Poloniex v. Cryptopia?


Preamble:

Do you ever feel like the above picture. A primate looking at a bone trying to figure what it does. How it works.

It’s like that now. The more I learn about cryptocurrency “exchanges” — at least the friendly ones — the less I know. What the hell is this “bone” thing?

Perhaps, it is best to clear our minds of the extraneous nonsense dished up on the internet like so much fast food, no matter how good it tastes.

Maybe we should go to the source. Talk to the guys and gals on the front lines. Go to the exchanges themselves and just ask. So, that’s what I did. Like a smart guy. Really smart, I tell you.

I feel that I have implied things in a previous post that I should not have. So, in a sense, this post is my retraction and clarification. My bit of re-education. Hey, I’m not perfect, but neither is crypto, so bite me.

Here’s what I learned, after being contacted by a manager from a cryptocurrency firm. I learned that things are rather screwed up, to put it politely.


The Tables have Turned:

I questioned the Cryptopia Cryptocurrency Exchange’s decision to delist Bytecoin. I was not on about Cryptopia’s fees or trying to review their policies. And it was not specifically about Bytecoin. I don’t even like Bytecoin (BCN) — any longer.

I was after the reasoning behind the delisting process. In fact, given my suspicions, I thought that there was something more to this story. Something nefarious. And I was right that their was more, but wrong for suspecting foul play.

As it turns out, a manager at Cryptopia took the time to explain to me why BCN will be delisted there. I’ll not give a name, but I have obtained permission to use the information here.

This is my interpretation of Cryptopia’s dilemma, but a predicament all exchanges of this nature should be aware. If I’m off base here, I apologize – to Cryptopia.

If cryptocurrency experts have questions about the following, please let me know in the comments section below.


Payment ID’s:

So, here’s the scoop.

It is not so much that BCN has a “paymentid” issue. It has more to do with another well-known exchange.

An exchange which is quite large, but perhaps has outgrown its ability to serve the customer. I’m referring to Poloniex, of course. It is becoming a dinosaur.

There are all kinds of complaints against Poloniex. Poloniex scams people. Poloniex scalps investors. Poloniex delists or freezes coins for months at a time. It has been seized by unknown parties, banned users, been hacked, and the list goes on.

But we’re focused on one thing here: BCN. Why the delist?

For those of you who are unaware of how one sends BCN’s, it’s a bit more involved than sending bitcoin (BTC’s). One requires, in many cases, two pieces of information.

  1. A wallet address where the BCN is supposed to go
  2. A paymentid, to ensure your BCN is credited to your account.

And this is where the difficulties arise.

One can encrypt the “paymentid” and the fact that one did this is visible on the blockchain. Even on Bytecoin’s blockchain.

Knowing this, means one can exploit this knowledge.

So, how does it work?

Poloniex transfers cryptocurrencies to other exchanges. A large percentage of the CryptoNote transactions, especially the ones Poloniex sends to Cryptopia deposit with no problems. The “paymentids” are not encrypted.

Unfortunately, about 10% of the Poloniex transfers to Cryptopia were (are) transferred encrypted.

But here is the problem. Poloniex has not provided the “key” to unlock the encrypted deposits.

In other words, Poloniex sends the BCN, but Cryptopia is unable to clear the transaction – unable to credit the customers’ cryptocurrency account.

So, what happens?

Continue reading Poloniex v. Cryptopia?

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Bytecoin: Don’t Mess with India


Playing With Fire

For those who follow the day-to-day docudrama that is Bytecoin, a CryptoNote derived cryptocurrency, it’s always great when the promoters get a little rankled around the collar. They play the victim even if many of us may refer to the “Bytecoin Scam.” Often becoming upset when the crypto-public asks a few relevant questions, like who they are or if they know anything about Bytecoin’s checkered past.

Let us focus on Bytecoin for a moment here. It’s the cryptocurrency of choice in India’s Temples these days, if we can believe the hype. And if this is true, it is probably an attempt by citizens in that country to retain their wealth. Recently their government announced that certain paper fiat currency bills were now worthless. But they gave the citizens plenty of time to convert larger denominations to lower ones. They gave them several hours. Thank you, Narendra Modi, you Grand Poobah Socialist, you.

Do you really think the average citizen in India is ready to get screwed by a bunch of crypto-jerks at Bytecoin.org after Modi bent them over?

Answer? Heck yes! Just go to Bytecoin.org.in and prepare to invest! And don’t worry about the Bytecoin delists. If Poloniex disables it again, I’m sure all will be well. And Cryptopia would never delist it. Just go to to the nearest empty Bytecoin faucet, read the boring entries in the Bytecoin Forum and feel good inside about your Bytecoin future. Bytecoin GPU or Bytecoin CPU miners welcome. Make sure to watch your graphs.

