Tag: coinbase

Bitcoin Is Not Dead

By Spencer Kellogg | @TheNewTreasury

Contrary to popular belief: Bitcoin is not dead. It’s just sleeping a bit. And perhaps it deserves some rest given the parabolic and insatiable rise in valuation and adoption it has seen in its less than 10-year existence. Think about that: 10 years. In the history of money, 10 years isn’t even the blink of an eye. We are still in those early drunken stages of undisciplined poking about in which everyone is set to knock around the darkened room of questions until we find a door that leads us to the next confounding labyrinth. In truth, we haven’t even seen what this thing is capable of yet.

Over 6,000 years ago, humans first developed a system of market exchange: bartering and trade. Seashells, stone tools, teas, salt, spices and anything else that could provide an agreed upon value was used for the peaceful exchange of goods. Horses were domesticated and became a living currency to many of the native prairie nations that roamed the American southwest. It wasn’t until 600BC that King Alyattes of Lydia minted the first currency, a coin of gold and silver with a lion’s head on the front. Today, the mobile phone credit M-Pesa is used successfully as a unit of exchange in the nation of Kenya. Currencies are diverse and linger most reliably in the eye of the beholder. The-First-Coin-2.jpg

– King Alyattes of Lydia Coin

What is a currency? In the Mike Maloney’s brilliant “Money vs. Currency” YouTube series, he defines a currency as “a unit of account that is portable, durable, interchangeable, and divisible.” From its inception, Bitcoin has attempted to answer each one of these demands through an encrypted network of peer to peer users working in a global, peaceful, and pluralistic system of equals. It strives to help humanity in a way that asserts an individual’s right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in face of crushing multi-national governments and banking entanglements that far too often overlook the majority’s interest in favor of wealth and power stratification.

Bitcoin is not nearly as anonymous as it probably should be and the speed/costs of using the technology are still too high in relation to other already viable payment options, but these are issues that are constantly discussed and addressed within the community. Sathosi Nakamoto’s currency requires time to reach a consensus and in many ways, this is how all great democracies have functioned; through anxious debate and slow lumbering changes. Tyrannies are those that are built behind bayonets in the dusk of an economic collapse.

In the Genesis Block of Bitcoin, there was a coded message. It read: “The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.” Created on the heels of the 2008 financial disaster, Bitcoin was a universal, internet-based alternative currency that rejected both the predatory boom and bust cycles of global Keynesian economics and the ‘injection of cash’ theory that modern governments asserted as they bailed out underperforming banks, mortgages and car companies along the way.

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– The Times of London Newspaper January 3rd, 2009

Today, the United States national debt stands at a staggering 21 trillion dollars and growing. That’s roughly $64,000 dollars for every single American. For what? So that Bank of America could swallow up a few regional branches here and there? So that Chrysler and General Motors could go on making cars? So that we could torch and murder our way through entire nations only to find the chief architect of 9/11 hiding behind shining palace doors in the US-allied nation of Pakistan? I remember people losing their houses, the country is $21 trillion in debt, millennials are saddled with student loan debt and yet the stock market keeps rising. See anything wrong with the picture? Our leaders are happy enough to forget that any of this ever occurred. They are on to the next fundraiser in Iowa to bang the podium for a fat check. It’s all a farce!

What happens when the bill comes due though? Who do you imagine will pay the price? It will be the global majority of underpaid and overworked servants who are expected to answer the call. The ones who ride the ever-growing line between lower and lower economic classes will suffer most. The men and women who are shipped off to meaningless wars made possible by the various centralized banks of untouchable power and wealth. It is always the already weak made weaker by bloated, selfish governments who suffer the final, eager blows. Whether under the crushing weight of a religious text or the pervasive dogmas of 20th-century neoliberalism, the uber-elite of modern governments have held the final say.

Until Bitcoin. Yes, that Bitcoin. That decentralized, peer to peer, free market, global equalist, anarcho-communist, radical syndicalist, definitionless Bitcoin. We, as a global community, have overlooked it again. The real reason we all ended up with private wallets and paragraph long seeds: freedom. The freedom to opt out of the federal reserve notes that have provided the ultra-capitalist lifeline to an empire of war after war while the dollar devalues with greater certainty each passing quarter. Next, they tell us we must build a great military industrial complex in the sky. We just want bread.

