GMO Internet to Pay 4,000 Employees Using Bitcoin

A Japanese company has taken the bold step of opting to pay their employees using Bitcoin. GMO Internet is a firm dealing in web-related matters. These include finance, advertising, and internet infrastructure. In an effort to get more familiar with cryptocurrency, they’re trialling its use as a payment method in a professional setting.

Employees at GMO Internet can opt to have up to 100,000 yen of their salary paid in Bitcoin every month. This is equivalent to around $900. The rest of their rate will be topped up with traditional currency. It’s also not compulsory, and workers at GMO Internet can still elect to be paid their entire paycheck in yen.

Harumi Ishii , a spokesperson for GMO internet told the UK’s The Guardian newspaper:

Employees can receive salaries by Bitcoin if they want to… We hope to improve our own literacy of virtual currency by actually using it.

Ishii estimated that around 4,000 workers at GMO Internet would be entitled to receive Bitcoin payments. RT News report that employees would even receive a bonus for receiving cryptocurrency. Workers can expect an additional 10% on top of their usual payment.

Outside of a few jobs in the fintech industry, this represents one of the first examples of a large company offering to pay all their employees in cryptocurrency. Back in 2014, a Canadian startup called WagePoint offered a service in which they offered clients the option to pay their employees using cryptocurrency. At the time, they estimated that they paid around $75,000 annually in Bitcoin. This is minuscule compare to the maximum $3.6 million a month which GMO Internet would pay out should every one of their employees opt for crypto payments. However, judging by the WagePoint’s website, the service has since been discontinued.

It won’t be the first dealings the GMO Internet have had with Bitcoin. They started a trading and exchange business back in May of this year. They are also planning on launching their own mining farm next month. Therefore, it makes perfect economic sense for them to pay their staff using the currency which they have obtained for much less than the market rate thanks to their mining operation. Rather than go through the effort of exchanging their freshly mined BTC for yen and then sending that out to employees, they can pay them directly with the cryptocurrency.

It’s hardly surprising that a Japanese company have been the first to trial paying employees in cryptocurrency. This year, the government there declared Bitcoin and other digital currencies legal tender. If GMO Internet’s pilot is successful, it seems likely that others will follow suit soon.



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The internet, which started as an internal network of the defense sector has grown into one of the basic necessities of today’s life. As the revolutionary technology of yesteryears continued to progress, it gave rise to cloud computing. However, cloud computing has a lot of room for improvement, especially when it comes to the centralized network structure. It is where the decentralized ledger technology from blockchain era comes to play.

There have been instances in the “recent” past, where cloud storage accounts have been compromised by hackers, and attackers have breached cloud hosted servers. Cloud with Me, a cryptocurrency startup has decided to take the internet revolution to its next step, by creating a decentralized cloud infrastructure.

Cloud with Me leverages “power of the crowd” to deliver a stable, scalable and secure cloud infrastructure. With the implementation of blockchain technology, Cloud with Me’s services are driven by its native cryptocurrency — Cloud token. A brainchild of Asaf Zamir — the founder and CTO, Cloud with Me has recently announced its “Cloud ICO” to gain the support of the cryptocurrency and investor community while making Cloud tokens known to a majority of people who are most likely to use them as an early adopter.

Once the early adopters pitch in and validate the system, the masses will soon follow, making Cloud with Me decentralized cloud solution a familiar name in the tech circles. Built over Ethereum blockchain, the platform aims to create a Decentralized Application Protocol that enables the design and launch of decentralized P2P cloud applications. These applications can range from a simple file sharing solution to P2P insurance, banking and financial solutions and governance platforms. The Cloud tokens will become the mode of payment for cloud services, replacing the conventional payment methods.

Cloud with Me has already entered into partnerships with the likes of Amazon, Google, Microsoft and other cloud infrastructure providers. The platform is currently holding a pre-ICO, where investors can gain a 17% pre-order bonus on the purchased cloud tokens, which will continue to reduce with time. The Cloud token ICO will commence on August 25, 2017, selling each Cloud token at $10. Participants can purchase the tokens against Bitcoin, Ether or Credit Card payments. The platform also accepts wire transfers.

The platform invites investors to become part of the crowdsale by visiting the official Cloud token web page.

Thanks to internet’s vital role in everyone’s lives, websites and their domain names represent the identity of a person or entity. The increased importance of online presence has turned domain names market into a lucrative business. Many individuals and entities have started buying and selling domains to make huge profits out of the trade. However, such a market continues to remain unorganized to a great extent.

Enter Nametoken, a blockchain based platform that brings structure to the domain marketplace. The decentralized platform, powered by NAT tokens allows people to register, list, park, buy and sell domains. In addition to making domain trading easier and more profitable, the platform also enables people to invest in domain names. These virtual real-estate investments have a potential to pay out huge sums when high-value domain names are involved.

