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1  Economy / Economics / Opinion: Our Weird Relationship with Money on: September 24, 2018, 04:43:44 AM
Opinion: Our Weird Relationship with Money
We all use money on a daily basis, but do you really understand how it works?

This article is a little bit different from the usual, as I will propose alternative ways of valuing money and looking at the economy as a whole. If you’ve been following my latest writings, you’ll understand my views on cryptocurrency adoption depend a lot on price and the role of technology Arguably, our own understanding of money will influence how cryptocurrency develops and that is exactly the subject of our discussion today. I’m definitely interested in reading your comments down below or on Twitter; Seriously, don’t be shy, if you have insights feel free to share!

Now, why are most economists ignoring the role of money in our society? They assume that it is centrally controlled by agents who make decisions on our behalf? Like allowing central banks to control interest rates by printing and selling more/less money to financial institutions? Even worse, today we endow private institutions the power to create currency: through debt.

How can we bestow our financial freedom to private agents whose interests rarely align with that of the common man?
https://www.ccn.com/opinion-our-weird-relationship-with-money/
2  Economy / Economics / Coinsquare Lists Blockchain ETF On Toronto Stock Exchange on: September 23, 2018, 04:40:02 AM
Coinsquare Lists Blockchain ETF On Toronto Stock Exchange
Coin Capital Investment Management Inc. (Coincapital), the portfolio management division of the Coinsquare digital asset trading platform, has listed a blockchain exchange traded fund (ETF), the STOXX Blockchain Patents Innovation Index Fund (LDGR), among two new ETFs the company has listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Coincapital, which is registered with the Ontario Securities Commission, has become Canada’s newest ETF provider following the introduction of the LDGR and the STOXX B.R.AI.N. Index Fund (THNK), the company’s first ETFs.
The LDGR and THNK ETFs were scheduled to commence trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange this morning.

ETF Taps Artificial Intelligence
LDGR, Coincapital’s first ETF, invests in global equity securities of companies that are investing in blockchain technologies. Coincapital uses a proprietary artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm to identify companies for the fund.

The selection is based primarily on blockchain intellectual property patent filings, which enables the fund to identify blockchain adopters and innovators. The selections also make use of the iSTOXX Yewno Developed Markets Blockchain Index.

THNK, the second ETF, invests in equity securities of companies focused on AI, nanotechnology, robotics and biotechnology. The main consideration is the company must generate half of its revenues from the aggregate of the B.R.A.I.N sectors. The fund also makes use of the iSTOXX Developed Markets B.R.A.I.N Index.
https://www.ccn.com/coinsquare-lists-blockchain-etf-on-toronto-stock-exchange/
3  Economy / Economics / Circle’s Poloniex Sees 190% Jump in Crypto Trading Volumes, Overtakes Bittrex on: September 22, 2018, 04:09:40 AM
Circle’s Poloniex Sees 190% Jump in Crypto Trading Volumes, Overtakes Bittrex
Poloniex, one of the oldest crypto exchanges in the global market, has become a major digital asset trading platform once again after years of stagnation.

Until 2015, Poloniex was one of the largest crypto exchanges alongside Coinbase. It was the go-to exchange for traders investing in smaller trading pairs like tokens and alternative cryptocurrencies.

But, controversy around the legitimacy of the exchange and the operating team of Poloniex led the platform lose out in tight competition, falling behind Bittrex, Bitfinex, Binance, OKEx, Huobi, HitBTC, and many other major cryptocurrency exchanges.

Circle’s Acquisition Leads to Revival
In February, Circle, a cryptocurrency and blockchain company that raised hundreds of millions of dollars from large venture capital firms throughout the past few years, acquired Poloniex for over $400 million.

At the time, the acquisition of Poloniex was controversial, primarily due to the stagnation of the exchange and the emergence of new exchanges like Binance and Huobi that started to gain dominance over the market.

While the Circle team spoke highly of Poloniex and its core development team, the community was not convinced that the exchange should be valued at $400 million.
https://www.ccn.com/circles-poloniex-sees-190-jump-in-crypto-trading-volumes-overtakes-bittrex/
4  Economy / Economics / Cryptojacking is up 459% in 2018, and it’s the NSA’s Fault on: September 21, 2018, 08:28:09 AM
Cryptojacking is up 459% in 2018, and it’s the NSA’s Fault
A report from the Cyber Threat Alliance (CTA) indicates a massive 459% increase in the rate of illegal cryptojacking, through which hackers hijack computer processing power to mine cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and monero.

