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Author Topic: "Long-term offers" - gonna have to tackle this 1 eventually  (Read 6565 times)
Micon (OP)
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September 01, 2012, 04:54:52 PM
 #1

1)  this is not the correct name for high-interest borrowing scams

2)  in the wake of BCST, are you guys going to really keep this stickied here???  https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=81542.0    This is simply a list of Ponzi schemes that a long time users is saying have "AA" credit ratings and whatnot.  This is totally, 100% unacceptable - didn't we just do this?  This forum shouldn't give free advertising to scammers IMO.

3)  https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=105285.0  I am going to dissect each still running Ponzi.  Can't let them get away with it again, can we?

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lebing
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September 01, 2012, 05:20:32 PM
 #2

Agree.

Bro, do you even blockchain?
-E Voorhees
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September 01, 2012, 05:25:49 PM
 #3

1)  this is not the correct name for high-interest borrowing scams

Agree, I think a better classification or subforum would be "high-risk" or "buyer beware".    

Lowest quality debt rated CCC, or Distressed securities, are commonly defined as those yielding 1500 basis points over equivalent government bonds.  So I would put anything with an equivalent yearly rate above

1-year USA T-Bond Rate (currently 0.2%) + 15% = 15.2%

into a high-risk subforum.

Shadow383
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September 02, 2012, 01:00:20 AM
 #4

1)  this is not the correct name for high-interest borrowing scams

Agree, I think a better classification or subforum would be "high-risk" or "buyer beware".    

Lowest quality debt rated CCC, or Distressed securities, are commonly defined as those yielding 1500 basis points over equivalent government bonds.  So I would put anything with an equivalent yearly rate above

1-year USA T-Bond Rate (currently 0.2%) + 15% = 15.2%

into a high-risk subforum.


No.

The easiest way to weed out all the scams would be to require lenders to provide proof of identity, location, current employment etc etc to the forum staff, on the understanding that in the event of a fraud these details will be made public and reported to the relevant authorities.
You could also require all lenders in the lending forum to make public spreadsheets detailing their assets and liabilities. This would have stopped BS&T very quickly.

Put those that don't meet this requirement in a High Yield Investment Programs (HYIPs) category.
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September 02, 2012, 01:08:42 AM
 #5

this is not the correct name for high-interest borrowing scams

The section is for long-term offers, not just HYIPs.

Having forum staff decide whether specific investments are dangerous is definitely something I don't want. Exact rules for what constitutes a HYIP could be defined, but services that don't meet the HYIP definition probably won't be that much safer than HYIPs. And interest rates in the Bitcoin ecosystem are much higher than traditional interest rates, so it's difficult to determine the correct limit. I think a policy of caveat emptor makes the most sense.

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September 02, 2012, 01:09:19 AM
 #6

The easiest way to weed out all the scams would be to require lenders to provide proof of identity, location, current employment etc etc

Yeah. But have third-parties do this and accredit the investments.

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September 02, 2012, 01:19:10 AM
 #7

Having forum staff decide whether specific investments are dangerous is definitely something I don't want.

How about having two categories of subfora: "New Schemes" and "Proven Models"? Any investment scheme has to be vetted through the "New Schemes" forum first via user base voting and reaction over the course of a few months. That's reasonably long enough to be able to gauge the overall honesty of the players running the show. If they prove to be for real, then they can post in the "Proven Models" forum.

IOW, any new investment idea HAS to be posted in "New Schemes" so we can all keep an eye on it rather than burden admins with the task. After the community knows they're for real, they can post to "Proven Model". It's not scamproof or foolproof by any means, but it might help a little.
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September 02, 2012, 01:26:47 AM
 #8

How about having two categories of subfora: "New Schemes" and "Proven Models"? Any investment scheme has to be vetted through the "New Schemes" forum first via user base voting and reaction over the course of a few months. That's reasonably long enough to be able to gauge the overall honesty of the players running the show. If they prove to be for real, then they can post in the "Proven Models" forum.

IOW, any new investment idea HAS to be posted in "New Schemes" so we can all keep an eye on it rather than burden admins with the task. After the community knows they're for real, they can post to "Proven Model". It's not scamproof or foolproof by any means, but it might help a little.

Pirate would have made it to "proven models"... It was around for a long time and had the support of a lot of highly-respected members.

