Five Minute Blockchain Newsletter Nr. 45

Updates from the intersection of trust, content and blockchain. What are notable developments this week?

Five Minute Blockchain – No. 45

19.01.2023

Estimated reading time: 4 min 45 seconds



QUOTE OF THE WEEK


“We know from years of research that people will always use technologies in ways that their creators did not intend. In other sectors and industries, governments and governance bodies create rules, laws, and regulations to constrain and limit malicious or dangerous uses of potentially harmful products. But advances in artificial intelligence and algorithmic, data-centric technologies have slipped the leash and operate largely outside of those kinds of assessments and controls.”

– Janet Haven, Predictions for Journalism 2023 (Nieman Lab)


TRUST


Predictions for Journalism

The above quote is from a series of articles published by Nieman Lab. Each year Nieman asks journalists about their predictions for the year. Below are links to some additional quotes and predictions relevant to the cross-section of trust/content/blockchain.

Prediction:

“The activist, scholar, and poet Maya Angelou famously said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

AI couldn’t care less. Journalists will care more (Jennifer Brandel, Hearken)

Prediction:

“For a fact-checking effort to gain trust, the arbiters of truth cannot also be its distributors.”

Belling the cat: The rise of independent fact-checking at scale (Kavya Sukumar, Lightrock India)

Prediction:

“This new type of app isn’t a platform itself but instead pulls together various platform and content streams to offer a single, seamless networked experience.”

Journalism realizes the replacement for Twitter is not a new Twitter (Andrew Losowky, Vox Media)

All predictions –> Nieman Lab


CONTENT


Interview: Open AI founder Sam Altman talks about future products, risks for society, possible video platform

Sam Altman, the founder and CEO of Open AI, said that the current license with Microsoft is not exclusive. Last week Microsoft announced the intention to use ChatGPT, a text-generating platform released by Open AI, to create better answers on Bing in the future. Microsoft is a significant shareholder after $1 billion in the AI company last year.

The interview included questions about safety and whether new AI tools will disrupt societies – such as in education or office work. Altman said: “There are societal changes that ChatGPT is going to cause or is causing. A big one going on now is about its impact on education and academic integrity, all of that.”

In addition, Altman said that reactions are negative and positive, sometimes from the same group of people: “We hear from teachers who are understandably very nervous about the impact of this on homework. We also hear a lot from teachers like, ‘Wow, this is an unbelievable personal tutor for each kid'”.

TechCrunch


Getty Images announces lawsuit against Stability AI over copyright infringement

Getty Images, a global provider of licensed photos, announced a lawsuit against the company behind the popular generative AI tool Stable Diffusion. The stock image company argues that the AI company processed millions of images without training the AI software without a license. The suit has been filed in London, meaning that the verdict will be made outside of the US, potentially influencing future regulation of visual and text AI tools.

Getty Images


Learn how to use Open Source Intelligence (OSINT)

The myriad of published texts, photos and videos available online opens the door for a new form of intelligence: OSINT stands for “Open Source Intelligence”.

It is an umbrella term for various techniques to find evidence on digital platforms. The methods are used by intelligence units as well as investigative journalists.

A typical application is to geo-locate a picture or a video. Or use small segments of such material to collect evidence of what happened in the Ukraine war in a specific town. One well-known group using OSINT is “Bellingcat“, located in the UK. The techniques can be learned. The link below leads to a four-hour, free training for the basics of OSINT.

YouTube


BLOCKCHAIN


UNHCR uses a blockchain payment platform to help Ukraine war refugees

What would be a modern way to efficiently and with accountability distribute financial aid to people displaced through war? The UNHCR uses a blockchain payment platform for this. Launched in December 2022, the solution is currently used in Ukraine.

From an article published by UNHCR: “The pilot phase of the project is designed specifically for Ukraine but can be adapted worldwide.”

The current solution uses the Stellar blockchain and distributes funds as a stablecoin equal to one US Dollar. Recipients can receive funds after installing an app on their smartphone. Cash conversion is possible in 4,500 MoneyGram locations in Ukraine or elsewhere in Europe. The statement did not say what commissions would be charged for such transactions.

UNHCR


Non-Crypto Applications of Blockchain discussed in Davos

Experts, politicians and top managers are talking about blockchain as a technology at this year’s gathering at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Despite the crypto crash, there are some positive views where blockchain technology is performing well.

Quote: “Despite the crypto crash, “the underlying tech has performed perfectly,” Schulman said. “The promise of a distributed ledger is that it can be faster and cheaper to settle transactions simultaneously with no middlemen. That’s an important thing.”

Coindesk

Others are far more critical and do not believe in any value from the blockchain for crypto or other use cases. One example is economist Nouriel Roubini, who has voiced his concerns over a blockchain. In Davos 2023, he said blockchain is a “fad” and “no more than a glorified database”. Roubini does not believe that blockchain entries can create trust without an institution verifying that the information is correct – for example, in food logistics.

Yahoo Finance


SHORT LINKS

  • Founders Fund sold off most of its crypto venture portfolio in March 2022, well before the crash, generating a $1.8 billion return. Financial Times
  • Musk’s Twitter Saw Revenue Drop 35% in Q4, Sharply Below Projections (The Information)

Thank you for reading. If you have questions or suggestions, please contact us via info@trublo.eu.

Photo by Evangeline Shaw on Unsplash

19. January 2023

Written by Mirko Lorenz

Mirko Lorenz, Innovation Manager Research and Cooperation team at Deutsche Welle. More: DW Innovation

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