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1  Economy / Trading Discussion / Three basic Market Analysis to Becoming a Successful trader for Newbies on: July 05, 2020, 02:51:21 PM
These  are 3 broad market analysis for a newbie trader to have an edge over the market in trading
1. Fundamental analysis
2. Technical analysis
3. Sentimental analysis
Fundamental analysis comprises of Social, Economic and political news which serves as the driving force of all prices they greatly
influenced price volatility and momentum of cryptos, forex, indices, commodities etc.
This analysis influenced most price in a market in crypto markets watch out for crypto Forks, Government clampdown on big exchanges etc
in forex, indices, commodities  Monetary policies, speeches on inflation, unemployment etc influenced prices
Traders are expected to be kept abreast and get updated on any upcoming fundamental news.

Technical analysis utilizes a trading pattern in predicting price movement of a crypto,  indices etc with the aid of charting patterns
this analysis with the aid of indicating tools both leading and lagging indicators help to predict the future price movement based on past historical
calculations, of course price history repeat itself, trend lines, support and resistance lines moving averages are some of the tools in ensuring a trader trade with the trend 'Trend is your friend' in trading coupled with learning Price Action is a must for newbies to earn profits consistently.

Sentimental analysis this analysis helps a trader to study investors, whales, market manipulators etc mind on their decision making mood
Although its quite difficult to understand but some knowledge is a prerequisite to become a successful trader.
Finally controlling emotion, fear psychology are all required for  newbie traders.
2  Other / Archival / [2018-05-23]Verge Struck by Second PoW Attack in as Many Months on: May 23, 2018, 05:22:52 AM
Verge Struck by Second PoW Attack in as Many Months

Accident-prone altcoin verge has been crippled by yet another mining attack. A little over a month after being subjected to a 51% attack, the network is once again at the mercy of a malevolent attacker who is rejecting blocks and profiting handsomely off the carnage caused. The repeat attack illustrates the risks faced by low hashrate Proof of Work coins.

Verge Does a Verge Special

On the morning of May 22, Suprvona, one of the largest altcoin mining pools, informed its 19,000 Twitter followers that verge was suffering yet another 51% attack, causing all blocks to be rejected. The attack was spotted by the same individual who uncovered the previous attack in April. In a post on the Bitcointalk forum, “ocminer” wrote: “Since nothing really was done about the previous attacks (only a band-aid), the attackers now simply use two algos to fork the chain for their own use and are gaining millions”.

The entity responsible was coining in $1,000 a minute and is believed to have made $1.7 million already from the attack. Predictably, verge’s fans assigned the attacker’s motivations to “an act of hate” designed to FUD their altcoin. This theory gained short shrift on the Bitcointalk forum, with one commenter retorting: “Verge is being targeted because it has shitty coding and an incompetent developer. This hack is the result of the terrible job he did ‘patching’ the previous hack.” The original attack involved exploiting one of the five hashing algorithms verge uses (most cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin only use one). This time around the attacker is believed to have used two algos after renting power from a service such as Nicehash and then using it to find all the new blocks.

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3  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-05-18]Cryptocurrencies to be Called “Digital Money” in Russia, Tokens on: May 18, 2018, 02:33:36 AM
Cryptocurrencies to be Called “Digital Money” in Russia, Tokens – “Digital Rights”

Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has shed some light on the progress authorities are making towards adopting the long-awaited crypto regulations. Legislators will replace common words like “cryptocurrencies” and “tokens” with legal terms such as “digital money” and “digital rights”, he revealed. Two draft laws have been filed in the Duma. One of the bills is scheduled for first reading next week.

Replacing “Slang” with “Strict Legal Concepts

The work on the Russian crypto regulations has been going on for some time, with unresolved questions and disagreements between institutions postponing their adoption. Two pieces of legislation have been filed in the State Duma, the lower house of Russia’s parliament – a bill defining crypto activities like initial coin offerings and mining, and a draft law amending the Russian civil code to regulate crypto transactions. According to Parlamentskaya Gazeta, the law legalizing token sales has been approved by the Financial Market Committee and will hit the House floor on May 22.

Words like “cryptocurrency” and its derivatives have gained popularity beyond crypto communities, yet authorities around the world tend to avoid them. Russian officials are no exception. According to comments made by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, the new Russian legislation on “digital financial assets” will not use the colloquial terms either, RIA Novosti and RBC reported. In a speech during the plenary session of the St. Petersburg International Legal Forum he said:

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4  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-05-16]Investigation of South Korea’s Largest Crypto Exchange Upbit Continu on: May 16, 2018, 05:43:24 AM
Investigation of South Korea’s Largest Crypto Exchange Upbit Continues

Since the South Korean prosecution started investigating Upbit, the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, more events have unfolded. While local media still discuss allegations and raise questions about Upbit’s business practice, some people believe that Upbit is already in the clear. The investigation continues.

The Allegations

Investigation of South Korea’s Largest Crypto Exchange Upbit ContinuesLocal media reported on Friday that South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Upbit, is under investigation for alleged fraud. More information has surfaced since, casting doubt on whether the allegations can be considered fraud. No charges have been filed against Upbit at the time of this writing. However, the prosecutors have confiscated the exchange’s computers and records as part of the investigation.

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5  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-04-27]New Data Depicts the Explosion in Token Sales on: April 27, 2018, 04:22:25 AM
New Data Depicts the Explosion in Token Sales

It’s no secret that token sales have grown exponentially since the start of last year. The extent to which the industry has mushroomed, however, can be hard to visualize in a space where figures referencing billions in capital are casually tossed around. Newly released data reveals the astronomical growth of ICOs and shows the rise in securitized token sales.

Token Sales Are Showing No Signs of Slowing Down

Whatever way you measure it – dollars raised; ETH raised; number of projects per month – token sales are proliferating. They’ve been on the up for some time and setting records with every passing month. Newly crunched data by Elementus, which derives its information from blockchain records rather than ICO self-reports, sheds light on the rise of crowdsales. It’s created a visualization that shows the slow and humble beginnings of ICOs, back in 2014, and the explosion which subsequently detonated in mid-2017.
The visualization shows three crowdsales in particular which tower over the rest, each of which is controversial for its own reasons. The Petro is a contentious project to put it mildly, and its reported $5 billion raised is hard to verify with absolute certainty given investors’ reluctance to comment publicly on their involvement, and an absence of information on the discounts that were provided. Telegram’s crowdsale has taken place without the crowds, meanwhile, going entirely to private investors, and “Ethereum killer” EOS’ $2.5 billion ICO has amassed over 5 million ETH, which exceeds 5% of the total supply.

