A recent coindesk article reported that on July 12, MasterCard suffered a global outage. What was particularly interesting was not necessarily the outage itself but cryptocurrencies enthusiasts’ reaction to the outage. As pointed out by coindesk, many enthusiasts voiced their reaction on Twitter.
“Supporters of specific cryptocurrencies also came out to heckle the payments giant, including supporters of XRP and the technology developed by distributed ledger startup Ripple, and those backing the cryptocurrency Dash.”
Most of the tweets focused on the perceived benefits of cryptocurrency and blockchain. My issue with the tweets, at least those included in the coindesk article, is that none of them address the fact that cryptocurrency and blockchain run on a digital platform and digital itself has inherent limitations as well. For example, if a merchant loses power to its facility, it does not matter if customers are using cards or cryptocurrency; the transaction will not be able to be processed. This among other reasons is why in recent months the media has reported a backlash against the notion of a cashless society, one from which cash has been completely removed and only digital payments are made.
It should also be pointed out that Mastercard recently filed and won a patent for processing cryptocurrency payments faster:
“Mastercard won a U.S. patent on Tuesday for a method of speeding up cryptocurrency payments.”
So, much to the chagrin of many cryptocurrency enthusiasts, it is not that large networks are ignoring or trying to remove cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology from the market. Rather, they recognize that there are fundamental issues with the technology and are working on ways to improve upon it in order to be able to utilize that technology on their platforms.
“This is not the first time Mastercard has expressed interest in addressing consumer protection in the space of crypto, having applied for a separate patent last year looking at building refund services for cryptocurrency transactions.”
Overview by PaymentJournal.com