The SEC vs. Cryptocurrency: From Dante to Facebook

“The Securities and Exchange Commission, the multibillion dollar agency that safeguards investors, presently stands on the precipice of the layer Dante reserved for the indecisive. For, nearly a decade after Bitcoin burst onto the scene in 2010, there has been no concrete attempt at delineating purchaser from investor in the cryptocurrency market—indeed, it appears the agency is content to provide guidance regarding fraud and custody rather than defining products and attendant responsibilities for those soliciting funds for digital conversion.

“In the 14th century, Dante Alighieri forever shaped our vision of a retributive afterlife with his Divine Comedy. Tellingly, the first “level of hell” introduced therein was populated by those who could not decide (‘those who lived without occasion for infamy or praise’); to the celebrated Renaissance poet, those habiting the sidelines of history could hope for limbo, at best, in the final judgment.” […]    –J. Scott Colesanti, New York Law Journal, July 31, 2019

Bitcoin inferno

“To say it’s a meteoric rise isn’t too hyperbolic. Bitcoin hit $15,000 early Thursday, just 12 hours after it passed the $14,000 mark, reports Business Insider, which puts the digital currency’s 36-hour increase at more than $3,000. To illustrate the massive growth another way: 10 days ago, the cryptocurrency market as a whole was worth $300 billion; now it’s above $400 billion, per CoinMarketCap.com. The quote of the day on the subject comes from Royal Bank of Scotland chair Sir Howard Davies, who called the whole situation “irrational exuberance” in comments to Bloomberg and warned, “All the authorities can do is put up the sign from Dante’s Inferno: ‘Abandon hope all ye who enter here.’ ”  […]    –Kate Seamons, Newser, December 7, 2017