The Number of Monthly Token Sales Keeps Rising

Elementus has also recorded the number of token sales to have raised at least $100k, and found them to have grown every month save for a slight dip in December. In March, 174 token sales were completed, which works out as an average of six a day, and just two more than February’s total of 172.

New Data Depicts the Explosion in Token Sales

One of the most interesting graphs, arguably, is the one showing the rise of security tokens and SAFTs (Simple Agreement for Future Tokens). A year ago, Reg D token sales were virtually unheard of before suddenly jumping from six in November to 23 in December, and 36 in March. Reg D enables crowdsales to raise funds from accredited investors and has no cap on the amount that can be raised. The drawback of course is that these fundraisers technically aren’t crowdsales as the public are unable to participate.
The next explosion that’s being predicted is that of Reg A+ token sales. These are more like a mini IPO and enable projects to raise up to $50 million in a year. Numerous applications have been made to the SEC for Reg A+ accreditation, but due to the time it takes for an offering placement memorandum (OPM) to be scrutinized and approved, the floodgates have yet to open. Once they do, securitized crowdsales will officially be open to the crowds, whereupon U.S. investors will be free to join the march to tokenization.


6  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-04-20]The Peer-to-Peer Crypto Exchange Hodl Hodl Doesn’t Require KYC on: April 20, 2018, 07:39:20 AM
The Peer-to-Peer Cryptocurrency Exchange Hodl Hodl Doesn’t Require KYC

This week as people hear about the peer-to-peer exchange Localbitcoins requiring identification for traders who deal in “significant” trade volumes, many of them are scouring the internet in search of decentralized exchanges that don’t require Know-Your-Customer (KYC) verification. One such trading platform called ‘Hodl Hodl’ launched its beta version this past February allowing traders to swap cryptocurrencies without the need for regulatory compliance protocols.

The Peer-to-Peer Multi-Sig Escrow Exchange ‘Hodl Hodl’ Doesn’t Require KYC Verification

There’s a new peer-to-peer cryptocurrency exchange called ‘Hodl Hodl,’ a platform that launched this past February, allowing traders to trade digital assets without the need for a third party. The trading platform creates a multi-signature escrow system that sets a predetermined trading time for both participants. At the moment Hodl Hodl is in its beta form and only has two cryptocurrencies available for trade at the moment which include BTC, and LTC. The creators of the exchange state more features will be launched when the platform comes out of beta in the summer of 2018.
Hodl Hodl is very similar to Localbitcoins and the platform Bitquick as it allows deals between buyers and sellers. The trading platform does not require users to verify their identities. Moreover, there are many options available for payments such as Moneygram, Skrill, various credit cards, Venmo, Western Union, Alipay, and many more. In order to sell BTC or LTC, a user simply fills out the trade requirements which include location, the amount they want to sell, a payment window, and the payment type. On the buyer side, users choose which cryptocurrency trades and the specific requirements look enticing to them. For instance, certain payment options for purchasing BTC on Hodl Hodl are higher than other options available. Credit card purchases show a price of over $9,000 per BTC while other options are still a few hundred dollars more than the current spot price.

Peer-to-Peer Review and Reputation System to Curb Counterparty Risk

Because the platform is still in beta users can experiment with the Hodl Hodl testnet exchange first. When the peer-to-peer platform comes out of beta, the exchange will be charging a maximum of 0.6 percent per trade. However, right now up until the beginning of July 2018 the exchange is waiving fees for users. Hodl Hodl claims they do not hold funds and basically provide traders with “secure multi-signature (P2SH) contracts, and you control the key to the funds in escrow.”
Additionally, the platform offers two-factor authentication (2FA), and a dispute resolution system as well. Hodl Hodl does not require KYC verifications but does have a trader review and reputation system. The exchange explains the rating system is used so counterparties can be trusted among other traders.  

“It shows whether he is fulfilling his obligations to other parties, whether he makes the payment fast, and whether he is responsive,” explains Hodl Hodl. “The Rating system is a useful tool for traders — it is information about how the trader behaved in the past and a reason/incentive to continue to act properly in the future.”

Hodl Hodl Doesn’t Leave Beta Until the Summer of 2018

Overall the Hodl Hodl system’s cryptocurrency trades function similarly to peer-to-peer ‘escrow-like’ trading platforms. Much like Bisq, Barterdex, and the other exchanges that facilitate trading activities without KYC in a decentralized manner — the Hodl Hodl platform doesn’t have a ton of action as far as volume. At the moment there are users selling BTC in various increments up to $10,000 USD, but some have caps between $300-1,500. The development team has explained that more cryptocurrencies will be added in the future alongside improving its mobile interface.
7  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-04-06]Bitcoin in Brief Friday: Satoshi’s Birthday and Tezos Turmoil on: April 06, 2018, 05:06:09 AM
Happy Birthday Satoshi Wherever You Are

On Thursday, bitcoin’s pseudonymous creator was sent birthday greetings from all corners of the cryptosphere. The DOB Satoshi Nakamoto entered on his Bitcointalk forum profile is almost certainly not his true birthday. Nevertheless, April 5 now rivals January 3, when the genesis block was mined in 2009, as unofficial Satoshi Day.
It has been suggested that Satoshi chose this date because on April 5 1933 President Roosevelt signed an executive order “forbidding the hoarding of gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates within the continental United States”. Saving gold was henceforth a crime punishable with a $10,000 fine ($200k today) and upto 10 years in jail. Then again, perhaps people are reading too much into all this. For what it’s worth, if his Bitcointalk DOB was correct, Satoshi would be 43.

Good News and Bad News for Tezos

This week Tezos eased closer to launching its mainnet, which is scheduled for Q3 of this year. That’s the good news. Meanwhile, juicy details have been emerging about the class action complaint filed against Tezos. That’s the bad news as far as Kathleen Breitman and husband Arthur are concerned. The plaintiffs are seeking their bitcoin and ethereum back plus monetary damages to cover the shortfall in the assets’ subsequent appreciation.

In particular, the class action complaint, filed on April 3, outlines evidence that Tezos was offering U.S. investors tokens that constituted a security. Amusingly, the criminal complaint includes quotes from r/ethtrader and r/tezos from Arthur Breitman, serving as a reminder that anything an ICO writes – in its whitepaper, on its website, and on social media – can and will be used as evidence against it. The class action filing also cites a Reddit AMA Kathleen Breitman held, highlighting the fact that she referred to herself as a “one woman band”.