I don't want the forum itself to tell readers what to think. Readers should make up their own minds.

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September 02, 2012, 01:30:14 AM
 #9

"Long-term offers" is appropriate and neutral.
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September 02, 2012, 01:37:45 AM
 #10


Pirate would have made it to "proven models"... It was around for a long time and had the support of a lot of highly-respected members.

I don't want the forum itself to tell readers what to think. Readers should make up their own minds.

Pirate was a special case. He took advantage of his position in the WOT. Most of the new scammers appear to be low on the totem pole or outside of it completely.

I agree with you on people being able to make up their own minds. Admins aren't babysitters. I would see breaking investment postings into two camps as more a community service rather than any kind of nannying.

It's just an idea. I've lurked this forum and the btc world for a while. Consider it as an opinion from an interested outsider. Cheers!
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September 02, 2012, 10:55:17 AM
 #11

this is not the correct name for high-interest borrowing scams

The section is for long-term offers, not just HYIPs.

Having forum staff decide whether specific investments are dangerous is definitely something I don't want. Exact rules for what constitutes a HYIP could be defined, but services that don't meet the HYIP definition probably won't be that much safer than HYIPs. And interest rates in the Bitcoin ecosystem are much higher than traditional interest rates, so it's difficult to determine the correct limit. I think a policy of caveat emptor makes the most sense.


1)  "long-term offers" couldn't be a worse descriptor for what is contained there.  "Buyer Beware" is appropriate, but would need to be legislated and I can understand not wanting to

2)  These are fake deposit programs.  They are fake entities claiming they are willing to borrow btc, and lots of it, at rates way higher than sustainable.  They are blatantly stealing money (again) and giving this a sticky:  https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=81542.0  is just shameful.  A- rating for a 3%/wk scam?  and it's stickied once again?

3) Why not categorize these borrowing offers by APR?  if you classify them as 0-15% and then 15+ or 15-50% then 51+ then the scams would categorize themselves and no mods needed.

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September 02, 2012, 01:32:44 PM
Last edit: September 02, 2012, 02:13:21 PM by n8rwJeTt8TrrLKPa55eU
 #12

3) Why not categorize these borrowing offers by APR?  if you classify them as 0-15% and then 15+ or 15-50% then 51+ then the scams would categorize themselves and no mods needed.

+1

The only truly objective, easy to measure property for all "loans" (legit or otherwise) is their interest rate.  Anyone with an ongoing borrowing business without a hard end date, should be required to disclose the equivalent annual interest rate that they are paying, as part of their thread title.

I emphasize the necessity of requiring standardized annual rates for no-end-date programs, so that readers can do apples-to-apples comparisons between loans, and because a lot of scams hide what would be impossible rates and unsustainable models by breaking them down into daily and weekly terms (example: Pirate).

You could then have:
  • Subforum for quickie loans that are one-time and fixed short duration (term under 6 months).  Not subject to mandatory standardized APY disclosure requirement.
  • Subforum for recurring or long-term (6+ months) loan programs: Annual APY disclosure required in thread title.


Anyone caught trying to get around the 6-month disclosure threshold by stopping and restarting shorter loan programs without full disbursement of all customer funds inbetween, would be subject to reporting/banning/scammertagging.

This proposal keeps the existing free rein wrt. offering legitimate loans, yet makes it harder for scams to hide.  And because it's based on 100% objective easy-to-measure numeric criteria, it would be very lightweight in terms of moderator/admin overhead.  I'm sure plenty of folks will monitor and self-police the lending forum to ensure compliance with above requirements.
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September 02, 2012, 03:27:03 PM
 #13

I agree with Micon. I'm embarrassed by 'Long Term Offers' and scared by 'Securities'.

How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
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September 02, 2012, 03:41:17 PM
 #14

I agree with Micon. I'm embarrassed by 'Long Term Offers' and scared by 'Securities'.


Some 'Securities' are dodgy or bad investments but with mine 'RSM' - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=63257.0 - It enabled me to buy mining hardware I otherwise couldn't have afforded.  So everyone owns a share of all the hardware and profits.  As long as people trust me not to run off there shares in RSM are backed by part ownership of all the hardware.  It was aimed at other people who couldn't afford (or have time/skills) to buy expensive mining hardware to micro-invest in bitcoin mining.  All major decisions are decided by a motion of shareholders.

