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Author Topic: ▁ ▂ ▄ ▅ ▆ Cloudmining 101 (ponzi risk assessment) ▆ ▅ ▄ ▂ ▁  (Read 319705 times)
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Puppet
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December 23, 2014, 09:56:43 AM
 #241

Added bitcoinmaker.ch  and introduced  "guaranteed profit" bonus point that automatically leads to a ponzi classification.
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December 23, 2014, 11:41:17 PM
 #242

Guys,

I'm having my doubts about megamine. Why is it scored so well in the list?

AFAIK, they're pretending to be mining in Facebooks datacenter or something, or in another datacenter in the neighborhood.
Company is unregistered, with address the same as the postal address of the datacenter they pretend they're using.
http://www.hydro66.com/#details

I couldn't find an endorsement by some vendor...


Would like to hear why you score it otherwise?

> Most cloudmining companies are ponzi scams <
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December 24, 2014, 12:05:08 AM
 #243

I wouldn't necessarily say that a promise of guaranteed profit is a foolproof indication of a ponzi. There could be actual mining operations that promise guaranteed profits but are just lying and hoping things work out.

Kind of like BFL offering Monarch delivery times starting November-December 2013, and then not taping out until November. It's not that they didn't make they ASIC, they just lied a lot about how they were going about it.
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December 24, 2014, 05:01:44 AM
 #244

I wouldn't necessarily say that a promise of guaranteed profit is a foolproof indication of a ponzi. There could be actual mining operations that promise guaranteed profits but are just lying and hoping things work out.

Kind of like BFL offering Monarch delivery times starting November-December 2013, and then not taping out until November. It's not that they didn't make they ASIC, they just lied a lot about how they were going about it.

I tend to agree with you, but I understand Puppet's point as well. It's a valid point as a risk assessment by making a dubious claim and warning potential buyers about it. Throwing guaranteed out there in the context of a mining investment is probably about the same as saying you'll get a guaranteed return from the stock market. However, it doesn't necessarily make them a ponzi by stating that, just probably less trustworthy I suppose.



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December 24, 2014, 08:19:29 AM
 #245

Guys,

I'm having my doubts about megamine. Why is it scored so well in the list?

AFAIK, they're pretending to be mining in Facebooks datacenter or something, or in another datacenter in the neighborhood.
Company is unregistered, with address the same as the postal address of the datacenter they pretend they're using.
http://www.hydro66.com/#details

I couldn't find an endorsement by some vendor...


Would like to hear why you score it otherwise?


The dc and the cloudmining are the same people. They use a building right next to KNC. I granted them the endorsement point because of that and the pictures which I think prove beyond reasonable doubt they are a huge KNC customer. Moreover,  since KNC dont post here anymore, I kinda understand they are not gonna get an endorsement post. Some further discussion here:
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=860400.msg9580202#msg9580202

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December 24, 2014, 08:23:14 AM
 #246

I wouldn't necessarily say that a promise of guaranteed profit is a foolproof indication of a ponzi. There could be actual mining operations that promise guaranteed profits but are just lying and hoping things work out.

Thats like saying the ponzi's are hoping difficulty will go up fast enough to make things work out. Keep in mind bitcoinmaker dont even sell you a certain hashrate, they explicitly sell you a profit margin and claim to adapt the hashrate to achieve that.
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December 24, 2014, 10:43:12 AM
 #247

Thats like saying the ponzi's are hoping difficulty will go up fast enough to make things work out. Keep in mind bitcoinmaker dont even sell you a certain hashrate, they explicitly sell you a profit margin and claim to adapt the hashrate to achieve that.

Don't forget that it can be a scam even if it's not a ponzi. If they are anonymous they can have real miners and sell the mining power very cheaply, even letting their customers point the miners to different pools. After a while they can just stop giving the mining power or profit margin they have promised to their customers and keep both their money and the miners. It wouldn't be a ponzi, but still a scam.
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December 24, 2014, 10:52:40 AM
 #248

Don't forget that it can be a scam even if it's not a ponzi. If they are anonymous they can have real miners and sell the mining power very cheaply, even letting their customers point the miners to different pools. After a while they can just stop giving the mining power or profit margin they have promised to their customers and keep both their money and the miners. It wouldn't be a ponzi, but still a scam.

True, which is why point 6 is so important, but sometimes difficult to verify.  I do think its going to be tricky to operate a large verifiable mining farm and maintain anonymity after running off with customers money though.

But here is the thing; I think I can guarantee that quite a few of these services will turn out to be scams, and thats what Im focused on. But no one can guarantee the safety of any cloudmining investment. After all,  there are other risks too, even a legitimate offer could be struck by disaster (fire, theft, legal problems,  whatever).  I think my position is clear that you are better off not investing in any of them, but if you have to, at least pick one that isnt guaranteed to be a scam. Just dont think that guarantees its not a scam.
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December 24, 2014, 02:47:09 PM
 #249

I wouldn't necessarily say that a promise of guaranteed profit is a foolproof indication of a ponzi. There could be actual mining operations that promise guaranteed profits but are just lying and hoping things work out.

