You can’t “blockchain” everything

Matt Levine on the “blockchain” projects attempting to adopt to real world, which doesn’t function as neatly as needed. Blockchain opens up a a lot of new possibilities, but you can’t simply port physical businesses to a blockchain. New models are needed in some cases, and in most, blockchain isn’t the answer.

Levine, of course, references “tech” company Juicero:

You might call this the Juicero Problem: You can build a computer ecosystem and associate it with bags of fruit, and encourage people to use the computer ecosystem to squeeze the bags of fruit, but not everything that happens to the bags of fruit in the real world can be completely controlled by your computer ecosystem. You can’t prevent people from squeezing the bags with their hands. The world exists, and it is messier than your protocols want it to be.

via The Blockchain Is Not the World at Bloomberg

Bitcoin Hard Forks as Dividends

At Bloomberg, Justina Lee compared the recent Bitcoin Gold hard fork to a stock dividend:

On top of stupendous capital gains, investors in bitcoin are also getting a dividend — if they’re lucky.

A split in the blockchain created a new offshoot in the form of bitcoin gold on Tuesday, with bitcoin holders receiving one unit for every bitcoin they own, according to the offshoot’s developers. The cryptocurrency fell from a record high after the so-called hard fork, just as stocks typically drop after going ex-dividend.

Of course, not all token holders received the dividend. For example. anyone holding BTC through Coinbase missed out. Then there’s the problem of whether a 5% of less dividend means anything when prices can fluctuate 30% in a week anyway.