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Bitcoins / Breaking News

Bitcoin Will Inspire The Next Gutenberg Moment

Business Insider (Australia) have published an interesting article which asks a number of experts from the blockchain industry if they believe we are about to witness a new ‘Gutenberg Moment’ from the blockchain.

You can see the full article for yourself, here-
https://www.businessinsider.com.au/we-asked-7-experts-whether-blockchain-is-the-next-gutenberg-moment-heres-what-they-said-2018-6

As the Gutenberg Moment is a key social turning point for any journalist, we want to explore how the blockchain could initiate a second coming of this, therefore, we will take a look at what the experts have told Business Insider and of course, will add our own input to the discussion.

Firstly though, in case you’re unaware of the Gutenberg Moment – according to the Stanford Social Innovation Review:

“The printing press, Johannes Gutenberg’s invention dating back to the mid-1400’s. Probably the most exhaustive exploration of the subject is in Elizabeth Eisenstein’s two-volume book The Printing Press as an Agent of Change. In her writings, Eisenstein refers to the “Unacknowledged Revolution” that followed Gutenberg’s invention, which encompassed not only the Protestant Reformation, but also the Renaissance and the Scientific Revolution. Print media allowed the general public to access ideas and information not previously available to them. This in turn led to the growth of public knowledge, and enabled individuals to formulate and share their own thoughts, independent from the church. Hence, new, non-church authorities and influences grew, and the arts and sciences flourished.”

See more for yourself, here- https://ssir.org/articles/entry/our_gutenberg_moment

Vintage Printing Press

Image Sourced from:
https://cdn.pixabay.com/photo/2015/11/07/19/40/printing-1032552_960_720.jpg

In essence, the Gutenberg Moment, inspired by the Gutenberg printing press signalled the start of a new information revolution, that gave people access to real news, on a new medium that was not moderated by religious authorities, this paved way for the arts and science revolution. Many people now believe that the blockchain is the next big invention to have a similar impact, in the sense that the blockchain can too, be an accessible source of true, validated information.

Business Insider have asked seven blockchain experts if they believe the blockchain will inspire a new Gutenberg Moment, after referring to a statement by Nicholas Cary, who believes that since ‘Google it’ is now a part of our everyday language (another Gutenberg Moment), ‘Check it on the blockchain’ will be the next big catchphrase for us, here’s what some of them had to say:

David Ballerini (Liven)

“The impact of blockchain technology will be massive and far reaching, but I disagree that people will use phrases like “Check it on the blockchain.” I believe for blockchain implementations to be truly successful they need to almost be invisible – hidden underneath well-designed interfaces with quality UX that obfuscates the underlying technology. In the same way that people say, “Google it” instead of, “Search for it with a pagerank algorithm”, blockchain technology itself will not be front and centre in the minds of the users.”

Tim Bos (ShareRing)

“Blockchain technology will be as important to the world as Gutenberg’s printing press but I’m not sure that we’ll be referring to the blockchain in our day to day lives like we do with Google. I believe that blockchain technology will be ubiquitous in many aspects of our lives, from banking and government services, to autonomous driving and ecommerce, but the technology will – for the most part – be hidden behind the services that are being offered.”

James Waugh (blueblock.io)

“Right now we have a large amount of ‘googleable’ information, but to confirm this information is concrete is almost impossible. The term ‘Google that’ found traction in the internet age, with the free flow of information globally. Now, the term, ‘Check it on the blockchain’ will find traction in the age of the blockchain as the ability to universally verify that the information we are googling is legitimate. Verifying this information on the blockchain will provide a large amount of value to the 21st century world.”

These experts have provided great insight, please note though these are just extracts, the full report gives a far more detailed account so please do head over to Business Insider to check it out.

So, the big one then, what do we believe?

Within the Gutenberg Moment, the printing press was the powerhouse behind the spread of information. So, indeed, we agree. Whilst ‘check it on the blockchain’ might not become a part of our lexicon and indeed, I can’t see it becoming a social norm, we do believe it will become a part of the fabric of our society. Normal technologies such as mobile phones will eventually retrieve data off the blockchain and thus, one day, we will all become integrated into a ‘blockchain access’ society that will in turn allow us to get richer, purer information that is accurate and verified from the blockchain. Ultimately though, we probably won’t be thinking about the blockchain when we do it. Much like with the original printing press, we will simply just consume the information it delivers us, leaving the technology to work in the background and inspire a new era, or as Business Insider put it, a new Gutenberg Moment.

Featured Image Original Source: Pixabay


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Thomas has led a number of teams, giving training and guidance in marketing and PR. He has worked at high profile firms, with offices across the country. He has experience in copywriting and editing, for a variety of different sectors.