Crypto Ethics: The Mathematics of Socially Responsible Investing in Blockchain and the Metaverse

Disruptive technology always comes with ethical considerations, especially when it comes to the tech industry. Internet, artificial intelligence, social media, peer-to-peer platforms, streaming services and now, blockchain technology. With the role of blockchain technology becoming increasingly important in today’s world, more and more investors are concerned about socially responsible investing.

Concerns about the ethical implications of blockchain technology have existed since its inception. However, as the technology grew in relevance, it would eventually become one of the main sources of positive and negative reviews. Probably the biggest criticism that blockchain technology faced was when the New York Times published an article about Bitcoin’s environmental impact.

The room, titled “In Coinbase’s Rise, a Reminder: Cryptocurrencies Use Lots of Energy,” drew attention to existing concerns about proof-of-work energy consumption. Many articles and columns would appear over the next few days, with companies like Square and Town While the subject of bitcoin’s use case is certainly not in the spotlight these days, it is still relevant.

More recently, non-fungible tokens have also risen to prominence as celebrities and brands around the world have started using and championing them. During the NFT craze, thousands of people joined in the discussion about the real ethics of NFTs. While proponents defended their potential use cases and their role in democratizing art, detractors pointed to the financial implications of the speculation around them and their hypocrisy.

The debate on the ethics of new technologies is not new. The International Journal of Ethics published by The University of Chicago Press already published on the subject in 1923. In an article entitled “Some Ethical Consequences of the Industrial Revolution”, Austin Freeman referred to the Industrial Revolution by saying:

“This ethical atrophy represents the sinking to a lower level of essential civilization. For civilization, we have agreed, is based on man’s recognition of his duty to his neighbour; none of which can be more evident than that of honesty and loyalty.

Today, most of us do not consider the technical revolution as a negative element, quite the contrary. Just like that, most of the criticism towards NFT, blockchain and crypto, is more about their current status… Not about the technology itself. When it comes to socially responsible investing, it’s not about whether or not to invest in crypto, but how.

The panel “The Mathematics of Socially Responsible Investing in Blockchain and the Metaverse” saw experts discuss this topic as part of Grit Daily House during Consensus 2022. Leah Callon-Butler, Principal at Emfarsis; Evin Cheikosman, political analyst at the World Economic Forum; and Nisa Amoils, Managing Partner at A100x Ventures, took the stage to share their ideas, opinions and experiences with attendees.

Moderated by Linqto’s Chief Strategy Officer, Karim Nurani, panelists addressed topics including environmental concerns around blockchain, fintech regulation, and the role of women in developing countries. If you want to hear what these experts have to say, you can watch the entire panel in the video below. Also find our other panels on the official Grit Daily website Youtube channel!

Juan Fajardo is News Desk Editor at Grit Daily. He is a software developer, technology and blockchain enthusiast, and writer, fields in which he has contributed to several projects. A jack-of-all-trades, he was born in Bogota, Colombia, but currently lives in Argentina after having traveled extensively. Always with a new interest in mind and a passion for entrepreneurship, Juan is an editor at Grit Daily where he covers everything related to the world of startups.

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