Konstantin Brazhnik Featured in Finance Magnates

Check out Juris Co-Founder and CTO, Konstantin Brazhnik featured in Finance Magnates talking about Facebook’s newly announced CryptoCurrency project “Libra.

From the post:

However, Konstantin Brazhnik, Chief Technology Officer of the Juris Project, pointed out to Finance Magnates that Facebook’s illustrious data-gathering policies will likely not have significant negative effects on its cryptocurrency. “Facebook has no incentive to adhere to the counterculture ethos that surrounds cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum,” Brazhnik explained, referencing the decentralized, ‘trustless,’ and immutable aspects of the Bitcoin network.

In fact, “Facebook has managed to succeed exceptionally with plenty of bad press about its data sharing practices. Clearly its users are not that concerned or the value it delivers is worth the price of privacy.”

“This is a perfect environment to release a 100% auditable and surveillable currency,” he explained.

Indeed, “Any entity releasing a stable coin will be held to an exponentially higher standard than the US dollar in terms of AML and KYC capabilities. What better entity to deliver it than the one that knows all of the embarrassing moments and confessions of its own users.”

Additionally, Facebook’s cryptocurrency payment system could take its data-based advertising to a whole new level. “A fully surveillable stable coin would allow frictionless financial transactions that could be instantly auditable and AML/KYC compliant,” Brazhnik explained.

“Imagine seeing a Facebook marketplace ad for a house, clicking a button, and instantly owning it. A cryptocurrency paired with Facebook’s extensive knowledge of its members is a perfect environment in which to build frictionless financial vehicles which automatically qualify buyers and clears transactions...if data is the new oil, then Facebook is Saudi Arabia.”

“In the US, we take our fiat currency for granted, after all, it is the de facto global reserve currency,” Brazhnik wrote. “However as soon as one steps a foot outside of the US borders, they feel the pain of global currencies that fluctuate with market and political forces. A Facebook or Telegram has the potential to smooth these volatilities in a way that consumers will flock to them just to avoid the uncomfortable and obsolete practice of fiat currency exchange.”

Check out the full post:

Facebook’s Crypto to Render Fiat Exchange, Transfer Obsolete

AwesomeCoin Crowdfunding Massacre — Juris Platform User Examples

Welcome to the Juris Project. We’re building a mediation and arbitration protocol for blockchain smart contracts. Start here if you want to know more about the project, and check out post one (“Juris Protocol Use Case — Ziggy Stardust”) or post two (“100,000 Twitter Bots, Bought on the Blockchain”) in the series t to start smaller. Continue on for an example from our whitepaper of how it will work.

Crowdfunding The World

By now, the general public is aware of the idea of crowdfunding. US law has caught up to the extent that regulations have been rolled out allowing a restricted version of crowdfunding in exchange for equity. And in this world, nearly all securities contracts use an arbitration clause, or agreement. We already looked at how things worked with Ziggy, described above. It isn’t difficult to extrapolate the implications for a Kickstarter- like platform, built via blockchain to maximize efficiency. But because ICOs are all the rage, lets take a look at that type of crowdfunding, in which the crowd isn’t quite as large. Just remember, because of how blockchains work, this could happen for one hundred or a thousand people as easily as ten we talk about.

The Simple Agreement for Future Tokens (SAFT) has quickly become a popular funding mechanism for pre-sale Token Generation Events. Sometimes they’re also called Initial Coin Offerings, or ICOs. They are a tool for the early sale of the tokens that will be generated and used by technology protocols for which funding is needed. They require a certain degree of interpersonal trust between founders and investors, as they are essentially a promise to produce and deliver something at a future date. But what if you want to fund a Cambodian team with a promising idea, and you can’t do a background check? What about an anonymous, distributed team? Because of this trust component, the SAFT is a less effective device for unproven teams or inexperienced (or crowd) investors.

The SCAFT?

Luckily the system is already primed for a trust-less solution, a SAFT built via smart contract, a SCAFT: Smart Contract for Future Tokens. But, like we’ve already covered, even smart contracts can’t always be perfect. Let’s take a look:

Ten investors would each like to pre-purchase 10,000 ETH of AwesomeCoin. Each puts their ETH in to a smart contract which has the following expected behavior: it will release .5% of its contents every day until it receives [the correct number of tokens] from [specific wallet address] at which point it will dump all of the remaining funds into the company’s account.

