This week in crypto has been a relatively muted one, with some developments that could have a good long-term impact. The U.S. house saw a bill allowing bitcoin to 401k plans introduced, and the crypto community celebrated another pizza day.

Highlights:

  • El Salvador hosted 32 central and 12 financial authorities for a discussion on bitcoin, financial inclusion, and the digital economy, among other things.
  • U.S. House of Representatives introduced a bill that would allow bitcoin to be a part of 401k retirement plans.
  • Bitcoin celebrated its pizza day on May 22. The day marks the occasion where early bitcoin enthusiast Laszlo Hanyecz spent 10,000 BTC to buy a few pizzas in 2010.
  • Decentralised naming service ENS is reaching critical mass, with all growth metrics at an all-time high.
  • NFT marketplace OpenSea has launched a new marketplace protocol, SeaPort. The new platform comes with a number of innovations.

This Week in Crypto

El Salvador Hosted Central Banks and Institutions for a Bitcoin Discussion

El Salvador hosted 32 central banks and 12 financial authorities for a discussion on financial inclusion, digital economy, banking the unbanked, the bitcoin rollout, and its benefits in the country. The attendees were largely central bank and financial authorities representatives from developing countries, of which there were a total of 44.

There hasn’t been much of an update on how the discussion panned out, but it’s clear that El Salvador has garnered the attention of other developing countries. Many of these smaller nations are looking to bitcoin and crypto to boost their economies, with the most recent being the Central African Republic, which also made bitcoin legal tender.

Bill To Allow Bitcoin Into 401k Introduced in US House

In what could be a landmark moment for bitcoin, the United States House of Representatives has introduced a bill that would allow bitcoin to be a part of 401k investment plans. Rep. Byron Donalds (R-FL) brought the bill forward, as part of the Senate’s Financial Freedom Act of 2022.

The news follows another related development that took place last month, namely that Fidelity Investments announced that it would be offering up to 20% portfolio allocation to crypto in 401 (k) plans. There might be some issues with this trend, however, as Senator Elizabeth Warren has expressed concerns about allowing bitcoin to be a part of retirement plans.

Bitcoin Celebrates Pizza Day

Bitcoin saw yet another pizza day pass by on May 22, and the crypto community celebrated the occasion in a typical fashion. Bitcoin Pizza Day refers to the day when Laszlo Hanyecz, an early bitcoin enthusiast, spent 10,000 BTC for a few pizzas far back in 2010. It was one of the first transactions where bitcoin was exchanged for something tangible, and it is a cultural moment.

In today’s market, those 10,000 bitcoins would be worth over $300 million. Hanyecz does not regret the decision. At the very least, it has become part of bitcoin’s history and stands as a good story to tell.

ENS Is Reaching a Critical Mass, According to Lead Developer

The lead developer of Ethereum Name Service (ENS), Nick Johnson, has revealed that interest in the decentralised naming service has reached an all-time high. Johnson tweeted that |every single ENS metric” showed a peak in interest, including registrations, renewals, revenue, and income. New and returning users are also at a high. He told CoinTelegraph that “ENS has reached a critical mass of awareness and adoption; most wallets support ENS names, so the usability factor is significant.”

ENS is a critical part of the web3 revolution and stands to provide a lot to entities who make use of it. It allows for decentralised naming of wallets and websites, and makes it easier to interact with other users and services of web3.

OpenSea Launches SeaPort Protocol

Leading NFT marketplace OpenSea launched the SeaPort Protocol on May 20 to a mostly positive reception. The new NFT marketplace offers several innovations for such a platform, including multiple ways for listings to be fulfilled and the ability to purchase NFTs using assets other than crypto.  The protocol has been audited by OpenZeppelin.

NFTs continue to thrive, relatively speaking, even though recent weeks have seen the crypto market suffer. There is a constant influx of new projects and NFT collections, which are attracting investors, both regular crypto investors and fresh ones.

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