Forget Bytecoin history, just focus on the hashrate. Learn how to buy Bytecoins at your earliest opportunity. Make your Bytecoin investment today. Buy those Bytecoin logo T-Shirts and be the first on your street or in your tent, to hold Bytecoin long term.

Is Bytecoin legit you ask? Absolutely and not a soul in India would ever confuse it with bitcoin. No way. Just get your trusty Bytecoin mining calculators out. Look up the best Bytecoin mining pools. Buy the best Bytecoin mining hardware you can find. Keep up with all of the Bytecoin news and run your Bytecoin nodes. Set up your Bytecoin online wallet immediately. Keep an eye on those Bytecoin price predictions. Read your daily Bytecoin reviews. Know about Bytecoin solo mining. Burn that Bytecoin symbol into your skull. Make sure you do your Bytecoin Tweets. Make sure to check for Bytecoin updates and know about all the Bytecoin uses. Are there uses?

And always know in your heart, the Bytecoin value, even as it drops to zero. Even as the Bytecoin YouTube channel chats it up — pumps it madly.

Now back to the real world…

Community Manager Promo’s

The latest bitcointalk.org information from the purported Community Manager of Bytecoin or more specifically, from BCN_Official gives us some rather vague information:

Messages about a dev team require some clarification. Previously, it was reported that there were…4 full-time developers, freelance devs, cryptography expert a and a community manager.

Here, the sentence sort of dies. Given that statement, a reasonable person would ask if the original statement was false or unclear. If unclear, are we now receiving the clarification? So, there weren’t four full-timers etc.? Let’s move on. Surely, it becomes clearer.

There’s no “old” or “new” team at all, it’s not a relationships [sic] where you can have a lot of “ex” and “present”.

Do you understand now? There are no old or new team members, because there is/are no relationship(s). No relationships between members where you can even have “ex” and “present.” This is meaningless or lost in translation.

Bytecoin has a straight vector of development and none of those “old” and “new” once [sic] can change it.

Now we find that the old team and new team cannot change the “straight vector of development.” Why not? Isn’t there someone in charge of development? A vector can be a quantity having direction and magnitude. That is, if we are trying to determine a position of one point in space in relation to another point in space. It sounds fancy, but it’s pure snake oil.

To calm those of you who are still wondering about the team: we do cooperate with all of the previous devs and the main ones of them are still with us at a main cast.

Wait a minute. Why do we need to be calm? Have you ever told an irate person to calm down? What happens? They often become more belligerent. Implying that investors should calm down is ludicrous and unprofessional; and the Community Manager is a hack for stating it. It’s a way of belittling those who dare to ask questions and seek answers. “Just calm down, Chuck. Relax. Let us take care of your money…”

You just stated there are no old and new teams. You’re just one happy family now? If you, BCN_Official, still cooperate with them – the “previous devs and the main ones,” then who or whom is controlling what? How is this cooperation managed?

There’s nothing to worry about.

Spoken like a true charlatan. When anyone tells you there’s nothing to worry about, worry a lot. This kind of psychology may work for the masses, but not on anyone with their eyes open and their wallets closed.

Speaking about today’s temps of developing. Are those regular updates, releases and total quality of the project don’t prove the professional skills we have?

If there are such skills, where are the disinterested party code reviews? Releases of updates and such do not sit well when a project is founded in the way it was. In the manner, where all requests for clarity have been summarily ignored for years. Why would anyone buy a product developed in secret, released in an unverified manner and given a false mystery (Cicada 3301), which I believe Smooth has implied. Are we to ignore the past?

Please, don’t spread the panic, we’re working every damn day to make BCN better than yesterday. And the results of the last two months are reflecting our efforts.

No rational person ought to beg. Why on earth should we not spread the truth?

The Problem:

  • We don’t even know the truth
  • We don’t know when Bytecoin (BCN) was invented
  • We don’t know why the white papers were purposely pre-dated
  • We are concerned that a few big bag holders have about 80% of BCN
  • We wonder why Bytecoin has adopted Monero upgrades
  • We are worried when and if BCN becomes valuable that the newest team won’t retire to the beach and let the coin die — again
  • We don’t know how long this latest BCN revival will last

Another Word from Our Sponsor:

Then there is this part of BCN_Official’s blurb that is most troubling:

I think there’s no need to continue this discussion – there’ll always be some guys who wanna hate. We’ve got no time to pay attention on ‘em, we have to focus on the further development.

It tells me that we don’t matter. It also tells me that “Jenny” is scared. That she or they are now milking India and will soon disappear. I hope not. I sincerely hope Bytecoin.org does not have the gall to once again flake out.

