Hot off the presses, this week’s #CryptoSmartEsq News-Issue 5 (4/29/2018)

By Professor Tonya M. Evans

Welcome to this week’s CryptoSmartEsq News, my carefully curated list of current legal issues and events in blockchain and crypto. 

If you’re new to this exciting, fast-developing space, check out the introductory video in the first CryptoSmartEsq news post. Follow me on Twitter at @CryptoSmartEsq (my blockchain and crypto-focused feed) and @IPProfEvans (my intellectual property-focused feed) and #EvansontheBlock for daily legal bits & bytes. Affiliate links noted with $.

Tweet me your news items.

Top Story

Accord Project to Define Standard for Smart Legal Contract Language (

Accord Project today [4/27/2018] published the first working draft and prototype for Ergo, a domain specific language for smart legal contracts. Designed to capture the operational details of legal contracts, Ergo supports contracts and clauses as first-class elements of the language, allowing lawyers and developers to quickly, easily and safely develop and verify the operation of computable legal contracts.

Tonya M. Evans, Franklin Pierce Center for IP Professor, is a member of The Accord Project’s Intellectual Property Working Group, led by Michael J. Riesen, Esq.

Intellectual Property

IBM Files Patent For Proof-Of-Work Protocol Tailored To IoT Networks (

Tech giant IBM has filed a patent for an Internet of Things (IOT)-focused Blockchain configuration which would tailor the proof-of-work (PoW) protocol in order to address potential security issues in IoT networks, in an application published April 26. More …

Sony Files Patent for Digital Rights Storage on a Blockchain (

Japan’s Sony has filed an application for a patent to store users’ digital rights data on the blockchain, and it stands to disrupt another industry.

The patent application, which was published by the US Patent & Trademark Office on April 26, has made its way to the top of the queue. It’s dubbed Blockchain-Based Digital Rights Management (DRM) and it was filed by both Tokyo-based Sony Corp and Culver City, Calif-based Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Amazon wins patent for data feed marketplace that could include bitcoin transactions (

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday [4/17/2018] approved the subsidiary’s September 2014 filing for a patent that can correlate different data streams and sell the combined feed as a subscription to people who want to track that data. The filing referenced bitcoin transactions twice as examples of possible products. More …

Law & Government

REALLY Smart (and Legal!) Contracts (

In this article, Clause CTO Dan Selman introduces smart legal contracts as well as the Open Source Accord Project.

Women in Blockchain and the Future of Smart Contracts (

The gender gap in blockchain may be more abysmal than it is in law, but I’ll tell you this: If Blockchain@Berkeley’s she(256) conference is any indication, it isn’t because there’s a pipeline problem. The day-long event on the UC Berkeley campus featured women who are true experts in the field and was attended by lots of young women – and not a few men – eager to hear what they had to say. It also yielded insights into the future shape of “smart contracts,” and how the blockchain community is feeling about recent regulatory pressure. (For those unfamiliar, “she(256)” is a play on “sha(256),” the 256-bit Secure Hash Algorithm used in Bitcoin mining). More …

A Former Top Wall Street Regulator Turns to the Blockchain (

Gary Gensler was one of the top financial regulators in the Obama administration, the finance chief for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and, before both of those jobs, a partner at Goldman Sachs. Now, like many other big names from business and government, he is plunging into the world of the blockchain, the data-tracking technology introduced by Bitcoin. More …

Predicting the Emergence of Common Law Through Blockchain (

A majority of the world’s economic activity now operates completely online. The Internet has surpassed regular jurisdictional avenues of governance and commerce channels. What’s more, the markets that were once regulated by bureaucratic, old-world systems are becoming increasingly more complex.

All of this digital activity is driving the need for new common law solutions. The infrastructure that exists today is not prepared to efficiently handle the billions of transactions and international trades that the new age of commerce has ushered in. Thankfully, there is a way for the world to create an efficient mode of control – and that’s with blockchain technology. More …


In First Post ‘Cyan’ Decision, Court Splits Blockchain Lawsuit Into Two (


How Blockchain is Making it Easier to Get Educated Online (

Nowadays, there are plenty of platforms where users can take a course and learn new skills from the comfort of their own home. It’s a big leap forward, but it still has downsides. These platforms can be expensive, and the creators of the educational content that we love are often underpaid and undervalued. It’s time to change things up, and build a new way of sharing educational content that benefits both publishers and consumers. Of all the ways to do this, blockchain technology is turning out to be one of the most promising. More …


Women on the Block
Kicks off Blockchain Week NYC and features women thought leaders in the blockchain community.
May 13 || 10:30 AM – 7PM || Brooklyn, NY
learn more + register

Women4Blockchain Hackathon + Conference

June 1 – 4, 2018 New York University School of Law
learn more + register 

List of 2018 Events (

Working Groups, Committees, & Orgs

Signup for Coinbase to receive $10 in $BTC after you buy or sell $100 worth of $BTC

[previous issue of CryptoSmartEsq News]

Leave a Reply