The crypto winter of 2022 had nothing on TOKEN2049. Attendees flocked to the annual crypto event, taking the opportunity to gain insights from leaders in the crypto industry. This article covers the highlights of the events in Singapore and London, including the tug-of-war between regulation and decentralization.
What is TOKEN2049?
TOKEN2049 is a premier crypto event bringing together the leading voices in crypto to share their views on the current market. It is held in two cities annually — Singapore and London.
Besides the series of panel discussions, other activities include workshops, meetups, and hackathons. These activities serve the overall aim to unite entrepreneurs, investors, developers, industry enthusiasts, and global media under the crypto umbrella.
Past speakers include Vitalik Buterin (Co-Founder of Ethereum), Stani Kulechov (Founder and CEO of Aave), and Charlie Lee (Creator of Litecoin).
While both events in Singapore and London share the same objective, there may be slight differences with regard to the topic of conversation due to the rapid development in the crypto industry.
TOKEN2049 Singapore Highlights
The main topics covered at the Singapore conference in September 2022 were the ongoing crypto winter, adoption by mainstream finance, and regulation.
Undeniably, crypto adoption by the traditional finance (TradFi) industry is a love-hate proposition. While there are concerns that TradFi might betray the core principles of crypto, their involvement adds much-needed liquidity to the space and gives it a sense of respectability.
Alexander Höptner, Former CEO of the crypto trading platform BitMEX said that the current bear market, far from sowing doubts among institutional finance players, was encouraging them to pile in.
During this TOKEN2049 conference, it was explained that institutional interest in crypto continues to grow due to two factors:
- The ‘flight-to-quality’ trend i.e. the simultaneous event of a stock market crash with a boom in crypto as observed in past years.
- Current price levels as interesting entry point for investors.
In terms of regulation, while speakers at TOKEN2049 Singapore raised concerns on this issue, they also demonstrated a willingness to embrace discipline for the benefit of their customers, their own longer-term interests, and the development of the sector.
Regulatory oversight used to be seen as a bad thing as the idea opposes the concept of decentralization that Bitcoin put forth. However, it seems that the sentiment is changing as leaders see regulations as removing uncertainty and improving the speed of innovation.
TOKEN2049 London Highlights
While only two months apart, the conversation at TOKEN2049 London in November had a different tone. According to Cecilia Wong (MRHB’s Head of PR), due to the FTX debacle, the conference focused more on transparency and decentralization.
While a typical response to fraud would be to increase regulations, which speakers at the Singapore conference alluded to, this might not satisfy the need for decentralization. Instead of a centralized regulatory approach, industry players could consider a more transparent and community-oriented approach guided by ethics and integrity.
Smart contract protocols whereby ethical guidance is built into the code (more on this later) could be the answer to both decentralization and transparency demands.
TOKEN2049 London also touched on data privacy in the age of surveillance capitalism, NFTs, and digital property rights. As the growing alliance of state and private industry undermines privacy and individual autonomy, more innovations to existing decentralized technologies will be much welcomed.
Overall, the feel at Token2049 was that opportunities for Web3 are very promising and this sector will no doubt continue to keep growing.
MRHB — The Future of Halal DeFi
TOKEN2049 highlighted the issues of regulation, transparency, and a lack of ethics, which led to an abuse of customers’ trust and their funds.
Where then do we go from here?
Implementing regulation, while convenient and attractive to TradFi investors, may ruffle the feathers of some crypto natives and proponents of decentralization. But without regulation, it can be difficult to keep bad players accountable and prevent them from stealing funds.
We may already have the answer as well as the means.
Instead of implementing centralized TradFi systems with obvious points of failure, it might be worth focusing more on innovating decentralized systems with ethics coded in the smart contracts.
Recognizing the need for security, transparency, and decentralization, MRHB has been way ahead of the curve with the halal DeFi ecosystem it is building with interest-free halal DeFi products that would satisfy the needs of faith-based and ethically conscious communities.
Support an ethical DeFi future by downloading the multi-chain self-custodial Sahal Wallet—the gateway to the entire MRHB ecosystem.