ScotPound: Scotland urged to launch new digital currency ...

How to make and lose $2b on blockchain

Source: https://www.afr.com/business/energy/how-to-make-and-lose-2-billion-on-blockchain-20181212-h1914w

In the wild world of blockchain pioneers, Power Ledger founder Jemma Green is a rock star.

The former investment banker oversaw the biggest initial coin offering in Australian history, was chosen as EY's fintech entrepreneur of the year, and won an international start-up competition overseen by Sir Richard Branson. She even stepped in as Perth's mayor last year.

Her two-and-half-year-old company promises to revolutionise the global power industry. Power Ledger's blockchain tokens, an unregulated, computer-based form of money, allow individuals to trade electricity between themselves, save money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


Power Ledger founder Jemma Green won the Extreme Tech Challenge in 2018, which was judged at Richard Branson's private island in the Caribbean. Supplied

Green created a virtual currency worth more than $2 billion at its peak. Yet her trading system has a tiny take-up, was rejected by the one big electricity retailer that tested it, and a government-funded trial hasn't met the expectations of some involved.

Over-hyped?
Now, some experienced tech and green-industry figures are posing an awkward question: does Power Ledger epitomise the over-hyping of blockchain?

"I'm a software engineer by training, have been mucking about online for 35-plus years and am an energy geek," says Melbourne green-energy investor Simon Holmes a Court. "I still don't understand what valuable problem they are trying to solve.

"The basic infrastructure to manage transactions at massive scale already exists – [there's] no need to use Blockchain."

Blockchain, which is the basis for Bitcoin and similar currencies, was invented in 2008 by an unknown person. Despite billions invested in the technology, it is unclear if there are any profitable blockchain businesses not directly involved in cryptocurrencies.

"We've seen a bunch of profitable blockchain applications, but all have been focused on obtaining and trading crypto and their profitability is generally linked to prices – think miners, exchanges and wallet providers," says John Henderson, a venture capitalist at AirTree Ventures.

The blockchain frenzy
Part of blockchain's popularity is as much ideological as financial. Encrypted databases spread around the internet, controlled by no one, blockchains represent a technological rebellion against the centralisation of economic power in governments and central banks, whom many hold responsible for global financial crisis.

"Blockchain has been seen as a nirvana – its ideological roots are decentralisation and removal of institutions," says Peter Williams, a partner at Deloitte Consulting who specialises in technology. "The zealots are into self-sovereign ID, everything decentralised and the end of institutions."

Last year, the blockchain enthusiasm drove a global investment wave. Some 1225 initial coin offerings, the blockchain-equivalent of IPOs or sharemarket floats, raised $US7.5 billion through the sale of blockchain tokens or coins, much of it from individual investors, according to the ICO Data website. The technology was predicted to change dozens of industries, from shipping to healthcare.

In Australia, Green was at the forefront of the movement. Her company promised to apply blockchain's anti-authority ethos to challenging big electricity monopolies.

@elonmusk I am told you might be interested in us at @PowerLedger_io we do blockchain energy for democratisation of power & citizen utilies

— Dr Jemma Green (@msjemmagreen) September 15, 2017
Green had been in London for 11 years. After starting as a trading assistant at the Royal Bank of Scotland, she joined JP Morgan, where she assessed the environmental and social risk of new loans and shares.

Going places in Perth
In 2013 she returned to Perth, where her father had bred and trained racehorses. She began to ascend the city's business and social hierarchy.

Green enrolled in a PhD at Curtin University, consulted under the brand The Green Enterprise, and ran for the City of Perth council. She joined the advisory board of One Million Women, a female climate change group based in Sydney.

Within four years she was deputy mayor and head of one of the Perth's hottest start-ups. She was tweeting Elon Musk, trying to get him interested. (He didn't reply.) "The motto that I live by is 'anything's possible'," she said at the time.

Why @elonmusk Has His Eye On This Aussie #Blockchain #Energy Company @PowerLedger_io #ICO #POWRtoken

— Crypto Guru 2018 (@ICO_Market_Guru) October 6, 2017
Green had hatched a plan worthy of her motto: cash in on the bitcoin boom by creating one billion virtual-currency tokens.

Her pitch was almost impossible for outsiders to understand. The ambition was unmistakable.

"The Power Ledger Platform is a trustless, transparent and interoperable energy trading platform that supports an ever-expanding suite of energy applications, with an exchangeable frictionless energy trading token, Sparkz," Power Ledger's 28-page company manifesto said.

Sounds like an IPO
It sounded like an IPO. It wasn't. Instead, the tokens gave investors the right to use Power Ledger's technology at some point in the future. The weren't entitled to any profits.


In Power Ledger's market individuals use blockchain tokens to buy and sell electricity generated from solar panels. Vicky Hughson

Most companies raising capital use stockbrokers or bankers. Power Ledger turned to what are known in the blockchain world as "bounty hunters".

One-and-a-half million POWR tokens were set aside for individuals to promote the sale on social media. Dozens of newspaper and blog articles were published. The Huffington Post profiled the company and compared blockchain with the early internet.

Articles exaggerated Power Ledger's achievements. The company was often described as operating a retail electricity market, and sounded liked an eBay or Amazon for solar power. In reality, it was building the technology and didn't have a commercial market operating.

Twitter was flooded with posts. Some claimed Musk had asked the company for advice. Fake accounts were rewarded with POWR tokens for their promotional work.

"Some of our bounty group were professional bounty hunters chasing tokens because it's what they do," Power Ledger said in a post a few weeks after the token sale. "Some were bots reporting an astounding 5000 likes of our social media output in a single 24-hour period."