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September 02, 2012, 03:56:26 PM
 #15

Securities scares me because in the USA there are strict laws with even TALKING about securities.

I know, I know, Congress is supposed to make no law abridging freedom of speech. I worry that won't stop the SEC from seizing the bitcointalk.org domain name for promoting unlicensed securities.

I think a separate top-level domain for everything under the Marketplace heading would be the right thing to do.

How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
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September 02, 2012, 04:02:53 PM
 #16

I know, I know, Congress is supposed to make no law abridging freedom of speech. I worry that won't stop the SEC from seizing the bitcointalk.org domain name for promoting unlicensed securities.

I think a separate top-level domain for everything under the Marketplace heading would be the right thing to do.
.onion would be a good choice of TLD.
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September 02, 2012, 09:19:16 PM
 #17

I agree with Micon. I'm embarrassed by 'Long Term Offers' and scared by 'Securities'.


1) tyvm.  I would love to have you on my podcast, DonkDown radio.  I have so many questions.

2)  I now am blaming the mods for this.  I heard Theymos invested in the giant Pirate scam.  Now Mod John says in this 1.5%/wk scam thread : https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=89122.180

He is on his quest to label every worthwhile lender in this subforum as a ponzi-maker. Be happy that he approved you too.  Wink

and then quickly deletes it.

Why are the bitcointalk mods on the side of the scammers?

3) I have intentionally never touched the GBLSE or MPEX as it seems like the SEC should be all over that soon.  It is clearly inevitable given the SEC's history of aggressive action towards unlicensed securities.  .onion that thing ASAP if you ever want to see it again.

4)  I don't know how it took me and everyone else this long to figure this out, but the current crop of "Long Term Offers" and formerly "Lending" had nothing to do with lending - they are all *borrowing*   Maybe a forum with subforums of different borrowing %? 

Sticky at top of 500% APR borrowing forum that says "In the course of human history, every entity borrowing at 500%+ APR has been a scam of some sort up until now" ?


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September 03, 2012, 12:14:13 AM
 #18

Notice how Liberty Reserve and Perfect Money are very careful to distance themselves from any HYIP schemes, even if they're the #1 payment method used for them. There's a good reason why.

Delete all the securities/hyip's and let somebody else run the risk of hosting it.



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September 03, 2012, 01:18:18 AM
 #19

Securities scares me because in the USA there are strict laws with even TALKING about securities.

I know, I know, Congress is supposed to make no law abridging freedom of speech. I worry that won't stop the SEC from seizing the bitcointalk.org domain name for promoting unlicensed securities.

I think a separate top-level domain for everything under the Marketplace heading would be the right thing to do.


I agree. It is the prudent thing to do.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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September 03, 2012, 01:57:20 AM
 #20

I'm embarrassed by 'Long Term Offers'

Why? If people want to throw away their money, I don't want to get in the way. That's what I said before BS&T crashed, and I feel exactly the same now. Perhaps in the future there will be a few borrowers that are legitimately providing enough value to the Bitcoin economy to offer such high interest rates.

I certainly don't want the forum to get into the business of identity verification or deciding whether businesses are legitimate or suspicious. Someone else should do that.

I have several problems with categorization based on interest rates:

- People can just as easily create low-interest Ponzi schemes as high-interest ones.
- If there are too few categories, legitimate investments might be categorized with the scams. If there are too many, each section (especially the intermediate ones) will receive fewer readers. Borrowers would be incentivized to standardize on certain rates.
- When investments have differing interest rates for different types of accounts (like BS&T did), where should they go?
- Interest rates in BTC are currently higher than USD interest rates, and they will increase over time due to deflation, so it's difficult to guess the best ranges to use for the categories.

So I tend to think that doing nothing would be better than adding interest-based categorization. Third-parties can do their own categorization and accreditation. We can link to these third-parties in stickies.

Securities scares me because in the USA there are strict laws with even TALKING about securities.

I know, I know, Congress is supposed to make no law abridging freedom of speech. I worry that won't stop the SEC from seizing the bitcointalk.org domain name for promoting unlicensed securities.

I think a separate top-level domain for everything under the Marketplace heading would be the right thing to do.

It'd be easier to just move the whole forum to a new domain name. I don't really want to move it a fourth time, though...

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