McDonald’s has begun to take Bitcoin and USDT in a test market in the city of Lugano, Switzerland, per Bitcoin Magazine. The city signed a memorandum of understanding with Tether on March 3rd, allowing two funding pools to be created: A $106 million, (100 million Swiss francs) investment pool for crypto startups, and the second is around $3 million (3 million Swiss francs) for shops and businesses to encourage the adoption of crypto.
I only have one thing to say.
Dogecoin, the popular and fairly useless memecoin, saw a dramatic jump on the news Elon Musk, the Dogecoin Master Shiller, is going to give up his fight to drop the Twitter deal and will go ahead and purchase it for the original agreed $44b price tag, possibly a move to avoid the looming Twitter suit. Musk also apparently mentioned a way to combat spam bots would be to use 0.1 DOGE in order to hamper mass spamming, as one feature of his new unrevealed “X” multi-purpose app idea, something the public believes will be the next evolution of Twitter.
Oh boy. Here we go again. Elon Musk has had a great track record for being insightful and savvy, but that track has been getting muddy for quite some time. Lately, his cringe-opinionated Tweets, cringe-worthy rants and ultimately poor business decisions have made him look like a shell of the icon he once was. Can he successfully run an already established company like Twitter? I don’t see why not. But can he turn Twitter into this Web3 amalgam of crud just to say he owns a huge Web3 company? Only time will tell, but I wouldn’t bet on it. My trust in Musk left a long time ago.
Ripple, the creators behind XRP, are starting to see their tokens price rise in anticipation of another major move that might put their SEC battle behind them once and for all (maybe). Former SEC Director of the corporation finance division William Hinman, whose penned documents a few years ago claimed ETH is not actually a security, is something Ripple has been trying to pry out of the the current SEC Director Gary Gensler’s hands without any luck, since it could throw the suit out. However, the district court judge in the case, Judge Analisa Torres, ordered the SEC to release the documents and could be the turning point in Ripple’s case (maybe).
I feel like I’ve heard “Ripple is about to beat the case” so many times now. Fool me once, shame on your. Fool me 19 times, shame on me. Forever. But…could this be that one time that MAYBE Ripple will ACTUALLY beat the case?
Ok I know, lame headline attempt. MEV (Maximal Extractable Value) bots are used mainly for arbitrage plays, and are known to do hundreds of thousands of transactions per month to try and reach maximum profits. Bert Miller, the product lead of a MEV bot research team called Flashbots detailed his findings on Twitter, and it's a story of victory followed by deep loss. A MEV bot operator won an arb(itrage) jackpot of 800 ETH in a single transaction on Sept 28th, only to lose it all plus another 300 ETH to a hacker an hour later. Miller noted that the owner had failed to protect the function they used to execute flashloans on the dYdX exchange, which was sniffed out.
So the person that was selling their $1.8m cUSDC got screwed by the MEV bot and the MEV bot got screwed by a hacker. Do we finally have a story where a hacker brings justice instead of just evading it?!
Monday brought a storm other than Hurricane Ian, and we're all on the edge of our seats wondering what's going to happen next. Anonymous posted a video slamming Yuga Labs with a myriad of allegations including use of esoteric symbolism in BAYC art that they believe is the company's stance on topics such as Nazism, racism, and others. Anonymous has claimed these allegations are true via research and interviews with figures that studied this symbolism and those possibly with knowledge of the company. Yuga Labs has denounced these claims, with co-founder Greg Solano stating “[w]e’ve become the target of a crazy disinformation campaign accusing us — a group of Jewish, Turkish, Pakistani, and Cuban friends — of being super-secret Nazis.”
Anonymous can be a scary entity. They've always claimed to protect citizens and the innocent from the evils and horrors of humanity. And usually, their actions seem to move in that direction as well. So this particular claim makes me wonder if Anonymous got it wrong...or if Yuga Labs is actually suspect. A friend sent me a similar type of video detailing the same allegations against Yuga, and although some of it made sense, I thought "meh, this can't be real". But now, I'm thinking "uhh could it be?" We'll see what happens soon enough...
Nancy Pelosi might not be too keen on the reformation bubbling up in her backyard. On Thursday, a new framework was released to change the policy known as the STOCK Act, aka "Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge", which puts the onus on congressional and government leaders to disclose stock and asset purchases, in order keep transparency with the public. Historically, there have been quite a few calls on leaders to stop purchasing stocks because of the potential of insider knowledge on upcoming policies which can be used to strategically line their pockets. The STOCKS Act was supposed to put some accountability on lawmakers, but that has waned over the decade in the eyes of the public. Proposed by Committee on House Administration Zoe Lofgren, she stated:
“Congress can act to restore the public’s faith and trust in their public officials and ensure that these officials act in the public interest, not their private financial interest, by restricting senior government officials — including Members of Congress and the Supreme Court — and their spouses and dependent children from trading stock or holding investments in securities, commodities, futures, cryptocurrency, and other similar investments and from shorting stocks.”
