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smart contracts

The headline may be intemperate but the point should not be easily overlooked. The English Common Law has something that codified legal systems, such as those across much of the EU, do not have - flexibility. That is an extraordinary strength that is being eroded in many areas of law. In this case, the point is to solve a problem without codification. Even so, it's odd that, in the specific instance, it's taken so long to come to a consensus - after all, common law is generally common sense. In this case, it's all about cryto-assets and smart contracts in respect of which the UK Jurisdiction Task Force has issued a statement. It's not binding on courts but it's highly persuasive, as Nigel Morris-Cotterill explains.

CoNet Section: 

The fintech world is at last waking up to the biggest problem facing real-world businesses: how to perform KYC on customers you will never physically meet and who live lives which do not intersect with your own except for one specific purpose - the provision of a service. Of course, being tech-driven, fintechs are looking for a tech solution and they've even got a name for it - Digital Identities. The world is full of "White Papers" but there are no practical applications nearing real-world testing, so far as we can ascertain. It appears that, as in so many cases, people are starting with the tech and trying to make the problem fit it, rather than looking at the problem and trying to build tech around reality, says Nigel Morris-Cotterill.

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**This article has been updated for spelling, grammar and one or two additions or amendments performed to improve clarity.** 11 November 2019.

This ultra-simplified explanation clarifies the absolute basics of a subject that has become shrouded in myth and mystery.

The blockchain, crypto-currencies (or cryptocurrencies) like bitcoin, distributed ledgers and smart contracts are, actually, stuff you already know..

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