This movement is not about the Hong Kong mansion parties. It’s not about crypto famous edgelords who may or may not have received an airdrop in their ether wallet. It’s definitely not about tacky, gaudy, ugly, pompous, gross Lamborghinis either (at least go for an Aston-Martin for God’s sake). Bitcoin is about what we are witnessing in Venezuela where citizens have turned to the cryptocurrency as a store of value while their own nation’s currency has become completely worthless over the course of one year. The people of Venezuela were neutered by a neo-socialist government that did not care for its people’s wellbeing. With Bitcoin, at least the people of Venezuela have the option of another way. rgplbYc8ClSqfqlrGYQSRebtrCg4wRRpjMreNOevEAo.jpg– Genesis Block Of Bitcoin

The cryptocurrency community is in a sort of collective paralysis at the moment. Somber and gossipy, it’s tripping on a heady mixture of hedonism, jealousy, emptiness, and outright fear. Many were later to the game than they really wish to admit and the general consensus feels bearish. For now. The same greed and power that Nakamoto hoped to disembody have manifested themselves into the community where market vampires and juvenile venture capitalists have accrued en masse. They have unlearned, or never learned, the core narrative of Bitcoin’s original intent: a rebellion.

An American and a Russian and a Kenyan and a Columbian and a Pakistani walk into a bar and they all enjoy the same cold beer. That was always Bitcoin’s mission. Not fame or fortune but to bring differing peaceful people to the same beautiful table of ideas. To sit them down and show how much they each have in common with one another when the brutal nationalism of war and economy have been stripped away. To forge a new and humane way forward. The only question is if we are strong enough to do it.


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Cryptocurrency Payments May Return On Reddit

By Nick Hamilton | United States

During an interview with Cheddar, Chris Stowe, the CTO of Reddit, asserted that Reddit hopes to bring back payments dealing with Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), and Ethereum (ETH).

Reddit stopped accepting Bitcoin in March of this year, when the Coinbase Merchant Services were experiencing some technical difficulties and bugs. This led the popular sharing site to drop the Cryptocurrency as an option for payment.

Coinbase has since announced the migration of Coinbase Merchant Services to a program called “Coinbase Commerce,” a program specifically designed for merchants. The migration of Coinbase Commerce will end on May 31st, which is when we could see a return of cryptocurrency payments to Reddit.

Reddit has always been very crypto friendly, with subreddits such as r/Bitcoin, r/Crypto, r/Litecoin, and r/Ethereum having tens of thousands of subscribers.

Stowe said the following Thursday:

The upcoming Coinbase change, combined with some bugs around the bitcoin payment option that were affecting purchases for certain users, led us to remove bitcoin as a payment option.

We have been looking at other cryptocurrencies. As a matter of fact, that was part of the issue with the high fees on the bitcoin network. We are looking at Ethereum and Litecoin that are both provided by Coinbase.


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Bitcoin Could Be Worth $25K By End Of Year

Analysts like Tim Draper, The Winklevoss Twins, and Thomas Lee have all made wild predictions as to the potential valuation of Bitcoin. Recently, a new voice has arisen to signal a potential boom in price.

Brian Kelly, the CEO and Founder of BKCM LLC, which is a digital assets investment fund, said in an interview with CNBC that there is “no reason” why Bitcoin can’t visit the $20,000 level, and even the $25,000 level by the end of 2018.

Kelly also made the assertion that while it sounds crazy, $250,000 by 2022 is not out of the question. He justified this by saying that over the past four years, Bitcoin has produced a 4000% trend, so this would simply be following the trend that Bitcoin has been on for the past four years.

He added that Bitcoin is difficult to use right now as a currency, due to its volatility. He said once that dampens, Bitcoin could become more usable.

When asked about Bitcoin’s week last week, and whether or not this week would produce similar results, he said this:

Traffic volume is starting to pick up, we have pack selling rolling off, we have short covering going on, so we need the fundamentals which is the number of transactions to catch up a bit and if we see that, I think we’ve bottomed here and we have a sustainable bull run.

At the time of this interview, BTC was at $7,848. As of 3:26 CST on April 16, Bitcoin has seen a slight jump to $7,962.

Devout investors will not be surprised if Bitcoin hits $25K by the end of 2018. The major volatility of the crypto market could be a huge win for early adopters and silence many critics.