As CCN recently reported, the Indian government was recently targeted in a cyberattack which hijacked processing power from government website servers to mine cryptocurrency.

Computers infected with cryptojacking malware are used to mine cryptocurrency networks like monero. The funds are sent to the hacker in control of the software, slowing down the owner’s computer, often without them realizing they’re infected.

The massive surge in cryptojacking is attributed to the leak of EternalBlue, a tool used to exploit vulnerabilities in Windows-based systems. Windows and the NSA both have their share of the blame for the leak, which occurred in April 2017 when a group calling themselves the Shadow Brokers put a packet of stolen NSA tools on the market.
https://www.ccn.com/cryptojacking-is-up-459-in-2018-and-its-the-nsas-fault/
5  Economy / Economics / Binance, Coinbase on Hiring Spree Despite Bear Market, Sign of Rapid Growth on: September 21, 2018, 08:25:59 AM
Binance, Coinbase on Hiring Spree Despite Bear Market, Sign of Rapid Growth
Binance and Coinbase, two of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world by user base and daily trading volume, are on a hiring spree despite the 80 percent correction the crypto market experienced throughout 2018.

Speaking to Bloomberg, Binance’s Chief Financial Officer Wei Zhou stated that the company is hiring 50 new employees in its headquarters in Malta while also recruiting new hires for the firm’s first fiat-to-crypto exchange in Singapore.

The Malta-based multi-billion dollar company, which already has more than 300 people across 39 countries, is soon expected to expand its team to over 350 employees.

Sign of Rapid Growth
Over the past year, Binance has experienced exponential growth, adding millions of users and billions in daily trading volume in merely months. The company is often described as the fastest growing startup in history, outside the realm of crypto and finance.

Zhou emphasized that Binance is continuing to grow the ecosystem, with its most recent initiative being the launch of Binance Singapore and potentially more fiat-integrated cryptocurrency exchanges in the months to come.

“Our goal right now is to continue to grow the ecosystem, not just for cryptocurrency, but for the blockchain industry as well. The company is currently looking to acquire projects in the fiat space, Zhou said.
https://www.ccn.com/binance-coinbase-on-hiring-spree-despite-bear-market-sign-of-rapid-growth/
6  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Speculation (Altcoins) / Ripple Surges by 36% in 48 Hours as Crypto Market Adds $2 Billion on: September 20, 2018, 02:16:53 PM
Ripple Surges by 36% in 48 Hours as Crypto Market Adds $2 Billion
Over the past 24 hours, major cryptocurrencies in the global market including Bitcoin, Ethereum and EOS increased by 2 to 5 percent, as Ripple led the market with a solid 10 percent gain.

Since September 18, within 48 hours, the price of XRP, the native cryptocurrency of the Ripple blockchain network, rose by more than 36.5 percent.



Technical analysts in the cryptocurrency community have expressed their optimism towards the trend reversal demonstrated by XRP in the last 24 hours.

What’s Behind Ripple Rally
Unlike previous rallies of XRP, the abrupt increase in the price of RIpple was not triggered by a specific series of events. Rather, similar to the rapid recovery of ETH, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum, it is likely that the steep decline in the price of XRP throughout July and August led the market to demonstrate oversold conditions.

Since late June, XRP experienced an intensified movement on the downside in comparison to other major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The price of XRP was around $0.54 on June 21 and within two months, XRP fell to $0.29, by 46 percent.

Meanwhile, during the same period, the price of Bitcoin only fell by 9 percent, from $6,700 to $6,100.

In the past seven days, social media activity of the keywords XRP and Ripple increased significantly, possibly due to Ripple’s announcement of a new cryptocurrency product by October. Increasing social media activity around Ripple likely led to a rise in hype of XRP.

Marcus Treacher, the global head of strategic accounts at Ripple, recently revealed that RippleNet has experienced rapid expansion throughout 40 countries, deploying a faster and transparent payments system internationally.
https://www.ccn.com/ripple-surges-by-36-in-48-hours-as-crypto-market-adds-2-billion/
7  Economy / Economics / Crypto Exchange Coinbase: We Don’t Engage in Proprietary Trading on: September 20, 2018, 02:15:26 PM
Crypto Exchange Coinbase: We Don’t Engage in Proprietary Trading
Cryptocurrency exchange operator Coinbase has denied that it engages in proprietary trading and that these activities account for a large percentage of the firm’s overall trading volume.

CCN reported yesterday that an investigation into cryptocurrency exchange policies and operations, published this week by the New York attorney general’s office (OAG), found that proprietary trading, through which an exchange operates a trading desk that trades on its own platform against its customers, is common within the crypto industry.

