Street art in Salem, Massachusetts

Today crypto seems like an insider’s game for the rich and powerful, not a grassroots movement.

The idea incepted by Satoshi Nakamoto of a peer-to-peer electronic cash system beyond the control of governments and corporations can seem like a distant memory when scanning news about today’s top cryptocurrency projects.

Dogecoin — which caught mainstream attention after generating an 85x return over the past 12 months — has turned corporate, launching a new advisory board starring Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin and an individual representing the coin’s top promoter, Elon Musk.

Stablecoins pegged to the dollar like USDC and exchange tokens like…

A future of personal and financial privacy might be closer and more realistic than you think.

The other day, I went to buy dog food at my local pet shop. I bought a large bag of dog food and some treats for my dog that claimed to be able to make her breath smell better. Toothbrush-shaped treats. I paid with my Chase Visa card and walked out of the store. A few minutes later, I happened to check Twitter and saw an advertisement pop up — for toothbrush-shaped dog treats. I thought: this was not an online purchase. I used nothing but my credit card. How did this happen?

The advertising was too specific to have…

Bitcoin: a tool of freedom and human rights.

Foreign Policy recently published the latest mainstream media attack on Bitcoin from the London-based author and journalist David Gerard. Gerard’s “Forget Bitcoin, Try your Mattress” is the newest in a long line of Bitcoin criticism published everywhere from the Financial Times to The Washington Post. This time, Bitcoin is part of a system “plagued by hacks, fraud, and social engineering.” Doesn’t sound very appealing, does it? Why, might you ask, would a human rights activist like me be interested in something so universally derided by experts and the world establishment?

This response is my answer. If you read along, we’ll…

Alex Gladstein

I’m the Chief Strategy Officer at @HRF. Follow me @gladstein.

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