A down year?
If 2017 was a "mainstream moment" for a suddenly surging industry, 2018 proved once again that cryptocurrency and blockchain remain early-stage technologies.
But while last year's hype no doubt gave way to reality as prices and market capitalizations fell out of the moon's orbit, it would be a mistake to write-off the year as one in which no gains were made.
Across the globe, innovators continue pushing the boundaries of the technology, pressing boldly on in the face of challenges, while discussion continues in earnest among regulators, policy makers and financial institutions at the highest levels.
Bringing together a range of these top global experts, CoinDesk's 2018 in Review seeks to dive deep into this story, taking a look at the issues and trends that not only shaped this year, but that could play a bigger role in 2019 and beyond.
Be sure to keep us bookmarked as we'll be updating daily through the new year.
We are way too early for “mainstream adoption” to be a sensible success metric for dapps, says Coleman Maher.Read Now
What is the future of initial coin offerings? One of the movements early leaders suggests the market might be at a tipping point.
As the crypto markets have matured, they've seen increasing acceptance with traditional finance and regulators, but there's still a way to go.
Culturally broken? A frustrated crypto entrepreneur argues 2018 was a money grab filled with broken promises.
While emerging assets are always turbulent, 2018 has been an especially violent year for the crypto markets. Lessons need to be learned.
Bitcoin is activism, not a get rich quick scheme or a startup platform, says Lamassu's Zach Harvey.
The crypto bubble hasn't altered the intrinsic value of crypto assets – but it should change our outlook on how they will evolve.
After this year’s wild market ride and many failed projects, what might cryptocurrency mean for money and finance in 2019 and beyond?
The strategic use of blockchains will be essential in enabling humans to become meaningful long-term stakeholders in the future of governance, argues entrepreneur Santiago Siri.
The crypto space is shifting rapidly with new innovations – but the industry still faces a number of urgent questions, says angel investor Donna Redel.
Cryptocurrency industry observer David Nage thinks we're in the Friendster/Myspace error of blockchain, but that Facebook isn't too far away.
"Not too little. Not too much. Just right.” Chromaway's CEO gives his take on why the Swedish saying may be key to unlocking blockchain's potential.
A penny not mean much to you, but for crypto exchange traders it's a big deal.
Eric Piscini, CEO of Citizens Reserve and Deloitte's former blockchain lead, outlines the key threads of 2018 and how they signal what's coming for 2019.
Decentralization may sound like a sexy concept, but realism may be a better real-deal solution, argues Elly Zhang.
Ethereum may have caught the world's attention but it needs to answer fundamental questions before being able to deliver on its promise.
From advances in art trading to setbacks for celebrities on the blockchain, it was a year of serious building for the crypto collectable market.
Sure, it was a tough year for crypto. But emerging from that year companies and projects are stronger and growing faster than ever.
Free from distractions, blockchain builders can – and must – now focus on using the technology to enable positive societal change.
How a South Korean governor is moving fast on blockchain, despite a slow national legislature.
One of the cryptographers most often cited in Satoshi Nakamoto's white paper has reason to think the industry's future is bright.
Three areas of conflict are taking shape in the crypto space and 2019 will see them unleashed in full force, says MintBit's Arwen Smit.
There's a growing consensus that DLT supports the credit sector's digital transformation goals, says Charlie Moore of Global Debt Registry.
The crypto revolution won't happen overnight – and it won't happen without pragmatism.
There will be opportunities for smart blockchain companies that can find their niche in the coming unbundling, says Ripple's Asheesh Birla.
What do virtual real estate and distributed computing have in common? They're both markets where P2P networks can improve efficiencies.
Regulators are going to regulate the digital asset space with or without the participation of the people and businesses in it.
A simple lesson from the 2018 bearish crypto market: We are better together, argued Ian Simpson of the Crypto Valley Association.
The ICO market may be waning, but a new way to tokenize assets is coming to Wall Street.
The denationalization of money is finally unfolding organically in the form of digital assets.
Fixing crypto Twitter starts with following positive examples – and a recognition of the problem.
The Philippines may not be the crypto capital of the world – but it may be where infrastructure building runs the deepest.
The CEO of one of the largest crypto security companies recaps his takeaways from the year that was.
Investments veteran Massimo Morini believes the end of 2018 is not the end of a year, but a decade, that changed the world of finance.
In this op-ed, Ouriel Ohayon argues why 2019 will be the year blockchain UX sees a new level of priority among developers and companies.
Games frequently serve as an experimental playground for new technology, writes Devin Finzer.
In this op-ed, Micah Winkelspecht explains why he believes that 2019 will see the return of bitcoin dominance after 2018's reality checks.
Get ready for talk about bitcoin's halving – the once-in-a-while event that won't happen in 2019, but that just might have an impact on the markets.
In an op-ed written exclusively for CoinDesk, Chelsea Palmer argues that defining blockchain governance must be a priority for 2019.
Sure, the crypto market boom of 2017 exposed the industry's lack of infrastructure. That just means the solution is clear – we must build it and keep building.
Decred's Jake Yocom-Piatt explains in this exclusive op-ed why he thinks information asymmetry is a key factor driving the manic buying and panic selling cycles in the crypto markets.
In this exclusive op-ed, Jenny Leung, an Australian attorney who formerly worked for the country's financial regulator, explained 7 legal questions that will define blockchain this year.
Crypto as an asset class? Investors would do well to learn it's not a one-size-fits all classification.
ICO-related drama overshadowed blockchain tech's enormous progress in 2018, writes EY's Paul Brody.
In an op-ed written exclusively for CoinDesk, Enigma CEO Guy Zyskind says 2019 must be about building decentralized solutions for data privacy.
Hashed CEO Simon Seojoon Kim looks at the inherent limitations of ICOs, in particular the belief that "anyone can invest in an initial project."
In 2019, tokens will invade the enterprise in full force and the line between public and private networks will start to disappear, writes ConsenSys' Ajit Tripathi.
Two particularly important ideas related to bitcoin's future are likely going to conflict with each other. But that doesn't need to a problem.
Africa's various currency crises illustrate why cryptocurrency innovation shouldn't be stifled, says economic analyst Terence Zimwara.
Are STOs a way to pass the SEC's incomplete crypto guidance? Chi-Ru Jou explains what are the unresolved legal issues for STOs in the coming year.
A class of dapp that we should all be excited about in the short term is the decentralized exchanges, says 256 Ventures' David Lu.
In 2018, the promise of a decentralized future took a big knock. There are lessons to be learned, says Yin Wu, founder of Dirt Protocol.
Despite the gloomy narratives, 2018 was hugely productive for teams building the decentralized web, says Parity's Jutta Steiner.
I’ve been through the ups and downs with bitcoin, and I am as certain as ever that the bitcoin revolution is coming, says Tim Draper.
If blockchain is to be part of our financial and governance future, the development process must represent a diverse population, says Alexis Gauba.
Are digital assets equal to digital securities? TokenSoft's Mason Borda argued the two types aren’t so different in terms of how regulators view them today.
We are way too early for “mainstream adoption” to be a sensible success metric for dapps, says Coleman Maher.