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A well-known bank in Belarus will begin offering a bitcoin contract for difference (CFD) product through its platform, a joint project with a Swiss bank. Meanwhile, Belarus is growing less crypto friendly, reportedly amending its decree to impose strict KYC rules.
New Bitcoin CFD Product
Mtbankfx is an accredited FX dealer and the first banking forex platform in Belarus. Launched in July 2016, it is a joint project between Minsk Transit Bank (Mtbank), one of the most well-known banks in Belarus, and Swiss Dukascopy Bank SA.
The platform will start offering a bitcoin CFD product next week, according to local media. It has already added information and updated its terms of service to reflect this new offering.
Mtbankfx explains in its terms of service that its tools, including the BTC/USD tool with 1:3 leverage, are “available for transactions around the clock – from the opening of the market on Sundays at 21:00 GMT in the summer (22:00 GMT in the winter) until the market closes on Fridays at 20:00 GMT in summer/winter time.” For the bitcoin CFD specifically, the company wrote:
All open positions as of 20:00 GMT Fridays will be forcibly closed.
While the platform offers CFDs for many underlying assets, the bitcoin CFD is the only one that will be forcibly closed.
On March 29, Switzerland’s Dukascopy Bank SA launched its own BTC/USD CFD product for European clients. “Bitcoin to US Dollar (BTC/USD) with leverage 1:3 has been added for live trading,” the company stated.
Belarus Becoming Less Crypto Friendly
Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko signed the decree “On the development of the digital economy” in January that legalized cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings, and smart contracts. The decree went into effect in March.
However, local media reported this week that amendments to that decree are already being prepared to obligate cryptocurrency exchanges operating within the High-Tech Park (HTP) to disclose their data and identify customers.
Ria Novosti’s source explained that “beneficiaries must meet the requirements for reputation” such as having no criminal record and no bankruptcy proceedings against them, in whole or part. “They should [also] show the availability of funds in accounts of at least $ 5 million and confirm the sources of their origin.” Additionally, Forklog elaborated:
Operators are required to identify the clients of the exchanges, as well as record and store all types of communications with them. In certain cases, exchange-residents of the HTP will be required to conduct customer verification procedures.
The news outlet added, “information about customers and their transactions should be stored at crypto exchanges for at least five years.”
Do you think Belarus will become even less crypto friendly? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Mtbankfx.
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South Korean Samsung Electronics saw its operating profits surge in the first quarter of this year compared to the previous year. The company attributes the increase to its semiconductor division which manufactures bitcoin mining chips and says that it expects the trend to continue into the second quarter.
A world leader in advanced semiconductor technology, South Korean Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. recently announced its 1Q18 earnings results. Samsung Electronics is the flagship company of the Samsung Group with assembly plants and sales network in 80 countries.
In the first quarter of this year, the company recorded consolidated earnings of 60.56 trillion won (~US$ 56 billion). Its operating profits were 15.64 trillion won (~$ 14.5 billion), a 58% increase from 9.9 trillion won (~$ 9.2 billion) achieved during the same period last year. Meanwhile, its year-on-year sales grew approximately 20%.
The Seoul Newspaper elaborated that Samsung Electronics’ “semiconductor division…accounted for about three-quarters (73%) of total operating profits, leading the company to a record high.” Samsung explained:
Demand for the semiconductor division increased due to sales of system LSIs [ASICs] for flagship smartphones and demand for virtual currency mining chips.
Samsung’s Mining Chips & Earnings Outlook
Samsung confirmed in January that it had begun manufacturing ASIC chips used for mining cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether. Without providing details, a company spokesperson told Techcrunch at the time that “Samsung’s foundry business is currently engaged in the manufacturing of cryptocurrency mining chips.”
Samsung Electronics offers design services which connect “mid-to small-sized companies with qualified ASIC design services and support.” In January, the Samsung Advanced Foundry Ecosystem program was launched to ensure deep collaboration between the Samsung foundry, ecosystem partners, and customers.
