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World Crypto Con | Joseph Ciccolo on Regulating Crypto Properly

Welcome to the World Crypto Con Spotlight series. Today’s guest: Joseph Ciccolo.

World Crypto Con

World Crypto Con (WCC) is a platform for industry leaders to share their knowledge of the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, as well as introduce their projects to the world. WCC welcomes both experts and novices to attend; there’s something for everyone.

Our World Crypto Con Spotlight series will be focusing on moments from the conference, speaking to headliners about their experience with WCC.

Thanks to World Crypto Con, we at CryptoCurrencyNews.com had the pleasure of interviewing Joseph Ciccolo, Founder and President of BitAML.

Today, Joseph tells us a little bit about how he found his way into crypto and gives us a sneak peek at his AML panel discussion.

World Crypto Con Spotlight: Joseph Ciccolo

Q: Just to give our readers some background, can you tell us a little about yourself, such as your schooling and professional background?

A: I went to college at Northeastern University where I remain an active alum, consulting and funding research into cryptocurrency. After graduation, I built a career in traditional bank compliance where I spent ten years in AML leadership positions at some of the top financial institutions in the US prior to launching BitAML.

Q: What year did you get into the cryptocurrency/blockchain space and what drew you to it?

A: I heard about cryptocurrency for the first time at a banking conference in 2014. The other attendees had a markedly negative view of this new tech, but it piqued my interest. At the time, I remember thinking that this innovation was long overdue in banking. I started doing some independent research into crypto, and by late 2014 and early 2015, I was attending meetups and giving some off-the-cuff compliance advice to the attendees there and online. I was having a lot of fun and decided to turn it into a full-time business. I left traditional banking and went all-in on crypto. The rest is history.

Q: You’re the founder of BitAML. What made you start a company on your own rather than just working as an exec position within the space?

A: While I was making the rounds at meetups, it struck me that the people there were some of the best and brightest I’d ever met; incredibly smart, innovative, and passionate. However, they seemed to be a little stuck when it came to compliance and money transmission laws and such. It became very clear that they weren’t just under-served, they were un-served. Once I put that together, I knew I could help these innovators and that I wanted to be along for the ride.

Q: You’re holding a panel at World Crypto Con surrounding AML and compliance. What do you want crypto enthusiasts to get out of this discussion?

A: The cryptocurrency space has matured and is ready for the next level of AML and compliance. Regulators have taken notice and examined the industry, and while there were some bright spots, it’s clear that we have a lot of work to do when it comes to our compliance. Cryptocurrency enthusiasts can look forward to learning about some of the recent developments and expectations in crypto AML and compliance, some regulatory trends to keep an eye on, and what businesses and entrepreneurs can expect in the next several months and throughout 2019.

Q: Since AML is the biggest issue for most government bodies when it comes to cryptocurrency around the world, do you see the framework of AML shifting in the crypto space with trying to comply with these new government regulations?

A: When it comes to AML, cryptocurrency is a bit of a round peg in a square hole. Governments have adapted and will continue to adapt existing regulatory frameworks in light of new technology, and this is especially true in the US. Internationally, it appears that the EU and other jurisdictions are taking proactive steps to create AML guidelines more specific to cryptocurrency.

Q: Data protection and cybersecurity are also huge points of interest for large companies looking at blockchain technology. Do you see anything new emerging in cybersecurity?

A: Absolutely. Expectations are rising. Regulators are beginning to demand stronger cybersecurity controls, documentation, data protection, and recovery. This is a regulatory compliance vertical on the rise in crypto, and we expect to see it ramp up even more in 2019.

Q: What or who are you most excited to see at World Crypto Con?

A: I’m eager to learn about the practical applications proposed for serving the unbanked and underbanked. On a personal note, as a dad, I’m interested in learning more about how blockchain can disrupt and innovate education and systems of learning.

Thanks again to World Crypto Con for the opportunity and to Joseph Ciccolo for taking the time to speak with us.