Per the report:

“The OAG found that significant variation exists in the amount of trading activity attributable to those platform operators. Circle reported that it accounted for less than one percent of the executed volume on its platform Poloniex during the most recent time period reviewed. BitFlyer USA indicated that its own activity accounted for approximately ten percent of the executed volume on its platform. Another, Coinbase, disclosed that almost twenty percent of executed volume on its platform was attributable to its own trading.”
https://www.ccn.com/crypto-exchange-coinbase-we-dont-engage-in-proprietary-trading/
8  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Major Retail Saudi Bank Joins Ripple Network for International Payments on: September 18, 2018, 12:18:16 PM
Major Retail Saudi Bank Joins Ripple Network for International Payments
The National Commercial Bank, Saudi Arabia’s first established bank, has become the latest financial institution to join RippleNet, Ripple’s enterprise blockchain network.

A massive market for international remittances due to its sizable migrant worker population, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has already seen its central bank pilot Ripple’s technology for instant international payments. With over 5 million customers worldwide, the National Commercial Bank (NCB) has followed the central bank in joining RippleNet to enable near-instant international payments with partner banks internationally.

RippleNet is Ripple’s enterprise blockchain network with over 100 financial institutions including banks, payment providers, remittance operators and other financial institutions using the SWIFT-replacement platform  for near real-time clearing and settlement of international transactions.

The bank will initially connect to financial institutions in North America and Asia, starting in Singapore, Ripple said in an announcement.

Ripple sees the KSA as one of the world’s largest sources for remittances over the last ten years. Citing World Bank statistics, 37 billion dollars in outward remittances were sent from the country in 2016, largely from a foreign worker population that remained over 10 million in 2018 despite a slowdown in the biggest Arab economy.

“For SMEs and corporations that depend on NCB, more efficient and transparent remittances will provide stability and help them grow their business faster,” Ripple added.

As CCN reported earlier in February, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) – the kingdom’s defacto central bank – became the first central monetary institution in the world to join RippleNet. The central bank initiated a pilot among regional banks using xCurrent, Ripple’s end-to-end tracking enterprise blockchain software.

Meanwhile, the central banks of Saudi Arabia and the UAE are concurrently working on a cross-border cryptocurrency for instant transactions between the two countries.
https://www.ccn.com/major-retail-saudi-bank-joins-ripple-network-for-international-payments/
9  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Crypto Bloodbath: Bitcoin and Ethereum Record Losses in $10 Billion Wipeout on: September 18, 2018, 12:16:44 PM
Crypto Bloodbath: Bitcoin and Ethereum Record Losses in $10 Billion Wipeout
Over the past 24 hours, the crypto market has experienced a large sell off as Bitcoin demonstrated a 3 percent drop in price, leading the market to drop $10 billion.



Ethereum and EOS recorded the largest drop amongst major cryptocurrencies at 9 percent, while Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Monero, Cardano, and Dash demonstrated steep 7 percent losses.

What Caused the Steep Decline?
On September 16, CCN reported that a wallet containing $720 million in Bitcoin, which was dormant for many years, started to move funds to Bitfinex.

A Reddit user with an online alias u/Sick_Silk claimed that the wallet is owned by a Silk Road-related figure, who was most likely involved in the operation of the dark web marketplace. The user said:

“It seems that the owner of a huge SilkRoad related wallet is moving funds actively since 3 days, dividing it in chunks of 100 coins by subwallets. The original wallet owned 111,114.62 BTC / BCH , which is currently valuated ~ $844M (without taking in account other #Bitcoin forks). Last movements on these subwallets are 4 years and 5 months old (March 9th, 2014).”

WizSec, a Japan-based security agency which discovered the money launderer behind the stolen funds of the now-defunct cryptocurrency exchange Mt. Gox, stated that the wallet is completely unrelated to Silk Road but rather to Mt. Gox. Analysts at the agency explained that a whale investor who purchased a massive batch of Bitcoin a few years back have started moving the funds.

It is possible that the sell-off of hundreds of millions of dollars in Bitcoin initiated by one whale investor caused a domino effect across all major cryptocurrency exchanges, causing the market to drop substantially.

