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Events in crypto take place at warp speed. This weekly crypto podcast reveals how the marquee names in crypto are reacting to the week’s top headlines. With host Laura Shin, the guests also discuss what they’re thinking about these days and reveal what they believe is on the horizon in crypto. Disclosure: I'm a nocoiner.


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00:23 02/26/2021
Girl Gone Crypto: How These Wildly Entertaining Crypto Videos Get Made - Ep.165
Lea Thompson, aka Girl Gone Crypto, talks about what goes into producing her popular “The Crypto Minute” vlog, what initially got her into crypto, and her recent decision to quit her day job and go full time crypto. In this episode we discuss: what “The Crypto Minute” is all about, and all the crypto video content she produces (2:37) how Lea comes up with creative content such as wearing a whale costume to portray Microstrategy CEO Michael Saylor (5:04) how long it actually takes to create “The Crypto Minute” (6:36) what goes into producing “The Crypto Minute” and which family member is behind the camera (7:05) the biggest challenges Lea faces when creating her videos and how she decides which stories make the final cut (8:56) Lea’s favorite bloopers including, but not limited to, rug pulls, sushi, an Amazon money printer, and a few fake $100 bills (10:28) how Girl Gone Crypto fell down the crypto rabbit hole and why her ukulele skills were instrumental to her crypto journey (12:54) the time when JK Rowling tweeted about Bitcoin, resulting in Lea’s viral “A Muggle’s Guide to Bitcoin” video (17:31) what type of crypto content works best on different social media platforms such as Twitter, YouTube, and TikTok  (20:00) when Girl Gone Crypto stopped being a hobby and how it is going now that Lea is full-time crypto (21:46) how Lea is trying to educate people about crypto in a simple and approachable way… one ninja suit at time (22:34) Crypto News Recap (26:12)   Thank you to our sponsors! Download the app here: The Sun Exchange:   Episode links: Lea Thompson: Her YouTube: Her TikTok: Lea's personal website:   Video Examples 2020 Year in Review… News Vlog Style:  A Muggle’s Guide to Bitcoin: Hardware Wallets Explained:   Miscellaneous Information Fair Use: Money Printer:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:  
38:35 02/19/2021
Michael Moro on Tesla's BTC Buy and the New Genesis Treasury - Ep.164
Michael Moro, CEO of Genesis Global, discusses Tesla’s purchase of $1.5 billion in bitcoin and Genesis’s new unit: Genesis Treasury. He also talks about how demand has shaped Genesis’ bitcoin and crypto offerings over the years, which events have acted as catalysts for institutional demand, and what Genesis is expecting in 2021. In this episode Michael covers: The significance of Tesla allocating $1.5 billion to BTC (1:08) How Tesla’s purchase is a result of the evolution of the asset class and why this is just the beginning How Genesis got its start as a regulated BTC trading desk in 2013 (2:56) What new products and services Genesis has launched since 2018 to meet institutional demand (6:11) How Genesis came to launch Genesis Treasury and what this unit does (8:00) Understanding the idea of bitcoin as a corporate treasury asset and how the stock market is rewarding companies for getting into crypto What the catalysts were in creating corporate demand for bitcoin and where corporate demand for bitcoin is coming from (10:52) How corporate interest in bitcoin correlated with Microstrategy’s Bitcoin for Corporations event (13:16) Why institutions have been interested in Bitcoin as collateral, and why that narrative is new How the conversation with institutions interested in buying bitcoin would be different in a bear market (16:00) How GAAP accounting rules affect the quarterly earnings reports of publicly traded companies that hold bitcoin (19:03 ) His projections for how 2021 in crypto will play out (21:44)   Thank you to our sponsors! The Sun Exchange:   Episode links: Michael Moro:   Genesis:  Genesis Treasury:   Recent institutional purchasing news: Tesla’s BTC purchase: Twitter’s CFO considers Bitcoin:  Microstrategy’s Bitcoin for Corporations event:  Michael Saylor’s Unchained interview: Companies holding bitcoin:  Genesis information: Michael Moro’s presentation at Microstrategy’s event:  Genesis Global background:  Prime Brokerage Services:  Q4 market observations:  Miscellaneous: Crypto and GAAP accounting :  Coin Metrics report on institutional investing:    Link to the Crypto News Recap:
34:05 02/12/2021
Why Asia Is So Important to Crypto - Ep.163
Mira Christanto, research analyst at Messari, recently wrote a comprehensive report on the crypto scene in Asia. In this episode, she covers cultural differences in crypto trading between East and West, plus gives us the latest on the diverse regulatory landscape within this large region. Some topics covered in this show include: why Asia is an important geography in crypto why Asia dominates the crypto futures trading markets why DeFi fits better with Western culture, and centralized services are more respected in the East the state of regulation across the region what makes crypto regulation in Hong Kong unique how the Chinese are approaching regulation, and how bitcoin is exchanged there how Japan's crypto industry differs from that of other companies and why penetration is still somewhat low why and how Korea is distinct from other crypto trading cultures why Singapore's regulatory framework for crypto is the most sophisticated what's happening in Southeast Asia and India  the status of crypto mining in China — and why the Western view of it is quite different from what it's like on the ground   Thank you to our sponsors! Sun Exchange:   Episode links: Mira Christanto: Messari:   Messari's Asia Crypto Landscape report:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
