With over 1,300 cryptocurrencies in the market today, what makes one cryptocurrency different from another? There are multiple tokens that focus on solving a problem; a new decentralized exchange, a new store of value, a new smart-contract platform.
In this article, CryptoGrinders takes a look at 4 cryptocurrencies that stand out because they have a cause that makes them more than just a monetary investment. Just as how legacy institutions today have become more and more involved in corporate social responsibility (CSR), so too have these cryptocurrencies found a way to contribute back to society.
Image Taken From Fenix.Cash
Rallying behind their Artist’s Manifesto, Fenix Cash was born out of the belief that ‘artists deserve to live off their art’. Based on their research, they found that over the past two decades, bands have been experiencing a diminishing amount of revenue. Despite increased access to a global audience, record labels and streaming services siphon most of the money that flows into the music industry.
Blockchain technology has rocked the foundations of legacy financial institutions, and Fenix Cash is applying this same technology to revolutionize the music scene. Using the Fenix Cash platform, artists will be able to sell directly to their fans, without having to pay a middleman fee.
How It Works
Artists are able to sell alluring and exclusive merchandise to their fans worldwide using the Fenix application, such as custom shirts, mugs, or even privileged access. Payments made on the Fenix Cash platform go straight to the artists; there is no fee involved.
More than that, 30% of FENIX tokens go straight to the artists participating. That’s right, artists are rewarded just for joining the network. By doing so, Fenix Cash ensures that the network will kick off strong; fans who enter their application will be able to find products they love right from the start.
Artists are able to supplement existing income and continue to make a living off their craft as fans listen to their music and purchase their products. The application also features a dashboard which shows artists the details of their sales, such as when and where the purchases occurred, and how much they have made. It also allows them to effortlessly upload new products, which will be shown in all installed Fenix applications. Over time, artists will become more and more adept at producing merchandise that the fans want; a mutually beneficial long-term strategy.
Image Taken From Medi.Bloc
Anyone who has gone to multiple hospitals has experienced the current inefficiencies in medical data dissemination; the records from your previous medical check-up at Hospital A is not always available to Hospital B.
The reason for this is simple; there are regulations in place to protect the privacy of medical data of patients. While implemented with the interest of the patient at heart, its execution has resulted in information being separated, and valuable time is wasted as requests for previous medical records go through the legal channels; time is crucial in an emergency.
More than that, medical data is highly sought after by researchers in the field. This digital data is vital for the medical industry to continuously improve. The problem lies in the fact that the data belongs to patients, who are often not consulted when their data is transferred to the researchers.
As for security, a centralized store of information always faces the risk of compromise through malicious cyberattacks, negligent management, or hardware failure.
MediBloc comes into the picture using blockchain technology to ensure that patients’ data remains secure and their own, and they are able to disseminate it to whomever they wish. It is a paradigm shift; just as Bitcoin puts money back into the hands of its rightful owners, so does MediBloc aim to do the same with personal medical information.
For healthcare providers, they will only be able to access patient’s information without consent in the case of an emergency, and even then, only vital information will be shown; information such as the blood type, which is necessary in the case of surgery. For researchers, all information will be denied unless they have the express permission of the owner.
Using the MED token, patients and healthcare providers are able to facilitate the exchange of medical information voluntarily; individuals can choose who to show their personal information to, and what information is shown.
By decentralizing the information, MediBloc also increases the security of the information stored; there is no single point of failure, nor can the ledger be hacked (not without enormous, and expensive, effort).
In this way, MediBloc is able to securely put information back into the hands of its owners, while still enabling the medical industry to advance.
Image Taken From NewEra.Energy
Global warming is a real concern, and Proof of Work mining has not done much to help the environment. To this end, New Era Energy aims to promote eco-friendly behavior among institutions and individuals alike.
For institutions, one of the main pain points is the costly and lengthy certification process; according to New Era Energy, it costs about $100,000. This means that being eco-friendly does not gain them any carbon credits, and the motivation to join the green movement is severely diminished.
