

And Finally, “NFT” – Collins’ Word of the Year

The Collins dictionary has revealed that “NFT” is its 2021 word of the year. Collins describes an NFT as an abbreviation for – “ non-fungible token: a unique digital certificate, registered in a blockchain, that is used to record ownership of an asset such as an artwork or a collectible.” As a noun, an NFT means “an asset whose ownership is recorded by means of a non-fungible token,” as per Collins.

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