32:36 02/05/2021
Why the GameStop Insanity Is So Similar to Crypto - Ep.162
Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO and founder of FTX, describes what happened between the Subreddit Wall Street Bets and hedge funds around the stock of GameStop this week. In this episode, he covers: what happened with the stock of video game retailer GameStop this week what that says about how to value a stock how the traditional financial establishment reacted how the events in GameStop this week are similar to the way crypto markets operate how a crypto financial system could affect the ability of investors to do what the hedge funds did with GameStop — shorting more shares of the stock than actually exist what led to FTX listing for tokenized versions of GameStop, Blackberry, AMC and Nokia, as well as a tokenized index fund of Wall Street Bets stocks how the tokenized stocks and index work on the back end why Robinhood restricted customers from purchasing shares in GameStop on Thursday what the inspiration was for FTX   Thank you to our sponsors! The Sun Exchange:   Episode links: Sam Bankman-Fried: FTX:   Roundups of what happened with Gamestop:  NYT: Vox: Early Wired story: NYT analysis:   Sam on what can determine an asset’s price:   Chamath Palihapitiya on CNBC discussing Gamestop — defending individual investors: Videos:   Gamestop price gyrations:    How many shares of GME are shorted:   FTX lists GME for tokenized spot and futures trading:   FTX’s Wall Street Bets tokenized index fund:   Robinhood customers only being able to sell, not buy GME when Robinhood’s revenue biggest revenue source is sending order flow to hedge funds:   Matt Levine of Bloomberg on GameStop:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
42:37 01/29/2021
Is Tether a Fraud? Its Bank Says It's Not - Ep.161
Gregory Pepin, deputy CEO of Deltec Bank and Trust, responds to allegations in a blog post by the pseudonymous Crypto Anonymous, that Tether is a "highly probably fraud." In this episode, he covers: how Deltec accounts for its reserves, and why they didn't show up on Crypto Anonymous's blog post where the dollars backing Tethers are held how Tethers get created where Tether Ltd. keeps its cash equivalents why there's more demand for trading with USDT than with USD partially because of the arbitrage opportunity between East and West  how Tethers get created using Deltec why USDT gets minted in very round numbers as opposed to very specific numbers that USDC is minted in where the cash equivalents backing Tethers are held what type of due diligence Deltec conducted when it took on Tether Ltd. as a customer why the perception that Tether is unregulated compared to other stablecoins is false what Deltec thinks about the New York Attorney General office's investigation in to Tether why Deltec has a "large position in bitcoin"   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Gregory Pepin: Deltec Bank:   Crypto Anonymous’s Medium post:   Deltec having large position in bitcoin:   Original video in which Deltec mentions its “large position in bitcoin”:   Deltec banking Tether:   Tether not audited:   Tether says it is fully backed:   Tether current balances:   What Tether is backed by:   New York Attorney General’s office press release on investigation into iFinex:   CoinDesk on NYAG investigation:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
36:07 01/22/2021
What You Need to Know About Bitcoin Layer 2s - Ep.160
Meltem Demirors, chief strategy officer at Coinshares, and Nic Carter, general partner at Castle Island Ventures, join me at the Stacks conference to discuss Bitcoin layer 2s. In this episode, they cover:  why layers 2s exist how layer 2s, such as payment channels like Lightning, work what kind of throughput layer 2s have  how moving Bitcoin to layer 2 affects the price why people having moved $5 billion worth of Bitcoin to Ethereum how Bitcoin moving to Ethereum affects the price the most popular Bitcoin layer 2s Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Meltem Demirors: Nic Carter: Stacks:   Total value locked in Lightning:   Bitcoin on Ethereum:   Stats on Lightning:   What layer 2s mean for altcoins and base chain assets like Bitcoin:   Sovryn: RSK: Liquid network:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
40:57 01/15/2021
2021 in Crypto: What to Expect in the Year Ahead - Ep.159
Frank Chaparro, director of news at The Block, gives his predictions for what will happen in crypto in 2021. In this episode, we discuss: the big stories in crypto in 2020 how the market has changed in 2020 how the market differs from the 2017-2018 bubble what big traditional financial services firms and investment banks will do in crypto in 2021 how crypto exchanges will experiment with their fee structures how regulatory actions, such as the lawsuit against Ripple, will affect exchanges what might happen to privacy coins as regulators become more active what he expects to see from the upcoming Coinbase IPO and how that will affect the broader market   Thank you to our sponsors! Blocknative:   Episode links: Frank Chaparro: The Block:   The Block's 2020 year in review:   Predictions from The Block's analysts:   Unchained interview with Raoul Pal and Michael Novogratz:   Bittrex delisting privacy coins:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