Transparency needed
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission disapproves of people spruiking investments without disclosing their interest.

"Certainly in my view it is not good practice for individuals to be promoting ICOs and receiving a benefit if they are not transparent about the benefits they are receiving," says John Price, an ASIC commissioner.

Peter Williams, the Deloitte partner, goes further. These are "classic market manipulation techniques," he says.


Some experienced tech and green-industry figures are posing an awkward question: does Power Ledger epitomise the over-hyping of blockchain?

Asked why Power Ledger used bounty hunters, Green says she isn't familiar with the phrase. "I don't know what you are talking about," she says.

Later, in an email, Greens says Power Ledger, unlike some other blockchain companies, works hard to be transparent. "We ran the ICO through a corporate structure, through our proprietary limited business," she says. "We have tax exposure. We had a proof of concept before going to market. And we did all of those things because we realise we need to bring legitimacy to our space and the ICO and crypto space more generally."

Perfect timing
In almost perfect timing, Power Ledger raised $34 million a couple of months before bitcoin peaked. No other Australian blockchain company was as popular.

Initially, the tokens were a great investment. Sold by Power Ledger for US8.38¢ each, within five weeks they were trading at $US1.79. In a year and half, a company with fewer than 30 staff had created $2.4 billion in wealth.

Tokens allocated to Green, other private investors and key staff were worth $360 million. The former traders' assistant had been hit by what is known in the tech circles as the "money truck".

Green became a bona fide tech celebrity. She turned up at the World Economic Forum in Davos to help launch the Global Blockchain Business Council. EY named Green as one of its entrepreneurs of the year.

The accounting firm had fast-tracked her through the process. Contenders in other categories were required to go through applications, interviews, presentations over many months. Green's name was simply forwarded to the judges with a few others.

A market that doesn't exist
The adulation was based on Power Ledger's home-to-home trading idea, which it says is "perfect for any household, office or retailer connected to the electricity grid".


Blockchain CEO David Martin with chairman Jemma Green at their Perth office. The company issued blockchain tokens worth $2.4 billion at their peak. Trevor Collens

But the system doesn't operate outside a few pre-established trials that cover a tiny number of people. The low-cost of electricity, the ubiquity of supply and efficient exiting payment systems pose significant obstacles, critics say.

There is no way to sign up to Power Ledger's trading system. Electricity companies are needed – the Power Ledger website urges consumers to lobby them – but Origin Energy carried out a simulation and decided not to go ahead.

Asked how many buildings around the world use Power Ledger's system, Green says, "I don't know exactly off the top of my head".

Her CEO, David Martin, says the number is less than 100. All are trial sites, except for three Perth apartment buildings that were part of Green's PhD thesis. "We have never said that anyone can get on and start trading," she says.

Uneconomic trading
The government has provided $2.6 million to test the system out on some 40 houses in Fremantle. The project is billed as the first electricity market where residents can set their own prices. It is a chance for Power Ledger to fulfil its core promise to generate higher prices for solar power producers and lower prices for consumers – the classic example of an efficient market.

One participant, who asked not to be named, says the trading system isn't worth using. A former manager in the energy industry, she her own solar panels and electric car. She sells electricity to the grid for 7¢ per kilowatt, and buys it for 26¢ per kilowatt.

Using Power Ledger, she expected to trade electricity with her neighbours between 7¢ and 26¢, saving both sides money. Power Ledger takes a cut of about half a cent a kilowatt.

But the local electricity retailer and power grid, Synergy and Western Power, charge a connection fee of $3 a day to trial participants. The overhead makes trading uneconomic for her.


Initially, the tokens were a great investment. Sold by Power Ledger for US8.38¢ each, within five weeks they were trading at $US1.79. In a year and half, a company with fewer than 30 staff had created $2.4 billion in wealth.

"I was quite disappointed because I find the idea of energy trading very exiting and I really wanted to experiment with it," she says.

The project's manager, Karla Fox-Reynolds of Curtin University, says other houses are buying and selling. "They are feeling empowered and enabled to participate in the energy market," she says. The project is advertising for more recruits.

'The road is not always straight'
Any criticism about Power Ledger's small take-up rate is unfair, Green says, because it is such a young company. "The road is not always straight," she says. "I think the value of it over time will be immeasurable."

Even some blockchain boosters are sceptical. Fred Schebesta, who owns a cryptocurrency broker, says he can't see what would drive the token price up.

"I think that they will need millions or hundreds of thousands [of customers] to be viable or really take off," he says. "The value of the token holders is not well aligned to the value of the business."

Now the bitcoin boom seems to have passed, many tech industry leaders are questioning if the ICOs were an investment fad that shifted wealth rather than created it.

​"The ICO craze is and was way worse than the dot-com boom, where capital raised was at least a share of the upside and was subject to regulation," says Williams, the Deloitte partner.

After spectacularly peaking in January, POWR tokens crashed with the rest of the bitcoin market. Today they trade around 6.5¢, about 20 per cent below their issue price.


Skeptics question if blockchain is needed in the retail electricity industry, where big networks have scale, ubiquity and easy payment options. Supplied

The company continues to reward bloggers who promote the virtual currency. One of the boosters is a price-comparison website, Finder.com.au, whose owner invests in cryptocurrencies.

"Power Ledger is an ambitious project but one that nonetheless has the potential to transform the energy industry around the world," one of the site's contributors, Tim Falk, wrote last month.