Oops…

Due to a technical problem while preparing for the token generation, the AwesomeCoin developers lose access to [specific wallet address]. This means the smart contracts will never trigger as specified in the SCAFT code. Without intervention, AwesomeCoin will never receive the full balance of their funds, and the investors will never receive their tokens. AwesomeCoin does not want to disrupt their timeline, so they push ahead, issue the tokens and distribute tokens manually from their new address, as promised, to the investors. Using the Juris self mediation tools, the developers propose that the money be transferred to their account even through the technical terms of the smart contract were not satisfied. Using the same tools, seven of the investor’s signal their assent; the developers signal their assent, and the transfer executes. Two of the investors invoke the SCAFT’s cancellation terms. Those contracts are frozen, and all of the money left in those accounts is moved into a Juris CDK generated holding account. The parties are unable to talk it out, and they trigger a SNAP Judgement, after which point one of the investors signals their willingness to release funds. Both parties sign off, and the funds are released.

The remaining investors choose to escalate the case further. This signals Juris to begin formation of a panel. The smart contract doesn’t detail what kind of mediation they would like, so default settings are used. The system guides the parties through the process to select a panel of three High Jurists. This panel hears arguments and examines evidence. At the end of that period, the judges find 2-to-1 for the entrepreneurs. Using their dispute mediation tools, without the consent of the investors, they transfer the remaining funds to the entrepreneurs’ account. The panel members split the mediation fee, and rate each other’s performance (those ratings are used to update their reputation scores).

100,000 Twitter Bots, Bought on the Blockchain – Juris Platform User Examples

In which there is a disagreement regarding “followers” and “bots.”

Welcome to the Juris Project. We’re building a mediation and arbitration protocol for blockchain smart contracts. Start here if you want to know more about the project, and check out the first post in this series “Juris Protocol Use Case — Ziggy Stardust”. Continue on for an example from our whitepaper of how it will work.

100,000 Twitter Bots

Alfred, an aspiring London comedian, is looking to drastically grow his small presence on Twitter to reach new audiences. He currently has around 20k followers and dreams of hitting the low six figures. On CoinLancer, a popular Ethereum-based freelancing marketplace, he finds Barbara: a self-proclaimed social media guru in Chicago. Barbara advertises that for 4 ETH she can grow anyone’s Twitter follower count by 100k followers within 30 days. Alfred’s sold: the price per follower sounds much better than any other offer he’s seen. CoinLancer’s system helps Alfred enter into a smart contract with Barbara, set to programmatically test Alfred’s follower count in 30 days.

30 days later, Alfred’s follower count is at 125k — and rising. The test clause of the smart contract becomes active, and confirms that his follower count has surpassed the success criteria to pay out to Barbara.

To Alfred’s horror, 3 days later, he receives an email from Twitter notifying him that 80k of Alfred’s 125k Followers were deactivated. His Follower count now falls drastically short of Barbara’s promise. As far as he’s concerned, this isn’t what he paid for. He contacts Barbara. As far as she’s concerned, she’s fulfilled the contract as it was written and has rendered her services as agreed: she got him his 100k followers.

Relieved that CoinLancer suggested he include Juris CDK in the smart contract, Alfred activates the adjudication function in his Juris dashboard. All the Ether in the contract is temporarily frozen, and a request is sent to Juris to begin arbitration. He and Barbara have already talked about their disagreement, and they’re getting nowhere, so Alfred decides to escalate to a SNAP Judgement.

Worldwide, holders of JRS receive notification of a new contract in need of arbitration. As they enter their online Juris dashboard and examine the ticket, they’re presented with case details provided by Alfred and Barbara, as well as a copy of the smart contract in question and any associated logs. Deng, a JRS holder in Singapore, reviews the initial case brief. He’s unfamiliar with bot protocols and Twitter, and he’s not confident that he will be able to contribute to the discussion. He decides this case isn’t for him. But Juan, a social media manager in Acapulco, has dealt with this before — personally. He, and thousands of other token holders, accept the ticket. He reviews the case and contract, and swiftly casts his first vote. Within a few days, thousands of votes have been cast worldwide, discussions have taken place, and short opinions have been written and submitted.

Alfred awakes the next day and, to his delight, the SNAP has already rendered a judgement. His dashboard reports back that 64% of the High Jurists sided with him, 73% of the Good Standing Jurists. As a token holder — and occasional Jurist himself — he knows that’s a very positive outcome for him. He is also able to see a record of discussion, and the opinions submitted along with rounds of voting. He knows Barbara will also see the same.

