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Wildcards Purports to Save Endangered Species With Technical First For Ethereum




It’s the first successful live deployment on the Ethereum mainnet of something called a “scalable Harberger tax contract,” and it might just help save at-risk animals.

Cointelegraph attended the CV Labs pitch session in Davos, Switzerland today, an event running alongside the 50th edition of the World Economic Forum. In the basement of the Pöstli Club, crypto entrepreneurs took to the stage to give brief presentations on their current projects. JonJon Clark gave the audience an engaging rundown on his project Wildcards — maybe it’s his charming South African accent, maybe it’s the fact that his company directly connects to improving the world, but we were intrigued to learn more.

“Wildcards is a platform that represents endangered animals as non-fungible tokens,” Clark said. “These NFTs are always for sale, so they can be traded often to generate funds for the organizations they support.”

Organizations doing relief work for the recent Australian wildfires might list tokenized koalas for sale, for example. Money spent on those tokens goes to the associated organization, which can use those funds to support its mission.

“My cofounders and I all grew up in South Africa, and we were close to conservation there. We’d go to game parks to see rhinos and elephants the way other families go to the beach for vacation,” Clark said. “As we grew up, we saw these animal populations dwindle, and we were eventually unable to see animals we could see when we were younger. We want our kids to be able to experience what we experienced.”

Wildcards packs an impressive technical punch for a project generally aimed at saving the world. It represents the first successful live deployment on the Ethereum mainnet of a scalable harberger tax contract. Clark offered us a breakdown on what that actually means:

“Animal tokens on Wildcards are always for sale. As you buy, you have to immediately set a selling price for someone to buy that token from you. But you pay a percentage of that designated selling price, called a harberger tax, in order to prevent you from setting that price to $5 million. Our system for this is scalable because all those tokens are managed by a single smart contract.”

The project unites user incentives related to patronage, collectibles, and profit. People making purchases on the platform get to know that their money is making a positive impact, and can showcase their platform statistics on social media if they want. Users are inclined to gather more and more animal tokens, like CryptoKitties. And the simple truth of the platform’s economic model is that even though it’s primarily about generating money for relief organization, users could theoretically sell their animal tokens for personal profit down the road.

When asked about what’s next for the company, Clark teased that Wildcards expects to release its token standard soon.

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