Falk, who recently wrote about 2018's top carpet cleaners, has punted on POWR tokens himself.



submitted by InfiniteAttempt to PowerLedger [link] [comments]

MeWe: A trip report

Among the more frequently mentioned G+ alternatives at the Google+ Mass Migration community, and others, is MeWe with over 250 mentions. The site bills itself as "The Next-Gen Social Network" and the "anti-Facebook": "No Ads, No Political Bias, No Spyware. NO BS. It is headed by professed Libertarian CEO Mark Weinstein.
As the site reveals no public user-generated content to non-members, it's necessary to create an account in order to get a full impression. I thought I'd provide an overview based on recent explorations.
This report leads of with background on the company, though readers may find the report and analysis of specific groups on the site of interest.

Leadership

Founder & CEO Mark Weinstein.
Co-Founder & Chief Scientist, Jonathan Wolfe (no longer with company).
Weinstein previously founded SuperFamily and SuperFriends, "at the turn of the millennium". Weinstein's MeWe biography lists articles published by The Mirror (UK), Huffington Post, USA Today, InfoSecurity Magazine, Dark Reading, and the Nation. His media appearances include MarketWatch, PBS, Fox News, and CNN. He's also the author of several personal-success books.
His Crunchbase bio is a repeat of the MeWe content.

Advisory Board

Ownership & Investment

MeWe is the dba of Sgrouples, a private for-profit early-stage venture company based in Los Angeles, though with a Mountain View HQ and mailing address, 11-50 employees, with $10m in funding over five rounds, and a $20m valuation as of 2016.
Sgrouples, Inc., dba MeWe Trust & Safety - Legal Policy c/o Fenwick West 801 California Street Mountain View, CA 94041
Crunchbase Profile.
Founded: 2012 (source)
Secured $1.2M in seed funding in 2014.
2016 valuation: $20m (source]
Backers:
Despite the business address, the company claims to be based in Los Angeles County, California and is described by the Los Angeles Business Journal as a Culver City, CA, company.

Business

Policy

In an August 6, 2018 Twitter post, Weinstein promotes MeWe writing:
Do you have friends still on Facebook? Share this link with them about Facebook wanting their banking information - tell them to move to MeWe now! No Ads. No Spyware. No Political Agenda. No Bias Algorithms. No Shadow Banning. No Facial Recognition.
MeWe provide several policy-related links on the site:
Highlights of these follow.

Privacy

The privacy policy addresses:

Terms of Service

The ToS addresses:
Effective: November 6, 2018.

FAQ

The FAQ addresses:

Values

This emphasises that people are social cratures and private people by right. The service offers the power of self expression under an umbrella of safety. It notes that our innermost thoughts require privacy.
Under "We aspire...":
MeWe is here to empower and enrich your world. We challenge the status quo by making privacy, respect, and safety the foundations of an innovatively designed, easy-to-use social experience.
Totalling 182 words.

Privacy Bill of Rights

A ten-item statement of principles (possibly inspired by another document, it might appear):
  1. You own your personal information & content. It is explicitly not ours.
  2. You will never receive a targeted advertisement or 3rd party content based on what you do or say online. We think that's creepy.
  3. You see every post in timeline order from your friends, family & groups. We do not manipulate, filter, or change the order of your content or what you see.
  4. Permissions & privacy are your rights. You control them.
  5. You control who can access your content.
  6. You control what, if anything, others can see in member searches.
  7. Your privacy means we do not share your personal information with anyone.
  8. Your emojis are for you and your friends. We do not monitor or mine your data.
  9. Your face is your business. We do not use facial recognition technology.
  10. You have the right to delete your account and take your content with you at any time.

Press

There are a few mentions of MeWe in the press, some listed on the company's website, others via web search.

Self-reported articles

The following articles are linked directly from MeWe's Press page:
The page also lists a "Privacy Revolution Required Reading" list of 20 articles all addressing Facebook privacy gaffes in the mainstream press (Wired, TechCrunch, Fortune, Gizmodo, The Guardian, etc.).
There are further self-reported mentions in several of the company's PR releases over the years.

Other mentions

A DuckDuckGo search produces several other press mentions, including:

Technology

This section is a basic rundown of the user-visible site technology.

Mobile Web

The site is not natively accessible from a mobile Web browser as it is overlayed with a promotion for the mobile application instead. Selecting "Desktop View" in most mobile browsers should allow browser-based access.

Mobile App

There are both Android and iOS apps for MeWe. I've used neither of these, though the App store entries note:
Crunchbase cites 209,220 mobile downloads over the past 30 days (via Apptopia), an 80.78% monthly growth rate, from Google Play.

Desktop Web

Either selecting "View Desktop" or navigating with a Desktop browser to https://www.mewe.com your are presented with a registration screen, with the "About", "Privacy Bill of Rights", "MeWe Challenge", and a language selector across the top of the page. Information requested are first and last name, phone or email, and a password. Pseudonymous identities are permitted, though this isn't noted on the login screen. Returning members can use the "Member Log In" button.
The uMatrix Firefox extension reveals no third-party content: all page elements are served from mewe.com, img.mewe.com, cdn.mewe.com, or ws.mewe.com. (In subsequent browsing, you may find third-party plugins from, for example, YouTube, for videos, or Giphy, for animated GIFs.)
The web front-end is nginx. The site uses SSL v3, issued by DigiCert Inc. to Sgrouples, Inc.

Onboarding

The onboarding experience is stark. There is no default content presented. A set of unidentified icons spans the top of the screen, these turn out to be Home, Chats, Groups, Pages, and Events. New users have to, somehow, find groups or people to connect with, and there's little guidance as to how to do this.

