Čvn 19

Altcoin Exchanges: Pros and Cons of Top Platforms

· June 19, 2017 · 1:00 pm

Altcoins, a collective name for all cryptocurrencies except bitcoin, have become the main point of attraction for cryptotraders around the world. The altcoin market, full of promising new coins, highly reputable old rivals of bitcoin, and downright scam coins, shows an equal potential for making someone a fortune or leaving them penniless.


Altcoin exchanges pop up like mushrooms after a summer rain, a fact that is predominantly attributed to the need of diversifying one’s altcoin investments. After the Mt.Gox fiasco, everyone is understandably very cautious.

The collapse of Cryptsy has made matters even worse. After two years of operation marked with multiple technical failures and unpopular administrative policies, the exchange went down after a $7.5 million-worth hack. The litigation that ensued has revealed that the exchange’s owner was stealing money for himself.

Even under increased caution and scrutiny, there are still many existing altcoin exchanges offer deals that involve downright swindling coins. Because of this, traders who lack a gargantuan appetite for risk-taking stick with the most reliable exchanges. Here are three of the most popular and top performing altcoin exchanges.

Poloniex

Poloniex, aka Polo, is probably the best-known altcoin exchange of them all. It offers a wide variety of cryptocurrency pairs, so a seasoned trader may compose a great portfolio of their choosing in no time.

Poloniex altcoin exchange

Signing up with Poloniex is similar to other websites that don’t offer instant registration via social networks. As with other online trading platforms, a new user has to undergo two levels of verification. Undergoing just the first level limits withdrawals to $2,000 a day. By providing further personal information like ID and home address, a user may extend the withdrawal limit to $25,000. In order to have an opportunity to withdraw more than that, a user would have to contact the exchange’s support team.

Technical support is available via e-mail, tickets or direct chat. The latter is possibly the best way to get a response as fast as possible, however, the moderators do not tend to answer the queries right away, and some users have complained that the responses were not sufficient to answer their questions.

The website offers two-factor identification similar to other online exchanges.

Remarkably, Poloniex does not deal with fiat currencies. The USD exchange rate it presents is actually tied to Tether, an altcoin designed to cost exactly $1. This issue often confuses newbies who try to withdraw fiat from the exchange.

Poloniex chart

Another notable downside is that the Poloniex offers no mobile apps, though it does provide a mobile browser version instead. There have been reports suggesting that there is an app at Google Play for Android devices, however, the app has no affiliation with the exchange, and therefore considered dangerous.

The exchange’s website is somewhat bulky and has been known to perform slowly compared to other exchanges. There have been reports of users’ browsers freezing up if there are other tabs opened at the same time.

Most notably, despite the service’s overall strong reputation, there have been numerous accusations of minor scams like supervising controllable and prearranged pumps and dumps, as well as meddling with Ethereum Classic supply. Additionally, DDoS attacks occur quite often to Poloniex, and its customers are more likely to receive phishing e-mails.

Takeaway: Overall, Poloniex is a great exchange for those interested in altcoin trading.

LiveCoin

LiveCoin does not focus on any particular part of the world, however, it supports USD, Euro-Russian Ruble withdrawals, so it might have the biggest appeal to those who mostly deal with those fiat currencies. However, altcoins traded at the platform are abundant.

LiveCoin altcoin exchange

The exchange requests that those who use bank transfers for deposits undergo special verification, which should be addressed to the support team. For all other cases, no additional verification is required. The service also offers two-factor verification for log-in and withdrawals common with all trading platforms and additionally may enable text notifications sent directly to the customer’s phone. Unlike Poloniex, LiveCoin does not use any withdrawal limits.

Similar to most other exchanges, LiveCoin offers standard market orders, limit orders, and, on top of that, pending orders, which is not common with its competitors. Pending orders are orders that essentially will activate only once the price of a selected currency reaches the value set forth by a trader. This may actually influence the trading by removing any influence from a particular trader. In fact, as long as nobody sees an order at a specified price, it cannot drive the market anywhere.

LiveCoin Chart

Another notable feature of LiveCoin is that the exchange offers fiat vs altcoin pairs, which most other currencies lack. This effectively removes the need to buy bitcoin for fiat, and then altcoin for bitcoin, thus paying transaction fees twice.

