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News & Politics

Unconfirmed: Insights and Analysis From the Top Minds in Crypto

Laura Shin - Independent journalist covering crypto (crypto assets, Bitcoin, Ethereum, ICOs, tokens)

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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 wh...Show More
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23:34 | Aug 16th

Maria Shen, head of data science at Electric Capital, dives into the details of the firm's report on crypto developer activity, which analyzed 27,000 code repositories to find that a recent decrease in crypto developer activity came from a drop-off i...Show More

23:12 | Aug 9th

Rebecca Rettig, partner at FisherBroyles, talks about Kik's answer this week to the SEC's complaint, why she predicted they would make this move as opposed to filing a motion to dismiss as many had expected and what their main arguments were. We disc...Show More
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25:04 | Aug 2nd

Chandan Lohda, the cofounder and CEO of CoinTracker, talks about the 10,000 letters the IRS sent to cryptocurrency holders last week, what kinds of letters were sent, what recipients should do depending on what type of letter they received and how th...Show More

22:57 | Jul 26th

Jeremy Allaire, cofounder and CEO of Circle, explains why the company has opened a new subsidiary in Bermuda, obtained a full Digital Assets Business Act license there and how it plans to create separate offerings for the US market vs. non-US. He dis...Show More

42:16 | Jul 19th

Peter Van Valkenburgh, director of research at Coin Center, explains the significance of all the governmental activity around crypto in the last week -- the President's tweets, the Treasury Secretary's and Fed Chair's remarks and of course the Congre...Show More

27:20 | Jul 12th

Lawson Baker, head of operations and general counsel at TokenSoft (disclosure: a previous sponsor of the podcast), explains the significance of this week's SEC statement on broker-dealer custody if digital asset securities, what issues it outlines, w...Show More

28:25 | Jul 5th

Michael Casey, chairman of the advisory board at CoinDesk, CEO of Streambed Media and a former Wall Street Journal reporter who covered global financial and economic affairs, discusses the regulatory response to Libra, in particular the letter from t...Show More

25:26 | Jun 28th

Ben Mezrich, author of the Accidental Billionaires, which formed the basis of the movie The Social Network, and the author of the recently published Bitcoin Billionaires about the Winklevoss twins' rise in the cryptocurrency industry, discusses what ...Show More

29:28 | Jun 21st

Dante Disparte, head of policy and communications for the Libra Association, describes the roles of the various entities that make up the Libra ecosystem and how he came to be in this position. He addresses the most common concern being expressed: wh...Show More

21:58 | Jun 14th

Dillon Chen, CEO of Edgeware, talks about how the network is distributing its tokens via a "lockdrop" in which people can lock up ether for certain time periods in order to obtain Edgeware tokens, why it chose to do so and how that could affect the d...Show More

21:34 | Jun 7th

In this conversation, conducted at the Oslo Freedom Forum, Vera Xavier, LocalBitcoins' Community Manager and Elena Tonoyan, Chief Customer Success Officer, describe what the Helsinki-based company does, how it got started, how its escrow system works...Show More

27:56 | May 31st

At Ethereal, I spoke with Austin Griffiths, director of research at Gitcoin and founder of Burner Wallet, and Arjun Bhuptani, cofounder of Connext Network, about how they think about getting everyday usage. In this discussion, Austin talked about how...Show More

33:44 | May 24th

How Polychain is faring during the crypto winter, where we are in the tech cycle, whether he thinks Ethereum 2.0 will deliver and how he views the competition in the smart contract space. We discuss the upcoming Facebook coin, what that might look li...Show More

25:35 | May 17th

Phil Chen, decentralized chief officer of HTC, discusses the upcoming model of the Exodus, why it will feature a full Bitcoin node, what's in it for the user, whether or not it will affect the performance of other apps on the phone and whether HTC wo...Show More

