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May 10, 0220

What Does It Take to Change US Government Policy?

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(31:50) Kristin Smith, executive director at US-based trade association Blockchain Association, described the three elements to changing policy in any industry, any combination of which are needed to get the job done. The first is utility, or demand for the product or service, like Uber. She said:

(32:48) “Crypto has a problem in that outside of our bubble that you and I spend a lot of time in most everyday people don’t yet see the compelling reason as to why crypto is useful. And as a result, lawmakers who are elected by these people don’t necessarily care very much because they don’t hear people talking about how great it was to transact in bitcoin yesterday because nobody’s really doing that.”

The two other levers that can be useful in creating policy are relationships with policymakers, because people want to help their friends, and having a compelling message, which crypto has tapped into a little bit.

On political fundraising, Smith had a warning.

(41:51) “I can say fundraising…goes back to relationships as being one of the three levers you have to change policies. It is the easiest way to build relationships…Most mature adult industries…they’re champions with political fundraising. And so if crypto wants to be part of that process and see good outcomes, it’s an unfortunate fact but it’s a tool that everyone else is using and we’re at a disadvantage if we’re not using it too.”

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Gerelyn Terzo
Gerelyn caught wind of bitcoin in mid-2017 and after learning about the peer-to-peer nature of Satoshi's creation has never looked back. Previously she covered institutional investing and fintech for several major trade publications. Gerelyn resides in Verona, N.J.

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