Personally, I do experience "wtf" moments when I read the types of stock/asset purchases lawmakers have enjoyed in the last decade. It's clear that these purchases are based off internal knowledge and the STOCKS Act in its' current form isn't that effective. Blocking them from purchasing while holding office might seem extreme to some, but I believe it's necessary, given just how much information they have access to. However, I do expect push back from some lawmakers, and we'll see how far this proposal actually goes.
What a fun trivia fact! A well-known crypto locksmith, known for recovering lost seed phrases and private keys, unveiled some information about the origins of the term "bitcoin" and it's down right interesting. Bitcoin.org was registered via a Japanese anonymous domain registrar called AnonymousSpeech on August 18, 2008. However, there was another similar domain name registered just one day before, called Netcoin.org on the same registrar. There is no other data to uncover here, as it looks like the domain stayed dormant until it was re-purchased by a subsidiary to Web.com in 2010.
First off, thank goodness that it's still called Bitcoin. Netcoin sounds like something that came out of the Dot Com bust in the late '90s. I can imagine how a conversation in the late 2000's about this would possibly go:
A recently leaked recording of Celsius' leadership call is shining some light into how they might get into the good graces of their customers again. A proposal for paying back customers might include giving wrapped assets that can be traded on other platforms. Here is the general breakdown:1) Celsius' remaining funds would be allocated into certain wallets 2) Then issue Celsius-wrapped tokens, known as Cx tokens, to represent the ratio of how much the firm owes to how much it has on hand. Ex. Customers waiting to redeem their bitcoin will receive CxBTC or CxETH tokens.The other option is to decline the wrapped token, and wait for a larger payout when additional revenue is realized. As markets go up, any assets held by Celsius will go up as well.
I find this to be an interesting idea, but will depend on the market demand for Celsius-wrapped tokens. If Celsius is able to clear all Chapter 11 hurdles, they might end up being bullish and the wrapped tokens might increase in value as well. Even waiting for the larger payout could be great too. As long as Celsius has a plan to pay back their loyal customers, unlike some of the other disgraced DeFi lenders in the last 6 or so months, then I guess all we can do is just hope it comes to fruition some day.
What the vast majority of people already knew would happen eventually happened and much earlier than anticipated. ETHPOW, the forked version of Ethereum, crashed hard after the Merge, losing over 85% of it's initial value. The fork was already fighting an uphill battle with how they would operate in parallel to Ethereum, but they had a big issue right off the bat…their chainID was matching other existing chainID's, which would cause issues such as replay scams (transactions could be replayed on other matching chainID services and protocols). At time of this writing, they did change it but to another chainID that already exists as well.
I was looking forward to getting the free ETHPOW tokens just to sell them as soon as possible, but with the issues they are already seeing, I'm going to go ahead and not touch it, even with a 10 ft pole!
The Merge successfully completed last Thursday, and leading up to the Merge for months, ETH prices increased in what was considered to be in anticipation for the positive aspects of what the Merge will bring, even against every micro and macro-economic roadblock that in other situations, would have kept any asset price down. ETH even outpaced BTC for the first time in this rare upward pattern. However, the Merge occurred, and ETH did not take the upward trajectory everyone thought it would. In fact, in the hours leading up to the Merge, prices started going down already. So what happened? Why didn't prices actually go up? I believe there were 3 major reasons for this:
Investors remembering "wait, aren't we in a recession?!" - It's the same reason why I was scratching my head when ETH prices started going up back in July. What's to guarantee the Merge will bring a paradigm shift so great that purchasing ETH leading up to that moment will pay off?
Global markets are down - War, and overall economic downturn has been a huge factor in why assets are down across all markets. ETH's uptick did not fit the pattern of every other asset out there and was bound to return to normality at some point.
Awful CPI data - And probably the biggest kicker was the CPI data presented on Wednesday, which spooked investors even further. Stocks crashed that day, and so did crypto assets. This was enough for investors to bail out, Merge or no Merge.
All signs are pointing to the bear market lasting one more year through 2023, so buckle in everyone!
A 39 year old Dutch man was arrested Wednesday for allegedly laundering tens of millions of Euros via cryptocurrencies, as part of larger push to crackdown on crypto-releated financial crimes in the Netherlands. The arrest stemmed from authorities tracing stolen Bitcoin from a software patch of the Electrum bitcoin wallet. Monero (XMR) was the primary crypto medium he used to attempt masking the source of funds, but was discovered through open ledger transactions eventually. This follows the scrutinized arrest of a Tornado Cash developer last month by Dutch police as well. More countries are stepping up the pursuit of finding scammers and crooks, which is a good thing for crypto as a whole.
As I've mentioned in posts before, I do believe in crypto privacy for the average individual, but not at the expense of someone's hard earned money being taken away from them through criminal activities, and laundering is on that list. Hoping this deters some of those thinking they'll get away with it, because chances are growing that they might not....
Twitter has been seeing an influx of Vitalik impersonators, with profiles looking exactly as the one and true profile, upon first glance. The kicker? They're all verified to make it even hard to discern for some users. These fake profiles have been circulating phishing attempts ahead of the Merge, hoping to lure someone unsuspecting into the scam. NYC Web3 identified at least 4 fake handles, which also seems to be owned by the same person or group of people, as they are all retweeting each others phishing tweets. Elon Musk recently tweeted the problem, no doubt in an attempt to separate himself even further from his previous takeover plans.