Joseph Ciccolo will be a panelist in ‘Regulation in a Decentralized World’ on November 2nd.

>> Check out more interviews from World Crypto Con!

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World Crypto Con | Chris J. Snook on His Journey through Crypto

Welcome to the World Crypto Con Spotlight series. Today’s guest: Chris J. Snook

World Crypto Con

World Crypto Con (WCC) is a platform for industry leaders to share their knowledge of the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, as well as introduce their projects to the world. WCC welcomes both experts and novices to attend; there’s something for everyone.

Our World Crypto Con Spotlight series will be focusing on moments from the conference, speaking to headliners about their experience with WCC.

Thanks to World Crypto Con, we at CryptoCurrencyNews.com had the pleasure of interviewing Chris J. Snook, Founder and Chairman of World Tokenomic Forum.

Today, Chris tells us a little more about himself and fills us in on his panel, in case you missed it.

World Crypto Con Spotlight: Chris J. Snook

Q: Just to give our readers some background, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

A: I am a 19-year serial entrepreneur/investor, the author of Digital Sense and forthcoming 2019 titles ‘Tokenomics’ and ‘Rebooting Retail’ and currently serve as Chairman at World Tokenomic Forum and the Editor-in-Chief at Token Standard.

Q: How and when did you get into the cryptocurrency/blockchain space?

A: Through curiosity and as a very part-time hobby back in 2012, but with full organizational effort and investment focus in our holding company Launch Haus in late 2016.

Q: It seems like you’re involved in all sorts of companies within crypto. Can you explain briefly what Token Standard and World Tokenomic Forum are?

A: Token Standard is a media platform, research arm, and publishing house dedicated to providing a highly curated and “less is more” feed of timely content to c-level executives, policymakers, technologists, and money managers around who and what is driving the next iteration of our global economy.

The World Tokenomic Forum is an invitation-only consortium of members across the public and private sectors marrying emerging technologies, to enterprise and capital through our Sandcastle Series initiative. We also host an annual summit of members in Grand Cayman each Fall to convene members, shape research agendas and policy initiatives. Launch Haus is our digital holding company and portfolio of related tech, agency, and blockchain investments.

Q: It seems like you’re speaking at all sorts of crypto conferences around the world. How have they been going?

A: I spoke at 22 conferences this year, and 17 of them have been related to crypto or blockchain outside of our own annual summit. I will attend far fewer next year and expect that the market will mirror that as well. The events that will last and provide value moving forward will become platforms that incorporate value exchange across every aspect of the value chain (enterprise, startup, capital provider, regulator, media, etc.) and find ways to do more than just provide startups with a platform to pitch and buy booth space.

I am excited by the vision of the WCC founders to connect technology and people to experiences that help ground people in the present and future capabilities of this space as it evolves. It is a bold mission, and the event platforms that achieve that and execute will likely get the majority of visitor and attendee traffic moving forward.

Q: At World Crypto Con, you’ll be leading a panel on ‘The Current and Future State of Adoption.’ How important is adoption to cryptocurrency? Do you think crypto adoption has dropped since the start of the crypto market’s recent downfall?

A: Adoption is always important in any technology. Use cases and proof-points are far more valuable than ideas. We also have to realize that everything that scales follows the path of infrastructure, protocols/standardization, and applications. We will see a continued “spaghetti on the wall” model and race to protocol development in 2019 and 2020 and infrastructure design as well. Applications will emerge and cut down paths for their competitors like in every cycle prior. User adoption based upon speculation is over and will likely not return, so the next wave of adoption will be driven more by a true readiness level across these three domains and some healthy speculation on top of true use cases and proof points.

Q: Your panel will include Grant Cohen, Sebastien Henot, Jeff Burton, Jan Pasboel, and Michael Proper. What are their thoughts on the state of adoption for cryptocurrency?