Mining rig manufacturer Halong Mining has previously revealed that its flagship product, the Dragonmint T1 Miner, uses Samsung’s 10nm T1558 mining chips, calling them “the first-ever 10nm bitcoin mining chips.” Halong says their rig is “the world’s most efficient bitcoin miner, operating at 16TH with Asicboost technology inside for greater power efficiency.”
“Earnings growth should continue in 2Q18, driven by demand for HPC-based semiconductors and an increase in supply of new 10nm process products,” Samsung Electronics detailed, emphasizing that “In the foundry business, despite a decline in demand for mobile parts due to seasonal weakness in 1Q18, earnings increased on the back of high-performance computing (HPC) chip orders.” The company continued to share:
The foundry business is expected to secure the second place in the industry with more than $ 10 billion in sales.
Mining Chip Market
In the field of ASIC mining chip manufacturing, Samsung Electronics is competing with a few other chipset manufacturers. The largest is Taiwan’s TSMC, which supplies mining chips to mining hardware makers such as Bitmain and Canaan. Recently, news.Bitcoin.com reported on TSMC hitting record sales during March due to demand for the hardware required for crypto mining.
According to a Trendforce study published in November of last year, TSMC held a 55.9% market share by revenue in the semiconductor foundry business, followed by Global Foundries with 9.4% market share, UMC with 8.5% and then Samsung with 7.7% market share.
Do you think Samsung will soon gain market share in the mining chip market? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Samsung, and TSMC.
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The post Samsung Profits Surge on High Demand for Bitcoin Mining Chips appeared first on Bitcoin News.
Over the past year, cryptocurrency-backed lending has grown very popular with organizations like Salt Lending, and Unchained Capital trying to capture a piece of this emerging industry. Projects like Salt Lending have issued millions worth of crypto-backed loans so far and the teams behind these digital currency operations believe crypto-to-cash lending is going to be a pretty big deal in the future. Furthermore, this week a company called Nexo also plans to offer a digital currency for cash lending platform and raised $ 50Mn USD in capital from venture capitalists like the Techcrunch founder Michael Arrington.
The Crypto-to-Cash Phenomenon
A new business model has formed recently called crypto-to-cash lending and this new financial sector is growing exponentially. The phenomenon follows the modern rise in recent years of peer-to-peer lending offered by financial giants like the Lending Club. Right now there are a few operations that are attempting to break the mold when it comes to this type of lending with projects such as Unchained Capital and Salt Lending taking the lead.
Then there is a new startup called Nexo that plans to provide crypto-infused instant credit to borrowers without the need for credit checks. VCs like the Techcrunch founder Michael Arrington, and others recently pumped $ 50Mn into Nexo and the company has a security partnership with Bitgo. Nexo believes it will be the first firm to provide instant crypto-backed loans as it states on its website:
Don’t sell your crypto — Don’t lose the upside potential — Get an instant crypto-backed Loan from Nexo.
Two Lending Projects Trying to Make a Mark in the Crypto-Lending Industry
Unchained Capital is a firm that offers cash loans to businesses and individuals who provide Bitcoin Core (BTC) as collateral. The company believes cryptocurrency holders need a method to borrow against their digital assets without selling them. Unchain Capital’s interest rates are between 12.5-14 percent APR and funds are wired to a bank account of the customers choosing. Customers make monthly payments on the loan and once the credit is paid in full collateral will be reimbursed. Moreover, individuals can borrow up to $ 1Mn without a credit check and the ratio of loan appropriation is 50 percent.
If the value of the collateral drops by 25 percent Unchained Capital will request more capital. If the digital asset dips below the 45 percent region the company can repossess the capital to recover any lost principal and interest. Unchained Capital loans USD to American residents and businesses with options to renew a loan when it comes to term. Both individuals and businesses may want to utilize a loan for tax savings as borrowing removes the need to pay capital gains.
