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Jimmy Wales: Blockchain Can’t Be Banned

The name Jimmy Wales (born August 7, 1966), may not sound familiar to those outside the world of IT, but when it is taken into consideration that his name appears in the Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of 2006, his credibility and prestige begin to prove evident.

“Jimbo” (his moniker) became world famous thanks to the success of Wikipedia, which has already become an international reference for the search for information.

He is currently working on a new project: WikiTribune, which seeks to revolutionize the world of journalism through a platform that promotes impartiality and fights fake and unsubstantiated news.

During the BlockShow Conference in Berlin, Jimy Wales was interviewed by Cointelegraph about his career prospects. The vision he showed about the world of cryptos and blockchain technologies is quite compelling.

Concerning cryptocurrencies, Catherine Ross, the interviewer, asked him if he was still holding to his previous statements in which he said he considered cryptocurrencies to be a bubble. Jimmi Wales joined the “Crypto is a Bubble” team, but with a reasonably objective vision:

“When I say something is a bubble, it doesn’t mean that I think there’s nothing of value there. It means there’s a lot of noise and there’s a lot of investment money flowing in, and a lot of things are being invested into what does not actually make sense. A lot of projects are going to fail, but we additionally have a lot of scams, a lot of theft, a lot of crazy things happening. So, I just ask people to be careful.”

He mentioned that he was not a crypto investor although he did accept that he had “some crypto here and there.”

Jimmy “Jimbo” Wales

He also noted that he had no particular interest in projects based on blockchain technologies, but did not deny the possibility of diving into the pool if any idea was meaningful.

Regarding the issue of the regulation of cryptomarket and ICOs, he pointed out that it makes no sense to consider extremist positions such as those of some politicians seeking to ban their use, but he was emphatic in stressing that it is necessary to innovate in a new legal framework adapted to this reality:

“Blockchain as a technology is not something that needs regulation. You’ll occasionally hear a politician saying, “We need to ban cryptography,” but that’s stupid and crazy and you’re never going to do it with math. You can’t ban math. You can’t ban blockchain. It’s math.”

At the same time, we see a lot of things going on that it’s very difficult to say they’re anything other than just scams. People are making millions of dollars of other people’s money with no accountability and that deserves law enforcement for investigation.

We see a lot of the hacks and Bitcoin or other coins being stolen because somebody hacked the server and got the keys. That’s what the police are for, right? Ideally. I feel like there’s been far too little response. You know, if you walked into Citibank and walked out with 56 million dollars’ worth of gold… You went, and you picked a lock and you stole the actual gold [and put it in] the back of a truck, then there’d be an army of FBI agents investigating this.

I feel like a lot of the cryptocurrency thefts have gone [unsolved]. The police are like, “We don’t know what to do,” so they do very little. That’s not to criticize them, that’s just the fact that we don’t see the right kind of law enforcement response. People don’t think about it as regulation, but of course it’s against the law to steal things.”

For Jimmy Wales, the fact that there are so many scams and hacks is a situation that, in addition to tarnishing the image of cryptocurrencies, hinders the revolution they could bring along.

Jimmy Wales on Government Adoption

On the adoption of blockchain technologies by governments, Jimmy Wales was enthusiastic but cautious. For him, governments would be risking too much on a technology they cannot tolerate failing:

“They need to be very cautious and very careful. I think particularly when they’re dealing with taxpayer money, there’s a very good reason to be extremely cautious about new technologies … It doesn’t mean that we won’t necessarily move in that direction, but I want to see governments moving very cautiously in this space.”

To see the full video click here:

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Switzerland Marches Ahead to Become the Crypto-Nation: ICO Guides

A very appreciated and welcomed approach by a gov – The Financial supervisor of Switzerland has taken a different path towards the much speculated ICO crowdfunding as it issued guidelines for Swiss-based startups that are planning to raise capital for support in the projects. These could be just one of many steps that the country has taken [in contrary to many other nations that are stricting-up rules] to take the lead in the Cryptocurrency community and ecosystem.

The guidelines do divide Initial Coin Offerings into three major categories which are: Utility ICOs, Payment ICOs and Asset ICOs.

Utility ICOs – In this group are included the crowdfunding at which funds or tokens are used as a way to give access to a service or product. Only if they are made with the target of serving a utility these are put down as security, otherwise they are not considered of the sort.

Payment ICOs – These are the ICO funds that are transferable and can be used as a mode of payment. Finma remarked these ICO would have to comply with the anti-money laundering regulations but they wouldn’t be considered as financial securities.

Asset ICOs – The ones that will be set on sale for investors as bonds or equities while making sure that the returns are in regular income or dividends. The Asset ICOs will undergo the definitions of security and the complete-regulation pack for financial securities will be added on.

Finma’s Chief Executive – Mark Branson [on Friday] added that the supportive yet balanced approach towards ICOs would allow:

“Legitimate innovators to navigate the regulatory landscape and so launch their projects in a way consistent with our laws protecting investors and the integrity of the financial system.”

This is a clear sign that Switzerland is trying to take the lead int he crypto-ecosystem tech-wave that has his the globe and finding the best way to utilize it, while other gov-s like South Korea, India or China have pointed out their unwillingness to adopt crypto-trading.

Economic Minister – Johann Schneider Ammann, in Jan, added that there is a full-intention taking place for Switzerland to become the cryptocurrency nation.