A: You will have to attend the session to hear from these amazing people first hand. I am not going to give away the goose before its cooked 🙂

Q: What are you (or the others in your panel) most excited about for World Crypto Con?

A: Meeting some new people, reconnecting with some friends, and experiencing the vision and production value that WCC has promised to deliver!

Thanks again to World Crypto Con for the opportunity and to Chris J. Snook for taking the time to speak with us.

Chris J. Snook participated in the ‘Mariposa Keynote Stage’ on November 1st and moderated ‘The State of Adoption with Chris J Snook’ on November 1st.

>> Check out more interviews from World Crypto Con!

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World Crypto Con

World Crypto Con | Vesa Kivinen Expresses Cryptocurrency through Art

Welcome to the World Crypto Con Spotlight series. Today’s guest: Vesa Kivinen.

World Crypto Con

World Crypto Con (WCC) is a platform for industry leaders to share their knowledge of the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, as well as introduce their projects to the world. WCC welcomes both experts and novices to attend; there’s something for everyone.

Our World Crypto Con Spotlight series will be focusing on moments from the conference, speaking to headliners about their experience with WCC.

Thanks to World Crypto Con, we at CryptoCurrencyNews.com had the pleasure of interviewing Vesa Kivinen, crypto artist and filmmaker, with strong influences in the blockchain art space.

Today, Vesa will be giving you a sneak peek at his keynote, integrating creativity, blockchain, and marketing all in one.

World Crypto Con Spotlight: Vesa Kivinen

Q: Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself?

A: I’m a mixed media artist currently living in London. My early years as a professional creative were influenced by Ken Wilber—the father of integral theory. This means to look at the projects from multiple angles including spirituality, economy, relationships, movements, politics, and philosophy.

Q: You are a renowned artist. Why do think art is important in the cryptocurrency/blockchain space? They are not a usual pairing, are they?

A: Oil paint is technology. It is just a very old one, so people don’t think of it as that. Our capacity to express has, for a very long time, been coupled with technology. The status quo of the art world mostly explores the past and is critical of the present. I relate to the giants of our past who dared to also imagine where we might be going.

Q: How can one benefit the other in your eyes?

A: The people who are involved in the tech space are rarely great communicators. The actual substance of the blockchain space inspires awe. We’ve only scratched the surface of understanding what will now be possible due to this invention. Coupled with VR and AI, it offers hope for the whole human enterprise. We’ve created an enormous amount of wealth during the past couple of centuries, but this has fuelled a lot of corruption too. Bitcoin and the decentralized solutions that follow it deserve their story be told in various ways to help people get why they are relevant.

Q: Separate from your artistic endeavors in the space, how has cryptocurrency inspired you? What excites you about this world?

A: They can’t really be differentiated from one another. The resources of the space were a part of the push towards creating the Art For Crypto platform, but it was driven first by getting rabbit holed by its potential. Blockchain allowed me, for the first time, to be authentically inspired by money. After hearing someone like Andreas Antonopoulos speak for a couple of hours, you have to be a bit tone deaf to not see why.

Q: You’ve been speaking at many conferences lately, how has the reaction been to your talks?

A: It’s been intense and engaging. I try not to get ideological despite excitement and present as balanced of a perspective on it as possible with a creative angle. Of course, adding a show element to the keynotes and art exhibits helps to transmit something people have not yet seen others do in it. Having just accepted a brand ambassadorship for Orion Vault and a collaboration with FourPark Blockchain, there are plenty more to come. There is a third new Fortune 100 company collaboration going forward, which will open up new doors, but this is not something I can talk about publicly yet.

World Crypto Con

Q: How has the reaction been to your cryptocurrency art pieces?

A: The reaction is supportive and positive. People buy them and space keeps offering me new opportunities. It is one of the best moves I’ve ever made and has helped me to develop as an artist and a human being.

Q: You have created a limit on some of your art pieces, similar to how, say, there is a limit on Bitcoin. Is this working? Are you finding that it helps sell your art to crypto-enthusiasts who feel there is a finite number?