Then there is another program called, Salt Lending, a blockchain-backed loan program built on top of the Ethereum network. SALT tokens are created from the ERC-20 branch. The Salt Lending platform is more peer-to-peer than Unchained Capital as it lends funds from a large group of Salt lenders. The project has gained a lot of attention and has lent over $ 40Mn USD worth of digital currency loans since the project’s inception. Further, the Salt Lending platform has accrued over 65,000 members in less than a year. Just like Unchained Capital once a loan is paid back on the Salt Lending platform then a borrower can obtain their cryptocurrency again.
According to Salt under Regulation D of 17 CFR § 230.501 et seq., all lenders are accredited investors who have passed a “lending suitability test.” There are various ways a lender will participate with the Salt Lending system and loans are processed using traditional financial markets. Salt users can borrow funds between $ 10,000 and $ 1,000,000 and no credit check is required.
A New Peer-to-Peer Lending Economy Emerges
Crypto-to-cash lending has been a trending business model in this industry for well over a year and there are other platforms trying similar ventures like Coinloan, Othera, Ethlend, and Everex. The popularity of this type of business is growing due to the many benefits loans like these offer such as lending without credit checks, and the ability to obtain fiat based off crypto reserves without paying capital gains. It’s likely there will be a lot more startups attempting to enter this market as the Crypto-to-cash lending economy is growing vibrant.
What do you think about cryptocurrency lending projects? Let us know your thoughts on this subject in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, Salt Lending, Nexo, and Unchained Capital.
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The post Crypto-to-Cash Lending is Growing Quite Popular These Days appeared first on Bitcoin News.
What would happen if bitcoin were to suffer a 51% attack? It’s a hypothetical question, but one that has troubled some of the community’s brightest minds. Just as army generals play out countless war games, enacting doomsday scenarios, bitcoin defenders like to ponder ways in which the decentralized cryptocurrency could be attacked and brought to its knees.
Contingency Planning for a Worst Case Scenario
A 51% attack, also known as a majority attack, refers to a situation in which a single miner or group of miners control the majority of the network hashrate. If attained, this would enable a bad actor to censor and reverse transactions, allowing them to double spend coins. One of bitcoin’s greatest attributes is its immunity to attacks, be they governmental or technological. With over 31 exahash now concentrated on the bitcoin network, launching a 51% attack would be virtually impossible. And yet the very act of contemplating such an event is critical in mitigating the likelihood of it ever occurring.
Bitcoin war games aren’t just larping: they’re strategic defense.
51% Is Probably Not Enough
In a widely read article last month, Jimmy Song pondered various hostile mining scenarios, including those presented by chip manufacturers, ASIC manufacturers, and mining pools. He ran through the ways in which a 51% attack could play out, but observed that owning 51% of the harshrate may not be enough to take over the bitcoin network. According to Song, an attacker armed with 60% of the hashrate would still be expected to take 100 minutes to overtake the rest of the network in confirming blocks. Meanwhile, the rest of the network would have caught on to what was happening, and begun invalidating the attacker’s blocks. (Conversely, it is theoretically possible to attack the bitcoin network with less than 51% of the hashrate). Song notes:
No rational merchant or exchange would ever take less than 30 confirmations in a scenario like this (at least without some knowledge about what’s going on)…Furthermore, a large reorg signals to the rest of the network that something nefarious is going on and nodes will likely view these new blocks with suspicion. It’s entirely possible that full node operators on the network will simply invalidate these blocks.
Who Wins by Attacking Bitcoin?
Due to bitcoin’s enormous hashrate, it would be impossible for anyone without any skin in the game – or rather ASICs in the game – to launch a 51% attack. The only players who could conceivably orchestrate such an attack are existing mining pools, or ASIC manufacturers if they were to backdoor their miners, for example, and later commandeer them. All of these entities are heavily invested in bitcoin, having spent hundreds of millions of dollars on the infrastructure required to compete in the mining sector. For their operations to remain profitable, bitcoin needs to maintain a certain price. If a bad actor (or pool of bad actors) were to start attacking bitcoin, they’d only be cannibalizing themselves.
