The ability of blockchain to maintain a distributed, tamper-proof infrastructure for collective digital memory has taken on an unexpected political significance for citizens in Hong Kong.
Soon after Hong Kong’s public broadcaster Radio Television Hong Kong, or RTHK, revealed this the intention Residents hurried to erase any archived material over a year old Save A collection of previous news footage that until now was freely available to the public. The reason for his haste was the recognition that the RTHK collection contained significant coverage of the anti-incumbency struggles and protests of recent years, beginning with the introduction of the Drakean. National security law, As well as evidence of the brutal suppression of these conflicts.
The battle has long been at an official level on the collective records of the past, embroiled by an effort by the Hong Kong police. Rewrite Narrative of one of the most Violent And painful protests in 2019: indiscriminate attack on civilians at suburban metro station UN Long. RTHK’s unbiased coverage of that episode will now be one of the content lost to oblivion, as incremental deletion is underway.
Against this backdrop, a blockchain platform that first emerged at the height of the protest movement is now Poised To provide citizens and activists important tools to reclaim and preserve their recent political history in its integrity.
The platform, called LikeCoin, is a blockchain-based decentralized publishing infrastructure, which provides a decentralized registry for all types of content. Its features enable the people of Hong Kong to coordinate their efforts to store now-threatened records in a distributed and tamper-proof collective database.
Rather than storing the data itself, LikeCoin registers metadata i.e. information about the author, title, publication date, and location of the content. It also stamps each entry with a unique and immutable digital fingerprint: an International Standard Material Number, Or ISCN, similar to the ISBN of a book.
The founder of the platform, Qin Ko, told reporters that downloading and saving content in an ad hoc manner could help citizens to resist the official censorship of history to an extent, proving that data in the future Authenticity and integrity would be more problematic. He explained in detail:
“If you’re the person to back it up, you can look through the hard disk. But what if you’re not that person? Or what if your hard disk is broken?” […] How do you know this [backed up] The photo is the same photo taken 10 years ago? How do you know extra work has not been done in it? “
With LikeCoin’s blockchain infrastructure, 10 (or even many) years from now it will be possible to know whether the content has been tampered with or not by tracking any changes to its digital fingerprint. When it comes to historically significant archived video footage, it may give a clue that the original file may have been intentionally re-edited in a deceptive manner.
Like this, LikeCoin uses its own blockchain to avoid the high transaction costs of networks such as Ethereum. It is no small matter to support the recent political history of a country. Ethereum, in a more limited context, was memorably used to publish and preserve a letter Chinese #MeToo Worker Struggling with government censorship.