A: I’m currently in the process of re-limiting the editions much more due to my new partnerships. As a result of fewer works available, the price will significantly increase. I innovated a new pricing system on how this art is sold for the flagship series Artevo, which functioned okay but only for a select few who took the trouble of understanding it. The price doubling mechanism will now finally have the necessary decentralized trust behind it due to smart contracts. I can’t wait to write the News BTC launch article on this once all the contractual details are sorted.

Q: Tell us about Artevo and how it works?

A: The word Artevo comes from the combination of art and evolution. It describes the content well but is also a reminder to keep constantly moving forward. The combination of content and technique is illustrated well in the two-minute opening video of the site. To write it would take more than people have the patience for in this format without doing the whole thing a disservice.

Q: What does the future hold for yourself and Artevo?

A: I just saw the first VR demo of an Artevo piece, and we are developing the experience further with a Swedish AR/VR company called Wavr. The quickly put-together demo alone felt like looking at the future of art. I feel fortunate to be one of the first to ride this overwhelming wave. As mentioned, these pieces require a certain state of mind to open up, which I feel will be greatly increased by immersive experiences.

Q: What are you most excited about for World Crypto Con?

A: My own part is a big challenge to get right, but the totality of what Adam and the guys have put together is the future of crypto conferences. There will be a new reality for what people expect from these gatherings after it, which raises the bar for everyone.

Thanks again to World Crypto Con for the opportunity and to Vesa Kivinen for taking the time to speak with us.

Vesa Kivinen will be attending the ‘Mariposa Keynote Stage’ on November 1st, and will also be performing his crypto live art on November 1st.

>> Check out more interviews from World Crypto Con!

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World Crypto Con | Journalist Jordan French Wants You to Pitch Him

Welcome to the World Crypto Con Spotlight series. Today’s guest: Jordan French.

World Crypto Con

World Crypto Con (WCC) is a platform for industry leaders to share their knowledge of the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, as well as introduce their projects to the world. WCC welcomes both experts and novices to attend; there’s something for everyone.

Our World Crypto Con Spotlight series will be focusing on moments from the conference, speaking to headliners about their experience with WCC.

Thanks to World Crypto Con, we at CryptoCurrencyNews.com had the pleasure of interviewing Jordan French—journalist, entrepreneur, attorney, and engineer, French knows all about fast industry growth.

Today, Jordan will be giving you a sneak peek at his panel and talking us through his ideal crypto future.

World Crypto Con Spotlight: Jordan French

Q: Your LinkedIn shows you have quite the extensive resume, can you briefly give our readers an overview of your education and expertise?

A: Relevant to the blockchain and cryptocurrency space, I’ve started a few companies and led a former life as an enforcement attorney and engineer. I worked for two years at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington, DC, Office of Enforcement, Division of Investigations. At FERC, as it’s called, I worked on a number of anti-manipulation cases in energy trading and separately on energy grid reliability matters.

The SEC and CFTC—sister agencies to FERC—have somewhat parallel structures and laws. In fact, FERC’s EPAct 2005 anti-manipulation statute is modeled after the SEC’s Rule 10b-5 that covers security fraud. Structurally, the SEC also has a ‘division of investigations’ inside its Office of Enforcement. Within the SEC Division of Investigations, the agency is taking a deeper look at cryptocurrency issuers and blockchain-based companies that raise money—somewhat controversially—through an ‘initial coin offering,’ or ICO.

It’s a great background for covering the blockchain and cryptocurrency space from a markets news perspective. I’ve come into the media space with a bit of a different, useful background than a lot of those covering it. My hope is that more than anything it offers a clearer perspective.

