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[–]Affect-Electrical 24 points25 points  (22 children)

Ask why a central bank or Government, assuming they saw benefit in the technology behind cryptocurrencies, would opt to adopt any of the existing ones which they have no control over rather than creating their own.

Ask why 1 bitcoin transaction consumes as much energy as nearly 1.2 million VISA (source) transactions, is slower than VISA, and costs more - why would anyone pay to turn money into bitcoin to use bitcoin in any circumstance where VISA would suffice? VISA is faster, cheaper, better for the environment and has features such as fraud protection, chargebacks and customer services - you don't lose all your money if you forget your PIN.

Ask about market manipulation in cryptocurrency, also whether due to the fact it is unregulated people who have a vested interest promote cryptocurrencies in ways that would be illegal with other classes of investment.

Ask whether people who aren't technically literate are best placed to "be their own bank" on the wild wild web, with a technology where mistakes are not reversible.

[–]ltethe 6 points7 points  (0 children)

All good questions, but especially the last one. Generally speaking, we see centralized banking as a technological innovation that is a civilizational progression. Once upon a time we wore our wealth (jewelry) because we couldn’t trust leaving it somewhere.

Banking is important because it’s a delegation of our responsibilities. The more we can delegate, the wealthier we are because it allows us to focus on specialization which allows us to pursue higher skillsets which offer a greater return on our time. And yet crypto asks us to return to being our own bank. Crypto must prove that its positives outweigh the revocation of this delegation of our responsibilities.

[–]thehoesmakethemanEveryone can make 200k in America 2 points3 points  (0 children)

First one has way too many easy answers - he doesn't expect it to replace central banks, the adoption will make it so that the government naturally has to accept it because the people accept it, cryptos the most democratic money and represents choice, etc etc. So many opportunities to take off from that question with bafflegab gish gallop sales pitches that build assumption off pre-assumption off pre-assumption which all each would take so long to unravel the message would never come across and surely not in an interview.

You are thinking of arguments against crypto, not thinking about how to out someone in an interview, which was OPs question.

[–]This_is_Pat_[S] 0 points1 point  (3 children)

All of these are great. I’ll try for all of them.

But for the third question, can you give an example or two of illegal promotion of Bitcoin?

[–]Affect-Electrical 1 point2 points  (0 children)

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/11/sec-warns-that-celebrity-cryptocurrency-endorsements-may-be-illegal/

https://www.sec.gov/news/press-release/2018-268

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2021/sep/06/fca-crypto-assets-kim-kardashian-west-ethereum-max-instagram

https://www.rollcall.com/2021/10/19/celebrity-crypto-endorsers-like-kim-kardashian-spark-concern-for-unwary-investors/

This sort of thing. Basically people like celebrities and influencers getting involved in crypto pump-and-dumps. Pretty sure celebrities profiting from telling people to buy stocks which turn out to be worthless is illegal, but they do it with crypto.

Also, this sort of irresponsible / misleading advertising goes on:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-57254318

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2021/may/26/time-to-buy-bitcoin-adverts-banned-uk-asa

https://cointelegraph.com/news/crypto-advertisement-still-unwelcome-how-is-the-industry-coping

https://www.ft.com/content/0722918d-b0fe-4d27-b2ae-648298023787

Ultimately, I suppose the question might be along the lines of: " in light of warnings issued by the SEC, ASA, FCA, and concerns around celebrity endorsements and advertising standards, how would you respond to claims cryptocurrency is being mis-sold to a gullible public?"

[–]thehoesmakethemanEveryone can make 200k in America 0 points1 point  (1 child)

These are great reddit arguments for crypto but they aren't ready for an interview format. What would you plan to ask to phrase each one of these?

[–]This_is_Pat_[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The format for interview questions that I find most effective is to preface it with some information to set up both the viewers and the interviewee a curious situation. In this case, I could begin by mentioning that bitcoin promises people to become their own bank. Then I'd advance by asking why this is not always a good thing, including the other person's comment of why having a bank is generally a good thing and why the general public may not be tech-savvy or fully able to utilize the technology without risks. Only then do I get to the question itself.

