Breeding Authenticity: The 2018 EU Blockathon Challenge
The coming ubiquity of Blockchain technology in the nearest future cannot be denied anymore. In the not so far future, it is going to be an integral part of our everyday life. It's very many applications will surely change the way business is run.
With this in mind, the European Commission (EU) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) decided to organize the 2018 EU Blockathon Challenge. It was aimed at getting participants to connect, code and co-create long lasting Blockchain solutions.
What Is The 2018 Blockathon?
The 2018 EU Blockathon event took place last week Friday in Brussels, capital city of Belgium. It brought together some of the brightest minds in the world of computer coding and Blockchain technology. The Blockathon was made up of 11 teams comprising a melting pot of different individuals, each hoping to steer their team to victory. The teams battled it out for two days, vying to create the best programs and apps that will aid relevant security agencies in tracking and easily fingering counterfeit products and other types of illegalities. The prize to be awarded to the victors was €100,000.
Research shows that every year almost 90 billion euros are lost to illegalities such as intellectual property theft and other similar crimes. It also has a widespread effect on employment, costing almost 80,000 jobs per annum. The rotting effects don't end there. It has also brought about a massive distrust on the part of consumers.
What Can This Solve?
Consumers in the EU are left to constantly ponder whether purchases they are making are the real deal, not a fake they are conned into buying. Worse still, over 40 million EU citizens ended up buying a fake product at some point in the year 2017.
A solution had to be found. The collaboration between the EU and EUIPO was set out to nip this menace in its bud, by utilizing the Blockchain technology. The coders were tasked with creating a program that would seamlessly fit in with law enforcement agencies, and more importantly reduce to a barest minimum the spate of intellectual property theft.
How Would This Work?
It is thought that integrating Blockchain into the fabric of security agencies will help combat counterfeiting, and also help consumers in assuring them of the authenticity of whatever goods and services they purchase. Consumers will be more certain that they are getting value for their hard earned money.
The event also aims to improve collaboration between member states of the EU, this is in anticipation of the proposed introduction of Blockchain applications across the entirety of the EU.
The conjunction was largely lauded by those in the Blockchain tech sphere, with many claiming that it was a step in the right direction. Also, it is thought that this can serve as a springboard for the EU to become a genuine force to be reckon as regards Blockchain technology.
This collaborated event signals a massive shift in relations, as the EU government are not largely known to be huge collaborators with the public sector. However, with the emergence and success of the 2018 EU Blockathon, hopefully there are many more prospective collaborations in the works.