There are scenarios – far-fetched admittedly – in which a 51% attack on the bitcoin network could be attempted. A hostile state could start accumulating ASIC miners, spending billions of dollars in readiness for the moment they had enough hashrate to greenlight an attack. Even Bitmain themselves would struggle to assemble enough ASICs to make such a feat possible however. An alternative scenario would be for a chip or ASIC manufacturer to make a breakthrough that provided a significant advantage over existing miners. A sort of Asicboost on steroids. Once again though, the best way to profit from this would be to honestly mine bitcoin with the souped-up units, or to sell them for a premium, rather than to launch a 51% attack.
Whatever way you slice it, a 51% attack on bitcoin isn’t just improbable – it makes zero sense for the attacker. Just because the cryptocurrency seems safe from mining attacks for now doesn’t mean it’s impervious to attack however. In a post entitled “Let’s destroy Bitcoin” published on MIT Technology Review, Morgan Peck proposes three ways in which bitcoin could be “brought down, co-opted, or made irrelevant”. None of them involve mining. A few altcoins, with a low hashrate, have been hit by a 51% attack in the past. In its nine-year history, bitcoin has never been attacked in such a manner. It didn’t happen in the past, even when one mining pool controlled a majority hashrate, and it’s probably not going to happen now.
In what other ways do you think bitcoin could be attacked? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.
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Kucoin exchange has devised a novel way of dealing with underperforming tokens. Rather than delist them, or leave them to die a slow death, it will send them to a “special treatment area”. Once placed on the token equivalent of the naughty step, they will be given a chance to buck up or risk being permanently removed.
Kucoin Sends Badly Performing Tokens to the Naughty Step
Tokens that develop a low trading volume can expect placement in a special treatment (ST) area by Kucoin. Likewise with tokens whose team run into legal difficulties or go AWOL. It’s the first step towards delisting, aka a permaban, though assets will be given a chance to earn a reprieve. Coins that are moved to the ST zone will be marked as such, giving traders notice that there’s a risk of removal.
Kucoin’s new policy has been welcomed by many traders, as it adds transparency and provides warning of assets that may be purged. Many exchanges delist coins at short notice and with little or no explanation. Bittrex, for example, has delisted dozens of coins at a time, leaving traders speculating as to the reason for their removal. While some of these clearly had no trading volume, others may have been deemed as securities, though it has traditionally been hard to tell.
Eight Reasons to Receive a Timeout
Kucoin has listed eight reasons why a token may be moved to its newly designated ST area:
- Negative Trading Volume for a certain period of time.
- Cease or likely cease of business activities for three months.
- In liquidation, insolvent, bankrupt or otherwise subject or in a position to become subject to bankruptcy proceedings.
- Negative opinions by the company auditor.
- Failure to submit the updates reports in accordance with the requirements of the Exchange in terms of project development, status of the team and status of listing entity for a consecutive certain period of time.
- The team of the project is likely to be dissolved.
- Any act considered as malicious operation to the market.
- Any other situation as determinate by the Exchange from time to time.
Cynics will point out that exchanges are only too happy to accept these tokens in the first place, and to pocket the hefty listing fees that can run into hundreds of thousands of dollars. Kucoin in particular has gone listing crazy over the past few months, adding tokens faster than any other major exchange. It is arguably due to the platform’s willingness to accept virtually any token that it now finds itself having to remove the worst performers.
Do you think other exchanges should follow Kucoin’s lead and provide warning of tokens that may be delisted? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.
