Augur REP Impossible to Regulate?
Launched in 2014, Augur is a decentralized prediction platform that saw its design and development take plan on Ethereum. Following a massive legal battle between the platform’s founders costing over $150M, Ethereum is currently under investigation by government regulators.
What occurs on Augur, known as “death-pools” are essentially betting circles in which users can gamble on when certain celebrities will die. Although this act is not illegal under regulations, it does raise several worries due to their illegality in the US. Also known as “assassination markets”, unidentified users gather and gamble on the lifespan of a certain figure and could possibly result in a homicide in the betting is high enough to motivate an unstable individual.
Additionally, US lawmakers believe that Augur may possibly contribute significantly to a massive unregulated market with almost no control or supervision as an options market. These markets, as of now, are incredibly regulated by authorities on a global scale. Despite a minor percentage of investors qualifying to trade options, Augur facilities easy over the counter transactions, commonly known as OTC trading.
If Augur's market continues to grow at an exponential rate, its regulation will prove to be impossible, including any tracking of the platform. This differs from conventional and traditional markets where each involved party is essentially centralized in themselves and Augur permits platform trading from each of the four corners of the world. What this means is that anyone looking to commit acts of fraud would provide governments with countless complexities when attempting legal action.
Due to Augur being completely open-source, with continued growth, it could become impossible for even its developers to terminate the decentralized platform. Creating another market similar to Augur can happen by anyone. Another highlighted issue is that the blockchain has drawn investments worth $255M although the number of active users has been under just a 100 individuals a day for the last few weeks.