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ICON Up More Than 50% Ahead Of Exchange Listings & Token Swap

The past couple months have been tough sledding for cryptocurrency holders. After the insane bull run that saw all cryptocurrencies reaching a collective market cap of near one trillion dollars during the holiday season, the crypto market pulled back significantly and many projects that soared to unprecedented heights found their valuations shattered in the span of several disheartening weeks.

One of the projects that benefited most from the bull run was the South Korean blockchain platform ICON. At its all-time high, ICON ($ICX) held a market cap valuation of more than four billion dollars that pushed the price of each individual ICON over $12 dollars. While the token remains eight dollars below its all-time high, Icon has surged more than +50% in the past two days behind speculation of new exchange listings, several promising ICO’s and an imminent token swap from the minted ERC-20 token to Icon’s native blockchain.

Bithumb, the fourth largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, processes close to one billion dollars worth of transactions a day and the listing of ICON is a major accomplishment for the Korean team. A day later, the tech startup announced they had been listed on UpBit, another top Korean exchange.

With South Korea viewed as the most forward-thinking cryptocurrency community in the world, the dual listing of ICON on Bithumb and Upbit is evidence of a team that achieves state goals in a timely and efficient manner. Further rumors that ICX could be traded on the second biggest Korean exchange, CoinOne, sent primed traders into a buying frenzy.

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Last week, Bithumb signed a monumental deal with BitPay that will allow businesses to convert invoices into Bitcoin and use BitPay’s service to settle them quicker than conventional banking institutions.

Speaking to CNBC, BitPay chief commercial officer Sonny Singh suggested that over $200 billion dollars worth of cross-border payments will be made between South Korea and The United States in 2018. Speaking on the inefficiencies in current banking and payment infrastructures, Singh had the following to say:

Right now, people are doing cross-border payments […] and paying bank wires, FX fees around 4% and it takes about four days. Using Bithumb and BitPay, we’re able to make this a 1% fee in one business day.

As ICON raced up the charts and supplanted all other alternative currencies on Binance’s 24hr volume chart, the hype machine spilled over. Some commentators predicted that the South Korean blockchain startup could soon appear on other top exchanges like Bittrex, Bitfinex & possibly even Coinbase.

https://twitter.com/bullishgentlemn/status/976497127550431232

Other bullish indicators for ICON include a list of ICO’s that plan on launching through on the ICX blockchain. ICO’s that fundraise through ICON’s platform will have to use the ICX token to participate leading to speculation that demand will be high for ICON tokens while the supply dries up. Similarly, ICO’s have helped Ethereum and NEO grow into some of the largest valuations in the community.

In late February, the ICON team announced the launch of their wallet service, ICONex, which runs as a chrome extension and will be available for iOS & Android users within the next few months. According to leadership, a token swap from the ICON’s current Ethereum chain ERC-20 token to a native ICX platform will take place in the next month:

We are currently preparing the ERC20 token to ICX coin Swap. We are working on the details and cannot give you the exact schedule at the moment, however we expect the Token Swap to start next month.

Even after the Token Swap process begins, the ICX ERC-20 tokens will be able to make transactions. After a period of several months with many announcements about the Token Swap, the ERC-20 tokens will be burned.

At the end of January, ICON announced six ICO’s that will crowdfund on the ICX platform between Q2 & Q3 of 2018. Among the decentralized apps included are Blue Whale (ecosystem for workers compensation), Tink (an anonymous social media voting platform), & UPPSALA (a security intelligence platform).

ICON’s close relationship with corporate and government entities within tech powerhouse South Korea have investors salivating about the potential growth of the new cryptocurrency. With a plan to ‘hyperconnect the world’ and major partnerships with Forbes & Bloomberg in the pipeline, 2018 could very well be the year that ICON reaches the mainstream visibility and valuation of other top crypto projects.

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The Great Coinbase “Disaster” Of 2017: Bitcoin Cash Murders The Blockchain

By Spencer Kellogg | USA

What the hell just happened? Alleged insider trading at Coinbase, Roger Ver blasted for having practical visions of the future of cryptocurrency and Charlie Lee attacked as a parasite for cashing in (rightfully) his stack of Litecoin. What a mess the past few days have been leaving some in the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency community feeling shell-shocked from a new presence of egoism and narcissism in the once generally positive community. Furthermore, hard questions are arising about Bitcoin’s dominance as ‘king of crypto’ leaving many consumers upset in its wake. Money is a bastard and the past 48 hours have been a shining example of how greed and playground groupthink have diluted the overarching philosophical goals of the space and split a massive userbase into argumentative factions while leading even the most sophisticated lemmings straight off the cliff.