Interface

Generally there is a three panel view, with left- and right-hand sidebars of largely navigational or status information, and a central panel with main content. There are also pop-up elements for chats, an omnipresent feature of the site.
Controls display labels on some devices and/or resolutions. Controls do not provide tooltips for navigational aid.

Features

Among the touted features of MeWe are:

Community

A key aspect of any social network is its community. Some of the available or ascertained information on this follows.

Size

Weinstein claims a "million+ following inside MeWe.com" on Twitter.
The largest visible groups appear to have a maximum of around 15,000 members , for "Awesome gifs". "Clean Comedy" rates 13,350, and the largest open political groups, 11,000+ members.
This compares to Google+ which has a staggering, though Android-registrations-inflated 3.3 billion profiles, and 7.9 million communities, though the largest of these come in at under 10 million members. It's likely that MeWe's membership is on the whole more more active than Google+'s, where generally-visible posting activity was limited to just over 9% of all profiles, and the active user base was well under 1% of the total nominal population.

Active Users

MeWe do not publish active users (e.g., MUA / monthly active users) statistics.

Groups

MeWe is principally a group-oriented discussion site -- interactions take place either between individuals or within group contexts. Virtually all discovery is group-oriented. The selection and dynamics of groups on the site will likely strongly affect user experience, so exploring the available groups and their characteristics is of interest.
"MeWe has over 60,000 open groups" according to its FAQ.
The Open groups -- visible to any registered MeWe user, though not to the general public Web -- are browsable, though sections and topics must be expanded to view the contents: an overview isn't immediately accessible. We provide a taste here.
A selection of ten featured topics spans the top of the browser. As I view these, they are:
Specific groups may appear in multiple categories.
The top Groups within these topics have, variously, 15,482, 7,738, 15,482 (dupe), 7,745, 8,223, 8,220, 1,713, 9,527, 2,716, and 1,516 members. Listings scroll at length -- the Music topic has 234 Groups, ranging in size from 5 to 5,738 members, with a median of 59, mean of 311.4, and a 90%ile of 743.5.
Below this is a grid of topics, 122 in all, ranging from Activism to Wellness, and including among them. A selected sample of these topics, with top groups listed members in (parens), follows:
To be clear: whilst I've not included every topic, I've sampled a majority of them above, and listed not an arbitrary selection, but the top few Groups under each topic.

Google+ Groups

The Google Plus expats group seems the most active of these by far.

Political Groups

It's curious that MeWe make a specific point in their FAQ that:
At MeWe we have absolutely no political agenda and we have a very straightforward Terms of Service. MeWe is for all law-abiding people everywhere in the world, regardless of political, ethnic, religious, sexual, and other preferences.
There are 403 political groups on MeWe. I won't list them all here, but the first 100 or so give a pretty clear idea of flavour. Again, membership is in (parentheses). Note that half the total political Groups memberships are in the first 21 groups listed here, the first 6 are 25% of the total.
  1. Donald J. Trump 2016 - Present (11486)
  2. The Conservative's Hangout (8345)
  3. Qanon Follow The White Rabbit (5600)
  4. Drain The Swamp (4978)
  5. Libertarians (4528)
  6. United We Stand Trump2020 (4216)
  7. The Right To Self Defense (3757)
  8. Alternative Media (3711)
  9. Hardcore Conservative Patriots for Trump (3192)
  10. Bastket Of Deplorables4Trump! (3032)
  11. Return of the Republic (2509)
  12. Infowars Chat Room Unofficial (2159)
  13. Donald Trump Our President 2017-2025 (2033)
  14. Berners for Progress (1963)
  15. Sean Hannity Fans (1901)
  16. The American Conservative (1839)
  17. I Am The NRA (1704)
  18. Tucker Carlson Fox News (1645)
  19. We Love Donald Trump (1611)
  20. MAGA - Make America Great Again (1512)
  21. Q (1396)
  22. ClashDaily.com (1384)
  23. news from the front (1337)
  24. Basket of Deplorables (1317)
  25. Payton's Park Bench (1283)
  26. Convention of States (1282)
  27. Britons For Brexit (1186)
  28. MoJo 5.0 Radio (1180)
  29. MeWe Free Press (1119)
  30. The Constitutionally Elite (1110)
  31. Libertarian (1097)
  32. WOMEN FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP (1032)
  33. AMERICANS AGAINST ISIS and OTHER ENEMIES (943)
  34. #WalkAway Campaign (894)
  35. ALEX JONES (877)
  36. The Lion Is Awake ! (854)
  37. We Support Donald Trump! (810)
  38. The Stratosphere Lounge (789)
  39. TRUMP-USA-HANDS OFF OUR PRESIDENT (767)
  40. Official Tea Party USA (749)
  41. Mojo50 Jackholes (739)
  42. Yes Scotland (697)
  43. "WE THE DEPLORABLE" - MOVE ON SNOWFLAKE! (688)
  44. Judge Jeanine Pirro Fans (671)
  45. Anarcho-Capitalism (658)
  46. Ted Cruz for President (650)
  47. No Lapdog Media (647)
  48. Q Chatter (647)
  49. Daily Brexit (636)
  50. Tucker Carlson Fox News (601)
  51. The Trumps Storm Group (600)
  52. QAnon-Patriots WWG1WGA (598)
  53. 100% American (569)
  54. Ladies For Donald Trump (566)
  55. Deep State (560)
  56. In the Name of Liberty (557)
  57. Material Planet (555)
  58. WikiUnderground (555)
  59. Trump NRA Free Speech Patriots on MeWe Gab.ai etc (546)
  60. Magna Carta Group (520)
  61. Constitutional Conservatives (506)
  62. Question Everything (503)
  63. Conspiracy Research (500)
  64. Bill O'Reilly Fans (481)
  65. Conservative Misfit's (479)
  66. Canadian politics (478)
  67. Anarchism (464)
  68. HARDCORE DEPLORABLES (454)
  69. Deplorable (450)
  70. Tampa Bay Trump Club (445)
  71. UK Politics (430)
  72. Bongino Fan Page (429)
  73. Radical Conservatives (429)
  74. RESIST THE RESISTANCE (419)
  75. The Deplorables (409)
  76. America's Freedom Fighters (401)
  77. Politically Incorrect & Proud (399)
  78. CONSERVATIVES FOR AMERICA ! (385)
  79. Political satire (383)
  80. RISE OF THE RIGHT (371)
  81. UK Sovereignty,Independence,Democracy -Everlasting (366)
  82. The Patriots Voting Coalition (359)
  83. End The Insanity (349)
  84. Coming American Civil War! (345)
  85. Constitutional Conservatives (343)
  86. United Nations Watch (342)
  87. A Revival Of The Critical Thinking Union (337)
  88. The New Libertarian (335)
  89. Libertarian Party (official ) (333)
  90. DDS United (Duterte Die-hard Supporters) (332)
  91. American Conservative Veterans (331)
  92. Anarchism/Agorism/Voluntaryism (328)
  93. America Needs Donald Trump (326)
  94. The UKIP Debating Society (321)
  95. Coalition For Trump (310)
  96. Egalitarianism (306)
  97. FRIENDS THAT LIKE JILL STEIN AND THE GREEN PARTY (292)
  98. 2nd Amendment (287)
  99. Never Forget #SethRich (286)
  100. Green Party Supporters 2020 (283)
It seems there is relatively little representation from the left wing, or even the centre, of the political spectrum. A case-insensitive match for "liberal" turns up:
Mainstream political parties are little represented, though again, the balance seems skewed searching on "(democrat|republic|gop)":
The terms "left" and "right" provide a few matches, not all strictly political-axis aligned:
Socialism and Communism also warrant a few mentions:
And there are some references to green, laboulabor parties:

