Barayamal Newsletter
Indigipreneur Podcast
If the Aboriginal Flag were in the Blockchain

If the Aboriginal Flag were in the Blockchain

It was announced ‘Australian government buys copyright to Aboriginal flag in $20m deal’. Within the copyright, transfer royalties from the sales of the Aboriginal flag will be donated to the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) and anyone will now be free to capitalise on the Aboriginal flag by using it on sporting apparel, websites, etc. 

Although it is fabulous to put this argument to rest the question of financial transparency remains the elephant in the room.

Remuneration to organisations that represented Australia’s First People, such as NAIDOC, was through a ‘hand-shake’, a colonial symbol of trust –“dictum meum pactum” (my word is my bond). While the intention was perhaps well-intended many times it fell short of expectations. There is a new kid on the block that could change this for good.
Blockchain technology enables trust that can be audited. Instead, of well-intended handshakes, there is transparency and auditability. Records powered by blockchain technology, such as NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and cryptocurrencies are permanent and cannot be deleted; they can only be updated with the original record retained. This technology is powerful for the art market.

The technology defines ownership – like a digital fingerprint. While anyone can copy the Mona Lisa from Google only one party can own it. In this presentation, I will demonstrate how indigenous communities can be empowered by NFT’s to kickstart ongoing wealth.

Vanessa (Lee) Lee-Ah Ma
I am a First Peoples Australian, with over 25 yrs experience in research, suicide prevention, public and social policy development and cultural governance leadership connecting First Peoples culture with mainstream services, including negotiating with government departments, and organisations. I’m one of the founding members of the Indigenous data sovereignty network - Australia, and Chair of RUOK? Aboriginal-Torres-Strait-Islander Advisory board.

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