Unlike some other exchanges where users may wait a long time until the support team responds, LiveCoin’s support team is quick to reply and remains strictly professional. Additionally, they maintain a FAQ section at Bitcointalk where everyone may ask their questions.

The user interface is quite convenient and the exchange works great in mobile browsers. Unfortunately, just like Poloniex, it has no apps for either iOS or Android. Another downside of the exchange is that some of the altcoins traded there have poor liquidity.

Takeaway: Both professional and amateur altcoin traders may find LiveCoin to be a great altcoin exchange with many useful and unique features.

Bittrex

Bittrex has been active since 2015 and features thousands of cryptocurrency pairs, two-factor authorization and cold storage of most user assets to protect them against possible system failures.

Bittrex altcoin exchange

The exchange may be one of the safest platforms for online trading as its creators pride themselves on being “security freaks.” Nevertheless, signing up with the exchange may scare anonymity advocates away due to those security reasons, as the new user has to specify their full name, date of birth, country, address, and ID number.

For the same security reasons, one cannot withdraw anything in the 24 hours following the change of password, and without two-factor authorization enabled, the amount of withdrawals will be limited to 1 BTC a day.

Even with all the security in place, there is still room for user complaints. Aside from the absence of an interface in any other language than English, the exchange’s technical support also causes some users to express their discontent. Complaints remain unresolved for a long time, and there are even some accusations of non-transparent policies and withdrawal problems.

Bittrex chart

The exchange acts as a wallet and a trading platform at the same time, which, with all the security rolled out, might be convenient without involving any serious risks.

Bittrex may be the best solution for those who value security above comfort. While verification may take a long while, and the support team seems to be generally sluggish, the security of user accounts is beyond all praise. When the user database was hacked in April 2016, only those accounts that had not enabled two-factor verification were in fact compromised.

Takeaway: While generally being one of the top cryptocurrency exchanges, when it comes to matters beyond security, Bittrex still has something to improve.

What do you think of our Top 3 altcoin exchanges? Do you have a favorite exchange that isn’t listed here? Let us know in the comments below.


Images courtesy of Bittrex, LiveCoin, Poloniex, Shutterstock

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Čvn 09

Crypviser Will Encrypt Messages on the Blockchain for Private Communications

· June 9, 2017 · 3:00 am

Crypviser is building a blockchain-based all-in-one network for secure social and business communications. ICO is currently ongoing.


Improving on Privacy with Blockchain Technology

In today’s Orwellian society, privacy has become a rare and valuable asset that some go to great lengths to protect while others simply throw it away in exchange for convenience. As technology evolves, however, so does access to privacy-oriented tools and their underlying technology.

Blockchain tech has gone a long way in the realm of financial privacy, now Crypviser wants to build upon it and extend its use onto end-to-end message encryption by providing a blockchain-based all-in-one network for secure social and business communications. The project is currently undergoing a crowdfunding campaign that will help fund the development of this network.

A unified and secure instant communication network, Crypviser provides real end-to-end encryption and unique blockchain based authentication, the latter of which allows users to truly identify and confirm each other’s identity through the user of private and public keys.

The end result is a secure and private messenger which will also feature its CVCPay system, allowing users to send funds to each other anonymously.

Crypviser ICO & CVCoin

In order to fund the development and marketing of Crypviser’s network, a crowdfunding campaign is currently taking place. Taking the form of an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), the Crypviser’s funding stage ill last until June 30, 2017, during which time investors can buy the CVCoin, the underlying token in the Crypviser’s platform.

The CVCoin is required in order to interact with the Crypviser platform and to cover its transaction fees. Transactions are required to authorize and identify the users’ access to public encryption keys, ensuring that messages cannot be forged nor can they be decrypted.

So far, the Crypviser ICO has managed to gather over $900,000. These funds will be used to cover mobile, backend, and infrastructure costs as well as licensing fees, legal services, operational costs, and of course, marketing.

The Initial Coin Offering is currently ongoing and will last until the 30th of June. Users can invest in the Crypviser ICO using Bitcoin, Ethereum, and even USD. Most recently, support for the TIME token was also added. 15 million CVCcoins will be distributed, along with special benefits such as free subscriptions, access to special features, free access to the CVPay system, and more. 