27:49 | May 10th

Tushar Jain of Multicoin Capital discusses how hackers likely obtained $40 million worth of Bitcoin in a hack on Binance, how the leading crypto exchange could have incentivized miners to reorganize the blocks, and what the possibility says about the...Show More

26:06 | May 3rd

Robert-Jan Den Haan, a contributor to the Block who has been researching the Bitfinex/Tether situation for over a year, talks about how Bitfinex found itself without access to $850 million of its own money, how the trouble crypto companies have maint...Show More

22:27 | Apr 26th

At the Subzero conference in Berlin, Ashley Tyson, the cofounder of the Web 3 Foundation, talks about how it plans to support the Polkadot protocol, plus bring together protocols to create a decentralized web, including other projects outside the Pol...Show More

27:53 | Apr 19th

Zachary Fallon, a former SEC staffer and author of the Reg A JOBS Act crowdfunding rules and a principal at Blakemore Fallon, discusses Blockstack's filing for a token offering under Reg A+, what that means for the security status of the tokens and w...Show More

21:13 | Apr 12th

Sam McIngvale, head of product for Coinbase Custody, describes its new staking service. He explains how Coinbase Custody plans to allow its customers to participate in crypto networks while keeping those funds offline, what Coinbase had to build from...Show More

22:43 | Apr 5th

Marco Santori, the president and chief legal officer of Blockchain, discusses this week's big regulatory news — the SEC's guidance on initial coin offerings and its first no-action letter. We talk about what guidance actually means and how much weigh...Show More

19:58 | Mar 29th

Ryan Todd and Matteo Leibowitz, research analysts at The Block, discuss why Dai has fallen below $1 in price, how the community has attempted to keep it pegged to $1 and how well that's been working. They also describe what the governance system look...Show More

24:08 | Mar 22nd

Delphi Digital recently released a report on Ethereum's short- and long-term prospects. It showed why there's been such high selling pressure on Ethereum, plus dived deeply into the economics of Ethereum 2.0, concluding that the current proposal leav...Show More

25:40 | Mar 15th

Hayden Adams, founder of the new decentralized exchange Uniswap, discusses how Uniswap differs from a traditional exchange based on order books, how market the contract determines the price of the tokens, and how market making on Uniswap is similar, ...Show More

01:54 | Mar 10th

Get your tickets now for Unchained Live with Vitalik Buterin! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/unchained-live-with-vitalik-buterin-tickets-56189456176 It will take place March 20th at 6pm at Columbia Journalism School in the Joseph D. Jamail Lecture Hal...Show More

23:27 | Mar 8th

Dan Elitzer, investor at IDEO CoLab Ventures, describes a concept he describes as superfluid collateral made possible in the decentralized finance space. We talk about which DeFi projects make this possible, how one can make collateral liquid so that...Show More

20:31 | Mar 1st

Blockstream chief strategy officer Samson Mow, who used to work at a competitor to Bitmain, discusses the recent news that the crypto mining manufacturer suffered a $500 million loss in the third quarter of 2018. He talks about possible reasons, incl...Show More

28:16 | Feb 22nd

Ruben Galindo Steckel, cofounder and CEO of AirTM, describes how his companies enables everyday Venezuelans the ability to escape the hyperinflation in their currency, the bolivar, to save in U.S. dollar accounts. He also describes how the company cr...Show More

01:06 | Feb 20th

In case you haven’t heard, I’m doing a live podcast recording with Vitalik Buterin, the creator of Ethereum. What is a live podcast recording? It's a podcast performed by me and the guest on a stage, in front of an audience.  Vitalik and I will be di...Show More

24:08 | Feb 15th

Joyce Yang, founder of Global Coin Research, discusses the crypto scene in Korea today. An epicenter of the crypto craze in 2017, Korea still has a number of young people pinning their hopes and dreams on crypto, as described in an article in The New...Show More

27:21 | Feb 8th

To hear that a 29-year-old died of complications from Crohn's disease is shocking enough. But it's practically unbelievable when the person in question was in charge of a crypto exchange that held an estimated $150 million of customer funds and that ...Show More