Binance Delists Centra, Bigs Up Malta

Binance has moved to delist centra (CTR), the token whose ICO founders were arrested on April 1 as one of them was trying to leave the U.S. As reported in Bitcoin in Brief on Tuesday, the CTR token subsequently plunged in price, while exchanges moved to distance themselves from a tainted asset that had been branded as a security. On a brighter note, Binance chairman CZ claims that over 20 crypto companies are looking to move to or invest in Malta, where his exchange is presently relocating.

This Week in Weird ICOs

On the one hand, ridiculous ICOs don’t deserve the oxygen of publicity they so desperately crave. But on the other, the Royal Wedding ICO is so crazy it warrants a mention. Apparently, the crowdsale enables “the people of the world to feel a part of the Royal Wedding, whilst being able to provide an engaging outlet for interested parties to not only contribute to a decentralised wedding gift, but also appeal to their financial prowess in the creation of an investment mechanism such as the Royale Coin.” One can only hope that’s the last time the words “decentralised wedding gift” are ever used. In comparison, Eric Voorhees’ suggestion that Tesla holds an ICO seems pretty sensible.

IOTA Burns More Bridges

IOTA is going through a very messy public break-up with a team member. The project’s David Sønstebø has accused now-former employee Per Lind of all sorts of misdeeds. He’s also deleted a Medium post dating from 2016 in which IOTA welcomed Lind into the fold. Lind, for what it’s worth, has refuted the accusations that have been made against him. An unusually high proportion of the people David Sønstebø meets wind up betraying him, if the IOTA co-founder is to be believed. He really does have rotten luck.

Buy the Dip

Finally, a trailer has appeared for a forthcoming crypto comedy called Buy the Dip. A “biting satire on the world of cryptocurrency” it looks every bit as silly as it sounds.
8  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-29]Cointext Launches Beta — Send Bitcoin Cash Without the Internet on: March 29, 2018, 05:27:45 AM
Cointext Launches Beta — Send Bitcoin Cash Without the Internet
This week, the text messaging platform Cointext announced the public launch of its feature service that allows anyone with a mobile phone to transact with bitcoin cash (BCH) without internet services. Cointext uses a phone’s Short Message Service (SMS) protocol, and the beta release can now be tested throughout the US, Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, Sweden, Netherlands, and the UK.

Cointext Launches Beta Release Allowing Users to Send and Receive Bitcoin Cash With SMS Technology

Bitcoin cash users now have the ability to send BCH without an internet connection through a mobile phone’s SMS protocol. On March 27, the developers of Cointext launched the public beta version of its platform. The lead developer of Cointext, and also the company’s co-founder and CTO, Vin Armani, announced the launch.

“Cointext is the easiest and most powerful way to spread the use of Bitcoin Cash because it works with any type of mobile phone and you don’t need any knowledge of cryptocurrency to use it,” Armani explained the day of the launch.
Because Cointext runs over the SMS communication layer for mobile phones, the platform’s wallet can do things most traditional crypto-wallets cannot. For instance, with Cointext BCH can be sent to a feature phone (Nokia-type) in order to target developing nations. Nearly 2,000 individuals have already signed up for Cointext during a soft launch for private testing. The platform is also giving away free BCH due to the donations provided by the BCH community. While supplies last, Cointext is giving $0.50 in bitcoin cash to first time users who text the word ‘CASH’ to the firm’s access number. Other Cointext command lines and instructions can be found on the company’s website.

“Money, or currency, has always been the killer app for bitcoin, not merely a store of value,” Armani emphasizes.

Cointext is delivering the original promise of permissionless, borderless money to the unbanked around the world.

Cointext Hopes to Gain Billions of Users Worldwide

The development team explains that Cointext does not hold user funds, and all SMS transactions are settled on the BCH network on-chain. The SMS client cannot modify or censor any transactions, and it can’t recover funds if a user loses their phone number. The firm collects roughly $0.05 cents worth of BCH for sending messages, and the fee is always the same.

Armani details that Cointext will be looking for feedback during the beta trial from BCH users experimenting with the platform. The co-founder says he hopes the application can be utilized in 54 countries and attract the attention of billions of people. 

“If everything goes smoothly, we’ll launch the next wave of access numbers in April and May, including the first language translations,” Armani adds.

9  Bitcoin / Press / [2017-03-26]Low-value Bitcoin Gift Vouchers Bring More Indians into Crypto on: March 26, 2018, 09:51:35 PM
Low-value Bitcoin Gift Vouchers Bring More Indians into Crypto

At times when the Indian crypto community is dealing with increasingly hostile environment, an initiative is bringing new investors on board. Bitcoin gift vouchers are gaining popularity in India’s IT hub – Hyderabad. A growing number of Indians like the idea of a cheap and low-risk entry into cryptocurrencies.

Buy Your First Satoshis for Just ₹200 INR

Gift vouchers offered at Hyderabad coffee shops are fueling both curiosity and demand for bitcoin. Sold for as little as ₹200 Indian Rupees ($3) they offer an opportunity to enter the cryptocurrency ecosphere with a micro investment that bears virtually no risk. It turns out that more and more Indians buy the vouchers to surprise friends and family or even for themselves.
“I have heard from a few friends about bitcoin and how they have gained a lot. Although they have invested huge amounts, this is only a small sum. Once I learn a little more, I can trade in a big way,” a buyer says, quoted by the Times of India. Cryptocurrency traders demand a huge cut when approached by a potential investor, he adds. His words confirm that bitcoin remains attractive in India, despite the recent market lows and the intensifying institutional clampdown.

Hyderabad, India’s fourth most populous city, has become an industrial and financial hub over the past decades. It is one of the largest contributors to the country’s GDP and has been called the “City of Pearls”, “India’s pharmaceutical capital”, and the “Genome Valley of India”. In recent years Hyderabad has turned into a global hub for information technology, adding another nickname – “Cyberabad“. Leading multinational corporations from the sector have opened offices in the local Hitec City. An estimated 400,000 people are employed by tech companies operating in Hyderabad.

Dropping Trading Volumes

Many of those tach-savvy Indians have invested in cryptocurrencies and others want to get involved. The bitcoin vouchers they are offered have been issued by a local crypto exchange urging you “to buy your first bitcoin”. Trading platforms in India have been experiencing an unprecedented drop in volume over the past few weeks. Representatives of leading exchanges have confirmed that trading has decreased up to 90% in just two months.

Although market volatility has obviously played a role, Indian traders have blamed two other major factors for the low turnover. They have complained about increasing regulatory uncertainty and a widening bank clampdown that have limited opportunities for both cryptocurrency exchanges and individual investors.

While the crypto community is still waiting for a comprehensive legal framework for the sector, officials have acknowledged that adopting effective regulations is proving difficult. At the same time, commercial banks have suspended accounts of bitcoin exchanges and restricted crypto-related transactions of private individuals. Tax authorities are also going after investors, despite the lack of clarity on how to report crypto incomes and profits.

