Amanda Graham


Code as Law

May 6, 2024 12:00 PM

The phrase "Code is Law" emerged in the late 1900s, predating the rise of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. If one has spent any time in the web3 space, they probably have both positive and negative connotations, but most of the positive probably stems from the idea that code is law. This is no less true in any connected, distributed system.The concept of jurisdiction is central to legal systems, but the nature of code makes it borderless and difficult to govern. This raises the question of who holds power in such a system. Traditional laws are subject to interpretation, which can change their meaning over time, but code can be rigid and unyielding. This shift from "shall not" to "cannot" has sparked a debate about the impact of this new way of thinking. This approach has far-reaching implications for decision-making regarding the development of software.

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