Bankless is a media brand and community that focuses on educating and empowering individuals to navigate the landscape. [1][2]


Founded by and in 2020, Bankless is a global community helping users on their journey. [3][4]

Bankless produces a wide range of content, including articles, guides, podcasts, newsletters, and videos hosted on YouTube by co-founders and . [4]

They cover topics such as protocols, , , (non-fungible tokens), and crypto adoption. The goal is to make complex concepts accessible to a broader audience. [1][2]

We're digital explorers navigating this new frontier alongside you, publishing everything we discover along the way in the form of articles and podcasts.[5]

Bankless Citizenship

Bankless Citizenship is a paid membership with exclusive access to a growing list of resources, tools, and community to help users go Bankless, designed for all experience levels. Resources such as daily market reports, exclusive podcast episodes, DeFi opportunities, etc. [9]

Users also get access to a private discord channel where they interact directly with & and the Bankless team alongside the community in crypto. [9]

Bankless Ventures

In May 2023, hosts of Bankless, Ryan, and David reportedly raised a $35 million venture capital fund to invest in seed-stage companies. The fund is a separate legal entity from the Bankless podcast but shares its brand. One venture capital source told the platform and investing arm combo would mean “incredible deal flow” for the nascent VC. [10]

According to the team, the fund focuses on early-stage crypto companies and on “empowering pioneers to explore the frontier of Web3.” [10][11]

The Bankless Ventures team includes the hosts, & , Ben Lakoff, Kimberly Adams, and Brent Matterson. [11]

Bankless & BanklessDAO Separation

In May 2021, Bankless launched a DAO called . [6]

"The bankless movement is now larger than any single entity, newsletter, podcast, or person to contain. It needs an internet scale organization to achieve its goals. So the bankless community is launching a DAO." - the blogpost wrote[6]

The Bankless DAO acted as a coordination mechanism for a collection of participating media nodes and also launched a token, $BANK, to facilitate the DAO coordination. [6]

However, in November 2023, applied for a grant of 1.82 million Arbitrum () tokens from , a layer-2 scaling project for . Concerns arose because BanklessDAO’s proposal requested a substantial amount of tokens for content creation without providing detailed information on how the funds would be used. Community members questioned whether BanklessDAO should leverage the weight of the Bankless brand, which it did not create, for such ambitious proposals. [7]

In response to community criticism related to BanklessDAO’s application, the co-founders took to X (formerly Twitter) on Nov. 26, 2023, to announce that they plan to burn all of their BanklessDAO (BANK) tokens and to also submit a governance proposal to BanklessDAO, aiming to formally separate the two entities. [7][8]

"The sharing of the brand between two independent entities, @BanklessHQ and @banklessDAO, is too confusing for the industry to accept." - tweeted

"As for our next steps: 1. We plan to submit a governance proposal to BanklessDAO early next week to clarify the branding separation between these entities. 2. We also plan to burn all of our BANK tokens on the back of this proposal."[8]

The argument between the proposal backers and opponents escalated rapidly on social media. Some commentators like pseudonymous Delegate Cash CEO Foobar accused Bankless founders of “legitimacy grifting” by pretending that BanklessDAO was completely unrelated to Bankless. The controversy led to the decision to separate the two entities and address the concerns raised by the community. [8]

Notable Interviews

Featuring Eliezer Yudkowsky

In episode 159 - We’re All Gonna Die with Eliezer Yudkowsky, the trio discussed the rapid advancement of AI like Chat GPT, with concerns about the potential development of superintelligent AI that could pose a threat to humanity. [12]

On why there is a concern about the potential dangers of AI, the host Yudkowsky responded:

"The concern stems from the potential development of superintelligent AI that could surpass human capabilities and become indifferent to our goals and values."

Some insights from the interview:

  • Chat GPT represents a significant advancement in AI, but it is not yet at the level of superintelligence that poses a direct threat to humanity.
  • Aligning AI with human values and goals is a challenging task due to the limitations of current methodologies.
  • Concerns about AI safety and the potential for superintelligent AI to surpass human capabilities are not widely acknowledged by the scientific community.