Can Blockchain technology help the internet regain its privacy? Can Crypviser become the merged solution we need for financial privacy and message encryption?


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Crypviser

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Čvn 04

Cryptocurrency-Powered Game Platform ZENIgames Announces Official Launch

· June 4, 2017 · 10:00 am

The new online gaming platform ZENIgames offers gamers a chance to play games and win “Zennies” in the process.


Love online gaming and cryptocurrencies? Then this new gaming platform is just for you. The Bulgarian arcade game website ZENIgames.com has announced its official launch and is powered by “Zennies”, the platform’s own cryptocurrency. ZENIgames offers free-to-play online games and lets players earn Zennies in the process.

ZENIgames joins other companies such as Datcroft Games Ltd. and Ionomy Studios in integrating cryptocurrency into their games. While Bitcoin has already fostered a burgeoning online gambling industry, it has more recently attracted the attention of mobile game companies who wish to use it to further monetize their games.

The ZENIgames Platform

ZENIgames currently offers around 2000 flashed-based games, which work on regular Internet browsers as well as Android and iOS devices. The site offers the usual range of browser-based games, from basic puzzle and platform games to more involved 3D action games.

The games are user-submitted, so their quality tends to vary. Some games, such as Crash Drive 2, are multiplayer-enabled and highly polished. Others, such as Tile War, are clearly meant as amusing time-killers. However, a five-star rating system allows users to push the best games to the top of each game list.

Zenigames Crash Drive 2

Some games track player progress using cookies stored on the user’s machine. The site also includes leaderboards and a site-wide chat system, allowing users to communicate with each other in-game.

Nonetheless, some HTML5-based games will not work on the Chrome browser due to their need for the Unity Web Player plugin. This is not enabled on Chrome by default, as it’s considered a security risk by its developers (amongst its other stability issues). Users will either need to manually enable NPAPI plugins on Chrome, or play using one of the Unity-supported browsers.

Zennies, the Prize Tickets of the Future

The innovation ZENIgames offers is its own cryptocurrency, Zennies, which are currently worth around 0.00000135 Bitcoins (or about $0.0034). Its name is derived from the Japanese word for “coins” or “small change”. According to CryptoCompare, Zennies was launched on March 22, 2017 (likely during the development of the site). Like other cryptocurrencies, Zennies is completely decentralized with its own blockchain and community of developers.

CryptoCompare price index for ZENI

By registering with ZENIgames, users can play games to earn Zexperience points, which can then be converted into Zennies. These can be used on the website as payments for games and other In-App Purchases (IAP). The site also offers tools to help developers integrate Zennies into their own creations.

A Blockchain Gaming Network

Although Zennies can be traded across one or two exchanges, they currently appear to have limited use as payment for game prizes on their own platform. However, ZENIgames is built on the ZENI game distribution system, which allows other arcade sites to fetch ZENIarcade games.

The ZENIverse

Theoretically, this will allow Zennies to be used as a cross-platform payment system on other sites. Should it gain momentum, the ZENI game distribution system may evolve into a networked game system, where Zexperience can be traded to earn prizes across a network of games.

ZENIgames is currently in beta, so expect more developments on the platform to follow in due time.

Is gaming a good application for blockchain? Could Zennies gain momentum as a currency for online games? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of CryptoCompare, ZENIgames.

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Čvn 02

China’s Central Bank Will Soon Regulate ICO’s

· June 2, 2017 · 9:00 am

The People’s Bank of China is turning its attention Initial Coin Offerings (ICO), seeking to regulate the new form of crowdfunding.


China to Regulate ICOs

Although cryptocurrency withdrawals are back on the big three Chinese exchanges, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) isn’t quite through with the cryptoworld. Now it seems like it’s going after Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), seeking to regulate the new phenomena in the crowdfunding world.

Chinese publication Weixin reports that Yao Qian, head of Digital Currency Research Institute at PBoC, has stated that the PBoC will soon regulate ICOs.

Initial Coin Offerings or ICOs are a way to fund projects or companies crowdfunding methods. This typically includes selling project tokens for fiat currency, Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other popular cryptocurrencies. These tokens are usually required in order to use the platform or they can also represent equity through a dividend or buy-back program.

Current ICO Landscape

The news comes at a time where ICOs are extremely popular, gathering millions of dollars every week and amassing higher and higher market caps.