Don’t Mess With India

Those guys and gals from from India are pretty sharp. Last I checked, they were not as enslaved as the Chinese and there are over 1.3 billion citizens of India. I’ll wager that there are more Indians with computer skills than the rest of the world combined. I wouldn’t screw with them. You will be found if you dare unload on a nation of computer nerds.

Now we play the waiting game. See if “Jenny” – BCN_Official or one of the other sock-puppets has the desire to continue the charade. A dangerous game now — IMO.

P.S. If you need a secure private crypto I suggest Monero or Aeon. Zcash and Nav Coin both have “developer” weakness. Meaning, the .govs can squeeze the human devs for info. Monero only has one known public person who can essentially be untied from the coin as necessary. Aeon has no public “weakness.”

Update:

Some have questioned where I obtained the news that temples in India now accept Bytecoin. Well, here are a few sources:

 


 

Bitcoin Billions at Risk

ball

If I had a tiny crystal ball, I could tell you if the 30 billion dollar bitcoin meltdown will continue. I could predict when to sell, when to buy and when to hold. But I don’t have even the tiniest of magical crystal balls — and neither does any other Bitcoin Jesus.

Bitcoin’s “potential” fork in the road is near. A few weeks, maybe sooner. Experts in the field are uncertain if bitcoin will survive in its current form — or any form. Traditional money-changers will shrug if it collapses. “We told you it was a bubble — it was funny-money.”

If bitcoin fails, billions of dollars could be forever locked away. Those who made their millions from the cryptocurrency will no doubt soldier on, creating new tech and innovating — all because bitcoin opened that door.

In the meantime, say in a few days, the large cryptocurrency exchanges might need to explain that all of their cryotocurrency accounts are okay, but they only have pre-SegWit bitcoins. Outfits like Bitfinex, Coinbase and Poloniex could freeze all bitcoin accounts until the storm blows over. Then the lawsuits would begin. If you think it won’t endanger your back-up crypto, think again. Think about saving your cryptocurrencies offline or in a wallet you completely control. Then hope. And wait. (I am.)

On the scale of things, bitcoin isn’t even a blip — when one focuses on the amount of money being flung around the world each day. It’s chump change compared to JPMorgan Chase or Barclays, but then they don’t get it do they? They don’t understand the idea behind bitcoin at all. The idea behind any cryptocurrency. If they do understand it and wish to keep their wealth, they are busily working to destroy it — or copy it. Thing is, they will always be behind. Innovators are even now working to improve fintech. In a few years the banking industry will again need to re-educate themselves or risk being heaped into the dust bin. Hundreds, if not thousands of years of traditional banking — the stuff that money is made of — is being rewritten.

At first glance, some might think that a back-up cryptocurrency is in order — another cryptocurrency to set aside, while bitcoin goes through its latest convulsions. Litecoin comes to mind. Maybe Ethereum. Perhaps instead, we should focus on the newest developments or what are called “Third Generation” crypto’s. Iota comes to mind. No doubt, the choices are difficult.

But the crypto-markets as a whole are deflating, suggesting that this isn’t over yet.

Colorful personalities such as Jeff Berwick have chimed it on the matter. Comedy seems to be the order of the day. Just another update. Don’t worry. Time to poke fun at the entire process. You can do that when you have loads of pre-halving bitcoin profits.

Berwick is apparently comfortable in the knowledge that all will be well — soon. That bitcoin is the “King of Crytocurrency” — period. At least for now. Oh, and if you do follow this “personality” you might want to check out his latest post about the Moon Landing having been faked. Great, comedy and conspiracies. Is he credible at all?

All joking aside, Bitcoin Magazine might be one of best sources of information. They delve into the specifics. Get in the weeds.

Here’s a recent article from Bitcoin Magazine that will fill you in:

Bitcoin miners at large have missed the first BIP 148 “deadline” to prevent a “split” in Bitcoin’s blockchain.

Source: Bitcoin Miners Miss the First BIP 148 “Deadline”

The article tells us that the first bitcoin deadline — when the miners should have taken action to show “solidarity” — has passed. “The miners at large” have not acted to install the recommended updates. This news helps us understand what is actually happening in the cryptosphere. Obtaining our news from CNBC, at the sound-bite level, can be annoying, if not misleading.

But the digital details may not matter to the “man on the street.” He just wants profits — stability — or a way to stick it to the real man. And that is just a side benefit, for now. Since bitcoin, for all intents and purposes is public and prying eyes are always a concern.

As a result of this apparent bitcoin “miner” inaction and other factors, the value of bitcoin is still dropping as of this posting. It is heading for the $1800 mark. The next psychological level — and you’ll hear about this soon — is the value of one ounce of gold. Once bitcoin touches that number, people will expect a reaction. Either a bounce of affirmation or the other thing. If the other thing occurs, then you will read about bubbles. About bitcoin diving to 30 dollars each, then pennies each, then you won’t hear about bitcoin any longer.

