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How the Blockchain Could Transform the P2P Economy

A very interesting aricle by Aaron Fernando on how blockchain will transform the p2p economy:

The peer-to-peer (P2P) economy is a relatively simple concept. It's an economy where anyone can transact as both producers and consumers ("prosumers") without having to use intermediaries. The concept of P2P economics has been around for a long time, but recent technological developments make this form of trade much more widespread by lowering costs and increasing ease and access.

Blockchain is a new way of storing and transferring information using an extremely secure, distributed network of computers. A blockchain keeps track of changes in value over time — transactions usually, but not necessarily (simple explanation here). Since a blockchain is a computational network, automated processes and applications can be programmed to run on a blockchain. These applications and processes, called "smart contracts," perform some action once certain conditions are met. For example, a simple smart contract might be one that plays Blackjack with you and either gives you a payout or takes your money if you lose.

Importantly, because of smart contracts, the need for third-party moderation can be drastically reduced or eliminated when dealing with a wide range of industries. By automating what previously require expensive third-party services via smart contracts, many financial services (insurance, lending, P2P payments) can be offered at a lower cost. This shift will disrupt those industries and many others — basically any that have potential for P2P trade.


The full article here:

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