29:56 01/08/2021
Laura's New Year's 2021 AMA: Your Questions About Privacy, the STABLE Act, Diem and More - Ep.158
For the holidays, I'm doing two AMAs. In the second of two, I cover: privacy blockchains my thoughts on the STABLE Act whether or not Facebook's Diem will have a positive or negative impact on crypto what I miss from pre-COVID about the crypto community how we can use blockchain and crypto to weed our propaganda and fake news the best pick and shovel plays in crypto what distinguishes a journalist from an entertainer my thoughts on the state of media and journalism in the US   Thank you to our sponsors! Blocknative:   Episode links: Meltem Demirors on privacy in 2021: Jessie Liu episode: Brian Brooks episode: STABLE Act episode: Episodes on Coinbase: Episode with Chad Cascarilla of Paxos:
24:50 01/01/2021
Laura's Christmas 2020 AMA: Your Questions About Crypto Media and More - Ep.157
For the holidays, I'm doing two AMAs. In this first of two, I cover: how my book is going tips for aspiring podcasters what it's like being an independent journalist how I spent my time outside crypto if I send bitcoin to North Korea whether I own any crypto if I expect bitcoin will lose its weirdness as it becomes more widely adopted how much blockchain technology can disintermediate banks what black swans I see on the horizon for 2021 what trends I see for 2021   Thank you to our sponsors! Blocknative:   Links:   My previous AMA: Whether North Koreans can benefit from bitcoin: Why North Korea is interested in cryptocurrency: Alex Gladstein of the Human Rights Foundation: DeFi hacks: Why yield farming is risky: Regulation:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:  
24:48 12/25/2020
Beeple on How and Why He Raked In $3.5 Million - Ep.156
Mike Winkelmann, the digital artist also known as Beeple who has made an artwork every day for over 13 years, talks about the NFT auctions he held last weekend, after learning about crypto two months ago. In the show, he discusses: how he got into crypto two months ago, and made $3.5 million in NFT auctions last weekend how the objects on sale were more than just jpegs and what physical objects came with the NFTs what types of auctions he had, and why some pieces were available for $1 apiece how he previously made money as a digital artist how he believes digital artists will be able to make money in the future why people would pay to own an NFT if they can just get a digital file of the art why he incorporated physical objects into his sale whether or not this model would work for artists with smaller followings than he has, with his 1.7 million Instagram followers what his relationship was with the collector who paid $777,777 for the final piece sold in the auction why he chose Nifty Gateway among all the NFT sites how NFTs could also change business models for other types of creators besides visual artists   Thank you to our sponsors! Blocknative:   Episode links: Mike Winkelmann: Video for auction: Instagram video showing the digital art displays:   Coverage of auctions:   Rapper Lil Yachty's NFT sale:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:  
31:57 12/18/2020
Why Rohan Grey Believes Stablecoin Issuers Need to Be Banks - Ep.155
Rohan Grey, assistant professor at Willamette Law, talks about the STABLE Act, which would require stable coin issuers to obtain a banking charter, require approval from the Federal Reserve and require issuers to have FDIC insurance. In this episode, Grey, an advisor to the bill, discusses: how the past history of financial innovation and events that have posed systemic risks necessitates the STABLE Act how he, not being a staff member of Congress, became involved in the bill  how the bill would prevent stablecoin issuers from committing crimes that banks have perpetrated by requiring them to become banks why he believes open source smart contracts enforcing rules and public audit-able blockchains are not a fundamentally new way to prevent the type of events that pose systemic risks that the STABLE Act aims to prevent why existing regulatory and licensing regimes are insufficient how he would answer people from countries like Argentina who have had their currency devalued by their government the STABLE Act, and who might say this bill exposes them to a different type of risk how much the rollout of Facebook's Diem, as opposed to existing stablecoins such as Tether, USDC or Dai, was a motivation for this bill whether, by focusing narrowly on systemic risk, this bill could squash crypto and fintech innovation that could help the un- and under-banked whether he sees any path forward for this bill to be passed   Thank you to our sponsors! Blocknative:   Episode links: Rohan Grey: STABLE Act:    Introduction of bill:   Implications of the bill for running an Ethereum node:   Rohan Grey and Jeremy Allaire interviews on The Block Live:   Unchained interview with acting Comptroller of the Currency Brian Brooks:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:  
33:14 12/11/2020
How to Get Your ETH2 Yield and Take Out a Loan on It - Ep.154
