Across the many key speakers and presenters at Consensus 2022 by CoinDesk, it was difficult to pin down any single common theme as discussion ranged from crypto mining to Web3 (and even Web5) to NFTs, and pretty much everything decentralized in between.
In apparent illustration of this, Michael Casey, CoinDesk’s Chief Content Officer, at one point remarked: “The spirit of decentralization allows me to express dismay on Ted Cruz’s position on abortion and guns, while cheering him on for his support of Bitcoin.”
So went the discourse at Consensus 2022. Edward Snowden, in an address about internet privacy, said: “I’m worried about our identity being used against us. I’m worried about money being used against us.” And while he stopped short of endorsing crypto as an investment, he did say that he “encourage
people to use the technology to transfer value.”
Chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov, who gave a presentation titled “Digital and Personal Freedom in the Age of Crypto,” touched upon Bitcoin’s importance for activism in the context of recent world events like the war in Ukraine. “Every day you see new and new operations…
One specific topic that did receive a good deal of attention throughout the week, though, was crypto regulation. On a panel titled “Washington’s Crypto Awakening,” Senators Cynthia Lummis and Kirsten Gillibrand spoke about the “Responsible Financial Innovation Act,” the bipartisan crypto bill that they had introduced to the US Senate just a few days before.
Regarding the bill, Lummis said: “It is very comprehensive, and it takes the existing regulatory framework for traditional assets, and we just lay the cryptocurrency world on top of those.” (Lummis also claimed that “it was mostly disagreements within this industry that brought about certain issues coming to the forefront and certain issues waiting until later.”)
“So the important part of this effort is to recognize the potential,” said Gillibrand, “and then build a structural framework around it, so that we have basic rules of the road, so that the United States can be a jurisdiction where there’s reliability, where’s there’s safety and soundness, where there’s transparency and accountability, where there is consumer protection.” She added: “We don’t want this market going to other countries that are just better at getting it set up and making it easier and more transparent for consumers, we want that industry here.”
Senator Pat Toomey, who was also on the panel, was confident about crypto regulation as a whole moving forward, despite some disagreements with the current version of the Senate bill. “What can we get done this year? I’m actually more optimistic than most. I’m going to go out on a limb and say we get stablecoins done this year,” he said.
During his own keynote, Sam Bankman-Fried talked about regulation as well, concluding: “In the end it’s the policy that matters more than politics… When you look at having sane economic policies that will have a massive impact on how government impacts lives… I’m excited that regulators are coming out with concrete regulatory steps… I’m really excited about this.”
Another noteworthy moment along the way involved rapper 2 Chainz elaborating on some of his own BTC holdings on yet another panel. “I’m true to this, I’m not new to this… I got a little something,” he said, before disclosing that he had first heard about Bitcoin in 2014, but had refrained from buying any at the time, and later regretted it. He went on to say that he had since bought Bitcoin for each of his three kids, as “
While some of the speakers did acknowledge bear market conditions and the prospect of crypto winter, there nonetheless remained an undeniable sense of resilience in the atmosphere. “During bull markets, everyone’s starting their own projects… if we are in a crypto winter, we will leverage that, and we will use that to the max,” said Binance founder Changpeng Zhao.
There were still other outlooks that proved even more bullishly specific. Mike Novogratz, for example, went as far as saying: “My hope is that by the fourth quarter, the economy will be slowing enough that the Fed says we are going to pause, and then you will see the next crypto cycle start. Then Bitcoin will break from equities and lead markets.”
More generally, Rumi Morales commented that “The level of innovation is greater than anything I have ever seen in 25 years of being in venture capital… In the last crypto winter, there was no DeFi, no NFTs, no metaverse. This is super exciting now.” Writer Neal Stephenson simply said: “Worrying doesn’t get us anywhere, building things is how we move forward.”
Wattum enjoyed hearing from the rich collection of speakers at Consensus 2022 and agrees that the current moment is one of great opportunity for crypto miners and investors. Right now makes for the perfect time to get involved, and we’re excited to continue building and expanding mining operations for our clients and customers. Get in touch with a sales representative to learn more about your Bitcoin mining options today.