The Ripple CTO, David Schwartz, has had a major impact on the cryptocurrency world. Ripple’s services rival many, even though it has come with a little controversy along the way as many consumers have speculated what exactly XRP should be considered. During the SXSW Conference, Schwartz sat down at a panel to discuss multiple important factors for the Ripple platform and the XRP token.
Schwartz was clear about the origins of the XRP ledger, stating it had been a collaborative effort between Jed McCaleb, Chris Larsen, and Arthur Britto. Some of the developers who were involved used 100 billion XRP towards themselves and the Ripple company, though these entities are separate. He made sure to note that holding this cryptocurrency does not constitute a stake in Ripple at all.
Securities Laws And Regulation
Considering the lack of clarity in security laws, it is hard to determine what laws apply to technology. He commented that security laws impacting blockchain technology haven’t really changed, though the SEC has discussed how to integrate the security laws with the tokens. Though they have been aggressive on taking down companies that fail to comply with securities laws, the regulations are still unclear.
In determining whether the XRP token is security, Schwartz says that the history of XRP being created as the first project is a necessary part of their evaluation. Ripple was built as a second step in the process, building up the technology involved with the XRP ledger. Considering that order, and the fact that XRP was made independently, Schwartz believes that XRP would not be considered as security. As such, once the SEC has settled on the classification of securities, Schwartz does not think their definition will be changed to security.
Still, the classification just is not that simple, since the SEC could also state that the developers of XRP created it with the intention of funding their own project within Ripple. The closest setup to this would be an ICO, and the SEC still has to evaluate all of these components before XRP could be security. As it stands right now, XRP is not considered a security, but the SEC’s classification could change at any time as the industry evolves.
Price Changes In Crypto
Price changes in cryptocurrencies became a talking point for Schwartz in the discussion, which he says is influenced by the success of a company or a project. Calling changing prices a “metric of success” for a company, Schwartz heavily noted that the success of the company was reliant on the use cases and the available market. Furthermore, the security of blockchain technology appealed to Schwartz, involving substantial growth through the years without failing.
The lack of impact that Ripple’s progress has made on XRP is strange, says the CTO. He commented that it was clear that the market could not discern the characteristic of certain projects, which led them to basically base their impression on the entire ecosystem. Schwartz has long been insistent that the price of XRP not be connected with Ripple, but that it could be related to the ecosystem as a whole. Ultimately, exchanges have been shown to influence the price of cryptocurrencies anyway, which is the point in the discussion that Schwartz that he turned attention to the Coinbase Effect. This effect is a phenomenon in the industry when the listing of a token on the platform would cause a massive surge in price.
While speaking about Ripple and XRP, he noted that the greatest case for Ripple so far has been international payments. He said that there is a present “a huge explosion of innovation” concerning the XRP ledger, but also the entire industry. The key is to find a use case for the particular technology, which Schwartz admitted that they hadn’t
“done a good job at.”
“Love At First Sight” For Bitcoin
Every person that has entered the cryptocurrency space has had some experience or knowledge of Bitcoin, considering that it was the first digital asset, overall. While at the conference, Schwartz revealed a rare moment of adoration over Bitcoin and the way it had paved the way for decentralization in the economy. When he first learned of Bitcoin, he was working on cryptography involving both cloud storage and secure messaging. He described the revelation of Bitcoin was
“love at first sight.”
As Schwartz sought to learn as much as possible about Bitcoin, he started learning about the source code as a potential way to solve issues while managing to claim bounties. With no need for a “central operator” or a “central point of trust,” Bitcoin was easy to love already. He called the fact that Bitcoin has hosted on a public ledger a “secret sauce” in its success.