Fifth Bulletin (May 2015)

Maro Bulletins, General Ecosystem, Uncategorized

1. Fairmarket alpha testing version launched the World Fair Trade Day

fairmarketEN

Fairmarket is FairCoop’s online market, where all the products and services offered by members of this cooperative can be found. A key project in the new global economic ecosystem we want to build is being born.
It works under the concept of an “open cooperative”; that is to say, everyone can easily be a member of FairCoop. As a seller, simply by using this tool, building your e-shop  and providing your goods and services, you take part in the process and therefore you participate as a member of it. 
The first alpha testing version of the Fairmarket has been published today, as the world celebrates World fair trade day https://wfto.com/events/world-fair-trade-day-2015 With Fairmarket, FairCoop is contributing to an inclusive worldwide festival of events celebrating Fair Trade as a tangible contribution to the fight against poverty and exploitation, climate change, and the economic crisis that has the greatest impact on the world’s most vulnerable populations.
This is an open testing phase, not fully operational, where we need your participation and suggestions to improve the platform and fix bugs.
So, Fairmarket is now under collective construction, and you can already join, propose ideas and get involved.
Alongside this launch, FairCoop is also presenting the first batch of Bounties.
300,000 Faircoin will be redistributed through 15 projects choosen as priorities by the FairCoop community. Read them, and if you think that you could get involved, add yourself as a candidate and become part of the process!
Fairmarket will be launched in three phases. For now, we are in the alpha phase. 
In this phase seller registration is already open and you can start setting up your shop, upload your products and services and promote yourself.
The next phase, the beta phase, will be when the market opens for trading, but it will still be lacking many of the features that are currently planned.
The third phase will be the fully productive one, when FairCoop will present to the postcapitalist world a fullfeatured marketplace to build the network economy that all of us deserve.
Now to begin, we need to build a strong Fairmarket community and you can get involved to make this possible.
Join the Fairmarket here: https://market.2017.fair.coop 
And join this forum to build Fairmarket together:  /groups/faircoop-community/fairmarket/forum/

2. Interconnecting financial alternatives | Partnership with Betabank!

betabank_faircoopBetabank (https://betabank.de/) is a community social bank alternative courtesy of the German  cooperative Betacoop (https://betacoop.de/). It aims to generate new pathways designed to lead us towards a practical alternative economy, based on solidarity and focused on people, through the generation of  decentralized economic networks where members can take advantage of mutual credit to meet their basic needs.
An alternative virtual currency called “beta” is used within BetaBank and free accounts are offered, as well as various payment services and innovative financing models for partners.
It offers a Mobile Banking app for iPhone and Android that allows users to pay securely and check their balance via SMS. A very convenient option for interaction which, by the way, does not necessarily require a smartphone and / or internet coverage for use.
Typically, conventional banks are highly restrictive, limiting to their clients (whether individuals or companies) the ability to interact with an online portal owner. With Betabank the opposite is true: the system is more flexible and so the options expand. In the case of individuals, receiving online payment notifications is allowed. And in a business context, the account can be can accessed via an API to automate payments and update internal systems, eliminating the need to perform tedious manual tasks. 
One of Betabank’s most important projects is Fairbill (https://fairbill.com/), a payment processor platform that already includes a variety of payment methods, and will soon also accept Faircoins.
But not only this also Betabank is currently developing a webwallet of Faircoin that doesn’t require installation: simply by requesting its activation the user is assigned a Faircoin address and can send and receive Faircoins.
Meanwhile FairCoop already has an account with Betabank and has added this option to the GetFaircoin site among its transfer options. GetFaircoin is working to include the Fairbill system and thus enjoy greater autonomy in key payment systems such as the acceptance of cards; at the same time, it is expected that Fairbill will be the tool for transactions of the shortly to be launched Fairmarket.
All these integrations are now, along with the creation of a local node in Leipzig some of the first results of the recent alliance between Betabank and FairCoop and all of which means another step toward building collective, transparent and democratically-based financial alternatives for a new economic system; one that is self-managed and outside of the predatory conventional banking system.

3. FairCoop and Faircoin in Hojaderouter.com

hojaderouter_diarioesFaircoin, the cryptocurrency of the catalan Robin Hood who expropiated from the banks to give to the poor.

