Have a question? Want to advertise? Something else? Contact us: [email protected]

From the Front Page

Rhys Lindmark: MIT's Digital Currency Initiative – Why We Need Blockchain Ethics

Published on October 29th, 2019 by epicenterbitcoin

Click to download audio version

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies have the potential to change the world in meaningful ways. And this change may drastically impact people’s lives – both for the better and for the worse. While ethics are often discussed for technologies like AI, the ethical considerations around blockchain technologies have received less focussed attention.

We’re joined by Rhys Lindmark, Head of Community and Long-Term Societal Impact at the MIT Media Lab’s Digital Currency Initiative. Previously the host of the podcast “Creating a Humanist Blockchain Future,” Rhys’ approach to blockchain was always about considering its potential impact. Since joining the DCI, his podcast, now “Gray Mirror,” continues to explore these questions. He has also recently started teaching a blockchain ethics course with the DCI’s Director, Neha Narula.

Topics discussed in this episode:

  • Rhys’ background as a podcaster and proponent of Effective Altruism
  • His advocacy work around universal tithing and donating to charity
  • The controversy surrounding the MIT Media Lab and the resignation of their Director Joi Ito
  • The difference between ethics and morals
  • Why we need to study blockchain ethics
  • Should we have ethics committees in blockchain as there exists about AI
  • The ethical considerations for different use cases and applications of blockchain technology
  • The role of miners and should they have ethical obligations to censor certain transactions
  • The DCI’s blockchain ethics class and what students learn

Links mentioned in this episode:


  • Cosmos: Change the future of finance at the SF Blockchain Week Defi Hackathon – $50,000 prize pool for winning teams
  • Trail of Bits: Trust the team at the forefront of blockchain security research
  • B9Lab: Level up and become a Solidity smart contract auditor – 5% off the with the code EPICENTER

This episode is hosted by Sebastien Couture & Friederike Ernst. Show notes and listening options: epicenter.tv/311

Views: 2,872


Make sure to make use of the "downvote" button for any spammy posts, and the "upvote" feature for interesting conversation. Be excellent.

comments powered by Disqus