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Interview with Aaron Greenspan, Harvard graduate, original creator of “The Facebook,” payments innovator, and autodidact non-lawyer. (PART THREE)
Aaron was generous both in his time and in his responses, which led me to split the interview into three parts: In PART ONE: REGULATION AND INNOVATION IN THE UNITED STATES, Aaron talks about United States money transmitters laws and identifies, with unusual clarity and depth, what he believes is wrong with them.
In PART TWO: BITCOIN, COMMUNISM AND THE SURVEILLANCE STATE, Aaron lays out his controversial point of view on Bitcoin.
Read on for PART THREE: A YOUNG FINTECH ENTERPRENEUR’S DAY OF RECKONING, the final and most controversial one, in which Aaron has no qualms about naming and shaming some of the individuals that have not “treated him with respect.” Again, here is a brief intro on Aaron, for the benefit of those who haven’t read the previous posts.
Having been a teen tech entrepreneur, during college at Harvard in 2003 Aaron created the predecessor to Facebook, Inc., which also happened to be called “The Facebook.” In 2009, he entered into a settlement Continue reading
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Interview with Aaron Greenspan, Harvard graduate, original creator of “The Facebook,” payments innovator, and autodidact non-lawyer. (PART ONE)
Having been a teen tech entrepreneur, during college at Harvard in 2003 Aaron created the predecessor to Facebook, Inc., which also happened to be called “The Facebook.” In 2009, he entered into a settlement agreement with Facebook, Inc. as well as his classmate Mark Zuckerberg, and then had the opportunity to figure out what he wanted to do next, so he followed a long-standing interest in payment systems and decided to try and tackle mobile payments. From 2008 through early 2011, he invested essentially every piece of time, energy and capital at his disposal into making his payments initiative, called FaceCash, widely regarded as a success—until he was told that he would be thrown in federal prison by a state bureaucrat.
As you will soon see, to say that Aaron does not mince his words is the understatement of the century, so I am aware of the risks I am taking by presenting his strong point of view here. However, even Continue reading
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A few months ago, a Latin American advisory group asked me to comment on the Digital Sucre and the potential impact of a country adopting a digital or crypto-currency as legal tender. It never occurred to me that I should post the surface-scratching responses I came up with, until American Banker‘s Bailey Reutzel asked the question (here). With the upcoming release of AuroraCoin in Iceland, and the adoption of a bitcoin clone by the Oglala Lakota Native American nation, this seems to be a good time to poke the discussion. So here go my two cents in the hope that a few extra thoughts will be triggered.
In concept, is bitcoin more currency or payments system?
Bitcoin is both. In addition, and most importantly and fundamentally, it’s also a protocol on top of which additionally functionality can be built. The fact that Bitcoin (with a capital B) is multiple things at once is what creates most of the confusion about it. Bitcoin is a sophisticated globally distributed asset register that, at this moment in time, is mostly being used to register value in USD or other fiat currencies. Hence the fact that it’s mostly construed as a commodity, or a digital asset class with a corresponding value in fiat Continue reading