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With 80 percent of all bitcoins already mined, and the hashrate of the network reaching all-time highs, in today’s Bitcoin in Brief we are covering some news from the world of crypto mining. An Italian company is developing mobile mining farms, while in Russia a mining hotel offers an opportunity to legally earn cryptocurrency. And, if you can’t afford to buy or rent a rig, you can always experience the life of a miner thanks to one of the simulators that are hitting the market.
Farms on Wheels to Criss-Cross Europe
Entrepreneurs Gabriele Angeli and Gabriele Stampa, founders of the Bitminer Factory in Florence, are working on a rig that could become the main component of a new business model for miners in Europe. The Italians, who run their country’s largest mining hosting facility, have developed their own mining rig – Bitminer 8. Their operation on the outskirts of the historical city, famous for minting coins through the Middle Ages, has attracted 140 participating miners.
The Bitminer 8 machine, around which the whole enterprise is built, started as a prototype assembled in a dishwasher drawer from off-the-shelf computer parts, Reuters reports. It is designed to mine altcoins, as bitcoin itself needs enormous computing power offered only by applications specific circuits (ASICs). These cryptos give companies like Bitminer and small scale crypto miners a chance to make a living and ultimately help expand the horizons of the crypto ecosphere.
The two Fiorentinos have a business idea that would push these boundaries even further. They now plan to literally hit the road by installing their Bitminer 8s in shipping containers loaded on trucks. The project will enable miners to move the mobile farms across the Old Continent to destinations with cheap electricity and favorable regulations – factors that are always subject to change. Besides, free mobility of people and capital is a basic principle of the Common Market, and small and medium-sized enterprises are its backbone. Supporting initiatives like this should be a “no-brainer” in Brussels!
Bitmain Develops Zcash ASIC Miner
Chinese mining giant and equipment producer Bitmain has announced on Twitter it is developing a new product targeting Zcash miners. The ASIC miner is capable of processing the proof-of-work algorithm of Equihash, used by Zcash and other cryptos. The Antminer Z9 Mini offers a hashrate of 10k Sol/s. It is expected to hit the market in June.
Zcash is mined primarily with graphics processing units (GPUs) that can be acquired by individual miners. Equihash was actually introduced to prevent the use of ASIC miners. Bitmain, however, has a history of overcoming ASIC-resistant algorithms. The company has already developed powerful miners for many cryptocurrencies whose developers have tried to stop the centralization of the hashing power. These include miners for Ethash, used by the Ethereum network, and Cryptonight, used by Monero.
Why Buy It, When You Can Mine It?
Mining accommodation is a niche which is rapidly expanding in Europe’s eastern neighbor Russia. A new mining hotel has recently opened doors in Moscow. The team behind the project offers ASIC-rentals with round-the-clock tech maintenance, IT support, and a reliable power supply. Clients will be able to remotely control their mining rigs through unlimited and backed-up internet connection. The datacenter is also equipped with professional cooling and humidity control systems.
The most important benefit of using a mining hotel, however, is that it offers Russians an opportunity to legally acquire bitcoins while the country’s crypto sector still struggles in a semi-regulated environment. Many aspects of regulation have yet to be clarified by Russian authorities, with two pieces of legislation pending in the State Duma. The bill “On digital financial assets” is expected to legalize crypto-related activities like mining, and another text should amend the country’s civil code to allow crypto payments.
Mining, which is favored by authorities in energy-rich Russia, is considered a legal way to acquire cryptocurrencies. Even now miners are allowed to register as individual entrepreneurs and enjoy preferential tax of only 6% on their turnover. Technically speaking, with the exception of mining, most other crypto operations are illegal at the moment. According to the website of the mining hotel in Moscow, renting an Antminer S9 (14 TH/s) for minting bitcoin costs 9,600 rubles a month (~$ 150), and Antminer L3+ (504 MH/s), the most powerful litecoin miner, is offered for 5,500 rubles (<$ 90).