James Slazas, founder and CEO of LiquidStake and DARMA Capital, describes their retail and institutional offerings for customers who want to stake on Ethereum 2.0 but still access the locked-up capital. In this episode, we discuss:  what problem LiquidStake solves and how  what happens if the dollar value of someone’s stake drops below the amount that they’ve borrowed who keeps the ETH in a liquidation  how LiquidStake makes money  how they determine the price of ETH to make the loan and what it does in the event of a flash crash on an exchange how LiquidStake and DARMA Capital are also serving institutional clients how total return swap agreements with DARMA work  why they offer more tax and regulatory clarity why LiquidStake currently offers USDC for its stablecoin the pros and cons of a centralized loans on staked ETH 2 over decentralized ones  the other crypto systems LiquidStake is partnering with how LiquidStake and DARMA Capital are able to make these loans from a regulatory perspective   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: James Slazas: Liquidstake: DARMA Capital:   LiquidStake announcements:   LiquidStake blog post:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
33:48 12/04/2020
Crypto on Every Corner: Driving Adoption With Jeremy Allaire and Meltem Demirors - Ep.153
This episode is a discussion from Stellar's Meridian conference, in which I moderated the panel, Crypto on Every Corner: Driving Adoption, featuring Jeremy Allaire, cofounder, chairman and CEO of Circle, and Meltem Demirors, chief strategy officer at CoinShares. In this discussion, we cover: what adoption means and looks like  why cryptocurrency is at a particularly interesting inflection point how central bank digital currencies could affect that how blockchains will recede into the background how existing fintech payment apps will use blockchains and/or crypto where on the road to adoption the industry currently is  the significance of Crypto Twitter as a marketing tool what the crypto industry needs to do in the next year to grow the industry why it would have been easier to start a bank than a crypto business why the separation of money and state is one of the most interesting experiments in history  how we'll see new corporate-like organizations without any connections to any existing legal or financial systems driven by tokens what their favorite crypto adoption success story is Thank you to our sponsors!   Episode links: Jeremy Allaire: Circle: Meltem Demirors: Coinshares:   PayPal offering crypto:   Revolut offering crypto:
27:50 11/27/2020
9 Ways Bitcoin Is at an All-Time High - Ep.152
Nic Carter, general partner at Castle Island Ventures, and cofounder and chairman of Coin Metrics, explains  why the Bitcoin price has been rising without the retail bubble seen in 2017-2018. In this episode he covers: how this Bitcoin rally differs from the ones in 2017-2018 and why the market is much more mature how much the pandemic and other macro forces this year have helped propel Bitcoin what it says that the number of Bitcoin addresses with $10 or more worth of bitcoin are is at 18 million now, compared to 2014 in the 2017-2018 bubble the significance of realized cap, and why there's less pressure to sell now since the current cost basis of all bitcoins is much higher than in the bubble the significance of the fact that open interest in CME Bitcoin futures hit $1 billion this week — and why, even though they're cash-settled, they do impact the Bitcoin price what the appreciation of the Bitcoin price in other countries' currencies such as Turkish lira means what it means that the stablecoin free float has grown from $1.5 billion in the last bubble to $23 billion during this rally what he makes of the theory that Chinese miners are having difficulty to sell their BTC being a driver of the price rise   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Nic Carter: Castle Island VC: Coin Metrics:    Nic’s post:   Chinese miners unable to sell BTC:  Dispute with this report:   CME Bitcoin open futures surpasses $1 billion:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
31:21 11/20/2020
Chad Cascarilla on Paxos's Partnership With PayPal - Ep.151
Paxos CEO and cofounder Chad Cascarilla discusses his company's partnership with PayPal, which just opened up its crypto purchase and selling product to all its US customers. In this episode, he covers: how Paxos enables PayPal's crypto product the regulatory steps Paxos took to make this happen why $200 billion company like PayPal would partner with a small company like Paxos how Paxos Crypto Brokerage works  how Paxos provides the regulatory cover that PayPal needs for this offering, along with custodial and liquidity services why this product sources its coins on Paxos's ItBit exchange how the four crypto assets available on PayPal — bitcoin, ether, litecoin and bitcoin cash — were chosen what other tokens one might expect to be offered through Paxos Crypto Brokerage, and possibly by extension by PayPal how PayPal gets around the scaling issues on Bitcoin and Ethereum whether Paxos's stablecoin business might be used by PayPal if PayPal does acquire BitGo, what that would mean for Paxos offering custody for PayPal through its brokerage how Paxos's equity settlement platform is going, and where it could go over time how and why Paxos is applying to the SEC to become one of three clearing agents    Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Chad Cascarilla:   Paxos:   PayPal now offers crypto purchases to all its customers:   Original announcements about PayPal offering crypto purchases with Paxos: Paxos announcement:   Paxos Crypto Brokerage:   PayPal approved for conditional BitLicense:   Paxos’s stablecoin business:   PayPal rumored to be in talks to acquire BitGo:   Paxos working with Revolut:   Paxos equity settlement business:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:
33:54 11/13/2020
What the Crypto Industry Could See Under a Biden Administration - Ep.150