Thats like saying the ponzi's are hoping difficulty will go up fast enough to make things work out. Keep in mind bitcoinmaker dont even sell you a certain hashrate, they explicitly sell you a profit margin and claim to adapt the hashrate to achieve that.

Yeah, bitcoinmaker is almost certainly a scam. My point is more general about the criteria though; tomorrow AMHash could get tired of disappointing sales and start pushing optimistic scenarios and guaranteeing profit. That wouldn't really make them a ponzi since they aren't paying out old money with new, but it would still be a massive red flag. IMO guaranteed profit should be another point (maybe worth double points), but it's not a homerun for it being a ponzi in and of itself.
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December 24, 2014, 03:06:42 PM
 #250

Yeah, bitcoinmaker is almost certainly a scam. My point is more general about the criteria though; tomorrow AMHash could get tired of disappointing sales and start pushing optimistic scenarios and guaranteeing profit. That wouldn't really make them a ponzi since they aren't paying out old money with new, but it would still be a massive red flag. IMO guaranteed profit should be another point (maybe worth double points), but it's not a homerun for it being a ponzi in and of itself.

If AMhash started guaranteeing profits, they would have become a scam.
You object to the name Ponzi, and perhaps you are right and it should just be called a scam, but consider where the money would come from to pay out the partial 'profits' while the difficulty/exchange rate ratio isnt as profitable as they promised. They can only instantly break their promise, or delay it by turning ponzi. Frankly, the distinction is semantics to me, you're getting screwed either way.
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December 24, 2014, 03:17:48 PM
 #251

Yeah, bitcoinmaker is almost certainly a scam. My point is more general about the criteria though; tomorrow AMHash could get tired of disappointing sales and start pushing optimistic scenarios and guaranteeing profit. That wouldn't really make them a ponzi since they aren't paying out old money with new, but it would still be a massive red flag. IMO guaranteed profit should be another point (maybe worth double points), but it's not a homerun for it being a ponzi in and of itself.

If AMhash started guaranteeing profits, they would have become a scam.
You object to the name Ponzi, and perhaps you are right and it should just be called a scam, but consider where the money would come from to pay out the partial 'profits' while the difficulty/exchange rate ratio isnt as profitable as they promised. They can only instantly break their promise, or delay it by turning ponzi. Frankly, the distinction is semantics to me, you're getting screwed either way.

LOL... You're probably getting screwed by AMHash anyway, they're just being honest about it right now and hoping you still line up lube in hand regardless.

It is a bit pedantic I'll agree, but I am a bit of a pedant and given how vociferously the referral link spammers are with their denials it's always nice to be accurate.

On another note, I've been running with displaying signatures disabled for awhile now, and every once in awhile I'll take a guess at a page in one of the ponzi threads on who has referral/sig campaign crap in their signature and who doesn't. Other than some old members who should know better, it's amazing how accurate it is once you turn them back on to see if you're right.
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December 24, 2014, 03:48:12 PM
 #252

ok, so lets be pedantic Smiley.

Am I correct assuming that we agree that bitcoinmaker is not just a scam, but specifically a ponzi type scam (either that, or a vehicle for Ingvar Kamprad to spread his wealth around).

If so, would it change anything if they were actually mining with 1 antminer ?
If not, what about  10? 100?

If not, then how is it different from the situation where amhash would be selling a fixed mining profit of x% per year ?

BTW, if you disable sigs, are you able to have one yourself?


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December 24, 2014, 04:42:02 PM
 #253

ok, so lets be pedantic Smiley.

Am I correct assuming that we agree that bitcoinmaker is not just a scam, but specifically a ponzi type scam (either that, or a vehicle for Ingvar Kamprad to spread his wealth around).

If so, would it change anything if they were actually mining with 1 antminer ?
If not, what about  10? 100?

If not, then how is it different from the situation where amhash would be selling a fixed mining profit of x% per year ?

BTW, if you disable sigs, are you able to have one yourself?

Whether or not they are mining has no real impact on whether or not it is a ponzi. Boyko obviously had some mining power at one point (rented or not, who knows) and that is a ponzi.
The hallmark of a ponzi is that the returns are not based on actual revenue, and are paid with investor money. I'm not sure exactly where you'd draw the line on a fractional reserve mining operation; as much as I hate to say it, it probably boils down to intent. A proper company would limit the offering to actually available hardware (covered by your unlimited IPO point), but if someone like Bitmain, KnC or Bitfury didn't do that and had a huge sales rush that put them past their actual capacity it wouldn't make them a ponzi.
A permanent fraction mining operation is a more complex beast and you'd have to judge them on a case by case basis. There exists the edge case where a real mine could be slightly fractional, but still pay out real revenue because their maintenance fees are much higher than their actual costs. They're still subjecting themselves (and their customers) to exchange rate risk, but I'm not sure I'd fully qualify that as a ponzi.

Also note, I'm not saying that AMHash would offer a fixed mining profit per year and actually pay it out. I'm just saying that they could advertise "guaranteed profit" with no real backing, and if it works out, great. If it doesn't, tough shit for you. Not a ponzi, just scammy false advertising.