Be careful everyone! And let's be honest, would the Vitalik we know ever push a shill post like this?? Also look twice, before clicking once. That needs to be the new crypto mantra so we don't fall for ignorant scams like these!
Older Australians have been having not so great of a time getting duped in crypto scams for an almost collective AUD$242.5m in 2022 so far. Most of the scams were romance baiting scams to classic Ponzi schemes and cryptocurrency scams. The Australian government is trying to create safeguards in how money is transferred between entities in order to KYC potential scammers, but it is going to be an uphill battle to get that implemented.
I know this is the same old tale of being cautious in the crypto world. Older generations are far more susceptible to these scams, but they are not the only ones. Everyone can and has been duped and we have to stay vigilant at all times. “Too good to be true” is absolutely applied here and if you see something that just doesn’t fit, walk away. It’s better to be safe than take the chance of losing all your money. There will be plenty of chances to get in on something great that’s also legit!
Here we go! The Merge is near and ETH prices have been jumping! What can we expect for the Merge? The biggest change: Migration from Proof of Work (PoW) to Proof of Stake (PoS). Still not sure what it is? Basically, the methodology in which new blocks are created will change. Currently, it’s all about which miners have the strongest hardware to “win” the right to process any given transaction via cryptographically solving block puzzles. This has been a HUGE detriment on power resources and PoS will bring in a new methodology where miners will become “validators” whom have to put up 32 ETH to participate in validating transactions, no matter the type of hardware they own. The transaction validations will be evenly distributed amongst validators. This means a reported 99% power usage reduction. However, this has been a thorn in the side of the miner community who have collectively spent a lot of money to build these powerful mining machines, and have been pushing to fork Ethereum so they can continue using them. Although no one TRULY knows how well the fork will flourish, most indications point to it being a failure sooner than later.
Reminder: ETH buy/sells will be paused at some point leading to the Merge and shortly after, so if you are planning to buy/sell, do it soon! Also, there are rumors of an ETHW airdrop to all ETH wallet holders. If you want to receive this airdrop, make sure you have ETH in your private wallet, not on Coinbase or FTX or any other centralized exchange (rumors are that you may not be eligible to “own” the airdrop if your ETH is on a CEX). If you have your ETH in a staked program, you will not receive the 1:1 airdrop on ETH not directly in your wallet, so remove your staked ETH temporarily if you want to participate!
GameStop, the formerly-irrelevant store known for selling video game related items for MSRP or buying back items at a fraction of the original price, has been in somewhat of a renaissance. Stemming from the Reddit "short sell" defense that pumped GME with loads of money, they decided to get into the crypto game, namely NFT and Web3 gaming. Well now they have a new powerful partner, FTX. FTX is joining forces with GameStop, with the latter becoming the "preferred retail partner in the United States.” This partnership comes on the heels of their quarterly report, which saw a 4% decline in net sales to $1.14 billion.
I have to admit, I thought GameStop would fail with this Web3 endeavor when it was first announced. However, they are still flying (somewhat) high with investors still backing them and their Web3 roadmap. It will be interesting to see if they can become the #1 stop for all Web3 retail shoppers. If so, be prepared to buy some stock as well!
Written by: nikethereum.eth / Medium / Mirror
What so many believed wouldn't work is actually gaining traction...and the PoW army are rejoicing...for now. ETHW, a non-difficulty bomb chain comparatively to the current Ethereum PoW chain, has been in the forked since August by the PoW community. However, many predicted this endeavor would be fruitless, as there are many issues with creating a forked version that people will ACTUALLY use. The biggest problem? How do you maintain every single dApp on both Ethereum and ETHW? This would require all dApp creators to manage two versions of their software, similar to software companies maintaining a version of their software for both Windows and Macs. It's not an impossible feat, would just be really hard to manage in the current infancy of Web3. Centralized exchanges, such as FTX and Binance, are already offering a 1:1 ETHW ratio drop for even ETH holder on their respective platforms by the drop date. I mentioned in this post my thoughts on PoW miners and them wanting to create a fork. However, this is a perfect example of Web3 fundamentals going to work. The will of a community is rising up to the challenge of creating a useful fork, and there's nothing wrong with that. If they succeed, great! If they don't, then it's a lesson we all will learn from. Either way, Web3 freedom is a major precept and it's great seeing it in action! Written by: nikethereum.eth / Medium / Mirror
With The Merge on its' way, there are a group of users who are wondering how they will survive this event: Ethereum POW miners. Currently, POW (proof of work) miners make quite a bit of ETH with their powerful crypto-solving machines. However, The Merge will introduce POS (proof of stake) where node operators will be required to deposit 32 ETH in order to be eligible to become network validators. This will inevitably decrease the amount of incoming transaction fees that miners have been enjoying thus far. Coinbase has responded to these outcries and will investigate possibly creating a fork in order for POW miners to keep plying their trade.
Say what?! So because efficiencies and improvements are reducing the amount of income for miners, a fork of Ethereum is the best solution?? What about the dwindling profession of coal mining? Their jobs have been reduced decade over decade due to advancements in renewable energy sources. Should society push for a new way to use coal so their industry can flourish again? It's time for POW miners to see the inevitable here. Can't just force an "outdated" and power-hungry method of validation to continue for a lame reason like that...