Source :
10  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-23]Crypto Collectibles Are Worthless Without a Website on: March 23, 2018, 01:57:17 AM
Crypto Collectibles Are Worthless Without a Website
Crypto collectibles are big business right now. Crypto Kitties just raised $12.5 million in venture capital, and lookalike sites are springing up everywhere trying to cash in on the craze for non-fungible digital assets. For all their innovation, these ‘decentralized’ projects have an achilles heel: without a website, the digital assets are worthless, as the digital assets are worthless, as the collapse of Crypto Celebs and similar platforms shows.

ERC271 Tokens Are Valuable Until They’re Not

ERC271 is the non-fungible token (NFT) standard used to fuel most of the digital collectible projects currently in the news. They’ve been described as “the next boom” for ethereum after ERC20 tokens, which drove the ICO craze. The ability to claim sole ownership of a digital asset, and to retain it on a wallet you hold the keys for, is pretty cool. But all you really own is a number assigned to your address by a smart contract. The associated element – the thing that gives the NFT its value – relies on a centralized server to host the image, just like the images displayed on this page.
If the blockchain is a football field, the website is the ball. Take away the ball and no one can play. That’s what happened with Crypto Celebrities, a short-lived ethereum trading card game that relied on the “greater fool theory” to bump up the price of the celebs whose pictures were assigned to each ERC271. Crypto All Stars – the same idea applied to Twitter cryptocurrency traders – also died a quick death.
The demise of these sites exposes one of the inherent drawbacks to NFTs. If you buy ethereum from a broker such as Coinbase and they later go out of business, your ETH is still worth something. If the same were to happen with Crypto Kitties, all those adorable little cats would effectively cease to exist.

Blockchains Don’t Add Value – People Do

The reason why cryptocurrencies attain value isn’t because they’re on a blockchain: it’s because enough people are willing to accept them as a medium of exchange. Only then do they gain value. People might be willing to play several ETH for an especially cute or rare collectible, but take away the image – i.e the part that adds value – and all that’s left is a unique token nobody wants. In defense of non-fungible tokens, they’re a promising field whose use cases are still being felt out.
Ethmoji allows people to create their own avatar out of composite parts, with creators being paid by smart contract for each piece that’s used such as a face or a hat. Then there’s Decentraland, a virtual world whose land marketplace opened last week. Venture capitalist Barry Silbert has called Decentraland the killer app for VR. Each plot of land can be traded as an NFT, and single squares are changing hands for hundreds or even thousands of dollars. There’s no reason to suspect that Crypto Kitties or Decentraland will be going anywhere. But due to the centralized design of these systems, their ecosystem is reliant upon a single point of failure. If it goes down, the value of even the rarest NFTs becomes zero.

11  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-22]Chinese Stock Exchanges Crack Down on Companies Falsely Claiming “Bl on: March 22, 2018, 01:51:08 AM
Chinese Stock Exchanges Crack Down on Companies Falsely Claiming “Blockchain

It appears that China’s stock exchanges are seeking to prevent companies from issuing misleading information in order to drive hype around blockchain technology – potentially influencing their share price.

Blockchain Mania Sweeps China’s Stock Exchanges

China’s Shenzhen Exchange has announced its intention to crack down on businesses misleading investors by seeking to associate themselves with so called “distributed ledger technology”, or “blockchain”.
The crackdown appears to comprise a response to Zheijiang Enjoyor Electronics Co. Ltd’s recent spike in share price that followed a blockchain-related announcement on Wechat approximately one week ago. The announcement claimed that an affiliate company of Enjoyor Electronics had entered into a partnership with a forensic sciences center based in Zhengjiang which will see the launch of what the company described as the world’s first blockchain-based electrical data forensic certificate. The announcement triggered an immediate spike in the price of Enjoyor Electronics’ stock – reaching its 10% trading limit.
Upon Shenzhen Exchange’s insistence that the company divulge further details pertaining to the partnership – such as when the investment in the affiliate company was made, the number of shares owned by Enjoyor Electronics, the financial figures of said business, and evidence of the purported blockchain-based forensic procedure – Enjoyor Electronics deleted the Wechat announcement
Shenzhen Exchange to Monitor Companies Claiming Blockchain Affiliation

In recent months, an increasing number of businesses have driven spikes in their share price by cashing in on the hype surrounding blockchain and cryptocurrency technology. In December 2017, for example, a small U.S beverage company saw its share price increase by over 400% after changing its name from Long Island Iced Tea Corp, to Long Blockchain Corporation. In a similar incident, Hong Kong-based Skypeople Fruit Juice appeared to double their share value by renaming to Future Fintech.
The trend of making dubious claims of embracing blockchain innovation to boost stock prices appears to have begun to take off in mainland China. According to China Money Network, “More than 20 listed companies have been questioned by the Shenzhen and Shanghai exchanges about their suspicious speculation on blockchain.”

Shenzhen Exchange has stated that
it “will closely monitor relative companies’ disclosure and their stocks in the secondary market. Companies that use blockchain to speculate and mislead investors will receive disciplinary punishment, and severe violations will be reported to the China Securities Regulatory Commission.”

Following the Shenzhen Exchange’s announcement, Shanghai Exchange followed suit, announcing that 20 companies listed on its exchange appear to be speculating on blockchain technology. Shanghai Exchange has stated that in several instances it has imposed trading halts and requested businesses to divulge information regarding ties to the blockchain industry from several.