Prior to September 18, major digital assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum demonstrated stability in the low price range, showing signs of a short-term bottom. Hence, it required a large sell-off and an unforeseen event in the cryptocurrency exchange market to trigger a drop of this magnitude.
https://www.ccn.com/crypto-bloodbath-bitcoin-and-ethereum-record-losses-in-10-billion-wipeout/
10  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Bitcoin Opinion: The Lessons Of A Bearish Market on: September 17, 2018, 07:22:26 AM
Bitcoin Opinion: The Lessons Of A Bearish Market
With my last couple of articles, I’ve taken the discussion away from price and volume, as I wanted to focus on the underlying bitcoin infrastructure and governance model, as well as on the technology developments that will push adoption. I believe it was worth it, as we really need to understand how this new distributed infrastructure and organizational models can be applied to most businesses today. More however, if we do not make an effort to learn the subtle difference between decentralizing infrastructure vs decentralizing governance, all this cryptocurrency madness might end up blowing all over our faces.

After all, what’s the point of having a decentralized infrastructure if power remains with the few and not the many?

It’s up to all of us to pressure governments, regulators, news media, and crypto-influencers to promote better outcomes for a decentralized world, by simply not blocking people from accessing this wonderful medium of storing value or by spreading FUD amongst the crypto-community. Aren’t we all on the same boat, after all?

–this article shouldn’t be taken as financial advisement as it represents my personal opinion and views. I have savings invested in cryptocurrency so take whatever I write with a grain of salt. Do not invest what you cannot afford to lose and always read as much as possible about a project before investing. Never forget: with great power, comes great responsibility. Being your own bank means you’re always responsible for your own money—
https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-opinion-the-lessons-of-a-bearish-market/
11  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / India’s Biggest Startup Incubator CEO [Falsely] Says Bitcoin Failed Due to $20 F on: September 16, 2018, 12:48:41 PM
India’s Biggest Startup Incubator CEO [Falsely] Says Bitcoin Failed Due to $20 F
According to Jay Krishnan, the CEO of T-Hub, India’s largest startup incubator & venture advisor to SRI Capital, Bitcoin has failed due to $20 transaction fees. Except that since December, for over nine months, the median transaction fee of Bitcoin has remained below $0.2.
In December 2017, the demand for Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, Ripple, and Bitcoin Cash achieved an all-time high. The price of Bitcoin, which hovered at around $19,500 in the global market, surpassed $24,000 in South Korea, as premiums pushed the price of BTC up.

False Argument About Scalability
Bitcoin and blockchain-based systems, in general, are decentralized networks that exist on peer-to-peer protocols. As such, scalability through cryptographic engineering and development is required. Since the end of 2017, Bitcoin, Ethereum, and many other blockchain networks have seen a drastic improvement in scalability.

Bitcoin has integrated SegWit and Lightning while Ethereum is in the process of implementing Sharding and Plasma to potentially increase the transaction capacity of the blockchain to a million transactions.

Yet, Krishnan, a figure that is responsible for overseeing innovative developments in one of the biggest markets in the world in terms of population and market size, concluded that Bitcoin has failed due to its inability to address unprecedented levels of transaction activity and demand in December.

“The fallacy of Bitcoin as a currency is its transaction fee which is typically above $20. The transaction fee is paid to ensure convenience and security in the exchange. This is not only higher than the transaction fee paid for regulated currency but is also an indication of the security risk it holds,” he said.

The difference in stance towards cryptocurrencies by Krishnan and world-renowned venture capital firms like Andreessen Horowitz is quite evident. This week, at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference, legendary investor and one of the most successful venture capital investors Ben Horowitz said that crypto represents the birth of a new computing system.

In the beginning, crypto may seem more inefficient and impractical than legacy systems. But, its decentralized nature leads to the development of apps that were not possible to build before. He added that the deceptiveness of new computing systems is that at the start, they seem worse in most ways than old platforms.

Horowitz said:

“I think that there is probably more developer activity in crypto than in anything we’ve seen since the Internet and the right way to think about it is, it’s a new computing platform. Once every decade or two, a new computing platform comes along. The thing that is deceptive about is that when the new platform at the time is generally worse in most ways than the old platform but has some new capabilities.”
https://www.ccn.com/indias-biggest-startup-incubator-ceo-falsely-says-bitcoin-failed-due-to-20-fees/
12  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Tezos Surges 50% in a Week Ahead of Scheduled Mainnet Launch on Monday on: September 16, 2018, 12:46:47 PM
Tezos Surges 50% in a Week Ahead of Scheduled Mainnet Launch on Monday
Tezos, the eighth largest initial coin offering (ICO) in history, is launching its mainnet on Monday. Ahead of its mainnet launch, the price of XTZ, the native token of the Tezos network, surged by more than 50 percent.