Due to the ongoing BendDAO NFT liquidity crisis, NFT marketplaces are feeling the rippling effects from it. OpenSea, arguably the most popular NFT marketplace, has seen a 99% drop in trading volume, from its' last highest volume set back on May 1st. Volumes this low might suggest a looming NFT bubble about to burst with users' interest waning in digital collectibles, coupled with Ethereum's prices dropping in parallel.
All of us who own NFT's have felt the pinch here. I've lost an estimated 80% peak value across my NFT portfolio. However, what I've been getting into recently is free minting! There are plenty of projects out there that are looking to mint for free, in order to gain popularity afterwards. A great place to start looking is on NFT Mint Radar, where there's a calendar of free mints. As always, exercise caution when minting anything. Some projects might seem valid, but can employ rug pulls easily. Check their Twitter/Discord accounts to make sure they are on the up and up!
There's further turmoil for what was considered one of the hottest DeFi protocols in the market. TribeDAO, which was mainly comprised of Rari Capital and Fei Protocol, has seen a fall from grace after the infamous $80m hack back in April. Since then, information was revealed in how the hack might have happened (poor coding by inexperienced developers) and the DAO has made some questionable decisions in how they will repay users that lost money due to the exploit. Most recently, a proposal was created by Fei/Rari that would essentially not pay out users, as was originally planned. This caused an uproar in the community, and essentially sealed the fate for the troubled DAO.
I'm sad to see this happen. The protocol I am currently working for has deep ties with TribeDAO, but has had to distance themselves since because of the poor management and decisions by key individuals in TribeDAO. Although I do not wish anyone to be in this situation, what has happened has happened. I do hope they eventually figure out a way to pay back their users, but that might be a lost cause at this point.
Bitboy Crypto, a well-known figure in the crypto world, has dropped his defamation lawsuit against Atozy, another well-known crypto figure. Atozy claimed that Bitboy was shilling poor fundamental assets, such as PAMP, just for his own gain. Bitboy fought back with a lawsuit against Atozy. However, the crypto community joined together to help Atozy's defense fund, and raised ~$200k in less than 24 hours. This prompted Bitboy to drop his lawsuit.
I will admit, when I first started studying crypto, Bitboy was one of the first content creators I started watching to try and learn more about strategies and what to look for in assets. However, even as inexperienced as I was, I quickly realized Bitboy's asset suggestions were less than stellar, and really was trying to sell everything under the sun in order to keep his Youtube viewership numbers up. Especially in comparison with Guy from CoinBureau (I HIGHLY RECOMMEND FOLLOWING HIM AND WATCHING HIS DAILY VIDEOS), Bitboy does not add any value to his recommendations, in my opinion (and the opinion of a vast majority out there, apparently).
The Inflation Reduction Act which was signed into law by Biden last month has given an influx of $80m to the IRS and they are using it to bolster the agency with 80k+ agents in order to implement audits for "fat cats" whom might have not had the most truthful tax returns. Although the administration implied that new audits would not apply for those making less than $400k per year, Senate Democrats voted against that, opening it up for every tax payer at every income level.
Where this should get everyone's attention is the "virtual currency" section of tax returns. With plenty of oversight from crypto exchanges such as Coinbase, which has to disclose its' clients activities to the IRS, those that checked "No" but did engage in crypto trading might see a harsh crackdown as well. So for those that might be in question, PLEASE CHECK YOUR PAST TAX RETURNS! And file an amendment ASAP, if necessary. Save yourselves the headache!
Uh oh! Looks like the largest NFT liquidation even is looming. Quite a few owners of NFTs such as Bored Ape Yacht Club and CryptoPunks are shaking in their boots, as they may have no choice but to see their prized possessions taken away from them. Those owners who have used their NFTs as collateral for borrowing funds may not have enough to repay after the NFT market's continuous downtrend. BendDAO, a lending service, has started to auction off $55m worth of NFTs that have a falling health factor to avoid holding bad debt and to recover its' loans. From that point, NFTs holder have 48 hours to pay back their loan, or they will be liquidated. Although sad new for their current holders, the liquidations will offer a discount for those looking to purchase them.
NFT lending is something I've looked into for my current company and the problem I saw is that when the market is hot, NFT lending can be extremely lucrative. However, the downturn we are seeing tends to make the NFT world experience the downturn far worse than what we see with cryptocurrency, since NFTs tend to be over-leveraged by design. For the sake of those current BAYC/CryptoPunk holders, I hope they are able to save their prized possessions before the crypto-repo man comes for them!
Welp! Celsius' awful investing strategies are being put under the microscope in their Chapter 11 restructuring, but for some, the damage has already been done (hey that rhymes!). The Quebec Pension Fund (CDPQ) wrote off almost all of its' 10-month $154.7m USD investment in Celsius, as CEO Charles Émond cites "For us, it is clear, when we look at all this, we arrived too soon in a sector which was in transition." Fortunately, this only affects a fraction of their $303.4b USD fund, so not ALL is lost. However, they are seeking legal avenues to retrieve some of their money (get in line, pal), but that path is not as clear as of this moment.
