Decentralisation, disintermediation and freedom of expression in blockchain

The appeal and primary feature of blockchains are their decentralisation and disintermediation. It’s believes that decentralised platforms promise benefits for the freedom of the press, because it makes it harder
for governments to censor content. However, blockchains’ aspiration of removing intermediaries risks negative impacts on freedom of expression.

Further, government still maintain responsibilities to protect and promote freedom of expression that cannot be abdicated by delegating those responsibilities to technology.

Blockchain still retain centralised features. Permissioned blockchains tend to be, by design, more ‘closed’ in who can access then and the creator may even appoint who runs the nodes responsible for authenticating transactions. In the case of public blockchains, most users still require intermediary services and software to connect to and interact with blockchains. The presence of these third parties to access blockchain services, whether they be software,
websites, or browser extensions, means that users are placing trust in entities that may or may not be trustworthy.

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