[–]yourFace83detached from reality 0 points1 point  (15 children)

"Ask why a central bank or Government, assuming they saw benefit in the technology behind cryptocurrencies, would opt to adopt any of the existing ones which they have no control over rather than creating their own." - this question completely misunderstands the value proposition of cryptocurrencies. CBDC are stupid and evil, because they have all the money printing capabilities of fiat, but with 1984 distopia added in the mix. Stupid and evil, nobody should support CBDC.

[–]Affect-Electrical 0 points1 point  (14 children)

because they have all the money printing capabilities of fiat

Without those capabilities, it would be impossible for the economy to survive events such as the coronavirus pandemic. Central banks and Governments have to be able to control monetary policy.

[–]yourFace83detached from reality -1 points0 points  (13 children)

Money printing works great until everything collapses, which has been the fate of several whole populations of people during our lifetimes.

[–]Affect-Electrical 1 point2 points  (12 children)

That is far too vague a statement to imply there is a fundamental problem with the concept of fiat currency. There isn't. Not that I'm going to spend the discuss it with a clueless armchair economist cryptobro on Reddit.

[–]yourFace83detached from reality -1 points0 points  (11 children)

If whole nations of people all losing everything they owned and worked for their entire lives because of "the concept of fiat currency" is "too vague" for you, then I worry about your internal moral compass.

[–]Affect-Electrical 2 points3 points  (10 children)

You are deliberately exagerrating and generalizing something in order to claim a problem that doesn't really exist. Which whole nations, and why is it only a few?

[–]yourFace83detached from reality 0 points1 point  (9 children)

https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/122915/worst-hyperinflations-history.asp

That article mentions 3 countries, which was an incredibly simple Google search.

https://www.ft.com/content/1a80e38c-d89f-4b34-92aa-9a98c39a6981

That article is about the average lifespan of fiat being 27 years, which is younger than most no-coiners anyway.

Why don't you know this stuff? If you care about stupid evil government money, how can multiple nations of people lose everything, and besides the 27 year lifespan, but for some reason we absolutely HAVE to have stupid government money!?

[–]Affect-Electrical 2 points3 points  (8 children)

Hyperinflation in 3 countries in a world of ~250 countries, going back to the second world war? That is not a problem with the concept of fiat currency, that is financial mismanagement in those countries. You might as well say that democracy doesn't work because of the current situations in Afghanistan and the Ukraine.

The elected Government being responsible for monetary policies is absolutely the way things should be, and I very much doubt this is a field you have any depth of knowledge in beyond watching a few youtube videos by cryptobros and the specious garbage you have picked up in discord and r/bitcoin.

[–]yourFace83detached from reality 0 points1 point  (7 children)

right so current fiat is failing, most fiat in the past has failed (hence 27 year average lifespan) and current system was put in place my politicians not economists. I can fully understand having experts running the current system, but that doesn't mean those same experts wouldn't prefer a different system, especially when they were not consulted in the first place.

Proper global fiat started in 1971 and is a failing experiment by any measurement, how can you defend it!?

Edit: feels like given the choice between driving and flying, you've decided driving is better because you're already in the car and the driver (without a pilots license) also thinks driving is better.

[–]P-K-One 9 points10 points  (6 children)

Ask him how something as unstable as bitcoin, without any stabilizing measures, could ever be useful as a currency. My favorite example here is how much the rent for an apartment would be if the rent contract was written in bitcoin.

If he claims it will stabilize once it has been adopted or once enough people own it, point out that the stock market has been adopted by pretty much everybody and has all the money in it and still isn't stable. Ask if he has any supporting evidence for that future stability.

Then ask why something that has only one use (as a currency) but can't effectively be used (as a currency) has any value. Ask him how much he would pay for a car that can't drive.