Conclusion

Whilst there may not be a political agenda, there does appear to be at least a slight political bias to the site. And a distinctive skew on many other topical subjects.
Those seeking new homes online may wish to take this into account.

Updates

submitted by dredmorbius to plexodus [link] [comments]

EU Banks Must Shun Bitcoin Until Rules in Place, EBA Says

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-07-04/eu-banks-must-shun-bitcoin-until-rules-in-place-eba-says.html
By Ben Moshinsky and Jim Brunsden 2014-07-04T15:54:17Z
The European Commission signaled it will try to impose rules on virtual currencies such as Bitcoin after the bloc’s banking regulator ordered lenders to shun them.
“It’s imperative to move quickly on this issue,” Chantal Hughes, a spokeswoman for Financial Services Commissioner Michel Barnier, said by e-mail today. “The potential for money laundering and terrorist financing is too serious to ignore.”
The Commission, the EU’s executive arm, moved after the European Banking Authority said banks shouldn’t buy, hold or sell virtual currencies until regulators develop safeguards to protect their integrity. The watchdog identified more than 70 risks linked to the currencies ranging from identity theft to the possibility hackers could target a trading platform.
Virtual currencies have come under increased scrutiny from regulators and prosecutors around the globe. Mt. Gox, once the world’s biggest Bitcoin exchange, filed for bankruptcy in Japan earlier this year amid claims it lost 850,000 Bitcoins. China’s central bank barred financial firms from handling virtual currency transactions last year.
“Regulators have become alert to the potential for fraud and disruption,” Richard Reid, a research fellow for finance and regulation at the University of Dundee, Scotland, said by e-mail. “Such attention from regulators is bound to curb the growth of markets such as Bitcoin.”
The EBA called on the EU to devise rules for trading platforms and start groups to oversee each internet currency to ensure that no individual can manipulate a currency. The EU should consider extending the scope of anti-money laundering law to better cover virtual currencies, according to the EBA.
‘Substantial’ Rules
“The EBA is of the view that a regulatory approach to addressing the risks it has identified would require a substantial body of regulation,” the regulator warned.
Widespread use of the currencies could also make it harder for central banks to steer the economy by making the effects of monetary policy harder to predict, the EBA noted.
Bitcoins emerged in 2009 out of a paper authored under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. Since then, retailers selling items from Gummi Bears to luxury homes have started accepting Bitcoins, and new companies have begun offering ways to ease its use as a payment system.
The currency gained credibility after law enforcement and securities agencies said in U.S. Senate hearings that it could be a legitimate means of exchange. The price of Bitcoins topped $1,000 as speculators anticipated broader use of digital money.
Not ‘Helpful’
The price has since dropped to about $629.98, including a 1.8 percent decline today, on Bitstamp, an online exchange based in Slovenia.
The EBA’s announcement is “not very helpful” and may only deter individual users of virtual currencies, according to Simon Dixon, a director of the U.K. Digital Currency Association, a group representing the country’s virtual currency industry.
“Banks are not engaging with digital currencies yet as it is a person-to-person network that operates outside of banking,” he said by e-mail. “The more likely result of the announcement is to scare people from using digital currencies rather than banks.”
submitted by wholecoin to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