Nametoken is the brainchild of a team of entrepreneurs and experts who have been involved in the industry for over two decades. Armed with the expertise, they have come up with a well-planned ecosystem which is transparent and fully decentralized. The platform is developed over Ethereum blockchain, utilizing smart contracts to automate various activities including payments.

Nametoken uses a proven domain appraisal algorithm which utilizes user-generated big data to match domains with buyers. Users can also contribute to the platform through voting and data maintenance activities, earning NAT tokens in the process.

In addition to marketplace and investment opportunities, The Nametoken platform also acts as a domain registrar and provides hosting services.

As the development continues, Nametoken has announced the upcoming launch of its ICO campaign. The campaign, beginning on August 1, 2017, will allow people to invest in the decentralized domain ecosystem by purchasing NAT tokens. The crowdsale has an attractive bonus system in place to incentivize early participants. Unlike other platforms where the creators hold a significant percentage of tokens, Nametoken is offering 90% of NAT tokens to investors. The remaining will be distributed among the advisory/legal team (3%) and the Nametoken team (7%).

Nametoken takes pride in its policy of 100% transparency. In addition to sharing most of the tokens with investors, the platform also has scheduled buy-backs and reinvestment processes in place to increase NAT’s value.

More information about the platform and upcoming crowdsale are available on Nametoken website.

Is there anything that blockchain technology can’t do? The question is hard to answer as long as we don’t change the way we perceive the distributed ledger technology. The blockchain technology is still in its nascent stages, but we fail to look at it with a fresh pair of eyes, says George Benner — Head of Digital Strategy at Droga5 Advertising Network.

In an article on one of the websites, George points out that by the overt commercialization of Blockchain technology, majority of the world is failing to see the endless opportunities it has to offer. Blockchain technology is being compared to the internet, which has been around for a long time now. While there are few similarities between the blockchain technology and internet, those who are unable to understand its full potential tend to swear by the known technologies instead of creating new benchmarks.

There are many of blockchain technology based companies in the world. Most of them are concentrating on the commercial applications of the technology, overlooking various other use cases. The number of companies working on blockchain technology based application for banking and financial sector as against those catering to rights management, content distribution and range of other sectors is a shining example of the divide between industries.

The distributed ledger technology is much more than a decentralized commercial cloud infrastructure. It is not just a glorified database with additional security and processing features. It is the answer to free global society, where individuals and communities can interact and do business with each other without having to worry about the geographical boundaries or bureaucracies of different governments. The world without boundaries may soon be a reality if the technology is used right; by creating a single repository for all records; optimizing manufacturing; managing rights and IP; optimizing the distribution of goods and products by tracking goods and commodities throughout the supply chain and more.

In the end, it is how do we want the distributed ledger technology to grow. Should we let our myopic views limit the innovation or should we think out of the box and encourage new possibilities?

Ref: Fast Company | Image: Shutterstock


Since the beginning of the Internet, the gambling industry has always been an adopter of all new online technologies that have been coming around. However, for some time now, the online gambling industry has been dealing with heavy regulatory impositions all over the world and many companies tried to find out new ways of going pass those restrictions.

It was in 2009, that Bitcoin was introduced to the world and the gambling Industry rapidly adopts this new currency. Bitcoin came to revolutionise the gambling industry, and since 2010, we start to see new gambling sites being launched that only accepted this new currency.

Bitcoin came to give a new momentum to the gambling Industry, and I might say that it even led companies to implement innovations and develop new business models.

One of these innovative gambling sites launched back in 2012 was Dragon’s Tale. This was a completely original gambling site. Dragon’s Tale was one of the first online Bitcoin Casinos to be launched, and this was no ordinary gambling site. Dragon’s Tale was to first to introduce a new gambling style: an online massively multiplayer casino role play game.

Because of its inherent characteristics and its decentralised nature Bitcoin has become very appealing to the gambling industry.  There are all sorts of aspects that we could mention that confers Bitcoin its ingenious utility to the gambling industry. Besides all the innovation that Bitcoin brought to the gambling industry, its decentralised nature also came as a saviour to face the increasing government restrictions all over the world.  Since governments everywhere have been imposing a lot of regulations on gambling and online casinos, Bitcoin became the perfect workaround to avoid these restrictions. Anyone living in a country where online gambling is heavily regulated can easily gamble with Bitcoin.

Bitcoin transactions are also very cheap. So, Casinos can lower their commissions and still get the same incentive. Since anyone can verify all the transactions in the Blockchain it allows greater financial transparency making it more secure using Bitcoin to gamble.

Bitcoin is the currency of the internet; it is perfectly aligned to support online based businesses and facilitates international transactions. Bitcoin has in fact, the power to disrupt the online gambling space.

