Dick Bryan and Akseli Virtanen
‘Stablecoins’ have claims to legitimacy because they avert the supposed principal flaw of cryptotokens: their price volatility. But whose stability is stable? What is the appropriate benchmark for ‘stability’?
We would like to challenge the conventional understanding of monetary ‘stability’ and reconsider its significance for the role of stablecoins.
By the beginning of the third decade of the 21st century, it is clear that something is not working about a conventionally-conceived fiat money system, centered on the role of the state. There is scarcely an economic commentator who hasn’t already proclaimed that conventional state monetary…
ON ECSA ECONOMIC WHITE PAPER CH 2
Dick Bryan, Jorge Lopez, Akseli Virtanen *
We have started to share some of our recent work on rethinking the economic component of ‘cryptoeconomics’ in the ECSA economic white paper Protocols for Cryptoeconomic Networks. This post is about Chapter 2.
Like said — for the introduction to the process see Towards Post-Capitalism. A Language for New Economic Expression — we’ve realized that we are in fact creating a language for new economic expression. A language for post-capitalist economic expression.
That makes you think. What makes a language valuable? …
We have been working for some time now quite intensively with something I am very excited about: the Economic Space Agency economic paper Protocols for Cryptoeconomic Networks. It is right now in a pre-alpha private review, so still worked on, parts unfinished, and not yet publicly shared — but if you would like to join the process of rethinking economic conventions as protocols, and thus as a design space, please just contact me — we are happy to share the text. See below the Table of Contents.
We have realized that we are creating a language for new economic expression…
DISTRIBUTED RUNTIME + PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE FOR ORGANIZATION + PROTOCOLS FOR VALUE EXPRESSION, MEASUREMENT & EXCHANGE
Organized together with CoinFund
We will do also a more technical session on the lower levels of the ECSA Tech Stack (Fri 9/28, you can register here), to go through in more detail:
Gravity node provides with secure computational containment, serialization, persistence, networking, and hardware interfaces to be utilized up the stack.
The Gravity protocol provides event ordering, scaling…
NETWORK DERIVATIVES, SYNTHETIC INDEXES, DISTRIBUTED VALUE FORMS
We will do our second series of Cryptoeconomics working sessions at NYU/Stern on Wed 9/26 (sessions 1 materials from May 2018 here). Almost everybody from our crypto-finance-economics group will be there, which normally means that something interesting is bound to happen. You can register here.
And here is what we are going to do:
We think we are discovering a new distributed value form and value calculus which are different to the capitalist commodity form and calculation of value. If this is true, it means reorganization and reproduction of economic space itself.
Dick Bryan, Benjamin Lee, Robert Wosnitzer, Akseli Virtanen*
The mounting literature on cryptoeconomics shows an interesting but also alarming characteristic: its underlying economics is remarkably conventional and conservative.
It is surely an anomaly that many people who have gone outside the mainstream to disrupt and develop new visions of the future and economy so readily adopt the conventions of the ‘dismal science’.
The problem is that the orthodox economics blocks the real potential for cryptoeconomics and cryptographically enabled distributed economic-social system to facilitate the building of a radically alternative politics and economics.
At the core of this view are two…
Dick Bryan, Chief Economist, Economic Space Agency
Long-term token values will be determined by three factors:
We know that the third factor is impossible to explain. It depends on what Keynes called ‘animal spirits’. It is likely that speculation will remain high, for this is an immature market with rapid new entry in a sector of the capital market with widely-appreciated potential but low levels of technical comprehension. …
Dick Bryan and Akseli Virtanen
There is growing concern about the unstable value of cryptocurrencies, and hence a growing appeal of mechanisms to stabilize coin values; invent mechanisms for a ‘stablecoin’. See, for example Haseeb Qureshi: “Stablecoins: designing a price-stable cryptocurrency” and a very interesting thread on ethresearch on “Collateralized Debt Obligations for Issuer-Backed Tokens”.
The impulse for stability is clear: trust and reputation mean that people should know, in broad terms, the value of what they are holding. While cryptocoins remain relatively minor currencies (where, for example, the US dollar is deemed to be the benchmark of stability) this…
Dick Bryan and Akseli Virtanen
In amongst all the excitement about blockchain and fortunes being won and lost from coin issuances built on blockchain, there seems to be a neglect of the economic significance of its innovation. In one dimension crypto companies are emerging as a growing sector of the conventionally conceived economy, generating employment and attracting mobile capital in search of high risk/high return investment possibilities. But the crypto economy is not just another tech sector. It is a different way of doing the economy.
The emergence of a crypto economy has been dependent most obviously on the innovation…
Next week I will be in New York. We are working on resetting the cryptoeconomics agenda. I will publish a couple of texts here about it too. We will have a pretty good crew at work, world class political economists, economic anthropologists, finance theorists, including professors Dick Bryan (the author of Risking Together and Capitalism with Derivatives), Benjamin Lee (Derivatives and the Wealth of Societies), Jonathan Beller (Computational Capitalism) and Robert Wosnitzer (cultures of finance specialist) - all now really deep into crypto economy and, especially, into finding out and prototyping what a token can do.