I vote that Celsius pays back from lowest amounts owed per account to highest. After all, don't the people that have little amounts in there need it more than the large funds that have only a fraction of their money lost? If anyone else is interested, I'll create a Change.org petition ASAP!
A South Korean town called Gunpo is making headlines as their plan for delinquent fine reimbursement is seeing quite a bit of success. The pilot program, which was selected by the national government, has seen an 88% success rate in recovering traffic fines by $668,000, which is on track to exceed the goal of retrieving $759,000 by end of year. However, the program only saw these fines totaling ~$759 subject to crypto seizures, and crypto seizures were only done if the funds in the person's bank accounts were not enough to pay off the fine(s) in question.
Good idea or bad idea? Honestly, holding crypto as hostage for paying fines seems scummy, but to be honest, isn't it scummy not to pay off fines? Sure, if fines are improperly given to an individual, then they should have the right to fight back and have them dismissed. Ignoring fines right off though? Yea, you might deserve having some of your crypto taken away to pay it off...
Billionaire and crypto enthusiast, Kevin O'Leary aka Mr. Wonderful spoke about Tornado Cash and claims it was necessary for Tornado Cash to capitulate in order to usher in "rules-based" crypto regulation in order to bring real institutional capital. Although O'Leary sees vast potential for crypto, he has also been a vocal proponent of regulation for some time which a majority in the space do not agree with.
We can't deny Mr. Wonderful is a smart man, and although he sees potential in crypto, I think he's missing the point of it with his push for regulation. Crypto/Web3 is about decentralization and removal of middle-men who would otherwise take stranglehold of users' privacy and freedoms. Yes, I agree there needs to be a change to stop all the hacking that has been going on but there has to be other ways around it!
On this edition of “Another Day, Another Hack”, another stablecoin has been hit, but maybe not to UST proportions. Acala, a DeFi protocol on Polkadot, was exploited in their aUSD/iBTC pool, where malicious actors minted 1.2 billion aUSD tokens without depositing collateral. This caused a 99% depeg situation thereafter. However, the Acala team was able to determine it was a configuration issue that allowed the minting to occur, and was able to freeze the hacker’s wallet, which caused quite the commotion within the community about how decentralized Acala truly is.
...well kind of hacked. On Tuesday, a flurry of messages on Twitter, Telegram, Discord, and more platforms began to hit the crypto community of a possible hack of Curve, arguably the most used DeFi protocol. Curve eventually responded with the issue with its nameserver for Curve.fi, not necessarily an issue with the protocol itself:
It seems that malicious actors were able to access the nameserver for Curve.fi, change the DNS entry to point to their own malicious site that had a Curve clone, which looked exactly like the original site, aka DNS spoofing:
Tornado Cash, a popular transaction privacy shielding protocol, has been sanctioned by the US’ OFAC (Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control), and has been blacklisted in the US. Due to their nature of hiding transaction history for users, it has become a primary tool for hackers to launder their illicit gains. Github shortly after suspended founder Roman Semenov’s account, taking the open source code offline:
However, the crypto community has been overwhelmingly against this move. According to countless Twitter posts, there seem to be a good percentage of law-abiding Web3 users who prefer their privacy for no more their their own self-interest. An anonymous user is sending small amounts of ETH to celebrity wallets to show that the ban would be hard to enforce as well.
I'm definitely loving this. A Redditor decided to create an entertaining set of quotes from some of crypto's biggest critics into NFTs. Here is a direct link to the Stratos marketplace, on Arbitrum, where the NFTs are being sold. Here are some of my favorites though:
Crypto-lender Voyager has announced a path has been set for user withdrawals, more than a month after all activity on the platform was paused. All accounts with U.S. dollars could with draw up to $100,000 within 24 hours starting August 11th, with funds received in 5 to 10 days.
This is finally some good news! Hoping other failed services will be able to give some of their clients' money back as well (looking at you, Celsius). In the meantime, what will these users do with their returned money? Maybe some stablecoin staking rewards in decentralized services?
Kim Kardashian's lawyers have filed a joint motion to dismiss a class-action lawsuit against her alleging she was promoting the EthereumMax pump and dump scheme. Her lawyers claim that users whom purchased those tokens never viewed her Instagram shill posts for it, nor was she compensated for it either. In addition to her, 8 other Americans in the suit, including Floyd Mayweather, have also filed motions to dismiss the lawsuit as well.
It's understandable that these celebs/business people got caught up in all the hype during the last bull run, but they have to take some responsibility for their actions, especially if someone was duped to their shilling of this token. On the other hand, if you invested in EthereumMax without doing your proper research...
In our next edition of "Another Day, Another Hack", we have two hacks occurring in the last few days: Nomad, a cross-chain bridge that was exploited via a security hole for $190m in a "free-for-all" attack, and a major Solana wallet hack that has drained $8m+ as of now. Within the Nomad hack, it looks to be a security configuration error that allowed users to replicate existing transaction blocks, causing the blockchain to allow unauthorized debits. As for the Solana wallet hack, the key theory is some how private keys have been accessed by the threat entity, since transactions on the chain were shown to be legitimate.