Kristin Smith, executive director of the Blockchain Association and a board member of HODLpac, discusses how advocating for crypto will change under what is likely to be a new presidential administration. In this episode she talks about: what crypto advocacy typically entails how the approach will change under a Biden administration compared to what it was under Trump what appointments by Biden could most affect the crypto industry which issues are at the top of the agendas for both the Blockchain Association and HODLpac why regulators are particularly interested in stablecoins how a potentially Democratic-controlled Senate under a Biden administration might affect crypto what she's watching for from Cynthia Lummis, a Bitcoiner who won her Wyoming Senate race how anti-trust sentiment in Congress could affect crypto, and whether legislators see Web3 as an antidote to monopoly problems the divisions within the crypto industry around how to approach regulators, and how to resolve them the potential for a de minimus tax exemption, in light of PayPal integrating cryptocurrencies and how HODLpac used quadratic voting to decide which candidates to support   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Kristin Smith: Blockchain Association: HODLpac:   Interview with acting Comptroller of the Currency, Brian Brooks:   Likely second runoff election in Georgia to determine control of Senate:   Cynthia Lummis to become first US Senator who is also a Bitcoiner   Brad Sherman wanting to ban cryptocurrency:   Leaked Binance doc about whether Binance.US is a decoy:   More on quadratic voting:   Link to the Crypto News Recap:  
36:43 11/06/2020
The 2 Types of Investors Driving Interest in Crypto - Ep.149
Matt Hougan, chief investment officer of Bitwise Asset Management, discusses a milestone Bitwise reached this week -- hitting $100 million in assets under management. He also covered what has been driving interest in Bitwise products the two types of customers who have been especially interested in purchasing crypto assets this year and why what this says about the maturation of the industry compared to during the 2017 bubble how conversations with Bitwise customers have changed since then what impact this week's bullish JPMorgan research note about Bitcoin could have on investors and why it was so significant what the significance will be of the integration of bitcoin, ether and other cryptocurrencies by PayPal next year  how Microstrategy and Square putting Bitcoin on their balance sheets will pave the way for other corporations to do so how the new Fed policy of targeting an average 2% inflation rate could affect Bitcoin how recent regulatory actions, such as with BitMEX, affect the likelihood of a Bitcoin ETF being approved in the next few years how a company like Bitwise, which interfaces with traditional investors, creates viable investment vehicles around DeFi for its clientele what a Trump win vs. a Biden win could mean for the crypto industry   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Matt Hougan: Bitwise:   Bitwise reaches $100 million in AUM:   JPMorgan research note on Bitcoin:   Matt's piece on the significance of the OCC letter giving banks the authority to custody crypto assets:   Matt's essay on how the Fed's new approach to inflation could affect Bitcoin:   Matt's post on DeFi:   News Recap:
35:46 10/30/2020
Willy Woo on Why It's 'an Extremely Great Time to Buy Bitcoin' - Ep.148
Willy Woo, on-chain Bitcoin analyst and writer of “The Bitcoin Forecast,” a market intelligence newsletter, discusses how the Bitcoin markets have been changing amidst what may be a forthcoming ebbing of derivatives exchanges and a revival of the importance of spot exchanges. In this episode, he covers: what the PayPal news means when there are currently only 23.4 million holders on chain, and only 101 million active unique accounts at centralized exchanges why "old hands" in Bitcoin have been changing their behaviors recently, selling at bottoms, rather than tops how derivatives exchanges have influenced Bitcoin price action  why price moves in Bitcoin are likely to be less volatile going forward how he's detecting the purchase of Bitcoin off spot exchanges by whales and corporate treasuries how these shifts are affecting crypto infrastructure players how the price of Bitcoin moves for every dollar invested and what his projection is based on that why, as the price of BTC rises, he's currently seeing HODLers holding tighter than ever by when he believes we'll see sovereign wealth funds investing in Bitcoin by when he says we'll see a $50,000 Bitcoin why the Bitcoin NVT ratio indicates it's an "extremely great time to buy Bitcoin" why he doesn't focus much on ether, how he thinks it will perform under Ethereum 2.0 and why things could change if Ethereum Improvement Proposal 1559 is implemented and transaction fees end up being burned   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links: Willy Woo: The Bitcoin Forecast: His charts and models:   PayPal news:   Willy's tweet about dormancy:   Willy on how coins on spot exchanges are dropping:   Willy on NVT ratio: Willy on ETH:
38:04 10/23/2020
What You Need to Know About the DOJ's Cryptocurrency Enforcement Framework - Ep.147
