Freddie New is the Head of Policy at Bitcoin Policy UK. In this interview, we discuss how his childhood experiences living in Zimbabwe and Syria have shaped his understanding of Bitcoin’s unique properties. We also discuss his amazing efforts in setting up Bitcoin Policy UK, a new and much-needed advocacy group promoting Bitcoin to policymakers and the wider public in the United Kingdom.
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Danny and I have been very fortunate to travel to a vast array of countries in making this show. In the process, I have been exposed to ideas and experiences that reinforce the importance of Bitcoin. But what strikes me the hardest is coming back to the UK. There is a general lack of interest and consideration for this innovation. It’s an attitude that borders on outright suspicion and derision on occasions.
Freddie New is one of the main people behind a new advocacy group: Bitcoin Policy UK. It is a lobbying and educational non-profit that the UK has been in desperate need of. This speaks to the difficulties of getting funding for such initiatives more than anything else. But, as the Bitcoin Policy Institute and Coin Centre attest, it’s about getting the right people to work in such organisations.
Freddie is such a person. Whilst he speaks like a typical London professional (which can open many doors in the UK!), his experiences in growing up and escaping Zimbabwe were anything like the typical insular upbringing of many in the UK. At an early age, Freddie was forced to acquire valuable education on the importance of the properties that Bitcoin provides. It is a story that makes you catch your breath.
Bitcoin advocacy is about looking beyond the investment potential of the Bitcoin asset and expressing its value as a technology that can protect people. Advocacy needs to be authoritative and tell powerful stories to persuade people who are blind to the economic transition coming down the road. Having someone who can eloquently attest to the need to have means to protect sovereign wealth could be the lightning rod for Bitcoin advocacy in the UK.