12  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-21]Hardware Wallet Demand in South Korea Grows Exponentially on: March 21, 2018, 03:21:23 AM
Hardware Wallet Demand in South Korea Grows Exponentially
According to local reports in South Korea, demand for hardware wallets is increasing exponentially. The demand has stemmed from attempted hacks last year against domestic trading platforms like Upbit and Bithumb.
Regional Reports Detail South Korean Hardware Wallet Demand is Rising
South Korean cryptocurrency traders want to keep their digital assets safer after a few scares from local exchanges in 2017. The cryptocurrency trading platform Upbit, and Bithumb were both targeted last year with attempts at breaching the firm’s hot wallets. Further, the recent Coincheck exchange hack in Japan has frightened South Koreans as well, which has bolstered more individuals to get their hands on some form of cold storage.
Many cryptocurrency enthusiasts worldwide use cold storage devices like Trezor, Ledger, Bitbox, and Keepkey. However, South Koreans also have a few local choices to choose from when it comes to hardware wallets and more in the near future. The cold storage hardware producers selling products in South Korea or plan to launch this year include Key Fair, Penta Security, Coldwelt, and K-Sine.
Two Local Choices
Key Fair’s CEO Lee Chang-keun has created the ‘Key Wallet Series’ that utilizes its own developed algorithm tethered to a dedicated security chip. There are also features called “Pro and Touch” which uses fingerprint recognition and NFC communications with smartphones. The Key Wallet can hold multiple cryptocurrencies including bitcoin core, ethereum, bitcoin cash, dash, ethereum classic, ripple, and litecoin.
Another company offering cold storage devices in South Korea is Penta Security although the products beta testing is due to finish in June of this year. Penta’s offering is a hardware wallet that resembles a credit card which uses advanced key storage and offers multiple authentication features. This includes a one-time-password, two-factor authentication and being tied to the user’s mobile device.
Two More Hardware Wallet Manufacturers Plan to Offer South Korean’s Cold Storage Products
Two other companies planning to launch cryptocurrency hardware wallets to the Korean market includes Kay Sine, and Coldwelt. Kay Sine’s subsidiary S-Tech Co., Ltd will launch the ‘Touch X-Wallet’ later this year which uses biometric fingerprint authentication. It also provides an electronic signature function through BLE communication with a smartphone application.
The French company, Coldwelt, will also be selling its hardware wallet to Koreans later this year with a device that is similar to Ledger’s Nano S. According to Coldwelt, the product will hold up to 20 different cryptocurrencies.

13  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-18]The ‘Mt Gox Whale’ Explains His Crypto-Selling Strategy on: March 18, 2018, 01:43:27 AM
The ‘Mt Gox Whale’ Explains His Crypto-Selling Strategy
On March 17 the Mt Gox bankruptcy trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi revealed some critical information about how he’s been selling the BTC and BCH he has in his possession. The news may comfort those who believe the remainder of the Mt Gox sales will crash the market. According to Kobayashi he has been consulting cryptocurrency experts and selling in a manner that would avoid affecting the market price.

The ‘Mt Gox Whale’ Sold BTC and BCH Between December 2017 and February 2018 on Separate Occasions

The bankruptcy trustee from Tokyo, Nobuaki Kobayashi, is now referred to as the ‘Mt Gox Whale’ on social media and many cryptocurrency centric forums. On Saturday, March 17, the trustee disclosed to the public exactly how he was offloading the cryptocurrencies he holds, as he still has another $1.9 billion worth of BTC and BCH to sell. This massive amount of holdings waiting to be sold has concerned bitcoin traders, because they think the sales could hurt the BTC and BCH market value.

“I sold BTC and BCH from December 2017 to February 2018,” explains Kobayashi in response to questions about the sale.

I sold BTC and BCH separately — Therefore, the total amounts of BTC and BCC sold until the time I ceased selling are different.

The 'Mt Gox Whale' Explains His Crypto-Selling Strategy
Nobuaki Kobayashi has already sold $400 million worth of BTC and BCH. The trustee still has $1.9 billion worth of digital assets left to sell.
Kobayashi Consulted ‘Cryptocurrency Experts’ and Did Not Sell the Cryptos Using an Ordinary Exchange
The 'Mt Gox Whale' Explains His Crypto-Selling Strategy
Nobuaki Kobayashi.
According to the trustee, he consulted “cryptocurrency experts” during the BCH and BTC sales, and he did not use the traditional method of using a digital asset exchange. Further Kobayashi says analyzing the movement of the public addresses is useless, as the assumption that the assets were sold at those exact times is “incorrect.” 

“Following consultation with cryptocurrency experts, I sold BTC and BCH, not by an ordinary sale through the BTC/BCH exchange, but in a manner that would avoid affecting the market price, while ensuring the security of the transaction to the extent possible,” Kobayashi details.   

The method of sale of BTC and BCH was approved by the court as well  — I would like to refrain from explaining the details of the method of sale; otherwise the future sale of BTC and BCH could be hindered  — At present, nothing has been determined regarding the sale of BTC and BCH in the future.

Besides the $1.9 billion worth of digital assets remaining under the trustee’s supervision, he is also supervising the cash collected from the last sale. The approximate holdings of JPY 44,000,000,000 in cash were only recently secured says Kobayashi, and he will determine when creditors will get their restitution settlements in the near future.

14  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-03-07]Taiwanese Airline to Accept Cryptocurrency Payments for Flight Ticke on: March 07, 2018, 04:01:06 AM
 Taiwanese Airline to Accept Cryptocurrency Payments for Flight Tickets
Asia is probably the most cryptocurrency receptive part of the world where, in addition to a strong bitcoin trading mania, you can already find many regular companies accepting crypto payments to attract new clients. Asian consumers now have yet another way to spend their bitcoin: buying flight tickets for travel around the region.

Flight Bitcoin Air 101 Ready to Depart

FAT Taiwan Inc., the company behind the Far Eastern Air Transport brand, has announced that it will accept crypto payments for tickets, making it the first Taiwanese airline to allow its clients to fly for cryptocurrency. The airline says it will fully accept cryptocurrency for the payment of tickets and all relevant services, with the aim of becoming a pioneer of cryptocurrency adoption in the aviation industry.
Zhang Gangwei, the airline’s president, commented: “The widespread use of cryptocurrency in various scenarios will usher in a new future for the airline business, lodging industry, OTA (Online Travel Agent) and the entire tourism sector. FAT is about to be the number one in the industry to embrace cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.”

Fly to China, Japan, South Korea and Beyond
Far Eastern Air currently operates flight services around east and southeast Asia, including lines to several cities in China and Japan, Cambodia, the Philippines, and South Korea as well as a number of destinations across Taiwan. According to its announcement (text in Chinese), passengers will now be able to enjoy a more convenient and “discounted” booking experience using cryptocurrency as they purchase from its over 20,000 flights a year and all related travel products of the company.
Considering its home and target markets, it is no surprise that the airline wants to be seen as a crypto pioneer. Besides the regional media attention that it will no doubt bring, accepting cryptocurrency payments will hopefully attract the many passionate bitcoin traders and users that Asian countries, Japan and South Korea specially right now, are known for.

And if you are a crypto flyer and looking for a place to land, it was just reported that a South Korean travel website with over 50,000 hotels and other types of accommodation facilities will also accept cryptocurrency payments.

15  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-02-28] Europol: Hardcore Criminals Are Shifting From Bitcoin to Monero, Zc on: February 28, 2018, 04:50:40 AM
Europol: Hardcore Criminals Are Shifting From Bitcoin to Monero, Zcash and Dash
A multitude of representatives of law enforcement agencies from around the world have talked about the use of bitcoin by criminal elements, sometimes revealing ignorance about cryptocurrencies in the process. Now it appears that Europol at least is trying to go deeper, learning about various altcoins and how they can be used too.