Since September 9, XTZ has increased by over 52 percent from $1.15 to $1.75, prior to its highly anticipated mainnet launch. Investors in the cryptocurrency market have been especially enthusiastic about the progress that has been made on the development of Tezos over the past few months, after a year-long dispute amongst its founders that stalled the launch of the blockchain network.

Although Tezos completed its $232 million ICO in July of 2017, the development of the blockchain network was delayed due to the conflict between its co-founders and founding members of the foundation.

Ultimately, the legal battle between the founders was resolved and the development of Tezos was resumed, allowing the foundation to streamline the process of releasing its first mainnet release.

Generally, over the past 48 hours, tokens have been on an optimistic trend, recording solid gains against Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies. But, tokens have only been able to initiate a corrective rally because the market demonstrated extremely oversold conditions.

Tokens specifically performed poor against the US dollar in early September, when Bitcoin remained in the low $6,000 region. As Bitcoin started to find momentum and recovered beyond the $6,500 resistance level, tokens showed slight momentum on the upside.
Hence, the 50 percent increase in the price of XTZ cannot be attributed to the overall recovery of the market but rather the mainnet launch of the Tezos blockchain network after a year of stalled development.

Moreover, as Ryan Jesperson, the president of Tezos Foundation, said in an official blog post, the launch of betanet was smooth and the genesis block of the betanet phase of Tezos was released without any hardship.

The seamless launch of the betanet of Tezos fueled the anticipation towards its mainnet, which is the network’s first major product release apart from its betanet release.

“As far as network launches go, it was remarkably smooth. A development team in Paris tested and refined the codebase, working tirelessly leading up to the launch. Ultimately, the Foundation proposed a genesis block and the betanet phase of the network went live,” Jesperson said.

Jesperson also noted that Tezos hired PwC, a Big Four auditor, to operate as an external auditor for Tezos, to ensure the legitimacy of the financials and operations of the project.

Jesperson added:

“We recently announced that PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Switzerland had agreed to act as the independent external auditor for our finances and operations. The Tezos Foundation is the first large-scale blockchain organization to have one of the Big Four accounting firms serve as an external auditor.”
https://www.ccn.com/tezos-surges-50-in-a-week-ahead-of-scheduled-mainnet-launch-on-monday/
13  Economy / Economics / Crypto Firm Adds Two Nobel Winning Economists to Advisory Board on: September 15, 2018, 12:33:08 PM
Crypto Firm Adds Two Nobel Winning Economists to Advisory Board
Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:

“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”

In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.

He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.

On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.

He said:

“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”

Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:

“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”

In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.

He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.

On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.

He said:

“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”

Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:

“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”

In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.

He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.

On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.

He said:

“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”
Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:

“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”

In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.

He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.

On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.

He said:

“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”

Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:

“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”

In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.

He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.

On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.

He said:

“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:
“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”
In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.
He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.
On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.
He said:
“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”
Cryptic Labs, a commercial blockchain research lab has announced the addition of two Economics Nobel Prize winners to its team. Dr. Eric S. Maskin and Sir Christopher Pissarides will provide their unique insights on incentive mechanisms, game theory and macro-economic policies to its Economics Advisory Board.

Research Portfolios and New Roles
Dr. Maskin, the Adams University Professor at Harvard University jointly won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Economics for laying the foundation of mechanism design theory. His work at Cryptic Labs will focus on game theory and mechanism design, with an emphasis on how blockchain companies can guide user incentives at a company level.

Dr. Pissarides is the Regius Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics where he specializes in the economics of labor markets, macroeconomic policy, economic growth, and structural change. In 2010 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his analysis of markets with search frictions.

At Cryptic Labs, he will provide expertise on macroeconomic trends, focusing on the effect of the labor and money supply at a macro level.

The two Nobel Laureates join a team at Cryptic Labs which includes Chief Scientist Dr. Whitfield Diffie, winner of the 2015 Turing Award. The trio were recruited by Herman Collins, a globally recognised executive search expert who also leads Cryptic Labs’ Human Capital Advisory initiative.

In a statement to CCN, Humphrey Polanen, Co-founder and Managing Director of Cryptic Labs expressed delight at the recruitment coup, stating that their combined expertise will provide an understanding of behavioral economics to the blockchain industry.

In his words:

“These experts and other economics advisors will help our client companies navigate complex problems, advising them on blockchain economics and helping them craft the incentive systems they need to ensure adoption and growth.”

In his own reaction, Dr. Pissarides described blockchain technology as “the most exciting development in financial markets in recent years,” albeit one that has not been sufficiently explored as to recommend wholesale financial transition to blockchain.