In this post we present an extensive article on FairCoop and Faicoin that appeared today in the online journal hojaderouter.com and eldiario.es (Spain) where they have laid out a good summary of the history of Faircoin; how, from its birth – exactly a year ago – it has been promoting a new autonomous global economic paradigm independent of the current capitalist system; based on cooperation, trust, mutual support, and free software commons; with the goal of replacing the obsession with personal profit and speculation, and generating a collective vision of how to improve society.
“Faircoin was created in early March 2014 by an anonymous developer who then left without a trace. 50 million coins were created and then distributed between the 6th and 8th of this month, at a rate of 1,000 units per hour; given as gifts to whoever signed up to receive them. It became the first virtual currency that did not initially have to be mined, and that was shared equitably in order to promote equality between participants.
 
Together, Faircoin and FairCoop try to promote a new global system of “post-capitalist economy” based on collaboration and free software. The cryptocurrency has become one of its main pillars, functioning as an exchange currency and a store of value. Thomas König, [the current developer behind Faircoin], explains that it promotes solidarity by allowing anyone to transfer value to other people quickly, securely and cheaply, without relying on centralised governmental or financial powers. In addition, “a cryptocoin can be a good excuse to generate a social movement and mutual support networks around it, and to bring the “virus of cooperation” to the money markets, says Enric Duran [the founder of FairCoop].
 
Both Duran as König argue that Faircoin, while important in Faircoop, is “nothing more than a tool within a global framework.” Progressively other tools will appear to “complete the monetary and economic ecosystem of Faircoop”, according to Duran. He explains that a just monetary system also needs access to credit that is democratic, that is accessible “to all persons having the capacity to produce, and that at any given moment can cover people’s basic needs.”
 
This will be possible in the future with the other decentralized currency called Faircredit, which will be tasked with providing mutual credit. The loans will be interest-free debts that will become a revenue for others, and the sum total of all balances in the system will be zero, so that credit will no longer depend on centralised banks but the common good. The appearance of Faircredit will not lead to the disappearance of Faircoin, but they will be used together as complementary currencies.

4. Hacking traditional methods of payment: BitSwop, BitBill and LitePaid now accept Faircoins

LitePaid, Bitbill and BitSwop are tools that recently started accepting Faircoin as payment. Through these services it is now possible to pay the phone bill or buy spices for cooking with Faircoins.

bbitbillbitswoplitepaid

Using a credit card, a bank account or cash is becoming an option rather than an obligation. New alternatives are emerging and thanks to these we can do without the traditional means of payment to start managing our own economy with digital currency, independent from traditional banking.
We will now explain how these new tools work to make this possible.
Bitbill is an online service that allows you to pay bills with cryptocurrency. For example, if you need to pay the phone bill, the rent or any other service, you can go to this website (https://www.bitbill.eu/ ) and by filling out a simple form with the amount, a reference, and then choosing your favorite cryptocurrency, you can – without having to sign anything – complete payment with Faircoin. Bitbill will arrange the requested transfer. For every transaction you make you will have to create a password and provide your email address so that we can track the status of your transaction, which takes one business day to complete. This service is maintained at a rate of 1%, plus a fixed amount of  95 euro cents. Currently this type of online bill payment is only offered in Europe and the US, but it’s a one step towards a global revolution that is on the horizon.
If Bitbill can support a total of 25 cryptocurrencies, such as Faircoin, it is because it is based on Litepaid (https://www.litepaid.com ), a system for payment processing for websites and online shops that allows the use of virtual cryptocurrencies for the acceptance of payments. Businesses can choose how to receive: whether in Euros or in one of the cryptocurrencies available. LitePaid is a useful tool for those who want to accept Faircoin as payment. The advantages are many and varied: it is safe, with reduced costs, provides immediate transactions and is global.
But the possibilities do not end here.