True Mining Simulator
A team of Belarusian developers is working on a project to create a “True Mining Simulator” – a computer game dedicated to replicating the life experiences of a cryptocurrency miner, Forklog reports. Players will be able to build their own mining farm, maintain its equipment, follow cryptocurrency markets, and exchange digital coins to fiat money. The creators of the simulation also say it will allow gamers to spend the cryptocurrency they have mined. They will be able to go to a restaurant or purchase a car in the virtual reality.
Last year, Russian developers created a mining simulator called Cryptocity for those who want to know what crypto mining looks like but don’t have the money to purchase expensive mining equipment. The mobile application uses real rates from cryptocurrency exchanges to calculate the mining income. Players can buy buildings and build mining farms. The game also simulates incidents like fires in the mining facility.
Do you think crypto mining will be profitable for individual miners in the long run? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Forklog.
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The post Bitcoin in Brief Friday: Farms on Wheels, a Hotel, and Even a Simulator for Miners appeared first on Bitcoin News.
United Kingdom corporate research firm Gartner conducted a survey of nearly 300 Chief Information Officers (CIOs), in an attempt to separate hype from reality. The results are revealing, with a dismal 1% reporting “any kind of blockchain adoption within their organizations.”
Survey of CIOs Reveals More Blockchain Hype Than Adoption
A rather revealing survey of 293 CIOs conducted by English research outfit Gartner is attempting to suss out marketing campaigns from actual fact on the subject of blockchain usage among businesses.
Gartner Vice President David Furlonger explained, “This year’s Gartner CIO Survey provides factual evidence about the massively hyped state of blockchain adoption and deployment. It is critical to understand what [it] is and what it is capable of today, compared to how it will transform companies, industries and society tomorrow.”
Among some of the standout numbers: a whopping 77% of CIOs admitted their companies exhibited exactly no interest in the tech, nor have they plans to in the future; 8 percent claimed to be looking at interim planning or experimentation with it; and only “1 percent of CIOs indicated any kind of […] adoption within their organizations,” the survey detailed.
Mr. Furlonger continued, “The challenge for CIOs is not just finding and retaining qualified engineers, but finding enough to accommodate growth in resources as blockchain developments grow. Qualified engineers may be cautious due to the historically libertarian and maverick nature of the [tech’s] developer community.”
Numbers Point to Slow Going for Blockchain Adoption
Cheekily, Mr. Furlonger waxed how “Blockchain continues its journey on the Gartner Hype Cycle at the Peak of Inflated Expectations. How quickly different industry players navigate the Trough of Disillusionment will be as much about the psychological acceptance of the innovations that [it] brings as the technology itself.”
Furthermore, of those companies dabbling in the tech, 13 percent believed a complete restructuring of an information technology department would be the only way to bring along blockchain; 14 percent worried it would mean a large change of company culture; 23 percent indicated a host of new skills are required to meaningfully use it; and 18 percent noted knowledge of the tech is nearly impossible to find among potential employees.
“Blockchain technology requires understanding of, at a fundamental level, aspects of security, law, value exchange, decentralized governance, process and commercial architectures,” Mr. Furlonger insisted. “It therefore implies that traditional lines of business and organization silos can no longer operate under their historical structures.”
Industries inclined toward blockchain include financial services, of course, insurance, and telecommunications. The survey notes even public utilities, government agencies, and transportation sectors are exploring it for logistics and efficiency. “While many industries indicate an initial interest in [such] initiatives, it remains to be seen whether they will accept decentralized, distributed, tokenized networks, or stall as they try to introduce blockchain into legacy value streams and systems,” Mr. Furlonger stressed.
Do you think blockchain is the inevitable future so many business leaders claim? Let us know in the comments below.
Images via Pixabay, Gartner.
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The post Only 1% of Business CIOs are Actually Using ”Blockchain” Technology appeared first on Bitcoin News.
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The crypto startup ETH888 has created the most feasible and provably fair lottery games on the Ethereum blockchain where participants can play Status browser or Ethereum wallet enabled environment, with instant result generation.
