The recurring theme that shaped this week was the phase shifts of the culture, geopolitical and financial landscape that set the cause and context for crypto.
There was, for example, the US’s disavowal of Venezuela’s Maduro and recognition
of opposition leader Guaido. Recent months have seen much about the possible role of crypto in Venezuela, and the political instability set off a wave of content about how Bitcoin is being used
and what the crypto people should be doing now
There were some interesting global regulatory developments
, with the UK’s securities regulator releasing guidance at odds with
the SEC’s “decentralization test.” This caused some to comment
about how providing regulatory clarity can actually allow certain nation states to attract crypto business. An example of this in the news this week was the Republic of Georgia’s
work with Bitfury.
Another frame setting force for crypto is the surveillance potential enabled by technology platforms. In that context, reports that Facebook will be moving Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram to a common infrastructure
set off alarm bells
for some. I also wrote a thread exploring the current state of crypto-driven alternatives
to the major social networks, asking whether anything had a chance to reach some sort of network effect escape velocity.
Of course, not everything was macro. There was some heated debate about “crypto law”
and whether we should always be aiming for social trust minimization. A study around Ripple’s circulating supply
suggested that XRP’s market cap may be overstated by some $6 billion. And a tokenization experiment
in a sub-reddit got everyone talking about the value of online reputation.
Twas an interesting week. Happy Long Reads-NLW
Long Reads Sunday #31. You know, at first this week seemed boring. Then tokenized donuts took over a community, Messari went to war with the XRP army, Venezuela’s oppo leader was recognized by the US, and everyone on CT started yelling about “crypto law.” Hooch ya ☕ its LRS! 👇
2/ It’s Sunday morning, so let’s talk donuts. Long story short, it was an accidental experiment in tokenized online reputation, that ended up showing off DEXes, deploying a Harberger Tax and highlighting some challenges with holdings-based governance https://twitter.com/willwarren89/status/1088127211541069824
And hey, speaking of governance, @VladZamfir got literally all of crypto flapping with his post advocating for a “a new crypto legal system.” I think Kyle’s distillation of the piece “why we should be able to change the thing” is the closest to a TL;DR I saw. https://twitter.com/KyleSamani/status/1089236700252000257
5/ @VitalikButerin joined the conversation, with (to me) his most important argument being that there is only so much to debate without defining examples of (to use @KyleSamani’s language) “what things should we be able to change”?
7/ I tend to think we’re going to see different approaches to governance more actively compete for people’s devotion. Don’t like the politics of this chain? Well we’ve got a different politics over here. Then again, in this fun hot takes thread @wheatpond calls BS https://twitter.com/wheatpond/status/1089234341677408256
9/ While China’s tax system might create incentives to put money into crypto, other nation states are experimenting with special economic zones to attract crypto business. @hasufl highlights an NYTimes story on Georgia (the country) working to enable mining. https://twitter.com/hasufl/status/1088818518055890952
18/ If the conversation about the impact of social networks on society is growing, what’s less clear is alternatives. In this thread, I look at the state of crypto-powered alternative social networks. Do any of them have a chance? https://twitter.com/nlw/status/1088231285418590208