In a recent interview, New York Assemblyman Ron Kim explained how the state could potentially benefit from blockchain technology.

Mending a Broken Relationship

In the past, New York and blockchain haven’t exactly been the best of friends. Animosity began in 2015 with the introduction of New York’s BitLicense, which many believed imposed unfair regulations on all crypto and blockchain-based ventures seeking to do business in the Big Apple. Exchanges such as Kraken eventually refused to offer their services to customers in New York, and as a result, the city that doesn’t sleep has often been viewed through a hostile lens by some of crypto’s biggest advocates.

But now, change has appeared on the horizon, and New York is potentially seeing the light when it comes to blockchain technology, which Kim says boasts many advantages. One of those advantages is the high level of trust it can produce between consumers and various merchants. The blockchain records all data and transactions in real-time, offering irrefutable evidence of an interaction between two parties. This can hold governments and business ventures accountable for their actions, and boost democracy in both New York and abroad.

The Public Needs to Know

Speaking to Tech Republic on the matter, Kim stated:

I’m trying my best to explain to the public and to all my constituents that behind every new technology, there is something deeply positive that can come out of it. It’s our job, as legislators, to foster and fuel that growth. When we allow blockchain technology to help us decentralize and keep local entities and governments accountable, those are some long-term impacts which can really transform our democracies in a way that should function healthier.

Europe’s Got It Right

Right now, Kim is working on putting various case studies together to better educate members of the public. He says that many positive examples of communities experimenting with blockchain have come out of areas like northern Europe, and he’s interested in learning more about how these community blockchain structures can assist people in his home state:

The best way to educate the public is to use case studies to better understand what the positive impact of this technology can be. One of the initiatives that I’m putting forward has to do with helping local community currencies. This is something experimented with in the Netherlands… Now that we have a technology, we can seamlessly trade in our dollar to invest in a local ecosystem that allows mom-and-pop stores to trade in local currencies, keeping the dollar circulating in the local economy, helping the dollar grow even more by supporting the community and being able to reward tangible points and give people loyalty points through form of cryptocurrency to engage in positive local behavior.

Does every community stand to benefit from the blockchain? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock, Ron Kim

Tags: BitLicense, blockchain, cryptocurrency, New York, Ron Kim