Most recently, the Basic Attention Token (BAT) ICO, gathered $30million in a matter of seconds, while the Aragon project gathered $20million in roughly 15 minutes. The MobileGo ICO gathered over $53 million in the course of its month-long ICO.

Poloniex

While most ICOs currently take place through the use of the Ethereum network, other projects are also getting in on the action, as is the case of the Waves Platform, Wings DAO, and Ethereum Classic.

Although some of these crowdfunding campaigns have had exorbitant returns for investors, many members of the community are also raising questions about the validity of some of these projects and if they are really worth tens of millions of dollars before having even built their project/platform or an MVP (minimum viable product).

Regulatory Clarity Could Boost Industry

Although the moratorium on cryptocurrency withdrawals has come to an end, the PBoC has stated that they are not yet done with Bitcoin exchanges.  Now, Bitcoin miners in the country are starting to shut down their operations in fear of future regulatory pressure like the one applied to exchanges.

Some Bitcoin miners in the Szechuan province, a place with cheaper electricity prices due to abundant hydropower resources, have decided to shut down in fear of regulation. One miner told YiCai Global:

The price is so high at the moment. Shutting down costs mine owners hundreds of thousands of yuan every day.

In China, the pressure from the PBoC has resulted in a weakened Bitcoin market, strict KYC policies and may now also affect mining and ICOs as well. However, regulation can also be helpful. In Japan, the new regulatory framework built around cryptocurrencies has allowed their popularity to grow in the country.

Can the new stance on Initial Coin Offerings by the PBoC change the ICO landscape? 


Images courtesy of CryptoCompare, Twitter, Shutterstock

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Kvě 29

China’s Biggest Exchanges to Add Ethereum, Other Altcoins as Demand Surges

· May 29, 2017 · 7:00 am

As altcoins continue to gain popularity throughout the world, Bitcoin exchanges in China are also getting in on the action and listing alternative cryptocurrencies.


Huobi to Support Altcoins

As the moratorium on cryptocurrency withdrawals is expected to soon end in China, exchanges in the country seem to be turning their attention to alternative cryptocurrencies. Two days ago, one of the big three exchanges in China, Huobi, announced it will launch Ethereum trading on May 31.

The announcement reads:

We are excited to announce the CNY/ETH will be listed on our exchanges. Trading will start at 12:00 May 31st (GMT +8). ETH deposit and withdrawal is available from now on.

Today, Huobi released a list of altcoins that are to be added in the future according to the rank of the coin in said list. According to Huboi’s underlying model, Ethereum, Litecoin and Ripple are the highest ranking coins following Bitcoin, followed by Dash, Zcash and Dogecoin.

Online news service cnLedger tweeted:

The list was ranked using a model created by Huobi which factors in the coin’s strategy, marketing, activity, risk and technology to calculate the relevance of the coin.

The list and underlying model can be seen in Huobi’s official announcement.

BTCC to Get In On the Action as Well

Huobi isn’t the only Bitcoin exchange in China that is to list alternative cryptocurrencies.

After a two-week poll, in which over 190k votes by the cryptocurrency community were counted, Ethereum Classic will be listed in the BTCC exchange. Bobby Lee, CEO of BTCC tweeted:

Although the exchanges employed a completely different method in which Huobi used a model to rank cryptocurrencies and BTCC used a community poll, both exchanges are interested in opening the doors for the Chinese community to invest in  alternative cryptocurrencies.

Huobi and BTCC, however, are not the first exchanges in the country to list alternative cryptocurrencies. The China-based Yunbi exchange allows users to buy and sell cryptocurrencies like Etherem, Ethereum Classic, Zcash, QTUM, Bitshares, and others. BTC38 also offers a multitude of cryptocurrencies to be bought and sold for CNY. Lastly, CHBTC also lists Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Litecoin.

Crypto in Asia

Although less-known exchanges in the country offer altcoin trading, most Chinese users are only familiar with Bitcoin and Litecoin, given that most cryptocurrency investors use one of the big three exchanges in the country, BTCC, OKCoin and Huobi.

China plays a big part in the Bitcoin world, ranking in the top 3 countries by daily trading volume but other countries in the continent are becoming increasingly interested in cryptocurrencies and it’s not just Bitcoin and Litecoin.