In addition, I continue to be an entrepreneur. I launched BlockTelegraph with former Futurism.com news desk editor, Pat Caughill, earlier in 2018 as a US-based, non-pay-to-play media outlet. BlockTelegraph, led by Pat and a team of half a dozen solid staff writers, has offered up some great coverage in the space. Predominantly an industry publication, we’ve focused on some of the newsworthy launches and market trends in blockchain. Given that all of BlockTelegraph’s editorial coverage is earned media, we’re open to pitches from practically anyone and anywhere. Rest assured if we cover a company, trend, or concept, it’s earned.

BlockTelegraph is also an events-heavy outlet with coverage at World Crypto Con, BlockShow, Korea Blockchain Week, Crypto Finance Conference, Blockchain Futurist, and a raft of other events with top speakers. We do take our time to get to know featured speakers and integrate with the community. As rather agenda-less journalists we’re a great fit as moderators—for panels and fireside chats. We’re not there to sell anything but instead to engage and ask the right questions. Often they’re tough questions. But that’s ultimately our job. BlockTelegraph also holds its own events in partnership with companies in the space. We introduced our own speaker series in New York, CryptoAlley.NYC, this year. BlockTelegraph’s next event is October 23rd in a fireside with Bitcoin purist and anarchist Jeff Wernick—certainly a rising name in the space. We do host events at companies in the space to offer up fireside chats with top CEOs or panels with companies and service providers.

Q: When did you first learn about blockchain technology or cryptocurrency?

A: For the better part of the last half decade, I’ve dabbled in journalism and especially technology. Early in its lifecycle, around 2009-2012, however, blockchain was relatively fringe and off the radar. Some of its first exposure to the world was around the time of the dominance of Silk Road—the now defunct but powerful platform for trading just about anything.

Often times people are very good at spotting problems but not necessarily finding the best solution to solve them. Blockchain’s—and Bitcoin’s—reputations were marred from Silk Road reporting around weapons and drugs sales. Put another way, Bitcoin, due to a mix of sensationalism and lack of media understanding, strongly associated blockchain-based cyrptocurrencies with illegal or ‘underground’ activities.

It turns out that Silk Road was a brilliant showcase of the benefits of decentralized cryptocurrencies—specifically Bitcoin—and the possibilities of blockchain technology. Today, we’re only scratching the surface of the promise and applications of what the technology can solve.

The current environment, with relatively depressed cryptocurrency prices, is in many ways an opportunity. With plenty of analogs to other bubbles, and especially the late ’90’s and early 2000’s tech bubble, it’s likely we’ll see companies with better execution come out far, far stronger from the current fray. Much like Amazon, Google, and later Facebook, Baidu, TenCent, and other now-top tech companies rose after a strong shake out early in the 21st century. It’s likely we’ll see a similar phenomenon in the blockchain space.

And it’s not the ideas that will drive those next ‘Amazons.’ Instead, it is execution—execution by well funded but nimble teams that take some of the better, applicable ideas in blockchain and find a market and traction.

Q: You’re speaking at the World Crypto Conference in Vegas soon, care to give us a brief overview of your topic?

A: I’m moderating a panel at World Crypto Con on ‘Mass Adoption—Crypto for the Average Person,’ featuring speakers from Latium, Bitcoin.com, Vault Logic, and Stronghold Financial. Mass adoption is both imminent and far in the distant future. Much like any business, blockchain-based companies will implement cryptocurrencies much more rapidly with other businesses as partners rather than with consumers, broadly. While it’s not likely that we see cryptocurrencies in use at every turn by consumers—at least not any time soon—on the ‘back end’ of many financial and recording systems, a lot of implementations are already in place. We’ll hear a lot more about it at World Crypto Con. That panel is on November 1st at 2:55pm at the Orovada Ballroom at the Aria Hotel.

Q: Why do you think it’s important that conferences like World Crypto Con exist?

A: On the one hand, we’re experiencing some level of ‘conference bubble’ in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space; on the other hand, conferences are one of the few relatively efficient ways to get people together to exchange ideas and form new collaborations. Increasingly in a digital world, in-person meetings are even more important. That ‘face time’ establishes or builds on trust and permits an easier exchange of information. I’ve witnessed a lot of benefit from people who go to conferences to join startups, invest, earn media attention, or recruit. That said we might be near saturation for the market for events in this particular space.

