Today is the final day of the conference. The panels are starting a bit later, and I expect a more laid-back atmosphere. Last night, I went out to dinner with my friend, Brian, who is a Debian Developer. I picked his brain about the parallels between Bitcoin and Debian as open-source projects.
After dinner, Mike Komaransky, of Cumberland Mining, invited us out to a party put on by the Digital Chamber of Commerce. The issue was that you needed a name tag to get in. When they asked who were, Mike informed them that I am, obviously, Vinny Lingham, and my friend’s name is Alex Fowler. That was easier than I thought! The party was an interesting mix of investor-types and heavy hitters. Paul Sports & Eric Lombrozo happened to be there and Eric graciously provided with me with a whiskey double. Thanks!
I was introduced to Anthony Di Lorio, of Ethereum, who explained his complex about people mistakenly putting an “L” in his name all the time. After informing them that I am Bitcoin Error Log, someone requested that I tell Anthony what his “error” is. I told Anthony that if I had wanted to attack him, I would have already, but to play along I mentioned that his “error” might be his involvement with the Ethereum initial crowd sale. He was actually very excited to talk about the topic, and offered me a menthol cigarette to take it outside and talk it out.
I learned more about the work they did to cover their asses legally, and about his perspectives on the whole thing. This is not a stupid man. I could labor over more details that aren’t terribly interesting, but in the end my impression is this: Ethereum is not Bitcoin, never intended to be Bitcoin, and if held to the ideals of Bitcoin will always fall under scrutiny. There are some things about their transparency that could be improved if viewed through the eyes of those forced to fully comply with SEC regulation, but Ethereum founders have no issue sharing information about their holdings. If you filter out all the aspects that are enveloped into what I’ve said so far, it leaves only one clear criticism. While I feel anyone should be able to invest in anything they damn well please, the people buying the Ethereum crowd sale did not buy Ether for its stated purpose. The paperwork most likely covers Ethereum’s ass, but there will always be collateral damage to overly ignorant or inexperienced investors. Personally, I’d rather live in a world where every man has free access to invest, than one where the government angles them out with standard like being an ‘accredited investor’. The world I prefer is the one where Ethereum is allowed to do what they did, regardless of whether a person believes their offering is a good investment.
Personally, I prefer to measure an ‘equity’ offering by the details of what the investor is getting and any related risks. For example, I feel the Mycelium offering is MUCH worse than Ethereum’s original crowd sale. The Mycelium offering is an insult to any investor, in my estimation. Furthermore, it’s offerings like Mycelium’s that are more likely to put us all in a “this is why we can’t have nice things” scenario.
10:00AM Setting Enterprise Standards in a Multi-Blockchain World
I have to say that listening to Vitalik Buterin field questions and correct the comments of co-panelists throughout this conference has provided me with a newfound respect for him. He has done as much as anyone here to defend and explain Bitcoin blockchain concepts. I already thanked him for this personally, but I want you readers to understand this as well.
Back to stories from last night. At some point yesterday I tried to introduce myself to Perianne Boring, I figured that her Digital Chamber of Commerce might be an appropriate channel to open for Bitcoin Core and their efforts to have better communication, so why not bug her? It was probably the most awkward exchange I’ve had at this event, even more so than discussing my CoinDesk Promotes London Bitcoin Forum Scam, Sweeps Under Rug article with CoinDesk reps, Ryan Selkis and Pete Rizzo. (Thanks for not strangling me, guys!) Perianne seemed suspicious of me in that first conversation, wanting to know who I worked for, and why I was helping Core over Classic, which I explained readily for her. She did explain that she must remain agnostic about such things, but relunctantly gave me her business card anyway. At the party, there were more awkward looks from her, but I only pieced together why this morning when I saw the little Chamber of Digital Commerce logo on my Barry Silbert name badge for the first time (Mike thought I should have options, what if Vinny actually showed up!?) Thanks for not kicking us out Perianne!
I just met Samson Mow, of BTCC, for the first time and I can report that no black holes or singularities occurred as a result. If you are not familiar with his work, he is a fellow Bitcoin leukocyte, trolling the deserving and shining sunshine onto the shadowy figures of the Bitcoin world. Follow him on Twitter. Samson discussed hiring me to go ahead and write a creative article idea I shared with him. Do I really wanna sell out?! Oh noes!!!
I’m walking around trying to find this panel with Alex Fowler, of Blockstream, since I have a particular interest in learning more about their Liquid sidechain project. I had no luck until I saw Ryan Selkis and asked where the hell the presentation his happening. He informs me it’s invite only and closed to the press. Grrr…
This also helps me realize that this event is pretty much over, since the private panels are the only ones continuing into the afternoon.
Thanks for reading, I hope these live blog posts were interesting to you!