Bitcoin has a problem. For all of the talk about it being the world’s new reserve currency, it doesn’t move very well. It requires an expensive fee and the time delay for receiving the coin has been virtually eradicated by other competing digital currencies in recent years. The strongest thing Bitcoin has going for it at the moment is its first mover advantage in the space and its dominating presence on every major exchange in the world. Bitcoin Cash is a ‘fork’ of Bitcoin meaning that Bitcoin Cash is of the same origin as Bitcoin but possesses functional and technological differences. Just like a forked path presents two new roads so too does a forked currency and the route that users choose to take determines the viability of the product. Bitcoin Cash promotes faster payments, lower fees and secure development from a centralized leadership. It also has Roger Ver, aka ‘Bitcoin Jesus’ (or Judas depending on your opinion), one of the great controversial figures in all of cryptocurrency. Ver sent the currency and overall markets into a feeding frenzy as he appeared on CNBC yesterday to discuss Bitcoin Cash as the currency entered into the connected crypto exchanges GDAX and Coinbase.

With Bitcoin Cash coming online at Coinbase (the major exchange in the USA) markets and consumers around the world flooded in to purchase the asset before its listing. Allegations of insider trading were rife leading to Coinbase halting the trading of the currency as they investigated their employee’s purchases leading up to the event. In the greater community, opinions were split with some users pointing at the “disaster” and using this event to call for greater regulation and even lawsuits for what they perceived to be cheating while others grinned and accepted the practice for what it is; a fully free, unregulated market that does not play by your grandfather’s Wall Street rules. All Bitcoin wallet addresses that held BTC during the August fork were given the exact same amount in Bitcoin Cash and in the month’s leading up to the New Year, there had been confusion regarding whether or not Coinbase would add Bitcoin Cash as a trading option with many believing that Coinbase would only provide withdrawal of the currency from its website. The decision regarding whether or not Coinbase would allow active trading of the commodity is important because it has a major effect on the wider adoption of the currency. As it stands now, the continued shenanigans from Coinbase is leading to a loss of faith from its consumers who suspect manipulation and lies on the part of the leadership. Until a better option is available many US-based crypto customers will have no choice but to use the major on-ramp platform for enter/exit trading.

In the world of Litecoin, founder Charlie Lee laid out his reasons for selling off his portfolio of Litecoin in a Reddit post that can be read here: Charlie Lee Sells His Litecoin. He pointed to his presence as a social and cultural figure in the cryptocurrency market overall and his interest in divesting from the coin that he has such an immense influence upon. This led to fingerpointing insinuating that Charlie Lee was using Litecoin simply to get rich or even that this had been done to take advantage of the Bitcoin Cash listing on Coinbase. Lee also made clear that the currency has seen a remarkable run up from four dollars in the springtime and that many investors should be careful in this new high-risk and unstable territory. In the past year, I have witnessed Charlie Lee act as an agent of good over and over again and I was surprised by the level of hostility aimed at Lee in the following days. The aggression towards one of the true white knights of the space speaks to the level of mistrust and resentment that some consumers are feeling in this grey area of ‘bubble’ uncertainty.

The Wild West of crypto is an enthralling business but the ailments of big money and uninformed speculators are beginning to rear their ugly head. I always thought the major hurdle of crypto’s mainstream adoption would be a belligerent Congress but after what I’ve witnessed this week I am beginning to believe it will be the low IQ newcomers who demand greater centralization and regulation to protect their interests. I suppose the trending backlash can be seen as a bullish sign because it signals that a mass userbase has collected with desires and opinions and a real stake in the game. The bickering, however, is difficult to listen to and reminds me most of the Sunday’s I spent as a child watching grown men smash into each other on the football field. We are still years away from true adoption of these services and much can be changed in the proceeding time. Do your own research, form your own opinions, strap in and get ready for the moon, just be careful which rocket you choose.


Image credits go to @Crypto_God