Manufacturers are able to obtain cheap carbon credits by purchasing them at a low cost from developing nations. By doing so, they are able to increase their profits at the expense of developing nations.
As for individuals, there exists an apathy toward the situation; global warming is not visible immediately, nor are there significant rewards for going green. While people usually do not contribute much pollution individually, collectively their activities produce a significant amount of carbon.
To that end, New Era Energy aims to solve these three issues. They are introducing Emission Reduction Units (ERUs), which are ‘Proof of Green’. To get ERUs, participants are required to upload ‘Proof of Green’ documents to NERA Online. After New Era has verified that a person/initiative has been doing their part, ERUs are distributed to them. Individuals as well as corporations that take part in green initiatives are therefore immediately rewarded, which motivates participation.
The token, NERA, is not mineable. Instead, it can only be obtained by trading in ERUs. This means that every NERA token is pegged to a green activity, and therein lies its value; even if someone uses cash to buy NERA tokens, someone else had to ‘mine’ the token by going green. Other than being traded speculatively, NERA tokens can also be used within NERA Online at selected merchants.
New Era Energy has accurately grasped the problems that green activities face today, and has found a way to not only promote awareness, but make it rewarding to be eco-friendly as well.
As a friend of mine once wrote, ’words tell, stories sell’. Good writing can make all the difference between a successful marketing campaign and a flop. That being said, it can be unfulfilling to write click-bait material all day, such as ‘10 things your boyfriend does to show he loves you’. However, the current writing market incentivises writers to get traffic onto their page through whatever means necessary; the more traffic that comes in, the more they are paid for advertisements. Another option writers have is to take up freelance jobs, and use their writing abilities to promote products and services for a fee.
These forms of writing can get dreary and kill off any creativity. Just as artists should be able to live off their art, writers should be able to live off their writing.
With Steemit, writers are rewarded with STEEM tokens for articles that are upvoted; it functions much the same way as Facebook’s ‘Like’. However, these upvotes are actually worth money.
Those who upvote articles that become popular are also rewarded with STEEM tokens; this encourages people to vote for writers that produce good material. These people are known as ‘curators’.
Steemit has three main forms of currency; STEEM, Steem Dollars, and Steem Power.
Just like Bitcoin and Ethereum, STEEM tokens can be bought, sold, and traded on exchanges. There are more and more STEEM tokens created daily though, so holding all of your earnings in STEEM tokens is not exactly the best way to store it; it is best done when wanting to cash out.
50% of the earnings that writers and curators receive are in the form of Steem Dollars. Steem Dollars are a safe store of value that do not get diluted (there are no Steem Dollars being created daily), and can be converted into STEEM at any time to trade on the market. This form enables users to hold their profits at a relatively stable price, and can be cashed out easily.
Holding STEEM Dollars helps to keep the money within Steemit, and users who do so are rewarded with 10% interest; an excellent way to store your Steemit profits in the mid term.
The remaining 50% of the earnings that writers and curators receive are in the form of Steem Power. Steem Power is a longer-term investment — it cannot be sold for two years. That being said, Steem Power has the most benefits within the network.
1. 90% of STEEM tokens created go to those who have Steem Power. The more you hold, the more STEEM you get.
2. The more Steem Power you have, the more your votes are worth. Not only does your influence increase, the payments increase as well (both for you, and the people you upvote)
More than that, Steem Power ensures that price volatility is mitigated; people are unable to cash out for two years, meaning that there will not be massive swings in prices each time news is released about cryptocurrency.
Steemit has found a way to make content creation profitable, and allow those who find good content and promote it be rewarded for their efforts. It uses an interface that is familiar to anyone who has used social media before, but allows the content to be community driven, rather than through paid advertisements.
Successful cryptocurrencies cater to a need that the market is facing. That being said, there are always competitors who are striving to enter the same market. All things equal, a cryptocurrency with a cause will always add a little extra appeal to investors.
As always, safe investing!
16 March 2018