He further expressed his excitement at the opportunity to use his macroeconomics expertise to make the blockchain more secure and widely accessible while examining its implications for trade, financial markets and economic performance.

On his part, Dr. Maskin stated that h looks forward to exploring blockchain technology from an economic as against technical point of view.

He said:

“Most discussions of blockchain technology focus on technical issues. I am more interested in the economic value such technology can bring. I believe that my background in economics and mechanism design should be useful for that purpose.”

https://www.ccn.com/crypto-firm-adds-two-nobel-winning-economists-to-advisory-board/




14  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Bitcoin Will Rebound, But Altcoins are ‘Never Coming Back’: BitPay Exec. on: September 14, 2018, 04:12:56 PM
Bitcoin Will Rebound, But Altcoins are ‘Never Coming Back’: BitPay Exec.
A top executive at one of the oldest and largest cryptocurrency payment processors said that he firmly expects bitcoin to rebound within the next year but that altcoin prices may never again see their early-2018 peaks.

Sonny Singh, chief commercial officer at BitPay, said during an interview with Bloomberg that his firm has “never been more bullish” on cryptocurrency, noting that adoption and infrastructure development is moving “full speed ahead” even as the market has shed approximately 80 percent of its value from its January peak.

However, he notes that this infrastructure development has largely been concentrated on a single cryptocurrency — bitcoin — which Singh expects to steadily eclipse the bulk of its supposed disruptors.

“[Altcoins] will never come back, I believe, in the same way, a bitcoin will come back. You know, Fidelity, BlackRock, they’re not launching altcoin products. They’re going to launch bitcoin products. So bitcoin will rebound next year” when these mainstream products begin to see widespread releases, he said, adding that the initial coin offering (ICO) market is “in a lot of trouble.”

To his point, altcoins as a group have been affected by the precipitous market decline to a markedly greater degree than bitcoin, whose market share in recent days has risen to 2018 highs.

Singh said that he is not sure if the bitcoin market has yet found its bottom, noting that trading sentiment appears to suggest that investors are looking for a “defining moment” or “catalyst” that will spur the next bitcoin rally.

Lately, he explained, investors have largely been trading on rumors of whether or not large financial institutions will roll out products for this nascent asset class. Consequently, it’s unlikely that the bitcoin price rally will see anything more than fits and starts until these rumors concretize into material actions, such if Goldman Sachs actually starts trading cryptocurrency, BlackRock launches a bitcoin ETF, or Square begins processing bitcoin payments.

Singh believes that such a catalyst will occur in the mid-term, likely at some point in 2019.

Featured Image from Shutterstock. Charts from TradingView.

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https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-will-rebound-but-altcoins-are-never-coming-back-bitpay-exec/
15  Economy / Economics / Mt. Gox Begins Taking Claims from Corporate Bitcoin Creditors on: September 14, 2018, 09:38:22 AM
Mt. Gox Begins Taking Claims from Corporate Bitcoin Creditors

Defunct bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox has opened up its online rehabilitation claim filing system to corporate creditors who were holding cryptocurrency funds on the platform when it went belly up in 2014.

Mt. Gox rehabilitation trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi made the announcement in a document dated Sept. 12 and published on the Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange operator’s website. According to the document, creditors must file their claims by Oct. 22 to be eligible for compensation.

CCN reported last month that Mt. Gox had begun accepting claims from individual creditors, who — like corporate users — must submit claims even if they had already done so during the exchange operator’s bankruptcy proceedings.

The exchange, which once handled 70 percent of all bitcoin trades worldwide, went bust in 2014, shortly after losing as much as $450 million (850,000 BTC) in what was long the largest theft in pure dollar terms in cryptocurrency history, having now been surpassed by the Coincheck hack that occurred in Jan. 2018.

Insolvent following the theft, Mt. Gox entered bankruptcy, though CEO Mark Karpeles — who served jail time for embezzling funds from the exchange — later recovered approximately 200,000 BTC worth of company funds.