Jessie Liu, partner at Skadden and the former US attorney for the District of Columbia, headed up the team that has prosecuted what some believe is the greatest number of cryptocurrency crimes worldwide — Welcome to Video, Dark Scandals, Helix, North Korea, Hamas/Al Qaeda and ISIS. In this episode, she discusses: how she came to create a Threat Finance Unit that focuses on the intersection of cybercrime that threatened national security what the DOJ's new cryptocurrency enforcement framework means and what the significance is of the framework  what parts of the framework crypto startups should pay attention to whether the DOJ will continue to act in concert with other agencies, as it did recently with its indictment of four executives at cryptocurrency derivatives exchange BitMEX in conjunction with an enforcement action by the CFTC against the same exchange how DOJ can claim jurisdiction over exchanges located outside the US, on a practical level, go after entities located outside  how the FATF global standards will affect enforcement in the US the DOJ's stance toward "anonymity-enhanced" cryptocurrencies, or privacy-preserving coins the DOJ's disagreement that EU's privacy law, GDPR, can be used by some crypto exchanges to keep the DOJ from obtaining data from those exchanges how willing foreign countries are to coordinate with US law enforcement and whether cryptocurrency criminals could engage in jurisdictional arbitrage   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links:  Jessie Liu: Skadden bio: Press release about cryptocurrency enforcement framework: Cryptocurrency enforcement framework:   Unchained podcast about FATF rules:   CoinDesk on how the enforcement framework is a warning shot to offshore exchanges:   Links from news recap:
31:50 10/16/2020
Abuse and Ethical Lapses: What Happened When Justin Sun Acquired BitTorrent - Ep.146
Freelance reporter and audio producer Chris Harland-Dunaway speaks about his long investigative story on Tron founder Justin Sun after his acquisition of BitTorrent. In this episode, Harland-Dunaway describes: how after his acquisition of peer-to-peer file sharing protocol BitTorrent Justin Sun straddled the China-West divide  Sun's background, his early success and how he got into cryptocurrency how he treated the US-based employees differently from those based in China how Sun made a threat to kill an employee's family over an anonymous employee question about what would happen is TRX went to $0 an incident in which Sun hit an employee how Sun handled ethical issues that cropped up around scammers on the app store on Tron, with piracy on BitTorrent product BT Movie and with dark web-style content on BT Live why he believes Sun's biggest liability is his lack of empathy as both a manager and entrepreneur   Thank you to our sponsor!   Episode links:  Christopher Harland-Dunaway: Justin Sun: Tron Foundation:   Chris's article on Justin in The Verge:   Links from news recap:  
37:32 10/09/2020
Coinbase in Turmoil: Why Employees Walked Out - Ep.145
Frank Chaparro, director of news at The Block, discusses a controversial blog post by Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong about how the company intends to take an apolitical stance, the pushback it received afterward, and the company's offer of generous exit packages for employees who disagree: why CEO Brian Armstrong wrote the blog post stating it would be taking an apolitical stance during these socially and politically tumultuous times why the company then offered a generous exit package to employees who disagreed with it which social and political issues caused the divisions at Coinbase how a question about Black Lives Matter at a a company all-hands back in June began the series of events that resulted in this blog post why employees walked out earlier this summer why Armstrong did tweet about the Black Lives Matter movement how the stance Armstrong took in the blog post is not a surprise to those who know his personality  why the reactions to the blog post were so wide-ranging how this affects Coinbase's place in the wider world of investment, which has seen a greater interest in environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing why Coinbase's plans to go public in the next year or so might have affected Armstrong's decision to take the apolitical stance what happened in another all-hands meeting on Thursday to discuss this issue plus, we talk about the DOJ and CFTC charges against BitMEX, how Frank talked with BitMEX cofounder and CEO Arthur Hayes last night, and whether it seemed Arthur had any awareness this was coming   Thank you to our sponsors! Cosmos:   Episode links:  Frank Chaparro: The Block:   Coinbase blog post:   CoinDesk on the blog post:   What sparked the walkout:   Erica Joy’s tweet thread on the Coinbase engineering walkout:   Paul Graham’s tweet:   Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s response to Brian’s blog post:   Axios article:   Coinbase offers severance package   How Coinbase's apolitical stance could affect its IPO:   The Interface on Brian’s blog post:   Links from news recap:  
37:52 10/02/2020
Why NFTs Are Attracting Everyday People to Crypto - Ep.144
Jake Brukhman, cofounder and CEO of CoinFund, explains why people are excited about non-fungible tokens, how they can be used, and what new behaviors and businesses they might enable. He discusses: what a NFT or non-fungible token is how they can be "liquid intellectual property" what kinds of digital assets can be turned into NFTs what new types of behaviors and new products and services can be created based off NFTs why consumers would prefer to use an NFT photo or song vs. one from Shutterstock or Spotify why someone would want to buy an NFT when it's so easy to make digital copies of things like art or ebooks or mp3s how disputes over digital objects could be adjudicated in a global marketplace how NFTs enable fractionalized ownership how NFTs can be used as collateral to manage risk how NFTs are combining with DeFi to create NFTFi how NFTs and NFTFi bring non-crypto people in to the space and expose them to finance why the NFT space is much bigger than people probably expect, and how it's drawing a new crowd to crypto   Thank you to our sponsors! Cosmos:   Episode links:  Jake Brukhman: CoinFund:   CoinFund’s NFT thesis:   Rarible:   Unchained show about Aragon:   The LAO:   Yield farming on digital collectibles:   NFTFi:   Aavegotchi:   $MEME:   Links from news recap:  