He submits to assent to the favorable opinion cast by the SNAP Jurists. If Barbara assents also, the case will be marked resolved and he’ll be refunded his Ether. He and Barbara can part ways. He knows that if she doesn’t, a second round of arbitration, this time binding, may happen. Seeing thousands of votes rendered in Alfred’s favor, Barbara concedes and assents to the decision. The Ether tied up in the contract is returned to Alfred, and the JRS used to power the arbitration function in the contract is divided equally amongst all the arbiters who took part in the SNAP.

Ziggy Stardust, Blockchain Rockstar – Juris Platform User Examples

In which an artist, a platform, and a whole lot of fans are saved a headache.

Welcome to the Juris Project. We’re building a mediation and arbitration protocol for blockchain smart contracts. Start here if you want to know more about the project, and you can check out “Juris Protocol Use Case — 100k Twitter Bots” for a slightly more advanced scenario. Continue on for an example from our whitepaper of how it will work.

Ziggy plays guitar.

He’s an independent singer and songwriter who puts out music with his band The Spiders from Mars. He wants to sell his tunes, but he’s sick of dealing with iTunes and the streaming options. He only makes 30% of the purchase price there. He thought about selling his music direct, and taking payments through PayPal, but those transaction fees are pretty high as well. To compete he needs to offer his tracks at $.99, $1.50 max, and he’s losing $.30-.50 of that on each transaction. But Ziggy has been watching the evolution of blockchain tech, so he thinks he can do even better. He finds a service built on Ethereum called Ujo that helps him set up a store with Ethereum smart contracts. The contract sends an attached Mp3 file directly to anyone that sends in $1 worth of Ether. Easy, and he gets to keep way more of that dollar than he would have with any alternative.

Ziggy drops his first single using his new smart contract system. He teases the track on Twitter and his fans are excited. David, a huge fan, immediately sends in his ETH, and he gets the mp3 he expected. But when he listens, he finds out the file is nothing but static. This also happened to a thousand other fans. It seems the file Ziggy uploaded was corrupted on export or delivery. Luckily Ujo had incorporated the Juris CDK. The company hasn’t collected any money yet, as it’s in a Juris CDK created holding wallet for the contracted two days clearance before they pass it to Ziggy. On David’s receipt he has a button that says “Request Refund or Report Problem.” He hits it, and fills out the details on the problem with his Mp3 file.

The platform operators and Ziggy get a notification right away that the smart contract outcome has been flagged, and the contract (and funds) are frozen. On their Juris Dashboard they can see that 800 other flags have come in for this issue. Ziggy immediately checks the file and sees what happened, realizes this is an obvious screw up, and they’ll need to make good. Ziggy exported the wrong track in his recording session, and Ujo didn’t catch it.

Ziggy outputs the right track and lets the service know. They send the fixed Mp3 file to David and all of the other fans who have placed an order so far. David gets a ping that Ujo and Ziggy have marked the dispute as resolved. He agrees, so he marks the conflict as resolved via the Juris Dashboard as well. The funds are unlocked, and the contract is able to run. In two days Ziggy’s ETH is delivered. In that time, the service has fixed the smart contract for Ziggy’s track so this won’t happen to the next buyer. As buzz grows, 50,000 more tracks are sold in the next day, all smooth transactions. The CDK just saved Ziggy, Ujo, and thousands of fans a headache, if not worse.

Justice is Coming to The Blockchain

Introducing the Juris Protocol: Human-Powered Dispute Resolution for Blockchain Smart Contracts.

For all the promise that self-executing smart contracts hold, mistakes, misunderstandings, disputes, and hacks will still happen. Juris is building a human-powered, blockchain-native, open source dispute resolution protocol because we believe that smart contract technology will never reach large scale adoption without a fair dispute resolution system, built to mesh with real world legal structures.

New contracts, old problems.

In the wake of costly cases like the DAO or Parity Wallet hacks, in which hundreds of millions of dollars were lost or stolen, our team began work on the Juris Protocol. Smart contracts have the potential to facilitate secure transactions and enforceable agreements with remarkable efficiency. Moreover, these tools can be made available globally and among a class of citizen to which such contractual means of enforcement have never previously been available. But, smart contracts will never truly take hold if they do not present themselves to the average person backed by an equally evolved and fair system of dispute resolution and judgement.