Criminals Go Alt
The European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol), formerly known as the European Police Office and Drugs Unit, is concerned that sophisticated criminals are switching to alternative cryptocurrencies while investigators are just focusing on bitcoin. Monero, zcash and dash are specifically mentioned as now appearing on the radar of the EU law agency.

Jarek Jacubchek, a Europol cyber-crime analyst, told Business Insider: “We can see a quite obvious and distinct shift from bitcoin to cryptocurrencies that can provide a higher level of privacy. So basically, you can achieve a higher level of privacy using these ‘altcoins’, and these altcoins are either using stealth as the basis, like monero. There are also coins like dash that do not have stealth addresses, they have transparent addresses, but they have a mixing process that is part of the protocol.”

Bitcoin Still Rules

This shift from bitcoin to altcoins is supposedly fueled by two ongoing trends. First, bitcoin exchanges are coming under regulatory pressure to adopt the same anti-money laundering and know your customer (AML/KYC) practices of traditional financial institutions, such as requiring photo IDs to open accounts, which are scaring away criminals. Second, most police forces are already aware of the potential use of bitcoin and are improving their ability to track down BTC transactions by suspects. Additionally, by shifting between multiple cryptocurrencies, people can better hide their tracks from investigators.

Despite all of this, bitcoin as the original cryptocurrency is still the most popular with criminals, just as it is with law-abiding citizens. The co-founder of cryptocurrency analysis firm Elliptic, Tom Robinson, explains that “the vast majority of illicit activity in cryptocurrencies is still taking place in bitcoin, because of its ease of exchange and more advanced infrastructure”.

16  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-01-28]Lawyers Are Taking Payment in Bitcoin Despite Conflict of Interest on: January 28, 2018, 03:03:13 AM

Lawyers Are Taking Payment in Bitcoin Despite Conflict of Interest Concerns

An increasing number of lawyers are taking payment in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. With many ICO startups destitute until their crowdsale, ether or tokens are often all they can offer. Rather than turn away business, some lawyers have admitted to taking payment in crypto. While increased acceptance of cryptocurrency – especially in such circles – is to be welcomed, it’s led to concerns that lawyers who are financially invested in a project may struggle to dispense impartial advice.

Meet the Crypto-Chasing Lawyers

It would be easy to assume that cryptocurrency acceptance in the legal profession is limited to a handful of fringe mavericks and libertarians, but it’s attracted a number of mainstream advocates. A recent article in (paywalled) quotes several lawyers who now accept crypto including Washington-based lawyer Carol Van Cleef, who helps crypto clients with compliance matters. She explains: “I’ve known for a long time that my opportunity to expand in certain areas has been affected by not taking [cryptocurrency]”.

Historically, lawyers who’ve served the poorest and most marginalized members of society have done so for ideological reasons rather than pecuniary gain. In times gone by, it was not unheard of for defense attorneys to take payment in the form of firewood, food or whatever else their clients could spare. Had Breaking Bad been filmed five years later, it’s easy to imagine wheeler-dealer lawyer Saul Goodman accepting crypto and using it to help Walter White account for his vertiginous pallets of $20 bills.
Tokens for Attorneys

As cryptocurrencies have entered the mainstream, their association with illicit activities has diminished, and so has the stigma of accepting them. Lawyers must tread more carefully than professionals from other sectors however and accepting crypto from startups they’re advising raise possible conflict of interest concerns. It’s common practice for cash-strapped startups to offer team members payment in tokens.

Everyone from web designers to marketers can be pacified with the promise of tokens as soon as the project launches. Any legal expert entering into such an agreement would be obliged to rule that the token constituted a utility and not a security, as to do otherwise would mean they wouldn’t get paid.

Conflict of Interest or Credibility Booster?

If a lawyer has never sent or received cryptocurrency, they seem ill-equipped to advise crypto startups on their structuring model. Cryptocurrency theory is all well and good, but to truly appreciate and understand it, proponents insist, it is necessary to experience it in action, and not just once for test purposes, but as part of everyday life. Lawyers who have gotten their hands dirty, so to speak, by using crypto should be able to understand and explain it more effectively than their counterparts who are still crypto virgins. It would be hard to see bitcoin or ethereum acceptance as presenting a conflict of interest; a lawyer taking tokens for the platform they’re advising on, however, would be a much narrower crypto case, and one that is much harder to defend.
Mainstream media organizations such as the New York Times forbid their bitcoin reporters from owning cryptocurrency, while other news sites expect their journalists to disclose any potential conflict of interest. While scribes such as the NYT’s Nathaniel Popper have earned praise for the quality of their reporting, it’s hard to shake the feeling that by watching from the sidelines, their reporting is in danger of being too detached. Just as Vietnam war journos had no qualms about hunkering down with the troops, crypto reporters with personal experience of the subject matter are likely to be better informed and more attuned to community matters.

Dirty Digital Money
Accepting crypto is “a symbol for the client about how vested you are in the area,” says DC lawyer Carol Van Cleef. Defense attorney Jay Cohen also accepts bitcoin but confesses “We cash it out when it comes in, because of the volatility”. This practice tallies with an opinion delivered by a Nebraska Supreme Court committee which advises lawyers to convert crypto to fiat expeditiously to prevent conflicts of interest caused by lawyers getting vastly over or underpaid due to bitcoin volatility.

There’s another problem though that defense lawyers accepting crypto from their clients must address: ensuring that it has not come from illegitimate activities. Cohen confesses to having to turn down bitcoin payment from a client who was charged with money laundering. Obvious red flag-raising cases aside, there’s nothing to stop lawyers from accepting crypto, as a number of firms in the U.S. and elsewhere do.

Former assistant U.S. attorney Kathryn Haun put it best when she told via email: “There is no reason to believe that cryptocurrency is illegitimate and criminally-derived any more than any other form of currency or payment. Cryptocurrencies are not special in that regard and I would think would be treated like any other funds.”


17  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-01-26]All Major Korean Cryptocurrency Exchanges Fail Privacy Tests – 30 Da on: January 26, 2018, 02:32:03 AM
All Major Korean Cryptocurrency Exchanges Fail Privacy Tests – 30 Days to Improve

The South Korean Communications Commission has conducted a survey of major cryptocurrency exchanges in the country and found them to have insufficient customer data protection. Eight exchanges have been sanctioned, with 30 days to resolve their issues and safeguard their system
All Major Korean Cryptocurrency Exchanges Fail Privacy Tests – 30 Days to ImproveThe South Korean Communications Commission (KCC) announced on Wednesday that it has sanctioned 8 cryptocurrency exchanges “a total of KRW141 million [~USD$132,540] in penalties for violating the Personal Information Protection Act.”