Buoyant bitcoin stirs crypto-bubble fears

This is the best tl;dr I could make, original reduced by 81%. (I'm a bot)
LONDON - Bitcoin and other "Cryptocurrencies" are big money, virtually as big as Goldman Sachs and Royal Bank of Scotland combined.
The price of a single bitcoin hit an all-time high of above $3,500 this week, dragging up the value of hundreds of newer, smaller digital rivals in its wake.
At the start of 2017, the total value - or market cap - of all cryptocurrencies in existence was about $17.5 billion, with bitcoin making up almost 90 percent of that, according to industry data firm CoinMarketCap.
Bitcoin Cash, a clone of bitcoin that was split off from the original last week by a rival group of developers, was valued at more than $12 billion less than 24 hours after it had started trading.
That's partly down to investor sentiment, but also because the start-ups issuing new coins in ICOs generally collect money in a more liquid cryptocurrency, such as bitcoin or, more commonly, Ethereum's ether - the second-biggest cryptocurrency in total value.
Smaller cryptocurrencies such as Dash, Monero and Z-cash are seen as having real value by some users because they offer an even higher level of anonymity than the likes of bitcoin.
Summary Source | FAQ | Feedback | Top keywords: cryptocurrency#1 Bitcoin#2 value#3 currency#4 ICO#5
Post found in /Bitcoin, /neutralnews, /Economics and /BitcoinAll.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
submitted by autotldr to autotldr [link] [comments]

Subreddit Stats: CryptoCurrency top posts from 2016-03-26 to 2017-03-25 06:16 PDT

Period: 363.66 days
Submissions Comments
Total 1000 5933
Rate (per day) 2.75 16.28
Unique Redditors 374 1711
Combined Score 21623 13093