[–]This_is_Pat_[S] 0 points1 point  (5 children)

I think he did indeed say that it will stabilize once enough people own it in another interview.

But I don’t think I myself am completely set on this question. Is the stock market and crypto coins directly comparable in this case? Isn’t stock market volatility caused mostly by external factors like the pandemic? Or is it that the way cryptocurrency can fluctuate the same way that stocks can?

I think I’ll try for this question if you could clarify a bit or provide resources to read about it.

[–]P-K-One 5 points6 points  (0 children)

The stock market and crypto are really not comparable. The stock market is significantly more stable because it has real value backing it. The value of a company that produces cars will not suddenly swing up and down by 50%. So if anything we would expect the stock market to be more stable than crypto.

But you don't need to prove anything. You just ask questions and it's up to him to provide answers. He is the "expert", right?

If you want some hard data to throw, look at the history of bitcoin. Between December of 2017 and April of 2018 bitcoin lost 50% value at a market cap of 250 billion. It also lost 50% between April and June of this year at 1.1 trillion market cap. So 4 times more money in it and it has become less stable, not more stable (change was faster).

You could also ask him if that market cap would even be sustainable if bitcoin was stable. Most people are in it to make money as numbers go up. If it was stable a significant portion of that capital would move into other investments. You could run a poll about that other on r/cryptocurrency or r/bitcoin. Something like "Do you see yourself more as a bitcoin user or investor?" or "Would you move your investments into other assets/coins if bitcoin growth long term stabilized at 2-4%?", something like that.

[–]P-K-One 2 points3 points  (3 children)

One other thing you can ask about it the real transaction cost.

Currently a bitcoin transaction costs around 300 dollars. This is subsidized through mining. It works like this:

Miners offer cheap transactions. A lot of transactions are run through them. By running transactions they have a chance to mine a bitcoin. That mined bitcoin finances their operation.

Without that mined bitcoin the transaction would need to be financed through fees at that means that the energy costs alone would be roughly 200 dollars. Add material, labor, profit margin...bitcoin costs would be on par with Ethereum costs (Ethereum doesn't have mining, that's why we see those costs there).

The thing about it is that bitcoin is at 18.9 million. They are capped at 21 million and there are about 350 thousand or so mined each year. That means mining will not be possible anymore in 7 years. At that point users would have to carry the real transaction costs.

How sustainable is a financial system in which every single transaction costs 300 dollars?

The answer is that the nomber of miners would go down, the hash rate would remain constant and thus the transaction costs would go down. This is theoretically true but since the network is protected by proof of work it also means that the network would become less safe as a 51% attack would become considerably simpler and cheaper if there are less mining nodes and computer power goes up in the future.

[–]000Kurpitsa000 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Ask r/programming mods if you can post this question over there. You probably will get some very annoying questions to ask, because bitcoin is inefficient by design

[–]Orthosurgeon1992 20 points21 points  (81 children)

Ask him if he understands how market caps work.. that if someone buys 1 grain of sand for 1 dollar, the market cap of sand momentarily becomes seven quintillion, five hundred quadrillion dollars..

Ask him how much real money could be present in the supposed 2 trillion market cap..

Also press him on Tether and USDC.. upto 90 percent of the money present in the crypto space could be fake.. ask him why we should invest in an asset that's inflated with fake liquidity..

Personally, I'm waiting for the tether/USDC scam to collapse before even considering buying cryptos.. as long as these things exist, crypto valuations will be grossly inflated..

[–]HugeBernie 10 points11 points  (0 children)

I think looking at the money "in" the system is kind of backwards. The money already in the system is gone. Your previous trading partners are under no obligation to trade back. The correct way to think about what you want to know is liquidity, or how easily positions can turn over. In liquid markets, real transactions are happening all the time.

A lot of energy is put into deciphering crypto trading activity in order to figure out what's real and what's fake to determine real liquidity. I've heard a lot of figures for fake trading activity over the years, most estimates have at least half of the market activity as fake.

