The co-founder of the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency has recently authored a feature on Quartz’s ‘The Future of Money’ segment. According to Joseph Lubin, the emergence of digital asset class has resulted in both “fascination and skepticism” but cryptocurrencies are simply just “the newest form of value representation”.
To illustrate his point, Lubin drew upon a quote by cognitive scientist Margaret Boden, who claimed that, “Some of the most important human creations have been new representation systems. These include formal notations, such as Arabic numerals (not forgetting zero), chemical formulae, or the staves, minims, and crotchets used by musicians. Programming languages are a more recent example.“
Joseph Lubin, who also heads the blockchain software developer ConsenSys, says that every time somebody invents a new way of representation, “people become suspicious.” Europe has stuck with metal representation of monetary value up until the 17th century, even though paper bills were used in Far East way before. Even though Europeans have heard about them, it was too hard to believe that a slip of paper could actually be worth more than a piece of gold. Right now, we are witnessing quite a similar situation as masses are still wary towards virtual currencies or not even aware of their existence.
Therefore, “Cryptocurrency is in many ways a natural evolution of prior representational systems, though one that favors truth over state-sanctioned power“, says the crypto entrepreneur. The crypto systems are different as they do not require a high level of trust that is so crucial in traditional financial structures. The data stored in the blockchain is immutable, open to everyone, decentralized and based on peer-to-peer trust. Admittedly, the security concerns remain a major issue but crypto companies are constantly making strides towards increasing the level of safety for their clients.
Lubin claims that virtual currencies will even have impact on our social systems, as “creating consensus without a central actor is also a profound evolution of the social contract.“ In addition to that, the new system brings us reduced costs, provides information and adds value to transactions.
He ends his article on a positive note, saying that instead of current corporation-client relations we will have “collective common-good relationships on networked open platforms.“ Lubin is aware that the process might be long but according to him, “the uptake has been swift.“
The bullish sentiment of the ETH co-founder echoes with his previous statements. Earlier this month, he said that blockchain technology is going to shape and impact economic, social and political systems around the world for the next few decades. Lubin believes that the technology is still fairly immature and huge growth and evolution awaits for us further down the road.
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I have been following the crypto markets since mid 2017, just in time to witness the incredible surge of the digital asset industry. Fascinated by the potential of blockchain technology I’ve started to dig deeper and that’s how I ended up meeting the Toshi Times team. I hold a Political Science degree, therefore the crypto regulation development is particularly interesting for me. I’m also heavily involved with music, running my own label, a YouTube channel and working with distribution. People call blockchain the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ and I believe it will change our daily lives in the coming years and we will have the front row seats to witness it.