21:15 | Feb 1st

Dan Morehead, CEO of Pantera Capital, explains why this crypto bear market is different from the previous one his firm endured, what he believes will give institutional money the confidence to enter the space, and how Pantera's investing approach has...Show More

22:14 | Jan 25th

Chandan Lodha, cofounder and CEO of CoinTracker, explains why reports from crypto exchanges could be insufficient for filing accurate tax returns to the IRS, how one should track one's crypto transactions in order to not over- or under-pay, and who c...Show More

22:02 | Jan 18th

The newly formed Blockchain Association recently released a post outlining what it calls the Hinman Token Standard based on a speech given last summer by Bill Hinman, director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance. The Blockchain Association's...Show More

24:23 | Jan 11th

Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin, discusses this week's 51% attack on the Ethereum Classic blockchain. He describes how the attacker was able to gain control of more than 51% of the network, why it was inexpensive for them to do so, how they prof...Show More

25:29 | Jan 4th

On the 10th birthday of the Bitcoin network, Arjun Balaji, founder and managing partner at Shomei Capital, explains why doesn't worry too much about potential bugs in the code such as there was last fall, why we'll see improved scalability, privacy a...Show More

23:15 | Dec 28th, 2018

Jemma Green, cofounder and chairman of PowerLedger, describes how the company, which won the 2018 Extreme Tech Challenge, spearheaded by Sir Richard Branson and CES, is using tokens to solve various energy problems. One is the principal-agent problem...Show More

29:17 | Dec 21st, 2018

Bloomberg reporter Matt Leising, who obtained bank statements from Tether's bank, Noble Bank in Puerto Rico, found that for those months, the number of dollars in the bank matched the amount of Tether outstanding. He talks about what this means, whet...Show More

19:02 | Dec 19th, 2018

This special episode is a recording of the closing fireside chat I had at Consensus: Invest, titled “Financial Products: 2019 and Beyond,”  with Jan Van Eck, president and CEO of the Van Eck Securities Corporation, and Mike Belshe, cofounder and CEO ...Show More

20:00 | Dec 14th, 2018

ConsenSys's Andrew Keys talks about the company's recent pivot, called "ConsenSys 2.0," toward greater efficiency, accountability and focus on revenue, why it laid off about 150 people, and what areas it plans to generate revenue from. He explains wh...Show More

21:32 | Dec 7th, 2018

Despite having Joe Lubin's billions at its back, and despite having 1,200 employees to build apparently anything they wanted in the Ethereum ecosystem, ConsenSys has accomplished very little and has little revenue -- so it's finally facing the music ...Show More

28:06 | Nov 30th, 2018

Jackson Palmer, the creator of Dogecoin and the website Are We Decentralized Yet, explains why he thinks the markets suddenly took a nosedive, why it's hard for him to get data on these crypto assets for the Are We Decentralized Yet website -- unless...Show More

18:42 | Nov 23rd, 2018

In lieu of a regular episode during this (U.S.) holiday, I'm releasing the audio from my TEDx San Francisco Talk. Thank you to our sponsors! Abra: Click this special link for a free $25 in Bitcoin! https://www.abra.com/unconfirmed WeTrust: Donate in ...Show More

24:02 | Nov 16th, 2018

Bitcoin Magazine technical editor Aaron Van Wirdum breaks down what is going on with the Bitcoin Cash contentious hard fork: who is fighting, over what, and how this could play out, including the nuclear option of a proof of work algorithm change. We...Show More

31:18 | Nov 9th, 2018

Emin Gun Sirer, Cornell professor, co-director at the Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Smart Contracts (IC3) and the founder of Ava, talks about the settlement the SEC reached with the founder of EtherDelta, and what that could mean for the coders...Show More

