Do developers need to consider legal consequences for the Dapps they create?

td6778td6778 Member Posts: 11
More specifically let's take, for example, one of the many gambling Dapps already in existence. Let's say the Dapp was created, launched, and maintained in a world region where online gambling is legal. Due to the inherent nature of a Dapp, it will be available to users anywhere, anytime, and as I understand it impossible to be "taken down". How do you think local and state governments will respond to a popular gambling Dapp being utilized in a locality where gambling is illegal? What if there is a widespread epidemic of underage gambling in this hypothetical area? Would the developer(s) be held liable, or worse?

I don't expect to receive legal advice from this forum. It's just something that I would like some opinions on. What one may consider to be perfectly OK in one place, can be regulated, restricted, or reprehensible in another. Hence, I feel like this is a valid discussion. What considerations, if any, should a developer and their team discuss?

For clarity, I have no interest nor intentions of creating a gambling Dapp or, for that matter, ANY Dapp that would be considered morally repugnant. This is just the best example I could think of for the sake of argument.


  • o0ragman0oo0ragman0o Member, Moderator Posts: 1,291 mod
    The gambling DAPP's so far have tended to focus on proven fair gambling. In that regard, they offer a better and safer alternative to normal internet gambling sites which have no transparency at all. But the most surprising thing about Ethereum and cryptoeconomics in general is that 'gambling' algorithms are so much a part of the security of the blockchain itself.

    The power of Ethereum is not that it can build boats that float or sink according to ethics, laws and regulators, but is a tide that floats all boats in spite of the moral or regulatory arguments. That is the essence of it as a disruptive technology.

    So far the regulators have simple sat and watched. The responses from different nations authorities have spanned the spectrum but most seem more open to Ethereum than Bitcoin though the latter would seem much less disruptive. On average, I think most of them have realised they going to have to simply get use to it being around. The smarter ones seem to be trying to work out how to befriend it and have even gone as far as saying the effects of "We're watching ICO's but probably won't do anything about them". Which is basically say "If ya's all get scammed, we don;t give a shit", "If you don't pay tax on your $100m ICO, no big deal"

    I think the regulators are trying not to look like they're staring into an abyss.

    That said, the serious ICO teams have all sought good legal advice and have tried to run as close as possible with the regulatory frameworks of their jurisdictions. Unfortunately, 'jurisdiction', doesn't mean much in a nation agnostic technology. So 'good legal advice' in this field is still emerging for the very fact that the regulatory environments have not been able to catch up. This is why you get things like EOS saying "US citizens can't participate in our ICO" and then advertise their ICO on Time Square digital billboards.

    However, outright scams are generally well covered under criminal law and there's been numerous successful prosecutions of perpetrators in the crypto-currency field. But you have to find them first.

    As for kids becoming addicted to Ethereum gambling DAPPs, you could simply write down the predictable daily loss ratio and stick it on the monitor for them.....then introduce them to speculative trading instead.
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