Binance Users Reach Out to Japan
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has called on the crypto community to “help our friends in need.” The CEO is talking about crypto donations for disaster relief in Western Japan. The island country has been hit with torrential rainfall causing dangerous flooding and mudslides on the island’s western side. With death toll at 155 and dangerous weather patterns still incoming, the Prime Minister has called it “a race against time” to provide relief in heavily hit areas. Binance is ready to join the race raising 1,410,000 USD in a week. The company released a statement on Medium on July 7th to update followers that round one of the donations was set to be sent out to their partners in Japan. Binance stopped operating in Japan after a crack down in policies in March 2018 meaning they would need to go through a partner that is still operating in the country. Binance announced a test transaction of .1 BTC before sending the first round of donations. Round one is an impressive 50,000,000 JPY that will be converted from cryptocurrency to bitcoin and then eventually into yen. Binance is still open for donations to provide relief for the heavily afflicted areas Hiroshima and Okayama. You can find their donation walle here.
The United Kingdom Is Exploring Smart Contracts
The United Kingdom is getting “smart”, smart contracts that is. The Law Commission of England and Wales released their yearly report and greatly endorsed cryptocurrency by announcing that they are researching the legal potential of smart contracts. Smart contracts are what allows users to cut out “the middleman” in regards to blockchain. The contract is defined as
“Self Executing contracts with the terms of the agreement between buyer and seller being directly written into lines of code. The code and the agreements contained therein exist across a distributed, decentralized blockchain network” (Rosten, 2018).
The interest in the legal framework is the first big move in support of blockchain we have seen from the UK government, but not the first we have seen in the legal community. Three out of five members of the Magic Circle, a group of five law firms thought to lead the game, have joined the Accord Project which is set on creating a comprehensible legal standard for blockchain. The use of smart contracts in a legal framework could be revolutionary, I guess you could say it’s a “smart” move on the commissions part to get involved.
Barclays Taking on New Heights with Cryptocurrency Patents
Barclay’s eagle is taking off with the company’s new flight plan for cryptocurrency. Last week the UK based bank put in for two new patents “Data Validation Storage” and “Secure Digital Data Operations”. The two patents deal with retrieval, authentication, and storage of cryptocurrency. This is not Barclays first go round with cryptocurrency. Striking a deal this past spring with Coinbase made the company the first major UK company to deal in the growing industry. The request for the patents follows closely on the heels of a rumored trade desk put in on Barclays trading floor. Securing the patents puts Barclays’ foot firmly in the door of the cryptocurrency industry, and opens up opportunities for its growth in the UK.
Author: Jordan Darling
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 Rosten, A. (2015, February 05). UK Takes Step Closer to Framework for Legal Smart Contracts. Retrieved from https://www.cryptoglobe.com/latest/2018/07/uk-takes-step-closer-to-framework-for-legal-smart-contracts/
 Kelso, C. (2018, July 19). Barclays, 300 Year-Old UK Legacy Bank, Files Crypto Patents. Retrieved from https://news.bitcoin.com/barclays-300-year-old-uk-legacy-bank-files-crypto-patents/
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