At the Tangle in Taipei on July 3, American economist and crypto sceptic Nouriel Roubini (aka “Dr. Doom”) and BitMEX CEO and co-founder Arthur Hayes didn’t agree on anything except that “Facebook’s Libra is not cryptocurrency.” One of the reasons on that is, while Roubini took for granted that the success of Bitcoin should be measured by its transaction speed only, Hayes argued that there was a different measurement. Roubini continued to criticize Bitcoin based on his assumption and said, as he has often pointed out, “this conference is not even accepting Bitcoin.” But for Hayes, that is not the only use case.
For Hayes, the success of Bitcoin hinges on whether or not it can protect financial privacy, especially when cash — the most anonymous means of payment — disappears from society. So, it is no wonder why the two could not reach any agreement on Bitcoin. It may be worth noting that Andrew Neil, a veteran journalist who hosted the debate, also seemed to underestimate the importance of Hayes’ point, as he called the market for financial privacy a niche.
A day before the Tangle at the Asia Blockchain Summit 2019, Hayes explained to Cointelegraph the importance of financial privacy in detail and predicted that anonymous features would be added to Bitcoin through a hard fork.
Financial privacy and cryptocurrency
Hisashi Oki: Why is financial privacy important?
Arthur Hayes: Society obviously values privacy. That is why some people like to use cash. They don’t want governments, families or someone else to know what they are buying. If you are merchants, you may want to offer services that might not be allowed, you want a way to transact values that are not censored. Especially, politically exposed groups want to fund themselves.
In China, WeChat Pay or any other systems are being rolled out . If everyone is in the same network, all financial transactions are completely transparent, and people can remove you from that financial system…