Like any market, the best will thrive, and the less value-additive will fall by the wayside. Economics will dictate those ‘winners’ and ‘losers.’

Q: What are you most looking forward to at the conference? Any particular speaker you’re interested in hearing? Celeb you hope to bump into?

A: I’m fascinated to hear what the speakers have to say on my panel. I’m usually quick to burrow right in and get to the point—finding the boundaries of the current dialogue. The real questions to answer are relatively defensive: Why haven’t we seen more ‘mass adoption’ if blockchain-powered cryptocurrencies are so great? Inversely, given the current awkward state of much of the technology, it’s equally fair to ask, well: Why should we?

Otherwise, I’m open to any introductions. There’s increasingly good coverage in the blockchain space and media is a core part of that, but the people and the companies they form are a critical part of that, too.

Thanks again to World Crypto Con for the opportunity and to Jordan French for taking the time to speak with us.

Jordan French will be moderating ‘Mass Adoption—Crypto for the Average Person’ on November 1st.

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World Crypto Con | Lyn Ulbricht on Freeing Her Son, Ross

Welcome to the World Crypto Con Spotlight series. Today’s guest: Lyn Ulbricht.

World Crypto Con

World Crypto Con (WCC) is a platform for industry leaders to share their knowledge of the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, as well as introduce their projects to the world. WCC welcomes both experts and novices to attend; there’s something for everyone.

Our World Crypto Con Spotlight series will be focusing on moments from the conference, speaking to headliners about their experience with WCC.

Thanks to World Crypto Con, we at CryptoCurrencyNews.com had the pleasure of interviewing Lyn Ulbricht, politcal activist and mother of Ross Ulbricht. Fighting for her son’s rights, as well as the rights of thousands harmed by flaws in the justice system, Lyn is the very definition of a Super Mom.

Today, Lyn will be giving you a sneak peek at her WCC talk and telling us a little more about what Ross Ulbricht’s case means for all of us.

World Crypto Con Spotlight: Lyn Ulbricht

Q: Lyn, can you tell us a little about Ross in your eyes?

A: I love Ross dearly, and not just because he’s my son. He is an exceptionally fine person, and I fervently hope that all the people at World Crypto Con will eventually have the opportunity to meet him and see this for themselves. Ross is kind, compassionate, idealistic and intelligent. Go to the Meet Ross page for more about who he really is. And please check out the 100 letters written about him by people who actually know him. These show the real Ross, rather than the character portrayed by the government and much of the media.

Q: You want to talk about the dangerous precedents being set regarding his case and how we are all impacted by them. So what are they?

A: Ross’ case involves many important precedents that will impact us all going into the digital age, including privacy, due process rights, and much more.

Q: Does Bitcoin have a positive or negative effect on our world in your opinion?

A: Positive.

Q: Do you/would you trade in cryptocurrencies yourself?

A: If I trusted myself to do it well I would.

Q: Ross Ulbricht’s dark-net site the Silk Road is now offline. Would you start a new one if you could?

A: No.

Q: Do you believe in the importance of anonymity?

A: Absolutely. We are fast approaching a full-on surveillance state. Without privacy, we are not free.

Q: What are you most interested in seeing at World Crypto Con?

A: My favorite part of conferences is the people: reconnecting with old friends and meeting new ones. I particularly look forward to thanking Charlie Lee for supporting Ross’ petition for clemency; and also meeting the great conference organizers who have been so supportive of Ross and my work to free him.

Thanks again to World Crypto Con for the opportunity and to Lyn Ulbricht for taking the time to speak with us.

Lyn Ulbricht will be a keynote speaker on November 2nd, leading the discussion on ‘Silk Road “The Pioneer and the Aftermath.”‘

>> Check out more World Crypto Con interviews!

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