This month the head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, published an article which will not be welcome reading for supporters of Crypto.
In essence the article painted Cryptocurrency as purely a conduit for illegal activity with no positive attributes. If this really does represent the view of such an important supranational body then fears of increased regulation may end up being valid.
The long term development of Cryptocurrency could be sent in a very different direction.
What did the IMF say ?
- The same reason crypto-currencies are so appealing is also what makes them dangerous.
- They are a potentially major new vehicle for money laundering.
- Their ill-defined connections to the traditional financial world could easily create new vulnerabilities.
You can read the whole article here.
The article, focusing only on negative points, goes on to justify the need for an international regulatory response that would render the use of any Crypto pointless for most people, even disturbingly at one point suggesting bio-metric tracking of users.
How many fans of Monero for example would welcome that ?
What did the IMF not say ?
The IMF failed to say anything positive.
- It did not acknowledge the potential benefits from having a decentralised infrastructure that is not solely reliant on one central actor.
- It did not acknowledge the benefits that can arise for users of Crypto in countries without a properly functioning banking system.
- It did not even mention the benefits of being able to conduct transactions privately for those living under authoritative regimes.
- It made no attempt to understand why people in any country in the world may feel the need for a more private way to conduct transactions.
- It never mentioned that fiat currency also has all of these flaws and that corrupt legal and banking systems in some very sunny places do far more damage.
Essentially it did not address the drivers of the technology it does not like and instead came up with a rational and response likely to make what it sees as a problem, worse.
The world in which we live
Every day people are being subject to more and more intrusion into their private lives.
This is not only from government, but from private companies, social media based ones in particular, who see your private data as something they can take ownership of and sell.
They are trying to track the worlds population 24/7 every day of their working lives in order to sell the ability to manipulate them to whoever they so choose.
This has recently taken a more sinister turn with revelations that private data taken by these companies may be used to inform manipulative political campaigns across the globe.
All of this means that people across the world are worried about their privacy. Something that remains central to the US constitution, not an abstract concept only promoted by survivalists in Alabama.
Advancements in technology mean that new ways of doing a lot of things, like business, need new technology to preserve accepted norms such as the right to privacy.
This is why Concurrency has appeared.
Ignoring it, rejecting it and the underlying concerns will only make things worse. It will drive the development of Crypto and Blockchain technology in general down a road that nobody wants to go down.
IMF, your wrong.