38:51 09/25/2020
The First Crypto Bank: What Kraken Financial Will Do and How - Ep.143
David Kinitsky, CEO of Kraken Financial, talks about Kraken's news that it is launching a bank, after receiving approval to form a special purpose depository institution (SPDI) from the state of Wyoming. He discusses: why Kraken decided to become a crypto bank, and what it will be able to do with this status how this status will affect the consumer experience for crypto users  what kinds of crypto assets it will be able to deal with  how quickly it will list coins, such as those DeFi coins that quickly balloon to billion-dollar market caps what its designation, special purpose depository institution (SPDI) means, and why that has special meaning for crypto users what "bailment" means, and why that's significant for crypto users interested in using a crypto bank and how that would affect users in the event any coins were stolen or lost how Kraken Financial's status as a crypto bank will affect the longstanding problem in the industry of obtaining and maintaining bank relationships how this overlaps and works in conjunction with other recent regulations that have affected the crypto industry, such as the OCC saying banks can custody crypto assets how its SPDI status will affect how Kraken Financial is regulated in New York State where the BitLicense is in effect why Kraken, which has a reputation for pushing back on what it deemed to be overreach by regulators, decided to pursue the SPDI how Kraken Financial will make money, despite keeping 100% reserves David's extensive background in cryptocurrency the timeline going forward for Kraken Financial    Thank you to our sponsors! Cosmos:   Episode links:  David Kinitsky: Kraken:   Kraken announcement about Kraken Financial receiving the SPDI title from the Wyoming Banking Board:   CoinDesk story:   The Block story:   Kraken Chief Legal Officer Marco Santori tweet storm on the significance:   Previous episode of Unchained on crypto friendly regulations in Wyoming:   OCC allowing banks to offer cryptocurrency custody services:   Conference of State Bank Supervisors’ new regulatory regime:   Links from news recap:  
36:50 09/18/2020
How SushiSwap Proved That Liquidity Is Not a Moat - Ep.142
0xMaki, a cofounder of SushiSwap explains how and why he got involved in this project forked from SushiSwap, why he thinks his view of decentralization differs from that of many centralized teams that being such projects, and what the benefits of the SushiSwap vampire mining scheme have been. He discusses:  how and why he got involved in SushiSwap why he feels his view of decentralization differs from that of teams such as Uniswap who he believes the other cofounders are, demographically why cofounder Chef Nomi cashed out to take $13 million after a week's worth of work on the project  how it was decided to hand the admin key to SushiSwap over to Sam Bankman-Fried, the CEO of FTX and Alameda Research how SushiSwap proved that liquidity is not a moat, although trading volume might be why he doesn't own $SUSHI how he feels about taking code from Uniswap the vision for SushiSwap going forward whether or not SushiSwap will be built on another blockchain where he got his $YFI sweatshirt and $YAM pants how SushiSwap introduced a lot of people to being liquidity providers for the first time, and why that's beneficial for DeFi in general  why, despite Chef Nomi cashing out, he thinks people will still trust anonymous devs going forward   Thank you to our sponsors! Nexo: Cosmos:   Episode links:  0xMaki: SushiSwap: SushiSwap stats:    The Defiant’s pre-migration recap of the SushiSwap saga:   How the SushiSwap migration went down:    Forbes interview with Sam Bankman-Fried on the SushiSwap drama:    Chef Nomi’s explanation of why he or she decided to cash out:   Reaction to Chef Nomi cashing out:   Sam Bankman-Fried’s proposal to build out SushiSwap on Solana:   In the end, the total amount of liquidity across both AMMs is greater than before SushiSwap was created:    Links from news recap:
36:34 09/11/2020
SushiSwap Takes On Uniswap: Which Should Win and Why? - Ep.141
Nadav Hollander, cofounder and CEO of Dharma, discusses the war currently being waged between Uniswap and SushiSwap, how this is driving up fees on Ethereum, and how Dharma's product can get around them. In this episode we discuss: why he conceptually supports SushiSwap and fair launch coins whether or not fair launch coins really are fair why SushiSwap makes him nervous why the battle between SushiSwap and Uniswap is a so-called "vampire attack," which is actually driving up the total value locked on Uniswap  how the SushiSwap yield farming works whether or not Uniswap will release Uniswap v3 in time to compete with SushiSwap whether he thinks Uniswap or SushiSwap will win what factors matter when it comes to which will win out between two nearly identical protocols how Dharma's product enables users to yield farm without paying the high gas fees on Ethereum, but what fee users will pay instead   Thank you to our sponsors! Nexo:   Episode links:  Nadav Hollander: Dharma:   Uniswap: SushiSwap:   Introducing SushiSwap:   Total value locked in SushiSwap:   The rise in SushiSwap:   The frenzy of trading in $SUSHI:   Technical issues/red flags raised around SushiSwap:    What factors could help determine who wins:   How Dharma is helping with high fees on Ethereum:    Links from news recap:  