Honestly, this is scary times. Threat actors are shaking out as many different services as possible to see what comes loose, and it's working. The one and only bright side to all this is that hopefully they come back stronger and battle tested. However, this is not fun for those who lost money. Reminder: COLD STORAGE is your friend and remember to protect your private keys!
A lower-tiered Brazilian soccer team made their first signing using cryptocurrency with an Argentinian player. The transfer of midfielder Giuliano Galoppo from Banfield’s Athletic Club to Sao Paulo Futebol Clube was made in USD Coin (USDC), ranging from $6 to $8 mil, against the highly volatile Argentinian peso. The reported exchange gap between pesos and USD keeps getting worse, affecting the possibility for football players to get signed by international teams.
The cases for using crypto just keeps growing. Rampant inflation (more than what we are used to here in the US) around the world is pushing more and more people to start using deflationary currencies. My guess is in the next two years, we will see crypto payments to athletes as the norm, rather than the exception!
Chipotle's recent "Buy The Dip" campaign has garnered a lot of attention, as the game allows players to win crypto, DOGE being one of them. However, now there is some unwanted attention from the SEC, which is now investigating Chipotle for involving themselves in crypto "securities" trading. Recently, it seems that the SEC attack on XRP (Ripple) might not continue for much longer, but they are setting their sights on every crypto case possible to save face.
First off all, they should be investigating that the game doesn't work! I tried playing 4 days in a row, all at varying times of the day with different browsers, and it doesn't seem to work at all! Did ANYONE get any crypto from them?
In the wake of popular centralized financial services in crypto falling, such as Celsius and Voyager, Coinbase came on record to state they are far from insolvency. However, market factors did cause some volatile times for the crypto giant, and they went through a round of layoffs about 6 weeks ago. Now, it looks like a big insider trading scheme has caused some of the biggest investors, including Cathie Woods to drop their stock before the SEC investigation causes more bleeding of their stock price.
A former Coinbase Product Manager, along with his brother and a friend, have been arrested and now under investigation on an insider trading scheme, where the PM would inform his brother and friend of pending ICO's (Initial Coin Offering), giving them them chance to purchase as much of the token/coin before Coinbase goes live with the offering. It was a keen eyed Twitter user who eventually saw the pattern, with multiple users replying with more evidence:
Over the past 2 weeks, Ethereum Classic has been picking up speed as Ethereum is transitioning to Proof-of-Stake. As of now, it's ~65% up over the last week. Why? Current Proof-of-Stake miners are believing their new home will be ETH Classic, as there are no plans to transition to POS there. Also with an endorsement from Vitalik himself, price for the token has skyrocketed.
I understand that miners desperation as their way of life is coming to an end on Ethereum. However, not sure how much activity there is on Classic, and if there will be enough for miners to reap benefits. We shall see!
Square Enix, the makers behind the wildly popular Final Fantasy series, are teaming up with NFT platform Enjin to bring digital collectibles in sync with planned physical collectibles. The physical collectibles are slated to be released first, and each one will have a unique code to collect the digital counterparts in 2023. In line with Square Enix's investments into Web3 gaming, this strategy fits into their foray into the NFT world.
As a Final Fantasy nerd and Final Fantasy 7 being my absolute favorite of the series, I for one will be waiting in the virtual line to purchase the collectibles. As Web3 gaming gains speed, big companies dipping their toes in this space only helps with its longevity. Can't wait!
On Tuesday, the owner of Amazon.eth rebuffed an offer on OpenSea, where it was listed for sale, from an anonymous entity for $1m. It's unclear if the owner decided to ignore the "low" offer or completely missed it before it expired or if the owner participated in a wash trade to inflate the floor price.
Personally, I might have taken the $1m and ran. However, I can also see why this purchase didn't go through. When normal TLD domains were available for purchase, some early purchasers were rewarded with multi-million dollar offers from the biggest companies, and .eth domains are the new kids on the block. To the person or entity who owns amazon.eth, best wishes on cashing out at the top!
I'm sure everyone has noticed that ETH has been going up and up for almost a week now. My anxiety has been high because the goal is to buy as low as possible. So did I miss the train? NO (just my opinion)! Here are the reasons why I believe that this is just a pump and dump:
In the end, all you can do is trust your gut. If this is truly because the Merge is looming, then good for those that bought early. However, my gut is telling me to wait it out for a bit. Industry analysts are predicting a sub-$900 value for ETH and I think they are correct. As always, be careful with investing!
In an already bloated NFT market, Tencent has decided to shutter one of their two NFT marketplaces, amid low sales and strict regulations. However, reports state their 2nd marketplace is also struggling to stay afloat. Apparently in China, NFT purchasers are prohibited from selling in private transactions afterwards. This trend follows social media giants Weibo and WeChat in removing any links to NFTs in recent months. Alibaba had also unveiled an NFT marketplace, but reversed course very quickly after.
The NFT market is a rough place to be right now, and it shows. If the top of the top platforms, such as OpenSea, are struggling then these other marketplaces stand zero chance. Overall, I believed there were far too many platforms with not enough incentives to transact off them, so this dead-weight cycle was inevitable.
