Skip to main content

A Changing Tide. But Not Really.

I almost titled this post, "An Open Love Letter to Rep. Darren Soto" but I thought that might be weird. I landed on [whatever it is] because it has recently occurred to me that there may be significant legislation around blockchain coming out of Congress this session. Rep. Soto (FL-09) has been one of blockchain's biggest champions on Capitol Hill and I expect that will continue to be the case. In anticipation of "big things blockin," I thought I'd revisit two blockchain bills that made it out of the House of Representatives during the last congressional session. Given the change in the make-up of the Senate, maybe we'll see them again. But maybe we won't need to see them again....? Stay tuned.

The first of the two bills was the Blockchain Innovation Act.

This legislation sought to have the Department of Commerce and Federal Trade Commission study the use of blockchain technology in commerce and assess its fraud and security risks and benefits. This study would also give these federal agencies the opportunity to provide input and recommendations to Congress before it passed any comprehensive legislation with significant regulatory impacts.

The second bill was the Digital Taxonomy Act which would require the Federal Trade Commission to submit a recommendations to Congress on unfair and deceptive practices when it comes to digital currency/tokens. If you recall from the crypto boom of 2017, many ordinary, everyday (i.e., not rich) people lost a lot of money in crypto/token schemes. The Federal Trade Commission, whose mission is largely centered on consumer protection, would essentially be able to help shape the legislation that it would ultimately be responsible for implementing.

Any legislation that makes it out of either chamber of Congress is helpful when it comes to destigmatizing blockchain. But the failure of these two bills to make it out of the Senate is likely inconsequential. Agencies that touch defense, finance, technology, procurement, health care, and many other sectors are already chewing on how blockchain is changing the landscape and how existing regulations and legislation apply. Many federal agencies are also already trying to figure out how blockchain can improve the efficiency and security of their internal operations. So the passage of these bills in the House was largely symbolic. But, "A symbolic victory is still a victory."

What big blockchain legislation would you like to see come out of the 117th Congress? What big blockchain legislation do we need to see come out of the 117th Congress?


Popular posts from this blog

Before You Mint Your NFT

With NFT season taking a bit of a breather (kinda), I thought this would be the perfect time to lay out a few things to consider before minting an NFT.  If you missed the frenzy, well, welcome. "NFT" stands for non-fungible token and these digital tokens represent real world ownership and provenance of a particular asset. NFTs are minted (i.e., produced), stored and transacted (bought/sold/traded) on a distributed ledger like blockchain. Some NFTs represent ownership of tangible assets and some NFTs are digital/virtual assets  (yes, a digital piece of art was purchased for $69M). "Non-fungibility" is a scary word but it essentially means that the asset is unique, cannot be interchanged with another asset, and cannot be replicated. Think of NFTs as either collectibles, like artwork and trading cards, or title to tangible/real property, like real estate and cars.  So with all the excitement having simmered down a bit, below are a few things to think about before you

New home. Who dis?

This post will be short and not blockchain-related. I recently moved my blog to a new platform so I'm still working out the kinks on the aesthetic aspects. Thanks for your patience!

The Rundown on CBDCs

Everyday there is a news report about a country that is "exploring" or "studying" the possibility of developing a central bank digital currency (CBDC). In the past few days, I've read articles about Rwanda, Israel and France looking to pilot programs with CBDCs. And yesterday, the Bank of International Settlements announced its backing of the development of CBDCs. With approximately 80% of central banks around the world taking a closer look at CBDCs, now is as good a time as any to learn more about them. What Are They? A central bank digital currency is exactly what it sounds like--a digital currency issued by a central bank. In the same way our central bank, the Federal Reserve, issues the U.S. dollar, it would similarly issue some official U.S. digital currency ('digital dollar'). This is pretty much where the simplicity of it all ends. Things get really hairy (really fast) when central banks have to figure out how CBDCs fit into a traditional financ