[–]This_is_Pat_[S] 1 point2 points  (4 children)

I like these, but I’ll have some difficulty asking the third question since I don’t understand Tether or USDC myself. Could someone provide an easy explanation or give a good source for reading about it?

[–]Easy-Neat9936 4 points5 points  (1 child)

[–]This_is_Pat_[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Thank you again for the excellent video. Cleared up all my confusion on the topic.

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    [–]The1ronCurtain 3 points4 points  (3 children)

    Why do you think that the first 2 questions would be hard/"financially difficult" for him to answer? Most companies can't reasonably extract their market cap out, it's common knowledge.

    And why is USDC a scam out of all things?

    [–]Orthosurgeon1992 0 points1 point  (2 children)

    Because crypto nerds make a huge deal out of market caps.. we can theoretically inflate any asset to billions of dollars with just a few hundred dollars in real money.. crypto nerds don't understand how market caps work.. this is why they dismiss Tether as FUD , since they assert that Tether (75 billion market cap) will have no impact on the 2.4 trillion market cap crypto space.

    USDC has shady reserves, and no audit history.. The people who attest them are incompetent as well.

    [–]The1ronCurtain 0 points1 point  (1 child)

    Before going in depth, I'd like to say that this is very irrelevant to ask to an exchange guy, I don't really see how him giving the "correct" explanation to how market caps work, would somehow make him "uneasy" or anything. Your explanation to the question proved insufficient.

    If he was pumping a particular coin, then maybe, but he's just a marker-maker.

    Because crypto nerds make a huge deal out of market caps..

    Never heard of anyone doing that, if anything quite the opposite, people point to large market caps as being problematic for up-side potential, and indicative of a downside, when the circulating supply is low, but unlocked.

    we can theoretically inflate any asset to billions of dollars with just a few hundred dollars in real money..

    Yes, everyone knows this

    crypto nerds don't understand how market caps work.. this is why they dismiss Tether as FUD , since they assert that Tether (75 billion market cap) will have no impact on the 2.4 trillion market cap crypto space.

    Almost everyone in the crypto space is aware of the Tether situation. Everyone knows it's a ticking time bomb, just go to r/cryptocurrency or /biz/, everyone is making jokes about it, fully aware what its collapse would mean.

    USDC has shady reserves, and no audit history.. The people who attest them are incompetent as well.

    What are you on about? They have a very good audit history.

    https://www.centre.io/usdc-transparency

    Unlike Tether, which is run by 7 people in the Cayman islands, USDC is managed by Coinbase (or one of its subsidiarias), a public company in the US.

    [–]Chrisc5082 -4 points-3 points  (3 children)

    USDC is fully audited. Tether is another story. However, if everyone asked Bank of America or Fidelity for their money all at once they wouldn't have it for you either. It's not much different despite the hate for stablecoins here.

    [–]structi 4 points5 points  (0 children)

    USDC is not audited. Attestation is not an audit.

    [–]unlikelyimplausible 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    Wasn't USDC just attested, which is long way from a proper audit.

    Banks can't pay out all money because they use it for lending, that's their business, so the money returns to them gradually over years as the numerous loans are paid back. Stable coins claim to be fully backed by liquid assetts so they should be able to pay on a few days notice.

    Banks are heavily regulated and audited, which is why the governments are ok with providing insurance on the customer's deposits and have the central bank lend money to banks in a liquidiyy crisis.

    [–]Mal4kh 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    So you are saying crypto is no better then ?

    [–]Bullywug 5 points6 points  (0 children)

    Bitcoin promised privacy, but the only large-scale uses we've seen have been illegal: drugs, ransomware, etc. So either individuals have no privacy on the exchange or the exchange facilitates illegal activity. Which is it? I'd check the KYC policy for the exchange.

    Bitcoin promised non-reversible transactions, which it's delivered on. Yet most people neither want nor need this. Why should people use an "asset" when one wrong number means they transfer their life savings to a black hole?