Top Submitters' Top Submissions

  1. 1930 points, 78 submissions: Coinosphere
    1. Bitcoin expected to become part of everyday life in the Caribbean within eighteen months as banks abandon the region (70 points, 11 comments)
    2. Marijuana now legal in eight more US States while vendors get more bitcoin options (66 points, 0 comments)
    3. Bitfinex hacked, halts trading, deposits, and withdrawals - 119,756 BTC lost so far with no insurance (60 points, 5 comments)
    4. Hacker holds San Francisco railway to ransom, demands 100 bitcoins (59 points, 8 comments)
    5. South Korea plans national digital currency using a Blockchain (52 points, 6 comments)
    6. Santander says ‘Yes to bitcoin’ in Brazil (50 points, 3 comments)
    7. Ukraine to be the first government to integrate blockchain technology, targets corruption (48 points, 1 comment)
    8. 50% of all consumers would use bank alternatives, including bitcoin, as Bank irrelevance grows (46 points, 0 comments)
    9. Core Bitcoin developer uncovers possible plot by ChainAnchor to force AML onto Bitcoin (46 points, 9 comments)
    10. Seafile replaces Paypal with bitcoin after Paypal privacy shenanigans (46 points, 0 comments)
  2. 930 points, 39 submissions: helmsk
    1. Countdown: Bitcoin Will Be a Legal Method of Payment in Japan in Two Months (88 points, 2 comments)
    2. Bitcoin Transactions Declared VAT-Exempt in Norway (85 points, 3 comments)
    3. Zeronet Wants to Replace the Dark Web by Marrying Bitcoin to Bittorrent Over Tor (46 points, 3 comments)
    4. Central Bank of Nigeria Says ‘We Can’t Stop Bitcoin’ (44 points, 6 comments)
    5. New Image Hosting Service Pays Thousands of Uploaders in Bitcoin (43 points, 4 comments)
    6. Coinbase Exits as Hawaii Requires Bitcoin Companies to Hold Fiat Reserves (39 points, 7 comments)
    7. Europe Lays Out Roadmap to Restrict Payments in Cash and Cryptocurrencies (35 points, 1 comment)
    8. One of These 5 Hyperinflating Economies Could Adopt Bitcoin in 2017 (32 points, 6 comments)
    9. Polish Bitcoin Adoption Escalating with Strong Ecosystem (30 points, 1 comment)
    10. A Look At Bitcoin Bubbles, When Will the Next One Be? (25 points, 6 comments)
  3. 846 points, 36 submissions: e-ok
    1. Europe Will Have Power to Ban Blockchain Tech in January 2018 (51 points, 20 comments)
    2. Bitcoin Projects on Github Surpass 10,000 (47 points, 3 comments)
    3. Italy's Largest Taxi Fleet Accepts Bitcoin (46 points, 2 comments)
    4. Bitcoin Symbol Left Out of Unicode's Latest Version (42 points, 4 comments)
    5. Malta's Prime Minister Says Europe Should Become the Bitcoin Continent (40 points, 3 comments)
    6. SEC Rejects Rule Change for Bitcoin ETF (32 points, 0 comments)
    7. Bitcoin Price Poised for a Breakout, Technical Analysis Shows (31 points, 5 comments)
    8. ECB to EU: Tighter Regulations, Less Anonymity on Digital Currencies (29 points, 8 comments)
    9. OpenBazaar 2.0 Now Running on Tor Network (27 points, 0 comments)
    10. Trump's Trade War With China Could Boost Chinese Bitcoin Demand (27 points, 8 comments)
  4. 801 points, 39 submissions: Posternut
    1. ‘Decentralized Reddit’ Steemit Awards $1.3 Million to Users (48 points, 15 comments)
    2. IBM Invests $200M Into Blockchain and IoT Research at German Headquarters (45 points, 2 comments)
    3. Bitcoin Price Rally Rages on, Market Cap Passes $10Bn USD (34 points, 0 comments)
    4. Apple Tells Jaxx To Remove Dashpay (31 points, 32 comments)
    5. Secret Chinese Bitcoin Mines Are Mining Millions (31 points, 4 comments)
    6. A Decentralized World Has No Kings (29 points, 0 comments)
    7. China's Social Security Fund to Use Blockchain Technology (28 points, 3 comments)
    8. FBI Director: 'There's No Such Thing As Absolute Privacy’ (28 points, 4 comments)
    9. Kim Dotcom’s Mega & Bitcoin ‘Baby’ Will Be Born This January (28 points, 5 comments)
    10. BitPay Launches Loadable Visa (27 points, 0 comments)
  5. 784 points, 35 submissions: CryptoCurrencyNews
    1. Libertarian City Liberstad in Norway is Moving Forward Using Bitcoin as Primary Currency (67 points, 8 comments)
    2. What Is the Flippening? (53 points, 16 comments)
    3. Only 807 People Have Declared Bitcoin for Tax Purposes According to IRS (40 points, 12 comments)
    4. Storj to Migrate Decentralized Storage Service to Ethereum Blockchain (40 points, 5 comments)
    5. Darknet Marketplace AlphaBay Will Enable Ethereum Payments Soon (35 points, 14 comments)
    6. The Trump Administration is Buying Into Blockchain Tech (35 points, 5 comments)
    7. Coinbase Receives Approval To Trade Ether and Litecoin in New York (32 points, 2 comments)
    8. Bitcoin's Price Just Finished its First Month Above $1,000 (29 points, 1 comment)
    9. Chinese Central Bank Requiring Extreme Customer Verifications at Exchanges (29 points, 5 comments)
    10. The EU is Now Targeting “Unpermissioned” Blockchains (29 points, 10 comments)
  6. 633 points, 35 submissions: twigwam
    1. Creator of the JavaScript language and early Internet pioneer plans blockchain-based digital ad platform on the Ethereum network (40 points, 18 comments)
    2. NYTimes on Ethereum... (37 points, 15 comments)
    3. The Disaster that is Bitcoin (35 points, 20 comments)
    4. Bitcoin is a Highly Centralized Network, Says Harvard Researcher - CCN (31 points, 14 comments)
    5. Gavin: Ethereum will outgrow Bitcoin at this pace. (28 points, 9 comments)
    6. The Amount of Self-Proclaimed Ethereum Experts Surpasses 3,000 On LinkedIn (25 points, 8 comments)
    7. [The Economist] Ethereum: One blockchain to rule them all? - talk with Vitalik Buterin (25 points, 0 comments)
    8. How the blockchain will radically transform the economy | Bettina Warburg (22 points, 9 comments)
    9. Vitalik Buterin to Debut Ethereum Scaling Paper at Devcon - CoinDesk (22 points, 7 comments)
    10. [Coinbase] "is convinced that public blockchains and cryptocurrencies would eventually produce greater innovation, just as the open Internet has changed society more than private intranets have." - Forbes in-depth article (20 points, 0 comments)
  7. 522 points, 20 submissions: olivercarding
    1. Bitcoin Activity in India Has Doubled Since the Banknote Ban (58 points, 0 comments)
    2. Apple Approves Steem, Lisk and Digicash for App Store; Rejects Ethereum Classic (57 points, 10 comments)
    3. Bitcoin Has Many Fans at Amazon According to Purse CEO Andrew Lee (50 points, 5 comments)
    4. $5 Worth of Bitcoin Gets You Internet ‘For Life’ on the Darknet (36 points, 7 comments)
    5. 4 Monero Features That Enable Better Privacy Than Bitcoin (35 points, 0 comments)
    6. Bitcoin is Eating the Entire Online Gambling Industry (31 points, 2 comments)
    7. Report Estimates There are More Than 10 Million Bitcoin Holders Worldwide (28 points, 7 comments)
    8. Bitcoin Dominance Index Approaches 90% as Ethereum and Steem Decline (25 points, 4 comments)
    9. Singapore’s Status Wants to Bring Ethereum to Every Mobile Device (25 points, 0 comments)
    10. Slock.It Says 'The DAO's Journey is Over' (23 points, 0 comments)
  8. 513 points, 21 submissions: _CapR_
    1. Polls suggest the Pirate Party who support Bitcoins as legal tender may win Saturday's election in Iceland (48 points, 3 comments)
    2. ALERT: Apple just approved two more scam wallets, please help reporting them - (/Bitcoin x-post) (41 points, 0 comments)
    3. War On Cash Intensifies: Citibank To Stop Accepting Cash At Some Branches (40 points, 3 comments)
    4. Russian Authorities: Bitcoin Poses No Threat, Won’t Be Banned (36 points, 5 comments)
    5. The Govt. Realized Bitcoin Could Not Be Shut down, Says U.S. Federal Prosecutor - CryptoCoinsNews (36 points, 7 comments)
    6. Saudis, China dump treasuries; foreign banks liquidate a record $346 billion in US paper (33 points, 2 comments)
    7. IRS Fail: Treasury Audit Says it Can't Manage Virtual Currencies - Bitcoin News (32 points, 2 comments)
    8. Bitcoin Is Real Money, Judge Rules in J.P. Morgan Hack (31 points, 0 comments)
    9. Massive scams like OneCoin harm all of crypto & can increase bad regs - help me make a letter on GitHub to send to enforcement agencies (29 points, 9 comments)
    10. Deploy is the fastest and easiest way to create an OpenBazaar store that will stay up 24/7, auto-update, and operate securely. (27 points, 0 comments)
  9. 365 points, 20 submissions: jholmes91
    1. Monero Testing $10, Releases Official Wallet (39 points, 1 comment)
    2. Litecoin Creator: I think there's a General Confusion that SegWit Signaling is a Vote (28 points, 2 comments)
    3. Open-source Cold Storage Guide for Bitcoin in the Works! (27 points, 1 comment)
    4. One in Five Users May Abandon Bitcoin Because of Privacy Concerns (24 points, 19 comments)
    5. Jaxx Wallet Set to Integrate DASH This Week (23 points, 4 comments)
    6. IRS Summons Coinbase, but the Bitcoin Exchange Fights Back (22 points, 2 comments)
    7. New OpenBazaar Release Provides Altcoin Integration (21 points, 12 comments)
    8. Russia's Ministry of Finance Wants to Legalize Bitcoin (21 points, 0 comments)
    9. Monero Appreciation Intensifies on Darknet Adoption (20 points, 7 comments)
    10. Monero Attracts Mainstream Media After ZCash Decline & Controversial Launch (18 points, 0 comments)
  10. 355 points, 17 submissions: coin_news
    1. Major Korean Bank to launch bitcoin-backed remittance service (40 points, 1 comment)
    2. Experts say Scotland should adopt blockchain technology, or risk losing tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions in earnings (32 points, 1 comment)
    3. Tumblers and unregulated wallet providers are the target of global cybercrime conference (30 points, 8 comments)
    4. Gemini launches daily bitcoin auctions to provide better price discovery (27 points, 0 comments)
    5. U.S. Department of Homeland Security funds four blockchain companies developing new cyber security technology (27 points, 1 comment)
    6. Deloitte boosts blockchain adoption by installing a bitcoin ATM in their Toronto office (25 points, 0 comments)
    7. DC attorneys suggest Federal Reserve actively embrace and utilize blockchain technology (24 points, 2 comments)
    8. House of Lords told Bank of England's digital currency is 'some way off' (24 points, 1 comment)
    9. 75% of corporate treasurers in Africa and Latin America interested in blockchain solutions (21 points, 0 comments)
    10. Public blockchains gaining acceptance at Bank of Japan’s Payment and Settlement Forum (17 points, 0 comments)