24:00 | Nov 2nd, 2018

To celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the publication of the Bitcoin white paper, Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin, asks how Bitcoin can go from a speculative asset to real money (hint: the Lightning Network plays a role) and explains what he t...Show More

20:45 | Oct 26th, 2018

Fidelity Digital Asset Services president Tom Jessop explains why its new crypto offering for institutional clients is focused on custody and trade execution, why it's decided not to launch its own exchange, and what kinds of trading capabilities fro...Show More

20:19 | Oct 19th, 2018

Dan McArdle, cofounder of Messari and the creator of OnChainFX, discusses why tether lost its dollar peg, how the Gemini USD traded at above $1, and how this was similar to the time before Mt. Gox imploded. We also discuss the significance of the Fid...Show More

24:18 | Oct 12th, 2018

Soona Amhaz of Token Daily talks about how we've misused the word decentralization and stretched it to the point of meaninglessness. She discusses how certain companies misrepresent being decentralized and walks us through some misleading graphs put ...Show More

23:52 | Oct 5th, 2018

Bill Barhydt, founder and CEO of Abra, describes its new product, the BIT10, which it created in partnership with Bitwise Asset Management (full disclosure: Bitwise previously sponsored my podcasts). He outlines the way the token is similar to an ETF...Show More

23:08 | Sep 28th, 2018

Rune Christensen, founder and CEO of MakerDao, explains what Andreessen Horowitz's $15 million investment in its Maker token means for the ecosystem and why they chose to work with a16z and its general partner Kathryn Haun. He also responds to critic...Show More

22:31 | Sep 21st, 2018

Linda Xie, cofounder at Scalar Capital, talks about what she saw at ETHBerlin, why it made her think Ethereum's first-mover advantage may be hard for other smart contract platforms to overcome and how the crypto community in Berlin differed from that...Show More

21:50 | Sep 14th, 2018

Alex Sunnarborg, founding partner of Tetras Capital, describes the three core buckets his fund is investing in, how they're investing during this bear market, and why the firm has decided to short ether. He also describes why he thinks dapps could ta...Show More

20:37 | Sep 7th, 2018

Katherine Wu, director of business development and community at Messari, talks about the news that everyone on crypto Twitter was discussing this week: Shapeshift's decision to require customer accounts. The well-known crypto-to-crypto exchange has l...Show More

20:01 | Aug 31st, 2018

Pamela Morgan, a lawyer in the blockchain space and the author of Cryptoasset Inheritance Planning, explains how you can pass on your crypto assets to your heirs without them or anyone else getting ahold of them beforehand. Surprisingly, the first st...Show More

39:40 | Aug 24th, 2018

Joe Lubin, cofounder of Ethereum and founder of ConsenSys, and Jimmy Song, partner at Blockchain Capital and founder of Programming Blockchain, pick up the bet they started at the Consensus conference in May. The challenge was on whether or not we wo...Show More

21:44 | Aug 17th, 2018

Silicon Valley capitalist and longtime crypto investor Bill Tai discusses some interesting theories about how crypto is changing money and work. He starts by talking about the shift from oil- to electron-based currencies. He also describes how people...Show More

23:21 | Aug 10th, 2018

Caitlin Long, who’s working on a book about Wall Street and crypto assets and is the cofounder of the Wyoming Blockchain Coalition, discusses the significance of the creation of Bakkt, a new federally regulated market for Bitcoin, by ICE, Microsoft, ...Show More

23:06 | Aug 3rd, 2018

Tricia Martinez, director of the Dala Foundation and founder and CEO of Wala, describes how cryptocurrency Dala is being used in Africa and how it hit 100,000 new wallets and 2.5 million in transactions in two months, with an average transaction size...Show More

23:17 | Jul 27th, 2018

CoinList founder and president Andy Bromberg talks about why the ICO services firm has worked with only five out of 2,500 token projects, how tokenomic models are changing to ensure the viability of the network and also avoid incurring regulatory act...Show More