This announcement followed the agency’s on-site survey of 10 exchange operators, in collaboration with the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Information and the Korea Internet Development Agency (KISA). The KCC wrote:

"Among the 10 surveyed companies, all eight companies, except the two companies which stopped providing related services during the survey period, were found to be in violation of the Information and Communication Network Act."

The 10 companies surveyed are Upbit, Ripple4y, Coinpia, Youbit, Korbit, Coinone, Coinplug, Eyalabs, Bizcoin, and Bizstore, according to Chosun. Bizcoin and Bizstore stopped their crypto-related services during the survey and were excluded from the list, the news outlet detailed. The country’s largest crypto exchange by volume, Bithumb, was previously investigated separately.

The Fines

The KCC fined Upbit 20 million won (~$18,800), Ripple4y 15 million won, Coinpia 15 million won, Eyalabs 10 million won, Youbit 25 million won, Korbit 21 million won, Coinone 25 million won, and Coinplug 10 million won.

Upbit is one of South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges. It is backed by the operator of the country’s most popular chat app, Kakao Talk. Meanwhile, Youbit was already in the process of filing bankruptcy before the survey ended.

Bithumb was sanctioned by the KCC in December. The agency fined the exchange 60 million won (~$56,400) for leaking customer data.

KCC’s Rectification Measures

Lee Hyo-Sung, the KCC chairman, said that “We will try to reduce the damage of users through more strict sanctions” of any crypto exchanges that violate the Information and Communication Network Act. He elaborated:

"While the security threats such as virtual currency speculation and hacking of handling sites are increasing, the actual situation of personal information protection of major virtual currency exchanges is very weak."
The Commission has ordered all the exchanges to immediately stop all violations. They are to make corrections within 30 days and report the results to the KCC, the agency announced. The Commission also plans to provide guidelines and regular education for any exchange officers in charge of personal information protection.

To prevent unauthorized access to personal data, the KCC requires the exchanges to “install and operate an access control device such as an intrusion prevention system, [take] measures to prevent the tampering of the access record, [and take] encryption measures for secure storage and transmission of personal information,” the agency wrote.

The exchanges must also “establish and implement internal management plans,” including those “related to the management of virtual currency electronic wallets and cryptographic keys and the transmission of virtual currency transactions,” the KCC detailed.


18  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-01-22]This Week in Bitcoin: Up, Down and Sideways on: January 22, 2018, 02:07:40 AM
This Week in Bitcoin: Up, Down and Sideways

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. From the hubris and excess of the North American Bitcoin Conference to the gloominess of the crypto markets, it’s been a feel-o-coaster of a week. Fear, uncertainty and doubt were the overarching emotions amidst a turbulent seven days, but there was also space for cheer, schadenfreude and disbelief. Welcome to another week in bitcoin.

High Drama Amidst Low Prices

This week in bitcoin managed to cram in more drama than a Mexican telenovela, with major market drama, regulatory drama, and Ponzi drama to name but three. Things started smoothly enough, with our leading story, as Monday broke, addressing the fact that 80% of all bitcoins have now been mined. Traditional media picked that one up and ran with it. Appreciation of bitcoin’s scarcity failed to stop the rot though, as bitcoin started to slide, taking the rest of the cryptocurrency market down with it.

Everyone had a theory behind the slump that saw bitcoin drop below the champagne threshold of $10k for the first time since early December. It was a price bracket that many thought we’d never see again. Theories postulated included threats to ban crypto in South Korea, threats of China cracking down further on bitcoin mining, historical data which shows bitcoin always performs badly in January, or the fact that bitcoin was “overbought” in the run-up to CME and Cboe futures launching last month, and thus a correction was necessary. Some people even chose to blame falling markets on the cycles of the moon, which seems as good a theory as any.

It Came From Korea

It’s impossible to review a week in bitcoin without acknowledging Korea, so here goes: our most popular story concerned government officials profiting on advance knowledge of regulatory action. That’s right, insider trading. Everyone seems to be at it, though it doesn’t require a man on the inside – simply the ability to sense a storm coming, as futures traders appear to have done, according to Eric Wall. He notes “there was an unusual increase in short positions around January 11. At the same time, the price was just bouncing around in the 12800-14200 range.” In other words, the markets looked normal, but futures traders had an inkling that something was brewing.

On Wednesday, every asset in the cryptocurrency top 100 was in the red. 24 hours later and we were back to fields of green. It was a non sequitur the likes of which hasn’t been since 1986 when Dallas’ Bobby Ewing reappeared in the shower after having been killed off in the previous season. In the words of Biggie Smalls, it was all a dream. The dreaming didn’t last for long unfortunately, as by the weekend the market revival had died out and we were back in the low eleven-hundreds. Quick, someone order more tethers.

Bitcoin Gets a Haircut, Bitconnect Gets Scalped

If bitcoiners thought they had it bad, they should spare a thought for bitconnectors. All those with their wealth locked up in the Church of Ponzi had their assets savagely crushed from $290 a token to $18. It would be heartening to say that everyone who got duped by Bitconnect has learned their lesson, but judging by the number of “victims” who are now piling into the Bitconnect X ICO or Davorcoin – yet another Ponzi – the signs aren’t encouraging.

To finish this week’s highlights, of which there are too many to list as usual, we have another tale from South Korea, suggesting that normal banking service may soon be resumed for cryptocurrency exchanges, which is just as well given the rate at which new exchanges are springing up in the country. While the mantle of crypto-friendliest Asian nation resides with Japan for now, in Europe, Belarus is staking a claim as a new haven for crypto’s rax averse.
If you’ve had the temerity to skip straight to the end of this review for the This Week in Bitcoin podcast, here it is. In it you’ll get the tl;dr on this week’s burning stories, delivered by your amiable host Matt Aaron. Catch you next week for more highlights from the heart-stopping world of bitcoin.

19  Bitcoin / Press / [2017-01-17]215,000+ Sign Petition Against South Korean Crypto Regulation – Gove on: January 17, 2018, 04:05:27 AM
215,000+ Sign Petition Against South Korean Crypto Regulation – Government to Respond

A national petition against extreme cryptocurrency regulations in South Korea has exceeded 200,000 signatures, the requirement for the government to respond. The petition entitled “Has the government ever dreamed a happy dream for the people?” was filed on December 28. Meanwhile, another related petition calls for the removal of the governor of the country’s Financial Supervisory Service.

