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Blockchain and The Law: Aaron Wright & Primavera De Filippi

The book Blockchain and The Law by Aaron Wright and Primavera De is a brilliant insight into how the tremendously popular digital technology often undermines the authority of the government and how the law needs to keep up with it.

Since the Bitcoin made an appearance in the market in 2009, it has baffled everyone who doesn’t possess advanced knowledge of computers. The technology which facilitates the use of bitcoin is called the Blockchain. It has become the chosen mode of transaction for digital money and is now being used for much more than just bitcoins. Although there are a lot of endogenous rules in place for this technology, the exogenous laws are somehow backdated and insufficient to keep the technology in check which is being used extensively by criminals.

This technology is being used to create “smart contracts,” which are autonomous computer programs to expedite payments, to create financial instruments, to organize and facilitate the exchange of data and information, and to enable interactions between humans and machines. By lending support to new organizational structures that encourage more democratic and participatory decision making, it is directly challenging the existing governance infrastructure.

Primavera De Filippi, a co-author of the book is a permanent researcher at the CERSA/CNRS/Université Paris II and a faculty associate at the Berkman-Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School, the “alchemist” for DAOstack. The other author, Aaron Wright, is an expert in corporate and intellectual property law, with extensive experience in Internet and new technology issues.

By combining their individual expertise, they have come up with this book which is extremely well written and fills the void for one such literary piece in the market. This book talks about the new possibilities inherent in Blockchain, however it also makes clear that the technology cannot be used productively without new rules and new approaches to legal thinking.