SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Merit, the world’s first invite-only cryptocurrency, today emerged from stealth with $1 million dollars in self-funding and announced general availability of its digital currency, MRT, and wallet. Merit is opening the world of digital currency to those outside of the global technological and financial elite, enabling any person with access to the Internet to easily use cryptocurrency for daily activities such as splitting a restaurant bill or buying clothing online. Merit is also the first cryptocurrency to feature decentralized vaults and escrows on the blockchain.
“The cryptocurrency has stumbled away from its decentralized roots and diverted to a winner-take-all Wall Street mentality,” said Merit Founder and CEO Adil Wali. “At Merit, we strive to get back to the original ethos of cryptocurrency: to use the power of blockchain technology to actually make our lives easier. We want it to be so easy to use that our least tech-savvy friends and family could use it everyday.”
Today, approximately only one in every 2,000 people has an active digital currency wallet for any currency. Many have heard about cryptocurrency, but haven’t adopted it themselves due to security and usability concerns. Between easy-to-spoof contracts and wallets with private keys that, if lost, render currency inaccessible, cryptocurrencies are both insecure and hard to use. By re-thinking how blockchain operates, Merit has created a cryptocurrency and wallet as easy to use as Venmo, Paypal or the Apple Cash app.
Easy enough for non-tech-savvy users
Merit removes barriers to entry to blockchain investments and payments by making MRT as easy to send as a tweet. Users can also simply create and send Merit via a link, to any user in the world, via any communication channel, such as SMS, WhatsApp, or email. No-download web wallets get users started, and Merit is claimable by users without wallets. These transactions are cancellable by the sender and can be password-protected. All of this is done without reliance on centralized third-parties.
Invite-only, community-grown cryptocurrency
The Merit blockchain employs a new kind of mining. Invitations are scarce, mineable and accounted for on the blockchain. New cryptocurrency is awarded based not only on proof-of-work, which is the existing norm for mining, but proof-of-growth—increasing the size of the community. Top referrers are awarded with a part of each block that is mined. It is the world’s first incentive model that promotes users for growing the network in addition to keeping it secure.
Decentralized vaults—an ultra-secure blockchain savings account
Merit enables users to create vaults that are considerably more secure than regular wallets. The community model provides a traceability and accountability that stops users from losing Merit by sending it to a ghost address, as happens with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. A unique protocol allows a user’s vault to be recovered in a decentralized way, through a community of friends, effectively creating the world’s first “password reset” on the blockchain.
Merit avoids the centralization that other cryptocurrencies have fallen prey to. Contrary to Satoshi’s original intent, the ICO model incentivizes behavior to increase the valuation of cryptocoins before useful blockchain applications are created. Such front-loading of capital into an organization limits opportunities for decentralized acquisition, such as mining. It also harkens comparisons to the cash-rich, hollow startups of the dot-com era. Designed to grow as a healthy, sustainable system, Merit is decentralized and widely applicable, course-correcting back to Satoshi’s mission.
“Satoshi intended bitcoin as a democratized, de-centralized digital currency for everyone,” said Wali. “Instead, cryptocurrency landed on centralized exchanges that are essentially banks, and became too complicated for everyday use. By re-orienting digital money to become user-friendly and communally accountable, Merit is grounding cryptocurrency back to its original vision.”
Merit is available now by invitation-only.
The Merit Foundation is a non-profit organization that is focused on increasing the worldwide adoption of digital currency. The organization was built from the ground up with a priority on simplicity, usability and security. Merit’s cryptocurrency, MRT, is as easy to use as sending a tweet, and is claimable without wallets. With MRT, Merit is poised to finally bring cryptocurrency to the masses. An invitation-only blockchain that is community-driven, transparent and highly secure, Merit grows with its users, and uses an innovative mining model to reward them accordingly. Merit is headquartered in Seattle and operates globally. Visit www.merit.me for more information.