Newsletter: July 2018

  • Campaign Continues to Protect State Smart Contract Innovation
  • Chamber Hosts Premier of Bermuda
  • Chamber Presents at FTC event in Chicago

Campaign Continues to Protect State Smart Contracts Innovation:
One Signature at a Time

Smart contracts, virtual currencies, and their underlying blockchain technology are buzzwords crossing beyond an initial niche group of tech followers and into the mainstream. This exponential growth in awareness of these advancements is piquing the interest of state legislators seeking to bring the power of this technology, and its growing economy, to their states. This includes an effort to confirm that so-called “smart contracts” are valid legal instruments under law. And for all of the benefits of smart contracts on a blockchain – transparency, efficiency, automation, and validation – why shouldn’t they?

There’s just one problem. When it comes to smart contracts, the rules to enable this technology are already in place under existing laws. Specifically, the federal Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN Act) and the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) provide an unquestionable legal basis for smart contract technology executing the terms of a legal contract

The Chamber of Digital Commerce released this joint statement in response to Smart Contracts legislation — supported and signed by more than 750 companies and individuals — explaining why new laws for smart contracts are unnecessary.

(Special thanks to Chamber member Jeff Brown of Bonner & Partners for his support in this important state smart contracts campaign.)

Read more here.

Chamber Hosts Premier of Bermuda

In late May, the Chamber was a host to a breakfast discussion featuring the Premier of Bermuda, the Hon. E. David Burt, JP, MP. The Premier shared recent steps Bermuda has taken to advance the blockchain industry, including its innovative steps to establish a regulatory framework around initial coin offerings. Bermuda’s ICO-related related legislation, which was signed in to law in April 2018, is available here.

Pictured (L to R) “Examining Different Cryptocurrency Scams” panelists: Elizabeth Kwok, Bureau of Consumer Protection; Jason Moon, Attorney, Southwest Region; Kyle Burgess, Consumers’ Research; Amy Davine Kim, Chamber of Digital Commerce; Joe Rotunda, Texas State Securities Board; Dr. Marie Vasek, University of New Mexico

Chamber Presents at FTC Event in Chicago:
Decrypting Cryptocurrency Scams

The Chamber’s Global Policy Director & General Counsel Amy Davine Kim participated on a recent panel at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)’s “Decrypting Cryptocurrency Scams” event in Chicago. The panel, “Examining Different Cryptocurrency Scams,” was moderated by Elizabeth Kwok. During the discussion, Kyle Burgess pointed out that crypto-assets and their underlying technology are not inherently fraudulent. Instead, they are an exciting new form of technology, with a recent spike in attention, and thus attracting many bad actors to practice age-old Ponzi scams and impersonation schemes. Marie Vasek discussed the hallmarks of a scam, such as guarantees of any sort or the promise of high return rates. Joe Rotunda discussed his agency’s approach to policing the burgeoning industry, clarifying that they went after people, not the technology itself and that often times they only had to implement simple investigative measures like cross-referencing white papers for plagiarism in order to uncover scams. Amy Davine Kim discussed the importance of distinguishing between maleficence and honest failure of a platform, and how the Chamber’s work to introduce self-regulatory practices into the token space as a way of enabling regulators to focus on true scams rather than sacrifice bandwidth on bringing legitimate, honest companies into compliance.

Read more and view video of panel here.

Blockchain Seattle 2018
Sept. 10-11, 2018, Seattle, WA
Blockchain Live
Sept. 26, 2018, London, UK
Wipfli Community Banking Forum
Oct. 9, 2018, Dekalb, IL
Georgetown FinTech Week
Nov. 5-8 , Washington, D.C.

Chamber Joins BoldTV’s BoldBiz

Chamber of Digital Commerce Founder and President Perianne Boring joined David Grasso and Philip Michael on BoldTV’s Bold Biz to discuss blockchain, tokens and Consensus 2018.

“This is the first time in the history of the world you have access to this informations… as an individual, it’s very empowering to own and control your own information.”

View TV interview here.

Voice of America Podcast

Jason Henrichs and JP Nicols hosted Perianne Boring on its Breaking Banks podcast discussing the trends and challenges surrounding blockchain.

“For me it was super clear the industry deserved a dedicated leader, advocate and resource headquartered in Washington D.C. that was 100 percent focused on policy.”

Listen to podcast here.

Chamber Joins Nasdaq Trade Talks

Chamber of Digital Commerce Founder and President Perianne Boring joined Jill Malandrino on NASDAQ’s Trade Talks at Consensus 2018.

“We’re using our non-profit platform to bring the various stakeholders together to have these important conversations…the responsible way to address issues around the token ecosystem. “

View interview here.

Chamber Supports Blockchain as Digital Assets Come under Increased Regulatory Scrutiny

Global Policy Director and General Counsel for the Chamber, Amy Davine Kim, shares her thoughts on the underlying value of the blockchain technology as a whole in a Morning Consult interview.

“My concern is that, at a national level, we need to work together to also recognize the importance that blockchain technology can bring to government, to industry and to citizens, and then let our enforcement posture be guided by that.”

View full story here.