Prior to the exchange’s exit from bankruptcy, Kobayashi attracted criticism within cryptocurrency circles for his decision to cover the exchange’s outstanding liabilities by liquidating its cryptocurrency assets in large batches on spot trading markets, rather than through the over-the-counter (OTC) channels typically used by large-scale traders. Following the company’s entry into civil rehabilitation, Kobayashi pledged that there would be no more surprise sell-offs.
https://www.ccn.com/mt-gox-begins-taking-claims-from-corporate-bitcoin-creditors/
16  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Ethereum Spikes 16% Overnight to $220 as Crypto Market Recovers to $204 Billion on: September 14, 2018, 09:36:48 AM
Ethereum Spikes 16% Overnight to $220 as Crypto Market Recovers to $204 Billion
ETH, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum, has surged by more than 16 percent overnight, rebounding $224.
Within 48 hours, the price of ETH surged from $168 to $224, by more than 33 percent. While ETH has retraced slightly to $215, the second most valuable cryptocurrency in the market has found a breathing room that may enable it to find momentum.
It is early in the corrective rally of ETH to definitively conclude that ETH has initiated an upside movement. But, investors in the market are optimistic as the valuation of the cryptocurrency market recovered beyond the $200 billion mark, to $204 billion.
Market Recovery
According to Alex Kruger, an economist and cryptocurrency researcher who previously expressed his concerns regarding a potential decline in the value of cryptocurrencies subsequent to a solid corrective rally, the upside of ETH is expected to continue in the upcoming days.
“The $6,400 BTC breakout unleashed an impressive +13.5% ETH reversal (from $189 to $215). Expect upwards continuation,” he said, reaffirming his target shared on September 12, when ETH started to recover.

Kruger added:
“Direction of ETHUSD depends on BTCUSD. If BTC breaks $6,400 next levels are $6,600 – $6,650 and $6,850. ETH would break up much harder. Temporarily. Then expect selloff to resume, BTC to break the year lows, hellfire among alts, and ETH weaker than competing tokens. That’s my view atm.”

Already, tokens like Nano, Tezos, Kyber Network, BAT, Tron, 0x, ICON, and Ontology have started to record decent gains against Bitcoin in the 5 to 20 percent range.

Generally, tokens have followed the short-term price trend of ETH over the past few months. As Ethereum begins to demonstrate some momentum on the upside and if the optimistic price trend of ETH can be maintained throughout the week, it is likely for tokens to see large gains against major cryptocurrencies.

The recovery of the market, which was undoubtedly triggered by strong oversold conditions, comes in a time in which some of the most positive developments in the cryptocurrency sector regarding the institutionalization and regulation of the market have emerged.

With Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, and Goldman Sachs committed to offer crypto custody and futures around cryptocurrencies, investors are expecting an influx of institutional investors in the market.
https://www.ccn.com/ethereum-spikes-16-overnight-to-220-as-crypto-market-recovers-to-204-billion/
17  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Current Legal System Can’t Recognize Bitcoin, India’s Central Bank Tells Supreme on: September 13, 2018, 12:23:19 PM
Current Legal System Can’t Recognize Bitcoin, India’s Central Bank Tells Supreme Court
The Reserve Bank on India (RBI) on Wednesday filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court to clarify its stand on cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

The central bank reserved its views on the legality of cryptocurrencies in India, telling the apex court that the constitution has not defined any legal system for virtual currencies. Citing the provisions of The Coinage Act and The RBI Act, the affidavit explained that the existing legal frameworks neither recognize Bitcoin as currency nor money. Hence, they are not a valid payment system.

The Supreme Court of India is currently hearing a case between the RBI and Bitcoin exchanges. The court’s busy schedule has pushed the hearing date twice already; the next hearing is now scheduled for September 17, 2018.

FEMA, PSSA Roadblocks to Recognition
RBI has been facing a backlash from the Indian crypto-community ever since it ordered banks to discontinue their services with cryptocurrency exchanges. An RTI response after the blanket ban further revealed that the Indian apex bank didn’t research Bitcoin enough before dismissing it.

However, RBI said they could not be the one to term Bitcoin as legal or illegal. They are bound by statutory provisions –  the acts mentioned in the Constitution of India – that makes them take the necessary measures against the booming virtual currency industry.

“RBI cannot unilaterally decide for the Government, on the legality of Bitcoins,” the central bank said.

The RBI affidavit mentioned The Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) which allows them the authority to name instruments as valid currency. But the act itself is only valid for instruments with similar characteristics that of cheques, money orders, postal orders, etc.
https://www.ccn.com/current-legal-system-cant-recognize-bitcoin-indias-central-bank-tells-supreme-court/
18  Economy / Economics / This Canadian Town is Coughing Up Bitcoin After Ransomware Attack on: September 12, 2018, 07:28:47 AM
This Canadian Town is Coughing Up Bitcoin After Ransomware Attack
A town in the Ontario Province of Canada has decided to pay hackers the ransom they are demanding in bitcoin in order to get its computer network working again.