The New York Yankees have decided to partner up with NYDIG to partially pay player payrolls (try to say that 10 times fast) with Bitcoin. "For employees of the Yankees and beyond, the opportunity to allocate a small slice of their paycheck to a Bitcoin Savings Plan can be one of the most efficient ways to save bitcoin, and the dollar-cost averaging can smooth out the bumps along the way", NYDIG CMO Kelly Brewster said.
On the heels of the UFC also announcing Bitcoin payments to fighters a few months ago, its great to see another iconic team also jumping on the wagon. This is good optics for crypto and Bitcoin has proven to be the king of crypto payments and its price shows it!
...Chapter 11 that is. In a move that was seen a mile away, embattled centralized finance outfit Celsius made it aware to regulators their plans to file for bankruptcy in order to reorganize their debts and assets.
According to an email sent out to customers late yesterday, they explain (poorly) why they paused activities in the first place and how bankruptcy will help them come back "stronger". There isn't much else to say about this. It's probably official that their customers have lost their money due to Celsius' mismanagement. However, their choice to close off the email with "it is our pleasure to serve you" seems like another poor choice. I would have rather read "we are sorry for making bad decisions that led us to this end". That would have felt far more real!
More than $4.7m was stolen in a fake token phishing scam on Uniswap. At first, it was thought to be an exploit of the Uniswap token until the community dug a bit deeper to uncover it was a sophisticated phishing scam that employed a fake UniswapLP token that was spoofed to look like it was coming from the real Uniswap contract on chain by modifying the "From" field.
Another cautionary tale to be careful on what you are interacting with, but this one concerns me more than anything. It's best practice to review the smart contracts for tokens before interacting, however reading smart contracts can be arduous and complex for most. Learning how to read smart contracts should be mandatory for anyone in the crypto game, but we all know that won't ever happen. And so the door stays open for scams, unfortunately. Stay vigilante everyone!
Terra, of failed blockchain fame, has seen over 48 projects migrate over to the layer-2 protocol Polygon. Polygon Studios CEO Ryan Wyatt has welcomed the migration, stating funding has been pushed through to make it easier for developers to make the move happen. Some of the higher-profile projects to move to Polygon are the Lunaverse (LUV) metaverse platform, the OnePlanet nonfungible token (NFT) marketplace and the Derby Stars play-to-earn (P2E) game.
Great news for Polygon and blockchains in general. During this time of blockchain experiments, it's great to see that projects can be freely moved between non-EVM blockchains when those environments do fail. Of course, none of us wants to see failures, as that hurts crypto as a whole, but it is inevitable as we have all seen. Great job Polygon!
A little late to this story, but it looks like the bear market is the perfect time to unveil a new crypto phone! Solana recently unveiled the Saga, an Android-based, Solana-integrated phone, whose promise is to make the foray into web3 a much more streamlined one. Anatoly Yakovenko, one of the co-founders for Solana mentioned in a blog post, "...every day, I hear stories of people leaving dinners, conferences, and vacations to get back to their computers and sign important transactions. The mints, trades, listings, and transfers critical to the daily life of crypto-lovers are dragging us away from our lives with others. The only companies with the resources to materialize the self-custody mobile future we’re all dreaming of, Apple and Google, have had no updates to give on their roadmaps for crypto."
As a fellow Android user, I am very intrigued in how well this phone can make everyday web3 actions easier on mobile. I have to admit, current mobile solutions are pretty clunky at best. Until Apple and Google embrace web3, I do not see them as a viable solution in the short run either so hoping Saga starts pushing the envelope to see bigger changes for the web3 mobile landscape in general.
Embattled crypto lending outfit Celsius, whom paused withdrawals and deposits last month, has been working hard to pay down debts with other institutions in order to unlock a trove of Bitcoin that was used as collateral, possibly paving the way to resume withdrawals for their very angry users. One of the more substantial payoffs recently was to Maker for $183m worth in debt, which resulted in unlocking $40m in Wrapped Bitcoin. However, they still have a 41 million DAI debt note, which will unlock $440m Wrapped Bitcoin! This could possibly mean they could sell it on centralized exchanges or via over-the-counter to unfreeze activities. They've also made some board changes that might also signal they are ready to resume their business.
Finally some good news! Hopefully those worried users get their money back soon enough!
...Well that is if you aren't too careful. Apparently, there are YouTube mining education videos that has been tricking viewers into installing malware from posted links that’s designed to steal data from 30 crypto wallets and crypto-browser extensions. It is named PennyWise, a la Stephen King's character in "It". Data stolen includes cryptocurrency extension data and login data. It can also take screenshots and steal sessions of chat applications such as Discord and Telegram. Some of the more popular wallets that can be exploited are Exodus, Atomic Wallet, and Coinomi.
Scary stuff! Especially since those three are some of the most used wallets amongst crypto holders. Remember, be extremely vigilante when installing software. Even Macs can get viruses, especially if you introduce it into the system itself! Install antivirus software as well, just in case. I recommend Avast, which I run on all my systems!