Image: NewsBTC

The opinions expressed in this article do not represent the views of NewsBTC or any of its team members.  NewsBTC is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied in Sponsored Stories such as this one.

Russian government officials want to exert complete control over the Internet in the country, Although that will be quite the challenge, there are plans in motion to make the usage of currencies not issued by the central bank punishable by law, and the Russian watchdog has blocked access to various Bitcoin sites in the past. According to Presidential Advisor for Internet Development Klimenko, terrorists abuse the Internet for communication and funnelling funds, and something has to be done.

Also read: Bitcoin Price Watch; Mid Range Triangle Signals Upside

Controlling The Internet is the Main Objective for Russia

Based on the statement issued by Presidential Advisor for Internet Development Klimenko, there is no denying terrorists use the Internet in a wide variety of ways. Whether it is for communication over encrypted platforms, or sluicing funds from one cell to another, it is becoming a major threat. Additionally, he also touches upon how state-sponsored hackers around the world are flocking to cyber attacks more often as of late, and proper precautions have to be taken.

However, trying to achieve Internet sovereignty in every country around the world will be all but an impossible task. The Internet was never meant to be controlled by governments or law enforcement, and using encryption backdoors to spy on communication protocols is being opposed by nearly every Western country.

Russia wants to take things one step further, though, as they aim to control the entire Internet. Not just within the country borders, but they seek a global governance of the World Wide Web. In fact, Klimenko mentioned how it is not unlikely Russia will ban all mobile phones in the country, or at least thoroughly restrict their Internet access.

“Bitcoin is a Joke and a Virus”

But there is more to this plan, as the Russian government has been keeping a close eye on the progress made by digital currencies. Cross-border payment solutions that are not controlled by the government or central bank pose a significant threat regarding terrorist funding, as there are no identities linked to individual wallet addresses or funds transfers.

It is not the first time Bitcoin and Russian government officials butt heads, as the Russian Internet watchdog has blocked access to several Bitcoin news sites in the past. Moreover, there is a proposal on the table to make the usage of Bitcoin and digital currency punishable by law in Russia, which could lead to up to seven years of jail time.

Klimenko went even one step further, and openly referred to the Bitcoin legislation in other countries as “figments of imagination”. In fact, according to him, Bitcoin is nothing more than an Internet joke, and even a virus that needs to be abolished sooner rather than later. None of these statements come as a complete surprise, though, considering Russia is not exactly known for their unbiased opinion on innovation and new technologies.

It remains to be seen how this situation will play out, considering how part of the Russian government wants to push for innovation in the financial sector. Fintech efforts – of which Bitcoin is a part – are getting a bit of positive attention, and there is a public interest by the Sberbank to explore the boundaries of blockchain technology.

Source: Rusnovosti

Image via Shutterstock

Bitcoin debit cards combine the best of both traditional and digital currency systems. The ease of swiping the card at a PoS, as it has been done for decades is now combined with the advanced digital currency of this generation. Bitcoin debit cards are one way of paying for goods and services at any place with a PoS machine irrespective of whether they accept digital currency or not. Coinbase now offers the same convenience to its customers with the newly launched Shift Card.

The new Shift bitcoin debit card was launched earlier on Friday by Coinbase, the leading bitcoin wallet and exchange service provider. Powered by Visa, the Shift bitcoin debit card is issued for US customers for a fee of $10. Once registered, the user will pay the required issuance fee with bitcoin and wait for the card to be delivered at their doorstep. Announcement of the latest product launch was reported by Coinbase on its official blog.

According to the blogpost, Coinbase’s Shift Card is currently available for residents of 24 US States. Shift Card holders can use it just like any Visa debit card for both online and offline shopping. In addition, there won’t be any transaction charges on payments made using the new bitcoin debit card, which makes owning it even more exciting.

Coinbase has launched Shift at the right time, during the holiday season. The company can expect a good response from those who would like to do their thanksgiving and holiday shopping directly with bitcoin instead of converting it into fiat currency over a bitcoin exchange or searching for outlets and websites that accept bitcoin.

Coinbase is not the first company to introduce bitcoin debit cards, as there are many such instruments for bitcoin transaction already available . However, it will definitely be an added advantage for Coinbase customers.

Introducing the Shift Card - Coinbase Blog

Internet in its current form has been around for decades now. While the bandwidth has definitely increased and with rapid improvements in technology, data costs have gone down drastically. However, deep down the framework on the internet remains mostly unchanged. The increased dependence and familiarity of internet among individuals, organizations and governments has made it an irreplaceable piece of technology of the modern day which one can’t imagine surviving without.