Take Japan, for example, where the recent Bitcoin law has created an accentuated demand for cryptocurrencies, making the JPY the biggest Bitcoin pair in the world by trading volume and that’s not all. Other cryptocurrencies are also gaining traction in the country.

Co-Founder of IndieSquare and Community Director at the Counterparty Foundation, stated in a recent blog post:

First, one of the unique characteristics of the Japanese crypto space is that altcoins are very popular as a means of investment and some of them have very strong and dedicated communities; some even more active than the Bitcoin community itself in a way. Among them, two of the most popular altcoins in Japan are XRP(Ripple) and XEM(NEM).

In South Korea, Ethereum and Ethereum Classic are also extremely popular, even more so than Bitcoin whose daily trading volume is smaller than that of ETH or ETC.

With China adhering to the altcoin craze, could Asia become the capital for alternative cryptocurrencies?


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.com, Twitter 

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Kvě 10

Hungary’s Central Bank Cracks Down on OneCoin

· May 10, 2017 · 3:00 pm

Hungary is the latest to take legal action against OneCoin as the country’s central bank organizes task force against the cryptocurrency scheme.


The OneCoin Task Force

Following India and Germany, Hungary is the most recent country to mount a crackdown on the OneCoin scheme. Following several warnings issued regarding the nature of dangerous nature OneCoin, the Hungarian central bank, Magyar Nemzeti Bank (MNB) is now assembling a task force aimed at dismantling the OneCoin operation.

Announced yesterday, the task force will be comprised of several agencies and institutions. The (translated) statement reads:

Several departments of the Ministry of the Interior, the Budapest Police Headquarters, the Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, the General Prosecutor’s Office, the National Taxation and Customs Administration, The National Police Headquarters and the Joint Market Advisory Working Group of the National Bank of Hungary (MNB).

This new development doesn’t come as a surprise, given the three warnings issued by the MNB throughout 2016 and 2015 and the recent Onecoin-related arrests in India. In the announcement made by Hungary’s Central Bank, OneCoin’s model is described as being “similar to the pyramid scheme”. The statement reads:

Simply put: for OneCoin currently no real commodity or service can be purchased, the value of the alleged virtual currency and its price is objectively unobservable.

Onecoin vs The Law

OneCoin has always been perceived by the cryptocurrency community as a Ponzi scheme and throughout the years, several official warnings have been issued by regulators and central banks all over the world. Too many to list in this post. However, OneCoin has managed to continue its global operations, leaving a trail of disgruntled “investors” along the way.

OneCoin dubbed ponzi scheme

Now, it seems that the tide is changing for the cryptocurrency scheme, possibly due to the unprecedented growth of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. In the last few weeks, authorities both in India and in Germany have started taking action against OneCoin.

In India, several people with ties to OneCoin were arrested by undercover officers, while in Germany, the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) froze the accounts of OneCoin’s payment processor, International Marketing Services GmbH, and ordered the company to return the funds to investors who made recent payments.

About OneCoin

If you’re new to the cryptocurrency space, you may be wondering just what exactly is Onecoin. This subject has been covered extensively in media outlets and there are multiple exposé articles throughout the web. Nevertheless, new users should be made aware of the dangers in the cryptocurrency sphere, and one of them is OneCoin.

OneCoin describes itself as a cryptocurrency with a private blockchain. However, it has been made clear, mostly through OneCoin’s own attempts to prove the existence of its blockchain, that it doesn’t exist.

When you invest in OneCoin, you’re basically buying the digital equivalent of monopoly money. The statement issued by Hungary’s central bank also makes note of this:

The OneCoin construction, similar to the pyramid scheme, seems to be an investment in some kind of equipment, but in reality, it can only be traded in a closed and unmanageable forum operated by the organizer.

The Organizations behind OneCoin will not sell you the coins directly. They will sell you “educational material” and mining spots so that you can “produce” them. They also have ridiculous methods like “splitting” coins, which doubles your coins out of thin air, something that doesn’t make any sense for someone that understands the basics of economy and/or blockchain technology.

In short, OneCoin is not really a cryptocurrency (centralized or otherwise), but rather just a bunch of numbers on a server that has no real-life value and cannot be exchanged for anything else outside of the OneCoin platform. Still, many have fallen victim to this scam, which has been successful most due to the growing popularity of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Hopefully, the recent developments may make potential investors aware and keep them away from OneCoin.