Rug-Pull Hall Of Famer Tai Lopez has his sights set on a new "project", and it involves the one and only RadioShack, one of the nerdiest places where your mom actually felt comfortable leaving you alone for an hour while she does her shopping. RadioShack folded in the last few years and it looks like Tai found a Trojan Horse to scam others by buying the brand and using it as a DEX (decentralized exchange). It looks to be just a simple Uniswap copy, with less than 1% of the liquidity Uniswap currently enjoys.
To garner viral attention, horny Tai has been tweeting NSFW messages, as the one above. Tacky. Seeing how he swindled many, hoping karma gets him soon enough.
On lighter side of news, TradFi industry middlemen, their investors, and they general anti-crypto population have teamed up to create their first conference to share skepticism and to network with lawmakers. According to crypto critic journalist Amy Castor, the Crypto Policy Symposium promises a platform for the anti-crypto resentful to voice their negativity.
Author and symposium organizer Stephen Dieh further explains that this is a way for lawmakers to get a better understanding of the harmful parts of crypto and give them better education on that front.
As a pro-crypto person, this is a futile attempt by industry leaders whom have the most to lose to try and secure their future. But what they don't realize is their future is crypto. We will see the worst parts of crypto shake out, which I believe is the main reason for crypto hate. However, this is progress and as just in any other new systems, there will be trial and error. Sorry Crypto Policy Symposium, but I do not see this lasting for too much longer.
Notorious crypto-hater Peter Schiff had his bank shut down by Puerto Rico regulators recently. This led to Crypto Twitter having a unified laugh at the irony that Schiff’s Bitcoin prediction actually came true for his trusted traditional (centralized) financial system. Puerto Rican regulators froze his accounts for not maintaining the net minimum capital requirements.
Everything that has happened here as reignited the premier reason for having a decentralized, autonomous system is to avoid these kinds of things from happening. Centralized powers tend to have too much power, and will exercise it for the entity's gains, not the investors. No gloating here, however. We have all lost money in all markets, not just crypto. All we can do is learn, strategize and move forward.
I know, that title is a stretch, but how else can I make another unfunny situation seem more pleasant? Anyways, Singapore-based centralized exchange, Vauld, has halted all withdrawals and other activities due to "extreme market conditions" about 18 days after they said they had no plans to do so, allegedly with $1 billion in assets under management.
Why did I even want to write about this today? Because it's another reminder of how CeFi can about face on their decisions, leaving many investors completely helpless. This has been the crux for the DeFi argument from the very beginning. Please get your money out of centralized exchanges and finance service before it's too late, put them in a cold wallet for now until you figure out the DeFi strategy that works best for you!
The legendary Cristiano Ronaldo has teamed up with Binance to create some NFT collections exclusively for Binance. In line with other teams such as Lazio and Porto, Ronaldo will build upon the existing NFT platform on Binance.
“My relationship with the fans is very important to me, so the idea of bringing unprecedented experiences and access through this NFT platform is something that I wanted to be a part of,” said Ronaldo. “I know the fans are going to enjoy the collection as much as I do.”
Some people believe that NFT's have validity for future use cases, some think it's a joke. I believe Cristiano is a smart business man and wants to make sure he protects his interests by making these collections, whether they take off or not. However, we may look back on this 5 years from now when some of his NFTs are selling for millions. Way to go CR7!
The ever eccentric Elon Musk, who is doing his best Trump impersonation in the picture above, is getting hit with a class action lawsuit from an overzealous investor who claims Elon, along with his companies SpaceX and Tesla, engaged in a pyramid scheme-type to shill Dogecoin to the masses. How much is Elon getting hit with? $258 billion!! The plantiff who filed the case in NY, alleges that Musk and his corporations were “unjustly enriched” by $86 billion windfall via various law violations and misconducts.
As polarizing as Elon can be, and no matter which side you agree with, it seems that the crypto community are giving a collective eye roll at this ridiculous amount, with good reason since the amount alone could get this suit thrown out.
I think I've made my feelings clear on how I feel about Elon in past articles so I won't repeat myself. I have always been against the way Elon blindly shills certain coins, suspiciously in a whale pattern, but this lawsuit does seem extremely frivolous and can't see it going forward. Good luck Keith!
Jack Dorsey, former head and co-creator of Twitter, has a new project in his sights, and the premise sounds very intriguing. Currently, Web3 has quite a few limitations comparatively to what the rest of the world enjoys within the Web2 realm. Music, email, shopping, banking, and other categories have a small foot print in Web3 but it’s often clunky in terms of functionality and user experience, mainly because Web3 is in a building phase, developing the blockchains and protocols that will become the platforms for the new web. Well welcome to Web5, where the blockchain of choice is the battle-tested and decentralized-proven Bitcoin network. The goal for Dorsey is to create a seamless experience between Web2 as services are moved to doppelgänger services on Web3. For example, services like Twitter should be successfully replicated to the Web3 realm via decentralized identity and personal services, matched with decentralized storage.
The migration from Web2 to Web3 isn’t a smooth one, but these kind of ideas are always great to see. Technological paradigm shifts are hard to navigate, but Web5 seems to at least give an answer to some use cases. Awesome!
Written by: nikethereum.eth