At similar blockchain-based online casinos, it takes one block time – or even up to several minutes – to generate a random result. It is not only time-consuming for the players but it costs them more since the process requires significant gas consumption. The ETH888 team invested their time to research and to develop a breakthrough off-chain technology for instant random result generation that takes no more than 3 seconds, about 1/8 block time, and also saves at least 50 percent gas consumption. Beta game versions are already live in Ropsten testnet.
Based on 2017 stats, the online gambling industry’s value is standing near 51 billion USD. The team behind ETH888 strives to develop the most responsive decentralized lottery house with the highest possible transparency and reasonable House Edge. The house will be using VAN tokens for currency within the platform. 40 percent of the house profits will be distributed to the Vanil pool where VAN token holders can share a portion of the profits determined by the amount of tokens owned. The first game in the mainnet will be ready by the Q3 of 2018.
ETH888 is holding a VAN tokensale started on April 28, 2018 with a hardcap of 1,085,180 VAN tokens lasting for 4 weeks, with 4 offers against weeks, 400 / 300 / 200 / 100 VANs per Ether. Currently, 400 VANs / Ether offer will end on May 5 2018. According to ETH888, the token sale is essential to raise ETH capital for the team for backing game payouts.
This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.
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After Reddit removed Bitcoin Core (BTC) as a form of payment for premium membership services this past March, the company seems to be planning to reinstate the digital asset soon. On Thursday, May 3 in an interview with Cheddar, the company’s chief technology officer (CTO), Chris Slowe, revealed it will be adding BTC again and more cryptocurrencies as well.
Reddit CTO Says Cryptocurrency Payments Will Return to the Social MediaPlatform
In an interview with the media outlet Cheddar, Chris Slowe, the CTO of Reddit explained the firm would be adding bitcoin core payments to the platform again. This will allow users to pay for premium membership called, Reddit Gold, with BTC. The company had previously removed the BTC payment option this past March stating the reason was due to a “Coinbase change” and only Paypal was accepted. During his interview with Cheddar, Chris Slowe says one of the reasons they dropped BTC was due to network transaction fees “being too large.”
Every Cryptocurrency in Existence Has a Community on Reddit
The Reddit CTO further stated that Coinbase was the main payment processing platform for Reddit, and the company recently revitalized its user interface and API. Slowe says the firm just didn’t have time to add the Coinbase API integration but they have been able to address the issue again. At the time the Reddit development team using Coinbase didn’t have access to other markets Slowe says, like Ethereum and Litecoin.
“We have some of the oldest cryptocurrencies forums online,” Slowe explains in his interview.
Like I remember when way back in the day maybe eight years ago when someone in the office found r/bitcoin, and I wondered what is a bitcoin? And why would I want to spend seven cents on one? It’s gotten a lot further along since then and the community and now every cryptocurrency in existence has a community on Reddit right now.
Meanwhile, Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian Feels BTC and ETH Markets Will be Extremely Bullish This Year
The interview with Slowe confirms Reddit is looking to integrate more cryptocurrencies shortly after a few weeks of hiatus. The CTO details that Reddit is looking at the cryptocurrencies offered by the Coinbase service which are Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and Ethereum. The news also follows the Reddit co-founder, Alexis Ohanian, stating on May 2nd that he believes BTC will rally to $ 20K by the end of 2018. Ohanian also thinks Ethereum will climb 20 times in value to a price of $ 15,000 USD per ETH by the end of the year.
“I’m most bullish about Ethereum simply because people are actually building on it,” Ohanian detailed.
Last year, it was all about AI and machine learning, This year, it’s all about blockchain — Most of the really vital, protocol-level, basic infrastructure around software and blockchain will need to get built in the next year or two for us to really see the Web 3.0 we’re really hoping for.
What do you think about Reddit adding multiple cryptocurrencies to the platform for payments? What do you think about Alexis Ohanian’s predictions? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Images via Pixabay, Reddit, and Cheddar.