Is this the beginning of the end for the OneCoin scheme? If so, will others take its place? Let us know what you think in the comment section.


Images courtesy of AltcoinSpekulant, Shutterstock. Wikimedia

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Kvě 08

Blockchain-Based Decentralized P2P IOU Platform, Sikoba Launches Pre-Sale Ahead of Token ICO

· May 7, 2017 · 8:00 pm

London-based decentralized money platform Sikoba has announced its upcoming ICO with a token presale. The blockchain-supported platform is based on P2P IOU’s, and the crowdsale will give participants the opportunity to receive a 50% bonus on SKO tokens — a cryptocurrency designed to fuel transactions within the Sikoba platform. The ICO will take place between April 25 and May 15, 2017.


A Blockchain-based IOU System

Sikoba’s decentralized money platform allows users to offer each other mutual lines of credit, within a blockchain-based IOU system. The P2P credit system is made possible through various smart contracts and gives users the freedom to pay each other with fiat and cryptocurrencies. Sikoba’s smart contracts have specified conditions, fee structures and repayment rules to keep the credit relationships in order.

The platform employs a ’credit conversion’ system that also allows users who do not trust each other to exchange credit safely. On Sikoba, fiat currencies or cryptocurrencies can act as a medium of exchange when there are no credit links between participants, or to repay outstanding balances when needed.

Sikoba’s CEO Aleksander Kampa recently expressed the company’s intention for the decentralized platform to evolve into an entirely independent and self-organizing entity eventually. The Sikoba blockchain could achieve this using its ‘federated Blockchain’ design. This unique blockchain is self-governing, which allows the addition and removal of participants, based on the member voting consensus.

Sikoba’s CEO Aleksander Kampa

This is a permissioned mining model where only authorized nodes add blocks to the blockchain.

Kampa also stated that Sikoba would most likely use Ethereum as a notary, but still perform its primary operations on its own or another blockchain. The blockchain will be chosen based on the relevant criteria of scalability, flexibility, and speed.

Sikoba operates with a small development team, aided by several important supporting members. Still in the pre-alpha stage, Sikoba’s IOU platform is not expected to be fully operational until towards the end of 2017. SKO token presale funds will be appropriated for the expansion of the Sikoba team, to finalize a detailed whitepaper and develop an MVP by the year end.

The Sikoba platform aims to offer a fully functioning virtual credit or IOU system that offers users the ability to attain accredited value, borrowed from another participant without releasing any funds. SKO tokens serve as a type of digital credit and have the potential to become a major aspect of the future credit system.

Sikoba ICO Token Pre-Sale

Sikoba ICO Token Pre-Sale

The Sikoba presale tokens are scheduled for release by the end of June 2017. Participants will receive usable SKO tokens after the platform’s launch, expected in Q3, 2018. The pre-allocation phase has begun on 17 March 2017, and the public presale will start on 25 April.

Following the presale, Sikoba presale tokens will be issued on the Ethereum blockchain. They will later become exchangeable into SKO tokens, which will be used to pay for transaction fees on the Sikoba network.

What do you think of Sikoba’s blockchain-based IOU system? Let us know in the comments below.


Images courtesy of Sikoba, Pixabay

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Dub 27

Ethereum Classic Takes Stance Against ‘Manipulative Crowdsale Tactics’

· April 27, 2017 · 8:30 am

The Ethereum Classic team addressed the current ICO hype, warning against “manipulative crowdsale tactics,” while promising not to vouch for coin offerings “in the same capacity” as the Ethereum Foundation. 


Ethereum Classic on ‘Irrational Appcoin Exuberance’

The Ethereum Classic development team has shared its opinion on what Nick Tomaino’s called, the “Irrational Appcoin Exuberance.” This exuberance is currently seen in Ethereum and may soon come to Ethereum Classic as more capital flows into the network.

Citing concerns regarding the way Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are structured in Ethereum and even within the Ethereum Classic network, the post seeks to caution investors against potentially risky investments in poorly planned or outright scam ICOs that can result in monumental losses for naive investors.

