IOTA (MIOTA)–In a landmark move, the Internet of Things currency has established a partnership with the United Nations in an effort to improve global efficiency, transparency and assist the U.N.’s effort to bring awareness to humanitarian efforts.
Coming off several weeks of negative press, IOTA has suffered from an emphasis on the development team’s aggressive marketing tactics. Ranging from allegations of direct threats to less-than professional name calling, the team behind IOTA has either been the target of a calculated FUD campaign (similar to the irrational backlash Justin Sun and the TRON Foundation experienced earlier in the year), or is guilty of heavy-handed tactics in the cryptospace. Some news outlets have even begun to question whether investors should be concerned over the mounting allegations and the potential implosion the currency could experience in the aftermath of a witch hunt. Speaking to Cointelegraph, IOTA’s CEO David Sønstebø stood behind his currency and the team’s contentious behavior as a necessary evil in an industry filled with competition, lack of regulation, and regular FUD-based attacks that lack substance:
“I am ‘blunt’ and brutally honest to people who attack IOTA, a non-profit project with pure intentions, with falsehoods, insane accusation, and general defamation, yes. If that makes me rude, I’m rude as f***.”
It’s easy to empathize with Sønstebø’s position: cryptocurrency is filled with warring factions of investors that seek to profit from the decline of their competition. In addition, the industry as a whole is under extreme pressure from outside forces, with financial titans like Warren Buffett making regular negative remarks. MIT, in particular, has been a primary detractor of IOTA, to the ire of both its CEO and investment base.
Changing Perception of IOTA
While transitory headlines may push the negative face of IOTA, the currency has made a major step forward in both public relations and real-world adoption by partnering with the United Nations. Not only does the agreement give a much-needed level of legitimization to cryptocurrency in solving global problems (a boon to the entire industry), but it puts a focus on the non-profit aspect of IOTA and the team’s commitment to improving the world.
This morning, the U.N. announced that IOTA has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations Office of Project Services. The partnership, under the tagline of shared problems require shared solutions, is aiming to “explore how innovative data management tech can enhance the efficiency of humanitarian & development operations.”
“Shared 🌍 problems require shared 🌍 solutions.” We've partnered w/ @iotatoken to explore how innovative data management tech can enhance the efficiency of humanitarian & development operations. | #distributedledger https://t.co/GHbbB2Pm9d
— UNOPS (@UNOPS) May 22, 2018
The United Nations Office of Project Services (UNOPS) operates in over eighty countries, and is looking to the blockchain powered ledger of IOTA for increased data processing, particularly in the area of tracking humanitarian efforts. Blockchain has often been proposed as a solution for third-world corruption, giving an unbroken, consensus mechanism that insures proper practices are being followed. IOTA comes with the added benefit of having fast, free transactions that allow UNOPS to track everything from where AID money is spent, to how projects are permeating through communities.
Using IOTA for Improved Efficiency
As we have pointed out in previous articles, 3rd party companies and organizations looking to cryptocurrency for increased efficiency are going to have an eye on scalability. It does not help UNOPS to implement a crypto for blockchain innovation if the currency fails to scale to the level necessary for ubiquitous use. IOTA’s tangle feature allows the currency to scale with increased network use, thereby conserving resources while also giving UTOPS a technology that is aiming to be accessible on the world’s 8.4 billion internet-connected devices.
Yoshiyuki Yamamoto, special advisor on blockchain for UNOPS, had this to say on the partnership with IOTA,
“We share a vision where machines, devices, sensors and people connect and communicate to each other – it’s the world of ‘Industry 4.0.’ Harnessing technology that allows for these processes to work simultaneously, without the need for intermediaries, will help expedite our mission as an organization.”
Likewise, aforementioned IOTA CEO David Sønstebø echoed the sentiment of his UNOPS counterpart, stating,
“Shared global problems require shared global solutions. With our open-source, permission-less innovation approach, IOTA’s distributed ledger technology lends itself uniquely to this kind of cooperative problem-solving.”
While previous press may have focused on the negative behavior of IOTA and the development team, the UNOPS partnership shows a level of maturity on behalf of the currency, in addition to a focus on solving legitimate, global problems. Other currencies may be content on promises of financial riches to their investment base and disrupting the entrenched banking system, but IOTA is setting a standard for real-world initiatives through the innovation of cryptocurrency.