Blockchain Ethics

Thoughts on Virgil Griffith's Arrest

One of Daniel Krawisz’s key points in his talk at the Bruce Fenton Bitcoin meetup in October was that we all have to think about the long game in this industry. I was reminded of this theme today when I heard that Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith was arrested over the weekend by U.S. Authorities for allegedly helping North Korea evade sanctions. Messari’s ( blog post today reiterated Daniel’s point. (Nic Carter’s Medium post referenced in the post is also important). Free tip: It’s never a good idea to antagonize regulators if you don’t have too, which seems like is kind of what may have happened in Mr. Griffith’s case. This is especially true if you are involved in a sensitive issue like introducing a new currency that is already under the microscope. This is just a reminder that we all have to be careful to not lose sight of the big picture when we are making day to day decisions about building this new ecosystem. The risk checklist that we made in class a couple of weeks ago is a good way to make sure that we don’t make this mistake, so I plan to use that as a key tool going forward.