The post also showcases some examples where the Ethereum Classic community and dev team has performed its due diligence and warned against ill-conceived crowdfunding campaign on the ETC network, noting the different attitudes that the two competing blockchains, ETC and ETH, employ towards the Initial Coin Offering frenzy. The post reads:

As one might expect, ETCDEV will not vouch for coin offerings in the same capacity as the Ethereum Foundation members who signed on as curators for the launch of The DAO crowdsale.

Appcoins Coming to ETC

The Ethereum Classic team sees yesterday’s launch of the Grayscale Ethereum Classic (ETC) Investment Trust, whose shares are the first securities solely invested in and deriving value from the price of ETC , as a possible incentive for developers to run their ICOs on Ethereum Classic’s “immutable chain.”

“If stakeholders profit in a short span of time as a consequence of the launch of the Ethereum Investment Trust, some developers may choose to run their ICOs on the immutable chain, inviting the backing of the ETC nouveau riche,” the post explains.

Ethereum Classic

Developers will be able to kickstart their Initial Coin Offerings through the Emerald Wallet, an official desktop wallet, that is currently being developed by the ETCDEV team.

It will feature an integrated set of tools that can be used to launch ICOs and build custom applications on top of Ethereum Classic blockchain, allowing the Ethereum Classic team to distance itself from said crowdfunding campaigns.

ICO organizers may opt to use Emerald Wallet tools to deliver tokens to backers, though crowdfunding will not be the stated purpose of the software. Taking advantage of these tools for the creation of ETC decentralized apps, startups can issue offerings without ETCDEV having to involve themselves in ICOs.

‘Curb Your ICO Enthusiasm’

Despite this, the Ethereum Classic team does not share the general enthusiasm that is felt towards ICOs and appcoins, citing Barry Silbert, founder of the Digital Currency Group.

Bitcoinist_Digital Currency Group Barry Silbert

During a presentation at the Blockchain Startups Singapore meetup in November 2016, Silbert noted that the lack of legal structure found in those could “attract negative attention from the Securities and Exchange Commission.”

Instead, the team considers “store of value through monetary strategy, internet of things functionality, and smart contracts applications” as the investment merits of ETC.

In the Ethereum space, some developers are voicing concerns regarding recent crowdsales. There exists at present no established framework for investors to assess Ethereum startups’ ICOs, along the lines of a PhD student’s being required to defend their thesis.

The nature of ICOs has made it the perfect pitfall for naive investors who may be enthusiastic about blockchain technology but cannot see through “manipulative crowd sale tactics” often employed by these projects, which often rely on Ethereum and Ethereum Classic blockchains.

The dev team references two ICO hoaxes that took place in the Ethereum Classic blockchain, Unicorn and BorgDAO, the latter of which collecting funds from investors.

Our contention here is that 1) irrational app-coin exuberance and 2) potential SEC intervention should be kept in mind by ETC investors when considering participation in a risky initial coin offering. We do not support disingenuous and manipulative crowdsale tactics, nor do we believe that we have seen the last of hoaxes like the BorgDAO.

Investors should be very cautious when investing in Initial Coin Offerings. Be it on the Ethereum, Ethereum Classic blockchain or any other ‘blockchain.’ ICOs can result in huge losses and some are outright scams.

Bitcoinist advises everyone to perform due diligence and to vet projects and teams carefully before committing your money.

Will we start to see more ICO’s on the Ethereum Classic blockchain? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Twitter

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Dub 07

SibCoin Expands Its Reach to China’s Cryptocurrency Market after Tasting National Success

· April 7, 2017 · 8:15 am

SibСoin, a Dash fork cryptocurrency originating from Siberia has gained substantial traction within its homeland and plans to expand its reach to the neighboring country, China. To Russian nationals, the cryptocurrency is known as ‘Siberian Сhervonets’ (SIB). The platform’s official website has added support for the Chinese language to help stimulate interest among Chinese investors and crypto-enthusiasts.


Created in May 2015, SibCoin was intended to cater to the needs of the Russian-speaking crypto-community and was formed under the title of the ‘People’s Patriotic Project’.

SibCoin gathered massive national adoption amongst traders and enthusiasts, as it offered a seemingly trustworthy alternative to Bitcoin.

Siberian Chervonets (SIB) is a decentralized payment system, free of useless intermediaries. The SibCoin blockchain technology uses a public mathematic algorithm on a trustless network, which stores the information for each transaction. The algorithm makes it possible for information to be safely shared among participants.

