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  • The Digital Traces of Crypto-Finance

    Alberto Cossu

    Chapter from the book: Armano, E et al. 2022. Digital Platforms and Algorithmic Subjectivities.


    The data made available by the digitisation of social life has revolutionised the behaviour of financial amateurs investing in crypto currencies, created in the aftermath of the Blockchain revolution. Knowledge of the actions of others was always a preoccupation for investors in every market as it played a pivotal role in the creation of financial profit: the less that key information was known to the public, the more it was valuable. Now, the regime of visibility is reverted: what was once secret is now publicly disseminated on the web. Amateur investors discuss potentially lucrative currencies online, where they are also socialised to the new practices and ethos of digital finance via YouTube videos and, most importantly, they coordinate their actions in online chat apps, such as Telegram or Discord. This chapter explores the new role of information production and creation in the functioning of crypto-financial markets. The digital traces left by amateur investors across the web call for an updated understanding of the cultural ideology operating beneath this financial revolution where an apparently perfect symmetry of information is coupled with universally accessible digital ledgers. Based on digital data gathering and content analysis this chapter argues that such digital traces empower new investors with unprecedented possibilities for creating value and, at the same time, are subject to massive data gathering activities by companies that analyse and sell aggregated behavioural information.

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    How to cite this chapter
    Cossu, A. 2022. The Digital Traces of Crypto-Finance. In: Armano, E et al (eds.), Digital Platforms and Algorithmic Subjectivities. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book54.j

    This chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives 4.0 license. Copyright is retained by the author(s)

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    Published on Nov. 1, 2022