The Three Most Important Laws in Cryptocurrencies Today according to Ethereum’s Vlad Zamfir

According to Vlad Zamfir, a researcher with the Ethereum Foundation, on his recent Medium blog post titled; Against Szabo’s Law for a New Crypto Legal System, there are a number of crypto laws that are the most operative in the daily management of disputes in blockchain governance.

blockchain crypto law szabo

He splits down the laws in three as follows;

1. Don’t Break The Protocol

According to Vlad, critical bugs cannot be used in blockchain governance since they can collapse the entire blockchain protocol.

” Critical bugs can cause the bridge to collapse, and there are people on the bridge at all times. Systemic collapse and noticeable degradation in the system’s quality always lead to disputes, and these disputes are to be avoided by preventing collapse.”

Developers, engineers and architects have the responsibility of ensuring the software is well maintained, in order to prevent occurrence of system failures and also be able to fix the failures as soon as they occur.

2. Keep The Crypto Law Legal

The laws governing the crypto universe not only operate inside several jurisdictions, but are also built in such a way that they are able to avoid disputes in or with the legal systems.

“Devs make technical decisions in order to minimize their exposure to possible liability; they will choose a solution that involves assuming less liability over one that involves more, all else being equal. They will often cite their concerns that something might be illegal under some existing legal systems, or that they will be sued for their exercise of power, as motivations for their decisions.”

3. Szabo’s Law

Szabo’s Law is a crypto law that was named after the famous Nick Szabo. The law simply urges users not to implement changes to the blockchain protocol unless the changes are required for the purpose of technical maitanance. This law prevents other crypto legal processes from touching the blockchain protocol expect when it’s related to tech maintanace.

According to the blog post, Nick Szabo has legalized this law in the following ways;

  • By popularizing autonomous software in the crypto legal form of smart contracts
  • By arguing that the minimization of responsibility for developers isolates them from legal risk
  • By arguing that crypto legal systems with Szabo’s law are more socially scalable than systems with more legal and political power.

Vlad goes on stating however, that Szabo’s law minimises crypto law as it excludes all crypto law that might be linked to making changes on the blockchain protocol. He describes the law as politically loaded, insecure and aggressive, and as not part of the scalable crypto legal system.

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