Government Will Respond

The South Korean government announced a series of regulatory measures for cryptocurrencies in December. Immediately following the announcement on December 28, a national petition entitled “Has the government ever dreamed a happy dream for the people?” was filed and will run through January 27. According to the rules set by the Blue House, if more than 200,000 people sign a petition within a month, the government will respond within 30 days.

On Tuesday, January 16, the number of signatures exceeded that threshold for the above petition, with 215,140 signatories at the time of writing.

Concerning illegal gambling, the author argues “people are not stupid. In the current era, virtual currency is invested because it is judged to be the 4th revolution and it is not just a random investment…I invest wisely to the extent that I do not overdo my money.”

After acknowledging the risks, the author emphasized:

The petition does not object to the real-name system which regulators are trying to implement or taxes that must be imposed. However, “Please do not take away our happiness and dreams that we had for the first time in Korea,” it concludes.

Another Petition and A Constitutional Court Case
On December 28, another national petition was filed. It “calls for the dismissal of Choi Heung-shik, the director of the Financial Supervisory Service, who is offering speculation to the people,” the document states.

This filing was in response to a speech Choi gave on December 28 in which he reportedly said it is a good bet that bitcoin’s bubble will burst. “Bitcoin will lose its bubble later. You can bet,” Hankook-Ilbo and other news outlets quoted him. At the time of writing, 37,911 people have signed this petition but the count is still rising.

Meanwhile, the country’s Constitutional Court has entered into a preliminary hearing on the case against cryptocurrency regulation filed on December 30. Anguk Law Offices appealed “over the government’s regulations on cryptocurrency trading, saying regulating the trade through administrative guidance without any legal grounds is an infringement of property rights,” the Korea Times explained.

The court will examine whether the constitutional appeal is appropriate and whether a full-scale trial is necessary.
20  Bitcoin / Press / [2018-01-16]The Futility of Government Bans – Bitcoin Always Finds a Way on: January 16, 2018, 05:15:23 AM
The Futility of Government Bans – Bitcoin Always Finds a Way
Cryptocurrencies have been threatened at one point or another by nearly every country on the planet. Rarely does a government venture beyond rhetoric. Those resorting to crackdowns are often met with greater public appetite for decentralized virtual money, making all that initial fuss an exercise in futility. Be they communist strongholds or liberal democracies, bitcoin cannot be stopped.
Government Threats Met with Pushback

In response to a recent Republic of Korea (ROK) bureaucrat’s statement, causing mainstream media to roar about a “ban” on bitcoin, the South Korean street riled to virtual barricades. Citizens flooded petition signatures to the President. Social media contained oceans of angry comments demanding the offending minister’s sacking. The pressure grew so intense, agencies within the same government began contradicting one another, ending with an official presidential announcement no “ban” was forthcoming. Sensing a political market opening, normally reticent ROK politicians jumped on the bandwagon to defend cryptocurrency legitimacy.  

The above is something like a rare historical scientific control with regard to just why bitcoin and cryptocurrencies cannot be banned. For our purposes, ROK’s geographical juxtaposition and its post-war politics fit comfortably beside its northern neighbor, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), North Korea. The two nations share a peninsula, a people, and a history, ripe for an organic experiment in prohibition.

Cryptocurrency probably made its way to DPRK through its wealthier brethren, and perhaps even China in bitcoin’s early years. Obviously, DPRK has a “ban” on bitcoin, de facto. Yet cryptocurrencies are still an issue for the country, something it must address, a problem some reports have as the regime tacitly embracing, and likely as a way around sanctions. Arguably the most closed country in the world is being confronted by a new monetary reality, which illustrates bitcoin’s inherent power under the most extreme of circumstances.

Pronouncement after pronouncement, rule changes, fines, bank harassment, appeals for international cooperation, taxes, emergency measures, the liberal democracy of ROK has been very busy. To be sure, the last round of news from South Korean regulators brought about double digit dips in bitcoin’s price, domestically and internationally. But even that appears to be temporary as markets see bitcoin retain relative price resiliency.

A Dozen Countries are Experimenting with Bans

The side-by-side control of having a hermit kingdom and republican democracy both grapple with bitcoin yields insight into what sort of prohibition is possible, and what is even meant by the word “ban.” Bitcoin cannot be banned in the ultimate sense, as it resembles the character of pushing on a sturdy balloon. Push it down on one side, and it grows on the other.

Of the 195 countries of the world, 12 have openly tried to ban bitcoin and crypto at various levels: Brazil, Indonesia, China, Vietnam, Israel, Morocco, Bolivia, Algeria, Ecuador, Kyrgyz Republic, Bangladesh, and Nepal.

However, that list is misleading. Not all governments have banned cryptocurrency in the same way. Israel, for example, has effectively prevented crypo stocks from being listed on its indices and aided the practice of its banks not allowing bitcoin business accounts. Yet its prime minister has made positive comments, and still another regulator has advocated making Israel a welcoming environment for bitcoin.

It’s worth pointing out Israel is a representative democracy, one of the only in Southwest Asia. The Israeli street is passionate about cryptocurrency and its potential, and, like South Korea, has the electoral ability to influence outcomes should regulators overplay their hand.

Wealthy Will Not Allow Ban

Charles Hugh Smith argued crypto prohibition won’t happen due to the influence of wealthy investors using it as a store of value unable to be monkeyed with by politicians. His point at once affirms and jettisons the democratic thesis, as it all comes down to levers of power. The same way assets such as housing are owned and closely guarded, Mr. Smith postulates, bitcoin will be protected even more. Wealthy holders have gone to great lengths already to keep the currency away from governments.    

For South American countries such as Brazil, Bolivia, and Ecuador, the challenges are both political and economic when it comes to prohibition. Each has versions of command economies, and nationalist fervor is easily whipped up when supposed threats are made against their respective currencies, and bitcoin can certainly represent that. However, even where economic expression is limited and politics are a crazy mix of bureaus and committees, crypto has found a way through. Its popularity grows in Latin America.
The remaining half, from China to Nepal, have almost no tradition of what anyone would ever call democracy, though in some cases governments have pulled back and allowed their populace more expression in personal economic matters. That too is debatable. For odious governments such as Nepal, cracks are appearing. Smartphone adoption continues apace, as does internet access generally. Add to those its young population, some 40 percent under 20 years, and there’s a recipe for crypto.

Prohibition, in the sense Mr. Smith might be thinking, almost always only impacts those without the means to subvert laws. That’s not as true when it comes to cryptocurrency. Whatever else its positives, all anyone needs is a $20 Android phone and they’re immediately able to participate in a huge transfer of wealth. Governments can shut down websites; they can arrest exchange owners; they can make onboarding hell; they can tax it as capital gains. Governments cannot stop an idea whose time has come.


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