Midland, which has a population of over 16,000, had its computer systems breached and infected with ransom malware that encrypted files at the beginning of the month. The cyber attack rendered the town’s computers inoperational for around 48 hours and this crippled email services, processing of payments, issuance of permits, reloading of transit cards and processing of marriage applications.

In the ‘Best Interest’ of Midland…
Critical services such as waste management and fire response were, however, not impacted. To facilitate decryption the hackers have been demanding that a ransom be paid in bitcoin. The town has consequently started the process of paying the unspecified ransom amount in bitcoin in order to get the decryption keys.

“Under the guidance of cyber security experts, we have initiated the process to pay the ransom in exchange for the decryption keys,” a media release from Midland Town Council read. “Although not ideal, it is in our best interest to bring the system back online as quickly as possible. The Town had previously secured an insurance policy to cover such circumstances. Decryption efforts are underway.”

The decision by Midland Town Council to acquiesce to the demands of the hackers stands in contrast to the move by the Professional Golfers Association of America to refuse to pay a ransom in bitcoin after similar malware was planted on its computer systems early last month. This was despite the fact that the hackers insisting that only they possessed the decryption software as CCN reported:

“We exclusively have decryption software for your situation. No decryption software is available in the public.”
https://www.ccn.com/this-canadian-town-is-coughing-up-bitcoin-after-ransomware-attack/
19  Economy / Economics / Riot Blockchain, MGT Capital CEOs Charged in $27 Million Penny Stock Scam on: September 11, 2018, 06:50:30 PM
Riot Blockchain, MGT Capital CEOs Charged in $27 Million Penny Stock Scam
Two of the blockchain hype bubble’s flagship companies now find themselves with new captains at their respective helms, after their CEOs stepped down days after being charged by U.S. regulators with perpetrating a $27 million penny stock scam.

Riot Blockchain, MGT Capital CEOs Named in SEC Complaint
John O’Rourke, who until this week led biotech-turned-cryptocurrency company Riot Blockchain, and Robert Ladd, the CEO of MGT Capital, were named as defendants in a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) complaint alleging that they and others orchestrated three “pump-and-dump” schemes to defraud investors. Neither Riot Blockchain nor MGT Capital was named in the complaint.

According to the SEC, O’Rourke, Ladd, and eight others — including 81-year-old pharmaceutical billionaire Phillip Frost — conspired to generate more than $27 million in unlawful stock sales by artificially driving up the prices of penny stocks and then selling these nearly-worthless shares at significant profit. The “primary strategist” behind these schemes was an investor named Barry Honig.

According to a Wall Street Journal report from earlier this year, Honig owned 9.9 percent of biotech company Bioptix prior to its October pivot to Riot Blockchain, which caused the firm’s shares to soar from $8 to $46 in a matter of weeks. By Jan. 2018, he had sold almost all of his shares, which, following the SEC’s announcement of charges against O’Rourke, are now worth just $4.27.

“When stock goes up, you take a profit. Every good investor does it,” Honig told the publication during the January interview.

The order does not charge the group with any malfeasance related to Riot Blockchain, but another company that made a high-profile cryptocurrency pivot does appear to make an uncredited cameo.
https://www.ccn.com/riot-blockchain-mgt-capital-ceos-charged-in-27-million-penny-stock-scam/
20  Economy / Speculation / Bitcoin Price Stabilizes: Market Recovery Expected After Flurry of Positive News on: September 11, 2018, 10:17:09 AM
Bitcoin Price Stabilizes: Market Recovery Expected After Flurry of Positive News
Bitcoin has found stability in the low range of $6,300 to $6,400, demonstrating decent volume at around $3.8 billion and pushing its dominance index to 56.1 percent.
Well performing tokens including WanChain, VeChain, Decentraland, and Waltonchain have recorded large losses against the US dollar in the range of 5 to 10 percent, mostly likely due to the struggle of ETH, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum, to recover beyond the $200 mark.

Positive News From EU, Nasdaq, Citigroup, Winklevoss Twins
The crypto sector has had arguably one of the best weeks in its nine-year history pertaining to institutionalization and regulation.

Over the past three days, Valdis Dombrovskis, vice president of the European Commission, said that cryptocurrencies will co-exist with the financial system, Nasdaq is preparing to release a crypto analytics tool for investors, Citigroup has shared its plans to support crypto custody, and Winklevoss twins-led Gemini has launched the first fully audited and licensed stablecoin in the market, called Gemini dollar (GUST).
https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-price-stabilizes-market-recovery-expected-after-flurry-of-positive-news/
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