How blockchain archives can change how we record history in wartime
We are coming into a great age of blockchain technology, but there are limits that need to be solved before decentralized archives enter the mainstream.
Decentralized blockchain technology has been around for a relatively short period of time, in the grand scheme of things, but its decentralized nature has the power to keep data and information out of the hands of censors looking to create a “safe” and “faultless” version of history.
Blockchain is permissionless and literally owned by no one. So, while we can’t save the Alexandria libraries of the past, we can make sure the future is well equipped with the tools necessary to preserve historical records.
Here we’ll look at some of the ways nonfungible tokens (NFT) and blockchain technology have been used for keeping archives, the potential downfalls of such technology, and what the future holds for blockchain-based storage systems.
NFTs and archives
While many current use cases surrounding NFTs deal with digital art, there is another side of nonfungible tokens that has only started to be explored.
Keeping an archive can be a costly and time-consuming endeavor, but NFTs can serve as a form of fundraising to support archival development.
For example, fashion designer Paco Rabanne is selling NFTs to fund his physical archive and support his brand name.
Furthermore, the technology itself can be used as means to store information.
Archangel, a test project of a “trusted archive of digital public records” at the Unversity of Surrey, has done just that. From 2017 to 2019, the university was able to create a test blockchain archive storage system that used distributed ledger technology (DLT) and NFTs and shifted “from an institutional underscoring of trust to a technological underscoring of trust.”
Cointelegraph reached out to Foteini Valeonti, a research fellow at University College London and founder of USEUM Collectibles — an organization advising museums, policymakers and cultural organizations on NFTs — to talk about the role of blockchain and NFTs in archives.