Even though the internet is getting better each passing day, the average overall internet experience across the world leaves a lot to be desired. It is mainly because even the applications are becoming overly process and data intensive. The data storage and transfer protocols currently has a lot of room for improvement and there is one player who intends to optimize it with a new protocol. The new protocol makes use of technology similar to the one used by bitcoin.

The InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) is the new decentralized hypermedia distribution protocol that optimizes the way data/media is stored on the internet. According to the website, the InterPlanetary File System distributes all the files across the network and makes it accessible to all computers connected to the network at the same time. Created by InterPlanetary Network, the InterPlanetary File System works similar to BitTorrent where one single file can be shared between a number of computers.

The shared files over the network are arranged in block structure similar to that of the bitcoin blockchain. The content is linked using hash key like referencer, that can be used to access them from client computers. InterPlanatery File System can be installed on the computer using the binary files available on the website and join the network. Detailed instructions are available on the website. The InterPlanetary File System protocol can be used to build distributed applications on versioned file systems that can be accessed over the network.

ALSO READ: MegaNet — Kim Dotcom’s Decentralized Internet Powered by Smartphones

If  you been ardently following our news updates, then you would have come across an article published last week about CISA and how it is going to impact the privacy of individuals not just in the United States but across the world.

FURTHER READING: Right to Privacy, What Is That? – CISA

CISA is going to affect the privacy of most of the internet users across the world because of a simple reason – Most of the email and chat service providers except for a handful are based out of the United States and a majority of the computers and smartphones either run on operating systems created by Apple, Google or Microsoft who have set up shop in Cupertino, Mountain View and Redmond respectively. User data collected by these giants are now open to the US Government and indirectly to its so-called allies which include the UK, NATO Alliance and selected countries in the Middle East and Asia.

Now, people are left with limited options. Either stop using the internet or start investing in some encryption software or forget about the concept of privacy. However, mentioned in the same article last week was the concept of decentralized internet and how it can come to the rescue along with certain encryption technologies which are similar to that of the Bitcoin protocol. There are people at MaidSafe and other startups who are already working on the decentralized internet. Even the Ethereum project can contribute a lot towards the development of decentralized internet and applications as it is already wading in those waters.

READ MORE: MaidSafe Decentralizes the Internet, Makes It Safe and Secure

Now there is one more player who is working on creating a decentralized internet network (yeah I know the usage of the word ‘network’ besides ‘internet’ makes it redundant). This decentralized internet will be powered by millions of devices called smartphones which we can find anywhere across the world these days. Kim Dotcom, the internet ‘mega’ mogul, fugitive in the eyes of the United States is the person who is going to build Meganet, the decentralized internet harnessing the power of smartphones.

Kim Dotcom, while speaking at the SydStart summit in Australia over Skype explained how his Meganet project will harness the processing power of mobile phones and combines the blockchain technology to offer a safe and secure communication network. Kim Dotcom’s has claimed that he has created a new form of blockchain technology that will enable phones to power a faster and less data intensive network. In order to join forces with Kim Dotcom on his new Meganet project, all one will have to do is download the Meganet application on their smartphones and contribute to the phone’s processing power.

If Kim Dotcom manages to pull it off, Meganet will definitely prove to be an alternative to the internet, without all the baggage.

Image: Kim Dotcom graffiti by Thierry Ehrmann (CC BY 2.0)

Speaking to Financial Times, co-founder of the San Francisco-based Bitcoin exchange Coinbase, Fred Ehrsam said, “In 10 years I think we are going to be sitting here and the internet will look a lot prettier because Bitcoin came into existence.

Bitcoin’s Killer App Will End Spam

Danish Bitcoin exchange CCEDK launched a crypto-debit card recently and called it the “killer app” that the Bitcoin community deserves. However, Fred differs saying that Bitcoin’s killer app will end spam.

The internet has never had economics properly embedded into it. Say you pay one-hundredth of a cent to send an email, spam email dies overnight. Who would create a bajilion Yahoo email accounts? It is no longer economically viable.

The former Goldman Sachs trader believes that the possibilities of a killer application are endless.

Market Orders Now Available on Coinbase

In a recent blog post, Coinbase has announced that users can now place market orders on Coinbase Exchange.

Market orders differ from limit orders in that they are executed at the best prices while the latter is executed only a fixed price.

Take a look at the image below for better understanding.

Market orders on Coinbase

A user can select ‘Buy’ or ‘Sell’ on the order ticket according to his intended operation, and should then select ‘Market.’ The transaction amount can be filled below this and finally, ‘Place Order’ should be clicked for confirmation.

The new offering comes just over a week after it launched its Referral Program, which allowed existing users to earn $25 of free Bitcoin for every new user they bring to Coinbase who makes a purchase of $100 or more of Bitcoin.

Coinbase is also open to discussing more features which would make the exchange the best place to trade Bitcoin. So, if you have something in mind, post it in the Community Forum right away.