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William Magnuson on Blockchain Democracy: Technology, Law and the Rule of the Crowd

Tuesday, July 7, 2020, 121 p.m.

Headshot of Magnuson

In Blockchain Democracy, William Magnuson explores the world of blockchain and bitcoin, from their origins in the online scribblings of a shadowy figure named Satoshi Nakamoto, to their furious rise and dramatic crash in the 2010s, to their ignominious connections to the dark web and online crime. Magnuson argues that blockchain’s popularity stands as a testament both to the depth of distrust of government today, and also to the fervent and undying belief that technology and the world of cyberspace can provide an answer. He demonstrates how blockchain’s failings provide broader lessons about what happens when technology runs up against the stubborn realities of law, markets, and human nature. This book should be read by anyone interested in understanding how technology is changing our democracy, and how democracy is changing our technology.


12 p.m. Welcome Remarks

Donna Rapaccioli, Dean of the Gabelli School of Business

12:05 p.m. Speaker Introduction

David Cowen, President/CEO, Museum of American Finance

12:08 p.m. Discussion

Presenter: William Magnuson, Associate Professor of Law at Texas A&M University

12:45 p.m.

Q&A from audience

1:00 p.m. Closing Remarks

David Cowen, President and CEO, Museum of American Finance

About the Author
William Magnuson is an associate professor at Texas A&M Law School, where he teaches and writes about corporations, technology and finance. Prior to joining Texas A&M, he taught law at Harvard, worked as an associate at Sullivan & Cromwell and served as a journalist in the Rome bureau of the Washington Post.

This event is co-sponsored by the Gabelli Center for Global Security Analysis,
the CFA Society of New York, and the Museum of American Finance.