26:55 | Jul 20th, 2018

In this wide-ranging conversation, the Token Economy newsletter coauthor Stefano Bernardi talks about fully digital security tokens -- security tokens with no relation to real world securities like companies and real estate, but that represent securi...Show More

43:28 | Jul 16th, 2018

In this special episode I hosted with CNBC Crypto Trader, Ran Neu Ner and I talk with Olaf Carlson-Wee, founder and CEO of crypto hedge fund Polychain Capital. We discuss his early career, what sets this crypto downturn apart from previous ones and w...Show More

24:40 | Jul 13th, 2018

Independent crypto analyst Willy Woo, who blogs at Woobull.com, talks about where he sees the price of Bitcoin going over the next six months. (Hint: He uses the word "sideways.") He also describes his concept of NVT Ratio, the Bitcoin equivalent of ...Show More

22:16 | Jul 6th, 2018

Demian Brener, the cofounder and CEO of Zeppelin discusses a dilemma he's seeing investors be concerned about: whether blockchains should be immutable forever or whether it should be possible to upgrade smart contracts over time. He explains why he d...Show More

23:37 | Jun 29th, 2018

Kyle Samani, managing partner of Multicoin Capital, talks about what got him really excited at this week's Zcon0 conference for Zcash -- primarily, technologies that could make possible a future of massively scalable blockchains featuring default pri...Show More

21:13 | Jun 22nd, 2018

Gideon Lewis-Kraus, a contributing writer at Wired, came out with a cover story in the magazine earlier this week that investigated the actions of both sides in the Tezos boardroom battle. Lewis-Kraus walks us through the accusations on both sides an...Show More

20:56 | Jun 15th, 2018

Adam White, vice president and general manager of Coinbase, explains why he believes the SEC's statement Thursday that ether, in its current form, is not a security, is a historic moment in crypto. Also, from his vantage point of being steeped in the...Show More

21:21 | Jun 8th, 2018

Joey Krug, cofounder of Augur and chief investment officer at Pantera Capital, talks about the upcoming Augur launch, and why we haven't yet seen a regular, non-deflationary, non-stablecoin cryptocurrency -- and how to create one. For instance, he sa...Show More

21:56 | Jun 1st, 2018

Think Bitcoin and crypto assets are just vehicles for speculation? They're already having both a positive impact and negative impact when it comes to human rights, says Alex Gladstein, chief strategy officer for the Human Rights Foundation. Gladstein...Show More

22:49 | May 25th, 2018

Blockchain consultant, Jill Carlson, who has worked with 0x, dydx, Algorand, Tezos, O1 Labs, and the IMF, discusses why Blockchain Week to her seemed to be too much about Lambos and how crypto has reached its "illogical conclusion" and is replicating...Show More

25:46 | May 18th, 2018

Mike Novogratz, the founder and CEO of Galaxy Digital Capital Management, talks about the recently announced Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index, why it's limited to just 12 cryptos, how traditional financial players know more about crypto than people beli...Show More

22:28 | May 13th, 2018

Many government officials have noted the potential blockchain technology has to fight fraud, waste and abuse. Tomicah Tillemann, cofounder of the Blockchain Trust Accelerator, assembled an intimate group of 18 people at the Rockefeller Foundation's B...Show More

21:45 | May 12th, 2018

Robert Opp, director of innovation and change management at the United Nations World Food Programme, discusses the Ethereum-based food voucher program for Syrian refugees. He describes how the refugees are identified, what they receive with their vou...Show More

21:30 | May 11th, 2018

Who sets up the rules of a blockchain? And how does that impact its users? Could there be unintended consequences? Might the design not account for the potential that bad actors will abuse it? These are questions that Cara LaPointe, a senior fellow a...Show More

19:15 | May 7th, 2018

Ryan Selkis of blockchain standards organization Messari explains why he jumped into a public debate between CoinDesk editor Pete Rizzo and Vitalik and Ethereum, in which Vitalik criticized CoinDesk for charging high prices for its Consensus conferen...Show More

