About a decade ago, the Bitcoin network was launched by its pseudonymous creator. It promised a revolution in how money works. Here at last, some thought, was an inclusive digital system for storing and transferring value -- a system that was inflation-proof, censorship-resistant, and independent of any oligarchic banking cartel. Bitcoin has since spawned thousands of cryptocurrencies, and they command coverage in both popular media and technical research by computer scientists, economists, and lawyers.
The goal of this research collective is to apply the tools of philosophy, politics, and economics to understand and evaluate the cryptocurrency phenomenon in an integrated way. We favor specifics over generalities and focus on the case of the oldest, most valued, and most well-known cryptocurrency -- Bitcoin. We are:
One theme in our research is that Bitcoin is a check against the authority and overreach of corporations, states, and anyone else who would serve as an intermediary between people and their money. Above all, it offers a way to elude and resist the interlocking and increasingly tight gears of institutions both private and public.