Jason Somensatto @jasonsomensatto
1/ As someone who has been pretty pro DeFi for the past two years and like to consider myself one of the first lawyers focused on the sub industry, I’m pretty shook by some of the new popular projects. Been thinking a lot in the past week and wanted to set out my current thinking
2/ DeFi protocols that don’t add economic value and are just used to recycle gains among speculators will likely win out in the short run. We should get ourselves comfortable with that fact.
3/ They will teach us very little about the future of finance but will hopefully show how governance tokens can incentivize actual participation in a community. Speculators will proactively coordinate to govern the protocols in a manner intended to maximum speculative gains.
4/ As a result, most of the high profile successful DeFi projects in the near future will probably not be relevant for what they create but may teach lessons for the creation of future communities on how to successfully incentivize ownership and governance over a public good.
5/ Despite what I see as a delayed benefit of this current DeFi movement, I’m hopeful there are some immediate benefits that will it will bring:
6/ First, and most practically, I hope it shows the very real value of a self-controlled, private, and universal login for all financial transactions. twitter.com/QWQiao/status/…
7/ Second, I’m hopeful it will alert us to the importance, and proper way for managing, smart contract risk. I feel like some much of the discussion (particularly among lawyers) fails to think about solutions to this problem.
8/ Third, it might prove that governance tokens can be the antithesis of securities – a capital asset in which returns are not the result of a passive investment in a third party team but the result of proactive governance and coordination among a large group of people.
9/ I think inevitably this craze will invite difficult legal questions and regulatory scrutiny. I don’t know how that will pan out for industry more broadly but I hope it leaves a healthier ecosystem in the end.
10/ Finally, a two-part request: (1) It would be great to see some coordination on self-regulatory measures: identifying projects with best practices on security, financial design, and legal structure. It probably wont matter to most users but will be important in the long run.
11/ Second request: Start pooling money for lobbying, legal defense funds, and other initiatives that will try to explain the real benefits these technologies are trying to provide. Because this can all be killed very easily.