By Roslyn Layton. June 15, 2022. (Forbes)
Four years ago this week, Security Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Director of Corporation Finance William Hinman detailed a vision for regulating digital assets. The speech was a bait and switch. It promised the opening of a blockchain revolution, the next chapter in the American innovation success story. In practice, the SEC wants to hammer crypto out of existence. On that fateful day, Hinman said that decentralization of a blockchain ledger, where tokens are being “used to purchase a good or service through the network on which it is created”, could transform a digital asset into a commodity outside the SEC’s purview. He opined that once they became “sufficiently decentralized”, a token and its network could operate without fear of an SEC enforcement action for failing to register like a stock. How wrong he was.