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Raiffeisen, Ripple, DIY banking and why 'Bitcoins don't stink'


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I wanted to share this article (only in Dutch sorry) from 'de groene amsterdammer' and my thoughts about it with you.

Bitcoins don't stink

The writer of the article Victor Broers researches the fact that alternatives for 'money' are popping up every where. Also he states this is not something new and exactly there are examples that can be found back as far back as 1934 with the Swiss wir, a complementary coin which still functions today.

Another example is sardex a unit of exchange which is successfully used on the Island of Sardinia. This was introduced in 2009 by a group of Arts and Humanities students lead Giuseppe Littera. Use case there is the fact that the Island was hit hard by credit crisis and banks stopped giving out loans. The system gave local businesses the possibility to invest and trade among each other, so you could say it made money personal again, because users are trading with each other directly. The article goes on interviewing more people and exploring the pro's and con's of using cryptocurrencies, but it also takes me back to one of the reasons why I got interested in Ripple in the first place.

Raiffeisen and DIY banking

My great granddad from my mothers-side was one of the founders of a local cooperative bank for farmers based on the Raiffeisen-system and the three 'S' formula: self-help, self-governance and self-responsibility. His bank later became a part of what is now the Rabobank. In my opinion the Rabobank and other banks really f-ed up because they no longer follow the three 'S' formula and instead of that put their commercial interests in front. They lost contact with their roots and are no longer one of the pillars of community, something I think they should be.

So late 2013 I was investigating for myself how banking could be reinvented with the wealth of technology that is available nowadays. It dawned on me that I was looking for a local, complementary money- and creditsystem just like my great granddad started over a century ago. Of course at first I looked at Bitcoin and I thought it would be able to provide a community with enough building blocks to create their own banking cooperation's again. But I think that Bitcoin isn't flexible enough and it didn't provide me with a solution to make it complementary with the existing money- and creditsystems which are around. Also the fact that it was 'anonymous' isn't necessarily a plus because of trust-issues (it makes it difficult to the self-governance).

Ripple to the rescue?

That's when I stumbled upon Ripple, it was late 2013, it ticked all the boxes to support a 'do it yourself'-bankingsystem like my great granddad did with his community. There even where some LETS (Local Exchange Trading System) initiatives like villages.cc and you could create your own currency which could co-exist next to other digital or fiat currencies in the ledger!

With my limited financial knowledge I thought it would be question of time before more fin-tech savvy people would start creating their own local 'banks' based on the ripple system/protocol. This exactly wasn't really the case and although there where some other interesting developments my interest in ripple faded for a couple of years. The price rise at the beginning of this year, rekindled my interest. At first I had to learn to life with the fact that Ripple had focussed more on banks, although now I fully understand this point of view. It's a more 'if you can't beat them, complement them'-mentality, which hopefully makes it even easier to develop community driven financial solutions next or even into the existing banking landscape.

How ever it turns out, I'm excited to see what the future will bring, because change is coming!


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26 minutes ago, JaiChai said:

Good meat on the bone. Just needs a chef. You mind if I cook it and serve it up with props to you for the ingredients?



Haha please give it a go.... As long as it isn't sushi you are serving :blink:

Edited by ThomasTheTGV
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3 hours ago, Rob12 said:

FWIW, CBS Sunday Morning did a story about Sardex recently that seems to show exactly what you are talking about with the grass roots, community based economy: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/sardex-creating-new-wealth-on-sardinia-without-cash/


@Rob12 Exactly sometimes I think I'm being naive, but the successes with systems like sardex and coins like the brixton pound seem to point out that communities (and not just the crypto community) are 'craving' for economies which are more tailor-made to their needs. At the same time it's a must that these different economies interconnect easily with each other and that's where the products Ripple provides come into the picture. 

BTW thanks for the link to the cbs story

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The whole idea of community banking being re-thought and re-formed on top of current crypto technology structures is something that can definitely happen. 

Banking as a whole, however, is not really a "small-community-friendly" sort of endeavor, and the barriers to entry are still quite high here in the United States.  You need to get various banking licenses and local licenses as well.  Money transmitter license?  Maybe that too. 

I remember the OMG (One Million Gateways) initiative kind of ran into trouble because of KYC requirements. 

I still like the idea, however, and I think there needs to be some special dispensation given to community-owned banks or co-operatives.  If that were the case, I can really see this idea taking off.  To tell you the truth, it might even have political wind behind its sails because having those community alternatives would provide a fall-back in the case of a financial crisis.  The "too big to fail" banks could go ahead and fail, and the small community banks could step in.  But that's just my personal viewpoint talking - big money and big politics plays by different rules.

I love the Sardex example.  I remember watching this on CBS Sunday morning and posting about it :  https://www.xrpchat.com/topic/8111-sardex-profiled-on-cbs-sunday-morning-today-8-6-2017/

Another good example of a local community fall-back in response to an economic crisis!  :good:


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43 minutes ago, Hodor said:

OMG (One Million Gateways) initiative

Yes the OMG (One Million Gateways) initiative that was the one I was looking for as well.

Here an archive link: http://archive.is/BjY54

Is andrewsf still active in the scene? I believe he was a vivid Bitcoin-fan as well so maybe he has already retired :)


Edited by ThomasTheTGV
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  • 3 months later...
On 9/15/2017 at 10:09 PM, ThomasTheTGV said:

Haha please give it a go.... As long as it isn't sushi you are serving :blink:

Uhmm **** now I am hungery for some sushi!

@JaiChai I just got my new Japanse knifes in and now i need some guidance in cooking ;)

Both ThomasTheTGV and JaiChai very good articles very interesting to read for a new comer on this market, specially having red hair ;) 
I didn't really know about ripple and I and the wife just stumbled upon it 5 days ago, since then trying to get the bigger picture but did not really got to it until these articles :)

If you allow me then there are two more members onboard the ripple train for the long run! (if i only knew about this earlier)


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