After an October Twitter scuffle in which Roubini called Buterin a “dictator for life,” in reference to Buterin’s perceived influence over Ethereum, Buterin hit back with a critique of the credit Roubini has received for predicting the housing bubble bust of 2007/2008. They will debate in person for the first time over the value and meaning of digital currency — a topic on which they couldn’t have more differing views.
It will be one of many unique programming aspects at Deconomy 2019, one of Asia’s most well-regarded blockchain events, returning this year to a larger venue in Seoul’s 4,000 seat Jangchung Arena. The event may also serve as a litmus test for broader sentiment and momentum for crypto in Korea. Perceived sentiment of the market in Asia got a boost in March with buzzy conferences in Hong Kong, and Deconomy has perhaps the most intriguing set of international speakers participating, including Andreas Antonopoulos, ConsenSys’ Joseph Lubin, Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) creator Philip Zimmermann, economist Jeffrey Tucker and Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao.
Still, real-world action speaks louder than any conference and the past year has seen both a step back and a step forward for the crypto market in South Korea. A collapse in retail interest in the country has coincided with the collapse of crypto prices globally, but enterprise adoption and crypto consumer product rollouts from leading tech companies in the country have progressed, as evidenced by a recent report that the leading exchange Bithumb would be laying off 50 percent of its staff coming on the same day as Kakao announced the launch of a crypto wallet for its messaging app that’s used by 44 million Koreans.
Along with Kakao, virtually every major Korean conglomerate has made a crypto play — from Samsung’s blockchain wallet rollout in the Galaxy S10 to Hyundai’s effort in coordination with IBM blockchain to improve its supply chain finance ecosystem. The country is rightfully seen by many as producing some of the best tools for mainstreaming the adoption of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
With tracks on “Financial Applications of Blockchain” and “Blockchain Technology,” the programming will be a mix of enterprise, distributed ledger technology and cryptocurrency applications content, with the regulatory side of the industry also getting attention through government participation.
“We invited such blockchain solution enterprises to the Deconomy forum in order to explore the latest industry trends and seek new business opportunities with all who attend the event,” Deconomy organizer Jeff Paik said of the programming.