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The following opinion piece was written by Jonald Fyookball.
In part 1 of this series, I highlighted the importance of education. A community that is educated will be less influenced by propaganda. The second principle is that of clarity. The community needs to be “on the same page”. There is never going to be a perfect alignment of opinions among a large group of people, but… we need to have the same basic vision for Bitcoin Cash.
It’s Not Complicated, Bitcoin Cash is Money
If you have something of value to offer me, and I’m willing to pay for it, then I send you bitcoin cash. No middleman and low fees.
That’s the vision.
The Challenge of Distributed Consensus
In bitcoin, everyone needs to be using the same set of rules — also called consensus rules, network rules, or protocol rules. What happens when we need to upgrade or change the rules?
We have this nifty thing in bitcoin called “Proof of Work”. It secures the network, and it keeps everyone on the same set of rules.
It’s also a voting mechanism: The miners can vote on changing the rules because the “longest” chain (the chain with the most accumulated proof of work) is accepted by convention.
In other words, the ultimate decision as to what rules the network follows are in the hands of the largest combined group of mining power. This is commonly known as Nakamoto Consensus.
Because of Metcalf’s Law, commonly referred to as “the network effect”, miners with a dissenting opinion are highly incentivized to capitulate and rejoin the majority.
Their only alternative is to “fork off” and continue mining a minority chain. This is usually not worth it, unless the direction that the majority wants to go is so radical that it’s deemed unacceptable.
…which is precisely what happened when Bitcoin Cash forked off from BTC on August 1st, 2017.
The BTC community had wandered too far off the reservation. They focused on making it cheap to run a node even if it was expensive to send a transaction. They valued being a digital commodity over being a payment system. They worked on ethereal problems of the future rather than the real problems facing us today. And worst of all, they allowed censorship to flourish.
Nakamoto Consensus works and is simple. We all stay together until it no longer makes sense.
Its limitation is that bitcoin is also a social experiment — it’s not just miners that make up the ecosystem. The miners (who are actually voting) are also trying to make the decisions they believe the developers, users, investors, and businesses will support. That’s why education (and communication) are so important.
A Magic Formula For Governance?
What happens when we think we all want the same thing, but disagree on the best way to achieve it?
For example, last year Bitcoin Cash’s difficulty adjustment algorithm (DAA) was updated but there was some contention between developers on the best algorithm to use.
It would be nice to have some governance process by which competing ideas could be resolved. So far, no one has invented a “magic formula” one-size-fits-all solution, although some have tried. For example, here is a proposal that attempts to create a simple, effective governance process.
In the above proposal, who decides if “a fix/improvement is under time pressure”, and what the “period of time” should be for voting on a proposal? Most importantly, how do you make sure miners have enough time (and unbiased information) to make the proper voting decisions?
Even though there’s no silver bullet or magic formula, that may be ok. In the end, decisions are made and Bitcoin Cash moves on.
BCH is a Peer to Peer Electronic Cash System
The Bitcoin Core approach was to avoid making any protocol changes without broad consensus. Generally, in a system that depends on consensus, there is wisdom in this.
Some would say that Core took this too far; that they impractically avoided making needed changes by looking for perfection. Others believe that this was merely an excuse and that those in control had already made up their minds against raising the blocksize.
Either way, the common thread is that the community lacked clarity around wanting to be a peer to peer electronic cash system and what that really means.
Knowing exactly what we want, and why, will help us to avoid stagnating and splintering in the future.
Written by Jonald Fyookball
Jonald Fyookball (pseudonym) is a cryptocurrency enthusiast, best known as the project leader of the Electron Cash wallet, and for a series of hard hitting articles on the Bitcoin scaling debate. Jonald is a computer scientist, businessman, investor, libertarian, and Bitcoin advocate.
What are your thoughts on educating the BCH community? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
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