🎙2020 Reflections on Crypto and Beyond | Vitalik Buterin

A discussion with Ethereum Founder Vitalik Buterin on his recent blog post “Endnotes on 2020: Crypto and Beyond.”

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This is Part Three of our series with Ethereum Founder Vitalik Buterin, in which we dive into three of his recent blog posts.

Part One: An Incomplete Guide to Rollups

Part Two: Social Recovery and Layer 2 Wallets


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🎙️ 2020 Reflections on Crypto and Beyond | Vitalik Buterin

February 8th, 2021

Vitalik wrote this post from Singapore, noting that 2020 was a dynamic year, in which we faced “humanity’s first boss-level enemy since 1945.” However, it was also a year that brought much hope in areas like transportation, medicine, AI, and blockchains.

In the Political Economy, there has been a transition from physical to digital – the events of 2020 served as a high-octane accelerant for these changes. A key piece of this change is a shifting emphasis from physical private goods to digital public goods. This transition requires creative solutions to the challenges of effective governance.

The phrase “digital nationalism” refers to humanity’s recent tendency to polarize and how the internet is no exception to this. Both Bitcoin and Ethereum have undergone great schisms, resulting in hard forks like BCH and ETC. These phenomena in the rising political economy will likely continue.

Vitalik walks through the tricky relationship between our financial and non-monetary social motivations. Culture and narrative can be incredibly powerful tools for innovation, but altruistic people are not the only ones with access to these things.

Vitalik concludes with thoughts on the “Big X” - Big Government, Big Business, Big Tech, etc. This multidisciplinary “dense jungle” is populated by a variety of powerful groups with dynamic interrelationships, and blockchains & cryptocurrencies are set up to play a vital role.


Endnotes on 2020: Crypto and Beyond

Vitalik’s Blog

Vitalik on Twitter

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