The SibCoin cryptocurrency is currently available for live trade on both ‘YoBit’ and ‘Livecoin’ platforms, and most recently it has been added to one of the most reputable trading platforms, Bittrex.

The SibCoin project leader, Ivan Rublev has said that the development team is focusing on two specific areas as they evolve the cryptocurrency’s ecosystem. MasterNode-based services and traditional services (which includes exchanges and payment collection services) will be the two main areas of focus for the SibCoin team.  

The SibCoin community is going to see a lot of feature additions to the platform during the year 2017. SibCoin’s community meetings have grown in scope and size with community interest now extending beyond Russia and Siberia. With the momentum gathered by the development team in Siberia, SibCoin is now looking forward to becoming the pioneering voice for blockchain adoption in all other neighboring countries.

[Note: This is a sponsored article provided by Bitcoin PRBuzz]


Images courtesy of Bitcoin PRBuzz

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Is Ripple Price Being Fueled by Confused Investors?

· April 3, 2017 · 6:00 am

Riding the wave of recent positive news for Ripple, the XRP token is roaring with a 200% price surge over the weekend as the cryptocurrency market is reaching higher highs. But is Ripple for real or is it being fueled by confusion among new investors? 


Is Ripple For Real?

Jokes were abound this weekend as the cryptocurrency industry embraced April Fool’s Day in usual fashion. Meanwhile, Ripple experienced a serious surge with its market cap soaring from $360,000 USD to over $2.3 billion.

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The price of Ripple XRP token experienced a whopping seven-fold increase in the past few days, and easily outperformed recent stalwarts such as Dash, Monero and the SegWit hopeful Litecoin in the past week. Even Bitcoin, which managed to break the $1,100 barrier on news of becoming a legal form of payment in Japan, could not match yesterday’s 200% rise. 

The rise comes amid news of Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ recently joining Ripple’s Interbank Group for Global Payments Based on Distributed Financial Technology.

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“We are pleased to join Ripple’s Global Payments Steering Group,” said Hirofumi Aihara, General Manager, MUFG Digital Innovation Division. “…Collaborating with other members of GPSG, MUFG will contribute to the creation of standards for Ripple’s network.”

Ripple is positioning itself as a cheaper payment network, particularly for large banks and enterprises, with a much higher throughput compared to Bitcoin. CEO Brad Garlinghouse explained that Ripple could rival traditional systems such as Visa with nearly 70K transactions in just 3.7 seconds and at a lower cost than Bitcoin.

However, the token might be setting up for a reality check as some believe the price surge has been fueled by a “misunderstanding.” Critics on Bitcointalk.org reacted to the meteoric rise, pointing out that Ripple, the company, is not the same as the XRP token and its Ripple Consensus ledger.

According to Ripple, its Global Payments Steering Group (GSPG) is where “leading banks are working with Ripple to reduce the time and cost of settlement, while also enabling new types of high-volume, low-value global transactions.”

By coming together to form the GSPG, these banks are laying the foundation for a new payments network, underpinned by Ripple’s solutions and supported by rules and governance for global settlement.

In other words, new demand for the XRP token could merely be speculative at this point as banks would be able to bypass transactions on the Ripple Consensus Ledger with their own Ripple-inspired platforms.

The commentator also noted:

Check the volumes, [Poloniex] currently stands for $150M+ volume, RCL only 20. What now is happening is a pump, driven by people misunderstanding the news.

The Rise and Rise of Cryptocurrencies

Overall, April is getting off to a hot start for cryptocurrencies as the total market capitalization is now a record $27 billion. It has been on an uptrend, particularly accelerating as of late following the rejection of the COIN Bitcoin ETF in mid-March.

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Though Bitcoin price has remained relatively stable oscillating between $900 and $1,200 amid scaling uncertainty, its overall dominance of the market has seen a huge drop from 84% to 68%.

Nevertheless, while the rejection of the first ever ETF might be seen as a setback for Bitcoin to some, the media attention received in the run-up to the decision appears to have attracted new investors to the crypto space as a whole.

What is the real cause for Ripple’s price rise? Is Bitcoin waning dominance a temporary phenomenon? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of coinmarketcap.com, Shutterstock, twitter, MUFG 

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