I would like to introduce a new, simplified, approach to implementing Dividends on a blockchain. As many astute economists have pointed out, destroying the currency and paying dividends have the same effect on your bottom line. In one case you end up with more units of a fixed supply, in the other case the units you have become more valuable. Despite the economic equivalence of these two actions there is a critical psychological difference. People are often unable to separate real return on capital from capital appreciation. There is also a huge difference in user experience between seeing the number of dollars they have go up due to 1% interest while ignoring the 5% inflation. They still 'feel' they got more.
This leads me to the following critical observation that all crypto-currencies are currently operating under the illusion that you have realized high gains when the reality is almost all coins have an inflation rate north of 10% per year. As a result people are paying taxes on imaginary gains because the gains were not adjusted for inflation. Just like we want the government to be 'honest' and tax people on their savings rather than hide the tax in inflation, all crypto-currencies should be honest and show the users' balance decrease by 10% per year as fees paid to miners.
The reason this has never been implemented is because 'implementing a tax' has been considered entirely too difficult and inefficient. I would now like to present a new approach to crypto-currencies that will simultaneously eliminate the inflation deception, enable dividends, and put an end to all crypto-currencies that think changing the money supply actually means something to the market. This change could easily be adopted by all Altcoins without having to change the blockchain at all.
Rather than considering the 'unit' of a currency to be individual shares, people should transact in 'Percent of Money Supply' and all balances should be represented as 'Percent of Money Supply'. As currency is created you see your balance shrinking due to inflation. When money is destroyed your see your balance increasing due to 'dividends'. You can shift the decimal on this percentage to create friendly numbers, but ultimately it is still a percentage. With a simple change to the user interface dividends can be implemented with ease.
If all block chains implemented this policy then the unit value on sites like http://coinmarketcap.com/
would be a meaningful way of comparing the coins. In the case of BitShares this eliminates a large amount of bookkeeping and simply changes the way the currency is entered or displayed by the user. Users get to see their dividends as their balance increases over time even though no coins are actually transferred to them.
In the case of Bitcoin users would be able to write of a 10% loss per year against their capital gains. I would like to officially proclaim that Bitcoin implements demurrage by charging people for holding a balance. It is currently hidden by inflation, but none the less the economic system of all coins to date have a hidden wealth tax in the name of security and are terribly inefficient. A future coin that is able to eliminate this inflation and 'tax' will have significantly more value.
Given this insight, many of our future block chains have become much easier to implement.