Top Commenters

  1. nugymmer (404 points, 207 comments)
  2. trancephorm (289 points, 67 comments)
  3. SeemedGood (132 points, 53 comments)
  4. indiamikezulu (91 points, 55 comments)
  5. kingofthejaffacakes (88 points, 22 comments)
  6. jwinterm (87 points, 32 comments)
  7. antiprosynthesis (83 points, 43 comments)
  8. nagalim (80 points, 28 comments)
  9. phor2zero (77 points, 13 comments)
  10. humbrie (76 points, 33 comments)
  11. RawlzSec (75 points, 17 comments)
  12. thegauntlet (73 points, 23 comments)
  13. MasterMined710 (70 points, 44 comments)
  14. wolffang1 (68 points, 39 comments)
  15. marenkar (62 points, 24 comments)
  16. shbour (58 points, 26 comments)
  17. twigwam (57 points, 33 comments)
  18. sn0wr4in (56 points, 14 comments)
  19. strips_of_serengeti (56 points, 14 comments)
  20. travis- (55 points, 16 comments)
  21. ASG3 (54 points, 36 comments)
  22. isrly_eder (54 points, 12 comments)
  23. Explodicle (53 points, 29 comments)
  24. _CapR_ (53 points, 25 comments)
  25. autotldr (52 points, 28 comments)

Top Submissions

  1. Employee mined bitcoins on Federal Reserve servers for two years by _bnc (106 points, 15 comments)
  2. Talking to people about CryptoCurrencies be like... by discombobulatedone (91 points, 11 comments)
  3. Bitcoin falls below 70% of total cryptocurrency market cap for the first time by SatoshiRoshi (90 points, 62 comments)
  4. Countdown: Bitcoin Will Be a Legal Method of Payment in Japan in Two Months by helmsk (88 points, 2 comments)
  5. Monero successfully hardforks! by jml390 (85 points, 33 comments)
  6. Bitcoin Transactions Declared VAT-Exempt in Norway by helmsk (85 points, 3 comments)
  7. Kraken launches Monero trading by jml390 (82 points, 3 comments)
  8. Poloniex is Secure. We're Good. by Poloniex (79 points, 52 comments)
  9. EU Parliament states Virtual Currencies cannot be anonymous by -bnc (70 points, 26 comments)
  10. Bitcoin expected to become part of everyday life in the Caribbean within eighteen months as banks abandon the region by Coinosphere (70 points, 11 comments)

Top Comments

  1. 44 points: boppie's comment in EU Parliament states Virtual Currencies cannot be anonymous
  2. 40 points: ihaphleas's comment in Bitcoin is not private, only decentralised. What is the most private, secure, and decentralised crypto currency?
  3. 32 points: FatherSigma's comment in How many people here know about Monero (XMR)?
  4. 32 points: adidasimwearing's comment in Best Alternative to Bitcoin
  5. 31 points: TH3J4CK4L's comment in Which coins are currently superior to Bitcoin as a currency / store of money?
  6. 26 points: eleitl's comment in Europe Will Have Power to Ban Blockchain Tech in January 2018
  7. 26 points: trancephorm's comment in Zcash trusted setup disaster. The number of parties used should have much larger. It is sad that they never properly responded to this concern.
  8. 25 points: phor2zero's comment in Which coins are currently superior to Bitcoin as a currency / store of money?
  9. 24 points: pasttense's comment in EU Parliament states Virtual Currencies cannot be anonymous
  10. 24 points: trancephorm's comment in Roger Ver Selling his Bitcoin for Dash to Protest Core Censorship (Today's Tony Podcast)
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