20:29 | May 4th, 2018

Vinny Lingham, the founder and CEO of blockchain-based identity service Civic, talks about how he hasn't seen token projects find good product-market fit yet, and gives us a sneak preview of how Civic is trying to solve that problem for itself. (Appa...Show More

21:28 | Apr 27th, 2018

Formerly head of emerging technology at State Street, Hu Liang is now launching Omniex, which offers tools for institutional investors in crypto. He talks at the Time Summit in Greenwich, Connecticut, about the four quadrants of activity he sees in t...Show More

22:09 | Apr 20th, 2018

At the CoinAlts Fund Symposium in New York City on Thursday, Don Wilson, CEO of DRW Holdings, discussed what hopeful signs he's seeing amid greater regulatory uncertainty, what crypto regulations in other jurisdictions he finds smart, and how the reg...Show More

22:25 | Apr 13th, 2018

Meltem Demirors of Athena Capital and recently of Digital Currency Group explains how the crypto world is creating artificial scarcity and how investors can uncover the true scarcity (or lack thereof). She describes why many projects have not yet abl...Show More

23:44 | Apr 6th, 2018

Chris Burniske, partner at Placeholder and author of Cryptoassets, discusses why he thinks initial coin offerings may not always be the best token distribution model, why he's more interested in projects that enable users to earn tokens through contr...Show More

27:07 | Mar 30th, 2018

Ari Paul, CIO of BlockTower Capital, discusses the slump in crypto prices, and how infrastructure rolling out over the rest of the year could have a positive effect on the market. He also describes how BlockTower Capital thinks about security for its...Show More

19:34 | Mar 23rd, 2018

Arianna Simpson, managing partner of investment firm Autonomous Partners, discusses this week's news that Cambridge Analytica had used data from Facebook to perhaps manipulate the 2016 election and whether that could create an opening for blockchain-...Show More

23:31 | Mar 16th, 2018

Wyoming now has five blockchain-specific laws. Caitlin Long, cofounder of the Wyoming Blockchain Coalition, describes what these laws are, what they mean, and how our least populous state became a crypto leader. The former chairman and president of S...Show More

21:27 | Mar 15th, 2018

Amber Baldet, JPMorgan Chase blockchain program lead, talks about what she was discussing at SXSW with Hyperledger executive director Brian Behlendorf and what themes she heard at the Ethereum Community Conference in Paris. She talks about privacy in...Show More

19:54 | Mar 14th, 2018

As a former government official, current board member of Coinbase and professor at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, Kathryn Haun has a unique and varied view of the crypto space. She doesn't necessarily see the SEC subpoenas as a ...Show More

22:23 | Mar 9th, 2018

Spencer Bogart, partner at Blockchain Capital, discusses why he think Bitcoin's growing pains are a sign of success, how the SEC regulatory gloom could affect the development of crypto and how a liquidity crunch could affect crypto hedge funds. We al...Show More

22:51 | Mar 2nd, 2018

Future Perfect Ventures' founder and managing partner Jalak Jobanputra and I discuss the New York Times article earlier this week about how few women there are in crypto. We discuss some of the surprising comments we saw from women in the space who w...Show More

22:25 | Feb 23rd, 2018

Brian Kelly of BKCM talks about token-curated registries, such as the proposal for Messari, by Ryan Selkis, formerly of Digital Currency Group and CoinDesk, and why such TCRs are probably a good idea, but what pitfalls they may face. We also discuss ...Show More

21:57 | Feb 16th, 2018

The founder and CEO of Polychain Capital discusses why an Ethereum core developer is stepping down, how blockchains should be governed and whether speculators and users have equal weight in crypto communities. We also discuss an op-ed that suggests a...Show More

00:33 | Feb 9th, 2018

Subscribe now - first episode coming Friday! Weekly Insights and Analysis From the Top Minds in Crypto.  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 head...Show More