The Sudden, Unexpected End of Crypto Tribalism – Bitcoin Magazine


“The lower the stake, the more intense the argument.”

Sayre’s law

The narcissism of small differences

Bitcoin and the crypto world have had a phenomenal decade. Despite the fact that Bitcoin is perhaps the most disruptive technology to the status quo since the printing press, those in power have largely left us alone. Sure, the exchanges have been required to take KYC measures, there have been some dark market arrests, China has banned Bitcoin a few times, and the US Securities and Exchange Commission has prosecuted some ICOs. However, these regulatory responses are the bare minimum. The same rules apply to the very scary antique market.

For a decade we’ve been largely on our own, enjoying the unparalleled luxury of a growth rate averaging thousands of percent. To be extremely successful, all you had to do was buy Bitcoin and then do nothing. In fact, you didn’t even have to do that, you could have chosen the cryptocurrency you would buy by throwing arrows while you were drunk and blindfolded, and you would still have seemed like a genius for buying XRP.

So we did what people always do when they are free of real problems – we turned on each other. Bitcoin hated Ethereum. BCH hated Bitcoin. Monero hated Zcash. And everyone hated Ripple. We spent the hours of our idyllic age of innocence going on Twitter and telling people to “have fun staying poor … idiot”. It felt important.

There are undoubtedly important differences between Bitcoin and, for example, Ethereum. There might also be a very real sense in which they compete with one another. While we didn’t have any major issues, the rivalry and its intensity might make sense.

End of innocence

This tribalism will soon come to a very sudden end. Bitcoin and crypto have gotten too big to ignore. Leviathan stirs. Even in the minds of the most unimaginative bureaucrats, the realization is dawning: “This is not a toy, this is not a millennial fad. This is our control over the monetary and financial system these children aspire to … “

Monero will be excluded from the exchange. An Ethereum Core developer and BitMEX’s CTO have been arrested. The travel rule is specially adapted for us. In the US, Europe, Israel and soon everywhere, you need to disclose your crypto holdings, not just when you sell, but always.

“First they laugh at you, then they ignore you, then they fight you …”

Congratulations everyone, they are preparing to fight us. No more pretense. This fight will be for fortresses. Are you ready? They say you can’t fight the town hall. How about a fight against a global coalition of nuclear-armed nations and Interpol that can set the financial rules?

We’re going to need every ally we can get, even if they’re an imperfect bastard.

New battle lines

It’s even worse. Those closest to us will turn the knife. For a decade now we’ve been entrusting our funds to the exchange and relying on them as our entrances and exits. We also prayed that this would be “the year the institutions come”. Well, the exchanges have built huge corporations that they now need to protect. You have shareholders to respond to. You have valuable government licenses that were expensive to acquire and easy to lose.

Coinbase will go public. Kraken has become a bank. Banks were an invention of the free market. They have been co-opted into a quasi-arm of the government and have become the main enforcers of the financial watchdog state. How long does it take for Kraken to have its tentacles in your finances and operate under the direction of the regulator? How long before we see all of these institutions did we get digest crypto firms together in an orgy of M&A?

If you imagined that institutions interested in Bitcoin were lobbying on our behalf, you were wrong. They will stand up for their own interests: to be mandatory middlemen who have to approve every transaction and who cut back on the problems. The exchanges that have served us so well over the years and that have given us great convenience in exchange for the little bit of control over our keys – those exchanges run by Bitcoin OGs – are no longer our friends. The age of innocence is over.

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Together we will overcome

Nothing binds a community like an ordinary enemy. As great as the perceived differences between the various crypto tribes may be, they pale in comparison to the gap between us and the NoCoiners. At the moment we live in a NoCoiner world. A fiat world of central authorities, financial oversight and crony capitalism. The NoCoiner have power by default. We must choose to either unite or allow them to succeed through a strategy of division and conquest.

The great success stories of the outsiders have always demanded that the revolutionaries put their differences aside and unite. The contentious Greeks came together to defeat the Persians and defend their democracy. The competing Houses of England halted their fighting and forced King John to sign the Magna Carta. The United States of America forgot their ideological and religious differences, defeated the Red Coats and gained their independence.

This hour challenges us to unite. While I am sure we will seek to do this, I am confident that once the lines of battle become clear, we will face the opportunity and focus on the mission we have in common. For this reason I am happy about projects like Sovryn and TBTC. Mission projects that stay true to our trustworthy values ​​and bring the worlds of Bitcoin and Ethereum together.

The higher the stakes, the more intense the need for unity.

At the hot gates, the Spartans were outflanked and massacred. During the marathon, however, they stood shoulder to shoulder with their archenemy, the Athenians. On that day, free men won a victory for freedom that we still benefit from today. Even the Spartans couldn’t HODL alone.

This is a guest post by Edan Yago. The opinions expressed are solely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.

Edan Yago |

Edan Yago is a neuroscientist and entrepreneur who dropped everything nine years ago to focus on Bitcoin. He is driven by the possibility of creating a new, open economic system that enables individuals worldwide. He was instrumental in setting up the recently launched Sovryn Protocol, a decentralized Bitcoin trading and credit platform, one of the first DeFi platforms based in Bitcoin. Previously, Yago Cement founded DAO, a tool for community-based curation of stablecoins, and Epiphyte, a company that used Bitcoin to bring cheaper, more reliable transfers to underserved communities.