On the signature, no idea. I don't have one. Tongue
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December 24, 2014, 08:26:20 PM
 #254

Also note, I'm not saying that AMHash would offer a fixed mining profit per year and actually pay it out. I'm just saying that they could advertise "guaranteed profit" with no real backing, and if it works out, great. If it doesn't, tough shit for you. Not a ponzi, just scammy false advertising.

Consider the following contracts:
- you get mining revenue of x GH minus Y fees and we guarantee that as a result you will break even or make Z% ROI (if not tough luck)
- you get z% ROI (thanks to our pixie dust fairy tale miner pool)

Seems to me you would consider the first just false advertising, although if the profit is guaranteed, Id say its a contractual obligation and I dont see a fundamental difference with the latter. in both cases, there is no mechanism to generate the promised profits.
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December 24, 2014, 08:41:17 PM
 #255

Also note, I'm not saying that AMHash would offer a fixed mining profit per year and actually pay it out. I'm just saying that they could advertise "guaranteed profit" with no real backing, and if it works out, great. If it doesn't, tough shit for you. Not a ponzi, just scammy false advertising.

Consider the following contracts:
- you get mining revenue of x GH minus Y fees and we guarantee that as a result you will break even or make Z% ROI (if not tough luck)
- you get z% ROI (thanks to our pixie dust fairy tale miner pool)

Seems to me you would consider the first just false advertising, although if the profit is guaranteed, Id say its a contractual obligation and I dont see a fundamental difference with the latter. in both cases, there is no mechanism to generate the promised profits.

True, but there was no mechanism for BFL to ship Monarchs in Nov-Dec with a November tapeout or for HashCoins to ship a 5 chip 4.5TH/s 2800W HashFast miner in an ATX case either, and it doesn't make them ponzis. It just makes them scams for promising something they can't deliver.

It is pedantic as most of the cloudmining scams will be ponzis, but it's possible for a Cloudmining outfit to be a scam or scammy without being a ponzi. In the theoretical AM case, if their contract remains the same as it is now but they plaster a simple mining calculator up on the main page that indexes everything to the current difficulty, or has a increasing BTC/USD factor, etc. and they then plaster big banners on the site that say "150 Day Break Even! 100% profit, guaranteed!" it doesn't make them a ponzi. You could argue (possibly successfully) that the front page claims supersede the boring long legalese contract that has no profit guarantee mentioned, or that they've violated their contract if they do claim it there but then break the terms of the contract, but that's a different kind of scam.
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December 25, 2014, 10:00:37 AM
 #256

True, but there was no mechanism for BFL to ship Monarchs in Nov-Dec with a November tapeout or for HashCoins to ship a 5 chip 4.5TH/s 2800W HashFast miner in an ATX case either, and it doesn't make them ponzis. It just makes them scams for promising something they can't deliver.

But they werent promising dividends which would have to be paid from customer's investments.

Quote
It is pedantic as most of the cloudmining scams will be ponzis, but it's possible for a Cloudmining outfit to be a scam or scammy without being a ponzi. In the theoretical AM case, if their contract remains the same as it is now but they plaster a simple mining calculator up on the main page that indexes everything to the current difficulty, or has a increasing BTC/USD factor, etc. and they then plaster big banners on the site that say "150 Day Break Even! 100% profit, guaranteed!" it doesn't make them a ponzi. You could argue (possibly successfully) that the front page claims supersede the boring long legalese contract that has no profit guarantee mentioned, or that they've violated their contract if they do claim it there but then break the terms of the contract, but that's a different kind of scam.

A banner advertising may or may not alter their contractual obligations, Im taking no position on that issue,  but that doesnt change the essence that if they sell a contract that makes these profit promises, that ponzi is an appropriate term. So it may or may not apply to the theoretical AM case, but it certainly applies to bitcoinmaker and will apply to any cloudmining company that explicitly sells a guaranteed profit contract.

Anyway, filed a complaint with swiss authorities regarding bitcoinmaker.ch, lets see if they do something.
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December 25, 2014, 03:39:01 PM
 #257

Here is another one: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=895814.0
I would say 1 to 7 minus 5 (not sure about referral, nothing to read about in OP).
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December 26, 2014, 09:39:06 AM
 #258

Here is another one: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=895814.0
I would say 1 to 7 minus 5 (not sure about referral, nothing to read about in OP).

Thanks, added it, including the '5', referrals are there if you sign up.
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December 26, 2014, 11:20:30 AM
 #259

HashProfit get many new customers .. They gain confidence, and here "very suspicious". Any news about this service?

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December 26, 2014, 11:26:35 AM
 #260

If its a ponzi as I suspect, there wont be any 'news' for as long as enough new customers sign up.  Its only when not enough new customers sign up or not enough old customers reinvest,  that you will be getting the news that payouts are delayed/too low/they were hacked/website gone/whatever. But until that day  (which can be any day) you would expect ponzi's to pay on schedule with no reported problems.
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