32:34 09/04/2020
Joseph Lubin on How JPMorgan's Quorum Will Fit In at ConsenSys - Ep.140
Joseph Lubin, founder of ConsenSys and cofounder of Ethereum, discusses ConsenSys's acquisition this week of JPMorgan's blockchain solution, Quorum. In this episode, he talks about: why JPMorgan sold Quorum to ConsenSys, and how that fits into ConsenSys's larger enterprise offerings who Quorum's clients are and what it is used for whether or not ConsenSys is also acquiring the Quorum team  how the acquisition fits in with the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance and its standards-based approach to blockchain enterprise development how much JPMorgan invested into ConsenSys how much ConsenSys is raising  how the Quorum acquisition fits into ConsenSys's larger restructuring into two main arms focused on software development and venture activity how the pandemic has affected ConsenSys's business the recent outcry over MetaMask's changes to its licensing structure and how it may eventually monetize with a token his thoughts on Ethereum's five-year anniversary and where it is headed with Ethereum 2.0   Thank you to our sponsors! Nexo:   Episode links:  Joe Lubin: ConsenSys: ConsenSys Quorum:   Announcement about acquisition of Quorum: The Block’s earlier reporting: Initial report about deal by Reuters:   Interbank Information Network:   ConsenSys receives money from Payroll Protection Program:   MetaMask licensing:   Links from news recap:
33:27 08/28/2020
AMA With Laura: The Greatest Innovation in the Industry Right Now - Ep.139
In this episode, I answer some questions submitted to me via Twitter. I take the audience behind the scenes at Unconfirmed and Unchained to discuss: how I started learning about crypto my pre-interview ritual and how I prepare for interviews the toughest interview I have done so far what I dislike about being a crypto journalist my interests outside of crypto what my recording setup and environment are like the storyline to my upcoming book who I consider to be the top five leaders in crypto  what the layer 1 blockchain future looks like whether my conviction in the crypto industry has grown over the years what I believe the next tech revolution will be what I think of the trends in dapps, alts and DeFi  how relevant fundamentals will be in the upcoming bull cycle whether I find time to reflect on how fast things are moving in the space   Thank you to our sponsors! Nexo:   Episode links:  Laura Shin: Unchained Podcast: Unchained and Unconfirmed on YouTube:   Newsletter link:  
45:45 08/21/2020
Andreas Antonopoulos on Why the ETH Supply Debate Is 'Silly' - Ep.138
Andreas Antonopoulos, speaker, educator and author of "Mastering Bitcoin" and "Mastering Ethereum," dives into the ETH supply debate that raged over the last week. In this episode, he talks about: why the question about the ETH supply is a "silly gotcha" what technical features of the Ethereum blockchain make it less straightforward to calculate the supply of ether how the shift to Ethereum 2.0 and a proof of stake system will affect the value of ETH as money why Bitcoin and Ethereum are not natural competitors and will continue to coexist how macro forces will affect Bitcoin, and whether it will ever be used as a medium of exchange in addition to a store of value whether the full Ethereum 2.0 transition will happen in time to meet DeFi demand why Bitcoin gives Ethereum the freedom to experiment why Bitcoin Cash shows that offering scaling with no community isn't enough to take market share why he supports diversity and inclusion efforts in the space   Thank you to our sponsors! Nexo:   Episode links:  Andreas Antonopoulos: On Twitter:   Andreas's tweet storm: Summary of the debate:   Andreas's video on the Lion and the Shark:   Links from news recap:  
40:19 08/14/2020
$5 Billion in AUM: Why Growth at Grayscale Exploded in the Last Quarter - Ep.137
Michael Sonnenshein, managing director of Grayscale Investments, talks about the strong growth in investment in its products, with inflows in Q2 totaling more than $900 million, bringing assets under management to over $5 billion. He discusses how Grayscale: saw more than $900 million in investment in Q2, up from $500 million in Q1 why the macro environment is causing investors to focus on crypto why investors are expressing growing interest in the Grayscale Ethereum Trust how 80% of Grayscale investors have exposure to more than one asset which types of investors are coming in what developments within the crypto space are also leading to the increased inflows into Grayscale products Grayscale's filing of a Form 10 for the Grayscale Ethereum Trust, which will enable it to become an SEC-reporting company why it is doing so for the Ethereum Trust as opposed to Ethereum Classic how the Grayscale Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin Trusts will soon by publicly trading what metrics they use to determine whether to bring a digital asset to market who are attracted to the Grayscale Digital Large Cap fund (GLDC) how Grayscale grew to have $5 billion in assets under management   Thank you to our sponsors! Nexo:   Episode links:  Michael Sonnenshein:   Grayscale:   Grayscale's filing of the Form 10 for the Ethereum Investment Trust:   Links from news recap:
34:21 08/07/2020