U.S. Congressional Bill Seeks Common Definition for Blockchain

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On Monday, October 1, a bill that directs the government and stakeholders to agree on a common definition for blockchain was introduced to the United States House of Representatives.

The Bill H.R. 6913, titled “Blockchain Promotion Act of 2018,” was sponsored by Representatives Doris Matsui and Brett Guthrie, both members of the Energy and Commerce Subcommittees on Communications and Technology and Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection.

In a press release, Congresswoman Matsui stated that the bi-partisan effort will gather stakeholder in the sector to develop a common blockchain definition. She explained that they would also recommend opportunities to leverage the blockchain technology to promote innovation.

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According to the announcement, the legislation would direct the Department of Commerce create a blockchain working group to advice government agencies including the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on how to approach blockchain tech. The recommendations will include a study of the technology and how to adopt it within the government.

“Opportunities to deploy blockchain technology ranges from greatly increased transparency, efficiencies and security in supply chains to more-opportunistically managing access to spectrum,” Congresswoman Matsui wrote.

On his part, Congressman Guthrie acknowledged blockchain a great resource for innovation and technology, explaining that “[the government] must figure out exactly what best common definition is and how it can be used.”

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The bill comes as the government—Federal and States—seek the best approach towards blockchain and cryptocurrency. In September, Republican Congressman Tom Emmer presented three blockchain related bills. The bills were focused on cryptocurrency regulations and policies including taxation and money transmitter requirements.

States like California and Wyoming have passed similar blockchain-related bills. As Smartereum reported last month, California passed bills that defined blockchain terms and also recommended a blockchain working group constitution of technical and non-technical stakeholders.


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