In recent decades we have witnessed the rapid digitization, decentralization, and distribution of myriad services and tools which used to exist solely in the “real world.” These technologies have fundamentally altered the way humans communicate. With this transition we have seen the rise of new problems, new solutions… and new problems again. Among those solutions we find blockchain technology, which gives us a simple but fundamentally different way of recording transactions between parties. And blockchain technology has given rise to the self-executing, “smart” contract: a simple but fundamentally revolutionary way to make and execute agreements about those transactions.

For all the promise this solution presents, it does not mean that these smart contracts are free of the complexity and nuance which has given rise to contract law and modern judicial systems. As all lawyers know well, there is no perfect contract, smart or otherwise. Like traditional contracts before them, smart contracts and their self-executed transactions will result in disputes, mistakes, chargeback requests, and hacks.

Our solution.

Including the Juris Protocol code will make any smart contract legally enforceable before disputes, errors, or hacks happen. By using the Juris Contract Development Kit, any smart contract user will have access to a subset of best practice boilerplate legal protections in the event of a dispute. With Juris Token (JRS) attached, the smart contract is backed by the ability to freeze contract operations and use Juris Protocol tools to resolve the disputed transactions.

When a dispute is triggered, users will be directed to the Juris SELF mediation tools, which provide disputing parties with a forum to come to mutual resolution on their own. If an agreement is reached, they can use Juris tools to execute a modified smart contract.

If SELF mediation is ineffective, users can escalate to the Juris SNAP mediation system to crowdsource an opinion from our decentralized force of qualified Jurists. If settlement negotiations are still stalled, users can escalate to a binding Juris PANEL which provides a decentralized, United Nations compliant arbitration tribunal judicially enforceable in 157 countries, (if preferred, escalation will also be possible to the external dispute resolution company of the smart contract user’s choice.)

If the contract runs without dispute, or a dispute is resolved via SELF mediation, all JRS is returned. If SNAP mediation or PANEL arbitration is needed, attached JRS is earned by Jurists for their time and judgement.

Human systems.

For blockchain-based technologies and smart contracts to work, we must acknowledge this fact of any tool working in service of human cooperation: humans will disagree and humans will misunderstand, often through no fault of their own. Disputes will happen. Even if we _could_ perfect smart contract automation, humans need to feel like their grievances have been heard in order to trust a system of resolution.

It is our intent at Juris not to disrupt the legal system, but to build a bridge: a decentralized mediation and arbitration layer as accessible as the Internet. Built with empathy and usability, Juris will conform to modern alternative dispute resolution science and law. It will be powered by a force of qualified legal professionals, including certified mediators and arbitrators, earning JRS Token for their services, provided from anywhere in the world.

The Juris Protocol will be able to incorporate with _any_ blockchain smart contract via open source plug-in, and _any_ traditional contract via standard arbitration clause.

Building a bridge.

In the realm of “Silicon Valley,” and tech innovation, there is a popular notion of “disruption” typified by the idea of tearing down and replacing previous institutions. This ethos has been instrumental to the growth and development of blockchain based technologies.

But, there are some systems of such great importance to society that every successive “disruption” has merely refined their application. In law and governance, destruction of the old is deliberately difficult. Passing a law is difficult and slow because we want — we _need —_ to get it right. We presume innocence until proof of guilt because keeping innocent people out of prison is fundamentally important. Human rights are held sacred, vigorously debated, and defended because they are critical to a citizenry’s contract with their government, and with one another. And above all, human beings are wired to expect and pursue the “fairness” of transactions.

From monarchies, to oligarchies, to the republic and democracy. Through centuries of decentralization in systems of government. From English common law to modern systems of judicial resolution and arbitration, the idea articulated in the Magna Carta that “lawful judgement” by other humans is the only way to fairly and peacefully resolve a dispute is not a notion to be “disrupted,” but a notion to be refined and incorporated anew in any system of governance which proposes to facilitate human cooperation.

It is with these convictions, and belief in smart contracts as the future of legally binding agreement, that our team — comprised of lawyers, engineers, economists and scientists — began work on the Juris Protocol: an open source, human-powered, blockchain-native, dispute arbitration and mediation system.

Today I am proud to announce the public launch of our whitepaper, available through our website: (http://jurisproject.io).

Take a look. Get involved. Help us build a judicial system for the blockchain.

Sincerely,

Adam J. Kerpelman, Founder & CEO, Juris