5. FairCoop seed spreading through Europe | BERLIN · LISBOA · OPORTO · MADRID

After Barcelona and London last month, FairCoop has now also been presented in Berlin, Lisbon, Porto and Madrid.
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The first presentation of the month was in the German capital on April 8 in Agora Collective (https://agoracollective.org/),  a coworking space that facilitates creative ways to exchange,  development, and innovation with a social background. Individual attendees and members of different groups were very interested in the  project as a unifying initiative of the collaborative economy and in the technological development involved, spearheaded by the Faircoin cryptocurrency.  The result of this meeting was that the process of creating a local  node in Berlin was set underway.
The next presentations were in Portugal: the first in Lisbon on April 18 in RDA69 (https://rda69.wordpress.com/) and the second in Porto on April 25 in SEDE
In Lisbon the presentation was attended by, among others, the Collective 1000101 and the ReCo – Collaborative Network from Amoreiras Vilage . Those attending this presentation were excited about the principles and values ​​promoted by FairCoop and an interesting discussion ensued on technological issues concerning both cryptocurrencies and Faircoin as commons issues, and other tools that are being developed and will soon be used . 
The result of this presentation is the node that is starting to build in the Portuguese capital. Continuing in Portugal a week later, a meeting took place in Porto a city that already has an active node. The attendees were very interested in how common tools are being developed by FairCoop and how to introduce them on a global scale. Faircoin once again generated a rich debate, both for its technological innovation and its extensive and diverse possibilities.
Our  last presentation was in Madrid on April 30th in the MediaLab Prado (medialab-prado.es) a national laboratory of production, research and dissemination of cultural projects exploring new forms of  experimentation and collaborative learning through emerging digital networks. The event – broadcast via streaming through spanishrevolution.tv – was well attended and FairCoop integration projects and social solidarity economy generated great interest in the attendees. The next day stakeholders were again given a presentation in the Tabacalera space about how coordinate and begin to implement the Madrid FairCoop node.
More news soon!

6. Faircoin PaperWallet

20150415_173507One of the main priorities of FairCoop is to provide all individuals and groups with a range of tools that facilitate the development and expansion of a new economy. Therefore, FairCoop presents its Paper Wallet.

Last month we launched the Android Wallet: a wallet for your smartphone that allows you to carry your wallet in your pocket. The general concept of the Paper Wallet is the same: move the Faircoins from your wallet (on your computer) to a paper backup. That is, you now have the ability to store your savings without relying on your computer, and they’re also offline (without being connected to the internet).
The advantages of this type of storage for your Faircoins are several:
On the one hand, we don’t have to worry about internet security, protect our wallet from intruders, and also have no need to make backups of the Paper Wallet. If, for example, you are saving a lot of Faircoins which you do not foresee yourself using, you might like to store some of these savings in the Paper Wallet and keep the rest of the Faircoins you think you’ll need to use on your computer wallet and / or the Android Wallet. Thus, the Paper Wallet becomes a physical wallet with money that cannot be manipulated; a kind of savings fund. However, note that backups of your computer wallet will still be needed .
Furthermore, the Paper Wallet also has the advantage of being used to make a transaction. So, if you need to pay something but do not have a smartphone, you can print yourself a Paper Wallet and pay with it. For example, if you have to pay the bill for a restaurant that accepts Faircoins, you must put the exact amount that your food will cost you. Once in the restaurant, and having finished your meal, you only need to scan the public address of your Paper wallet and the QR code of the private key the restaurant, and the bill is paid. Thus, the total amount of Faircoin in the Paper Wallet has been transferred to the account of the restaurant. However, it is singleuse only, so if you want to make a second payment, for security reasons you must generate a new Paper Wallet.

7. FairCoop nominated for the 2015 OuiShare prizes!!!

ouishareportadaThe OuiShare Fest is the most important event related to the collaborative economy in Europe. Each year, various initiatives that promote social change on a global level are nominated in order to help support their future development.

The OuiShare Awards seek to reward projects that are contributing to transition, transformation or change. The intention is to highlight the diversity of the collaborative economy and demonstrate its impact; from solving important social and environmental challenges to disrupting the status quo in certain sectors – or once again redefining the concept of the city.

This year, 150 proposals were presented and FairCoop was selected among 14 nominees in the category of “Collaborative Finance”. From the 20th to 22nd May we will be at the OuiShare Fest in Paris to present it!

A few days from now and certainly within a month we may also find ourselves chosen for the final selection.
We invite you to view the proposals and cast your vote online: https://awards.ouishare.net/2015/vote/

This post is also available in: Spanish French Catalan German Portuguese