What is social blockchain?

With cryptocurrencies falling from the top and the governments of different countries passing laws on their regulation, more and more startups suggest using blockchain to make the life of people better.

Medical insurance

The idea to use the blockchain technology in medical insurance systems is quite widespread. At the moment, there are many projects offering solutions in this sphere. The essence of the projects consists in storing all data about a person’s health state in a blockchain. Thanks to this, a person can get medical assistance wherever he is and any doctor in any hospital will have access to his case report.

American International Group, Standard Chartered Bank and IBM have developed the first transnational policy using the blockchain technology. The authors of the project suggest writing down the insurance conditions for citizens in Kenya, Great Britain, the USA and Singapore in the form of smart contracts. It allows to track the type of insurance, insured events and payments. The system allows the data to be accessed by third parties — insurers, brokers, etc.

Passports for migrants

Last year, the immigration service of Finland offered to use blockchain to help refugees. The MONI project suggested storing all their data in a blockchain and attaching refugees’ payment cards, containing the funds allocated by the government of Finland, to blockchain databases. That is, a migrant will receive an ID card together with an ordinary card. Thanks to storing this information in a blockchain, getting a job has become much easier for them. Besides, the blockchain system allows to track the purchases made with these cards and how the means are spent. As a matter of fact, the project represents an ordinary payment application on blockchain, only that it is created for the sake of solving a social problem.

Payment for housing and communal services

The Chechen Republic government in Russia is introducing blockchain for housing and communal services payments. It is supposed, that blockchain will not only make it possible to track the payment history, but also to take the counter readings and conduct surveys among citizens in the future. Exactly why it was decided to use blockchain for this purpose remains unclear, it is only known, that the Chechen government has been interested for more than a year in the developments in this sphere, as was declared by the head of the republic, Ramzan Kadyrov, in a Telegram channel.

Elections on blockchain

In this selection of variants of applying blockchain in social projects, we cannot forget about the elections on blockchain. Besides, this system has already been tested during the elections in Sierra Leone, that almost all large European mass-media have written about. However, in truth, the elections on blockchain did not take place in the whole country, but only in its densely populated Western part, and the technology was just used to verify signatures. That is, strictly speaking, it wasn’t a blockchain election. Nevertheless, the idea itself has the right to exist, but for now it can be used only on a rather small scale, for example, within the limits of one university during chancellor elections. The direct use of blockchain in state elections is complicated by legal issues.

Blockchain in state purchases

One more popular idea consists in using blockchain in the struggle against corruption, that is, when buying something for the state. By means of blockchain you can track the spending of means and real expenses on tasks. However, in spite of the fact that the idea has been around for more than a year, no project in this sphere has yet been realised, which once again shows that, notwithstanding the technologies, human nature remains the same.

Social gambling on blockchain

Gambling addiction is a serious social problem and one of the ways to solve it is blockchain. One of the serious problems of online gambling is cheating. Thanks to blockchain no casino, no players nor somebody else will manipulate winnings. This technology is able to make gambling safer and mitigate the negative consequences of gambling. Blockchain developers, for example, the FairWin team, pay a lot of attention to gameplay, graphics and design of their games, so that players can enjoy not only the fair winnings, but the game process itself. The fascinating gameplay and beautiful design are necessary conditions for safe social gambling.

The blockchain technology can really make life better. More often two obstacles lie in the way of realisation of any good idea on blockchain — human nature and the technology’s imperfection. Probably, that is why many of these social ideas on blockchain have not borne fruit yet.

But, I hope, everything is still ahead.

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What is social blockchain? was originally published in Data Driven Investor on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.