On how close we are to the development of superintelligent AI:

"The timeline is uncertain, but there are concerns about inadvertently reaching a point of AI escape velocity, where rapid advancements lead to a superintelligent AI that could be difficult to control"[12]

Featuring Vitalik Buterin

In January 2022, Bankless interviewed , co-founder of to discuss his article Endgame, as well as a rundown of the year 2021. [13]

In this episode, Vitalik Buterin discussed the future roadmap of Ethereum, highlighting key milestones such as the merge, , and scalability improvements. The conversation explored the rise of alternative layer-one blockchains and their potential to decentralize over time. Ethereum's progress and success in 2021 were emphasized, particularly in terms of adoption and mainstream attention. Detailed technical insights into the merge, , rollups, and the challenges of scaling the Ethereum network were provided. [13]

The podcast reflected on the broader crypto landscape, stressing the importance of decentralization and Ethereum's pivotal role in leading this movement.

"The core idea here is to basically kind of like leave the past in the past and create an Ethereum that actually becomes simpler and simpler over time." - Vitalik on plans for Ethereum[13]

Featuring Marc Andreessen & Chris Dixon

In May 2022, the Bankless team was joined by and to discuss the reinvention of the Internet and to emphasize the importance of looking beyond current criticisms of the internet and its technologies to recognize their potential, especially when driven by the smartest minds tackling existing issues. [14]

On web3's aim for the Internet, Marc responded:

"Web 3 aims to bring back trust and economic incentives through decentralization, permissionless innovation, and technologies like blockchain. It allows for direct transactions, incentivizes developers, and ensures transparency and security."[14]

Some insights from the interview:

  • Web 1 faced challenges due to a lack of trust, economic incentives, and permissionless innovation, which hindered its development and led to limitations such as reliance on advertising.
  • Web 3, through and decentralization, aims to fix these issues and bring back the principles of openness and trust that characterized Web 1.
  • The comparison between Web 1 and Web 3 emphasizes the importance of collective effort, the potential for global adoption, and the need to adapt to societal challenges to realize the full potential of these technologies. [14]

Featuring Cobie

In the 100th episode featuring Cobie, fka Crypto Chain, the host discussed his keys to surviving in crypto and what it takes to last long term. They also talked about how much decentralization matters, roles and responsibilities in shaping the world around us. [15]

Cobie discussed the importance of holding like for the long term instead of constantly trading, emphasizing that long-term holding could have been more beneficial and less stressful. [15]

The conversation included a debate on whether decentralization truly mattered in the current crypto landscape, with Cobie providing insights on its significance and practical implications. He shared his experiences navigating the fast-paced and often overwhelming nature of the crypto market, highlighting the importance of staying informed and resilient. [15]

The discussion also touched on how regulations and the initial setups of various crypto systems had affected retail investors, often leading to challenges and losses. Finally, Cobie and the hosts speculated about the future of crypto in 2022, considering both bullish and bearish scenarios based on macroeconomic conditions. [15]

Featuring Lyn Alden

In the episode featuring Lyn Alden, founder of Lyn Alden Investment Strategy, the team discussed her guide on how to survive the U.S. dollar collapse. [16]

Lyn Alden explained how new technologies had empowered individuals to bypass national financial limitations, allowing them to access foreign assets and currencies, thereby countering capital controls and fiscal dominance. [16]

She highlighted that we had entered a new era called "fiscal dominance," where traditional monetary tools, such as central bank interest rates, had become less effective, and fiscal policies took precedence. To navigate this era, investors were advised to hold specific assets like , gold, real estate, and energy equities that could withstand the pressures of fiscal dominance and potential capital controls. [16]

Alden drew on historical instances of fiscal dominance, such as the inflation and currency devaluations of the 1970s and major wars, driven by extensive government spending and bond issuance. She also noted that the future of crypto might involve increased regulation and capital controls, with governments aiming to monitor and restrict the movement of digital assets, thereby raising the importance of privacy tools and decentralized finance. [16]

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Commit Info

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Edited On

July 4, 2024

Reason for edit:

added more info & included notable interviews


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