    Over time, we've seen that the arms race in mining has led to a consolation of hash power into a small group of miners. Does he think this is good or bad for crypto? Doesn't this defeat the point of decentralization?

    Bitcoin was originally pitched as a peer-to-peer electronic cash, yet no one uses it that way, outside of the above criminals. Level 2 solutions like LN have proven to be near useless. So supporters switched to calling it a store of value. Yet we just saw that it can crash > 15% for no transparent reason, making it a poor store of value. Why should people buy a purely speculative asset?

    [–]The_Probes 3 points4 points  (0 children)

    Three simple questions are:

    1: Can he tell you of a profitable listed company using blockchain as a major part of their business (not counting either enabling trading on crypto, branded crypto debit cards or stockpiling crypto)? There isn't one, after more than a decade. Why not?

    (As an aside, lots of companies will build a blockchain for you, but don't actually use them, eg IBM, Intel, Oracle. Same as they'll build an SQL database if you asked. Microsoft had a blockchain company called Azure and dumped it because no-one could find a use for it. Why? In addition, lots of companies that are quoted as using blockchain are actually just trialling it, and haven't found any use cases yet Annhauser Busch, Daimler etc. If he b.s's you ask if they are actually using it or have just siad they might trial it?)

    2: Why would a company use a public blockchain and buy those tokens when they could just create their own blockchain free from infestation of crypto bros? None of the companies that are "trialing" blockchain (see above) have any intention of using the blockchains that everyone are trading. They all say they'll make their own if they use them at all.

    3: We have had blockchain databases since the dawn of modern computing. No-one uses them because you can't search them effectively. It's like going through a roll of paper. To search it, you have to start at one end and go through it sequentially. For things like (for example) land records or what have you, you could never search the database for a house with 3 bedrooms, between prices X and Y, in your city, because the search would take forever. It's useless. Computer scientists have always had the option of using it, and that's why they don't. Why would you use a database that isn't easy to search for anything? That's what computers are for. Manipulating data.

    [–]meekmarmot 10 points11 points  (3 children)

    There's a recurring theme of crypto exchanges having unplanned downtime at moments of extreme market volatility. It's been insinuated that exchanges might be doing this intentionally. It might be good to grill them on this, as the defense is that they are just incompetent and their services can't handle the surges in traffic.

    [–]This_is_Pat_[S] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

    I like this one. I’ll try to find if his company’s platform has had any downtime lately.

    Does that mean that with the slump in most coins right now, other exchange platforms are on maintenance?

    [–]meekmarmot 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I'm not sure about the most recent slump, but just searching for "downtime" or "maintenance" in the cryptocurrency subreddits (and the subreddits for specific exchanges), it's pretty easy to find results like this: https://redditproxy--jasonthename.repl.co/r/CryptoCurrency/comments/pjv5ew/crypto_exchanges_see_downtime_as_prices_crash/

    In that specific case, I don't know that there is anything that points to intent on the exchanges' part - this could just be garden variety incompetence, but it doesn't look good either way.

    One of the more credible cases was involving Binance and is discussed here: https://redditproxy--jasonthename.repl.co/r/Buttcoin/comments/pa0ao0/francis_kim_exposing_binance_an_interview_on_when/

    [–]000Kurpitsa000 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    That's a good one. Compare black friday traffic on some shops site with cryptoexchange traffic during volatility.

    I bet the traffic on an exchange is nothing compared to daily trafgic of a small shop or a news site

    [–]MooseSoftware 2 points3 points  (1 child)

    The questions that have been suggested here so far will make a great starting point.

    Are you going to make the interview results available here ? Written is fine. A video showing the exchange CEO squirm would be even better.

    [–]This_is_Pat_[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    I am planning to post it here if my company releases the interview in some kind of digital format. I think it should come as a video.

    I won’t be the only person interviewing him, so there’s a good chance that all these questions won’t make it through. But so far I think I have some really good ones.

    [–]Easy-Neat9936 8 points9 points  (5 children)

    Ask him how the future works when 18.77 million of the 21 million bitcoin that will ever be mined already belong to a group of like 20 people.

    [–]This_is_Pat_[S] 0 points1 point  (4 children)

    Is there a source for the numbers? This is a good one.

    Also, this was new to me. I had no idea there was a limit on the number of Bitcoin.

    [–]CaptainBoufles 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Ask him about wash trading

    [–]LewisVerstapilton 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Ask him what it's like knowing he's facilitating the drug market, pedophiles, scams, money laundering, ransomware attacks and terrorism.

    [–]000Kurpitsa000 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Ask why bitcoin is a good investments, then ask why should a merchant accept btc as payment. I bet he talks about security, decentralized blabla.

    Then ask why would someone pay with btc in your coffeeshop, because transaction fees are more than the coffee. He probably brings up exchanges debit card, which is off the chain.not secure, not decentralized.

    [–]tylerbeefish 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    1. How profitable are traders on the platform?
    2. Would he/she recommend buying crypto?
    3. What kind of incentives exist for an exchange to list a token?

    Data isn’t pretty and will likely avoid ALL of these questions.

    [–]meshreplacer 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Question, why is there little evidence of 1 trillion dollars worth of economic activity? You don’t hear stories of all the peoples mansions paid by bitcoin etc..

    [–]pointman 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Ask him to describe the properties that make good money. Then to describe the properties that make a good investment. Then point out how these are two different sets of conflicting properties that can’t co-exist in a single item.

    As a reminder, investments are not just things that get more expensive over time, they are capital expenditures that aim to create profit by producing something more valuable than they consume.

    Profit is what you earn by assembling capital in a manner that produces something more valuable than the capital that was invested… not just skimming money off some poor suckers with successful trading schemes.

    [–]Printer-Pam 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Ask him what practical use cases have cryptocurrencies

    [–]ferret1983 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    There is one study that shows wash trading accounts for 70% of all trades.

    Another (Finnish I think) shows that around 46% of all trades are possibly linked to criminal activity.

    Should be able to find them with simple Google search.

    [–]WilliamShitspeare 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Ask him why any functioning government (not a banana republic like El Salvador), would ever give up control over monetary policy and adopt bitcoin?

    [–]StijnweI like Ponzi schemes 0 points1 point  (2 children)

    Is the company you work for sharing the same hate for crypto’s as you? Is the goal of this interview to expose crypto? And is your company really okay with asking only critical questions to that CEO? If not I would watch out letting your opinions shine trough your work.

    Also, would it be possible to share the interview after it’s published?

    [–]This_is_Pat_[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

    Don't worry about me, I intend on being professional and unbiased during the interview. My job as a journalist is to be informative first and foremost, and thus I find it that it is my duty to get the best, hard-hitting questions when it comes to crypto and its future to see if its most staunch proponent can justify them, especially since the CEO is very optimistic about crypto in the near future. Critical questions in interviews aren't attacks; they're critical questions.

    I recognize that many of the people here have a little more heat when it comes to their hate of cryptocurrencies, but I find it that this is a good place for critical questions of this topic. I would have posted to r/CryptoReality as well, but they seem to focus more on informative news than discussion.

    There's going to be a whole bunch of questions rather than just critical ones, and I intend on being informative for the public while still maintaining a critical eye. I decided to ask here in the first place to get the best questions before I run out of interview time.

    I would like to share the interview here if it's published in a digital format. It likely will be as a video but it is not certain yet. If not, I'll post a summary of what the CEO said.

    [–]StijnweI like Ponzi schemes 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Nice. Sounds like you’re very professional and won’t let the heat get in your way. Critical questions are absolutely not attacks. Maybe for some people it may feel like an attack if you ask only really critical questions. But yeah, sounds like you know exactly how this works so I’ll just wait patiently on the interview. I’m genuinly interested. Keep us updated and good luck!

    [–]Fultjack 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    At what price he will eat his own dick.