Right now, the 30 billion dollar question is, has the bitcoin community at large already signaled that Bitcoin Core is no longer in touch with the users themselves? If this is true, are we now staring at the “fork of failure?” Or are we reaffirming our trust in the backbone — the miners — of the bitcoin system?

If we follow the miners, where will they take us? Down commercial roads, where large corporations and their Nanny-State governments dictate policy? If we follow Bitcoin Core, will this latest software “patch” suffice until the next critical juncture? Still keeping the community safe from the ever growing centralization of control? It seems that we are damned either way.

What is curious about the article in Bitcoin Magazine is that if bitcoin does fork and the powers that be decide, belatedly, to go ahead and allow the updates to commence — they could reunite the blockchain. In other words, having bluffed and lost, the miners and Bitcoin Core could have a “coming to Jesus” moment after they look into their respective digital wallets and discover that they are holding worthless numbers. But they better not wait long to reunite, because every second they delay, trust is evaporating.

In the event of a temporary fork there will still be significant disruption for the users, of course. It would be like keeping two sets of books. Eventually, if the blockchain is mended, only one set of books would be accepted. And therein lies the problem. The other set of books — all of the transactions, purchases, trades and the like — would be nullified. Users could potentially lose millions. Maybe more. Again, trust would be seriously eroded.

I don’t even want to think what would happen if bitcoin permanently forks. The cascade effect would certainly push many other cryptocurrencies into an unrecoverable downward spiral. We couldn’t really say if both bitcoin blockchains would have value. In such a dual-bitcoin scenario, no doubt both bitcoins would attempt to retain the title of “bitcoin.”

And if bitcoin forks, would not every blockchain born cryptocurrency become immediately suspect? Risky.

The other side of that Crypto-Armageddon is that a new coin could be born. Meaning the old guard — Bitcoin Core — could be left behind as Bitcoin Unlimited, for example, moves on with all of the “customers.”

Eventually, blockchain tech will be replaced. All tech is updated. The question is when?

A prediction would be that bitcoin prices could be touching gold price territory within the week.

Thanks for stopping by.

 


Image: Flickr

 

 

Bytecoin Blackout?


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Earlier today it was reported that Bytecoin.org mysteriously went offline. (You can read about it on BitcoinTalk.org here.) As of this writing the site is still down. Here’s what you might get:

An error occurred.

Sorry, the page you are looking for is currently unavailable. Please try again later.

If you are the system administrator of this resource then you should check the error log for details.

Faithfully yours, nginx.

Now this does not necessarily mean that 300 million dollars in BCN will evaporate, but it might end up that way. Especially if news comes out that Bytecoin.org was a complete and utter scam from jump street. Many have warned about this very thing.

And please know that Bytecoin’s Forum is still up. See: https://bytecointalk.org/index.php to verify. However, this is not a very active forum.

Are we about to experience another Alphabay fiasco? It does not appear to be that way — exactly. Unless the Bytecoin Team has raked in enough cash and has decided to abandon ship — which is not sinking. Maybe they are quitting on a high note? If so, the value should fall very soon. Why? Who will tend the software? How will we know when there is a software update? Are they switching to a full wallet based system — a more decentralized approach? If so, then where will newcomers obtain the application software? The wallet? The blockchain?

You can check here to see if the site is up yet: Bytecoin.org

The timing of this outage — this blackout — is curious. It coincides with a massive pump on the order of four million dollars (US). Although, Poloniex has not yet opened BCN (Bytecoin) for deposits/withdrawals — allegedly they are waiting for a solution from Bytecoin. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the BCN trading at Poloniex is “off the chain.” What do they know that we don’t? Is this just another Polo-Pump?

If we back up a bit, some of us might recall that Bytecoin.org took their private forum offline recently and dumped a load of spam. This was shortly after I emailed them about the problem, but I do not know if they conducted the cleaning because of my email.

Strangely, just after my post yesterday about Pacific_Skyline, the main site went offline. Again, that’s probably just a coincidence, right? I mean, did I shame them? Maybe. I’ve been pretty tough on them lately about their odd writing — how it seems foreign-styled. Foreign in the sense that it’s not the American style of writing. Which is okay, but they might need to hire an editor to flesh out some of their extraneous verbiage. Long winded and flowery for sure. That is unusual, in my mind, for “math” types. Maybe it’s a French thing, since their website is allegedly based there. But I doubt it.

Now the Cryptonote.org website is still up. If you recall, Bytecoin is a Cryptonote coin. Run Scamadviser and you should find that this site is listed as “99%” and it “looks safe.” “Looks” is a weasel word. My cat “looks” safe, but he will eat your dog. Cryptonote.org might be located in the Netherlands, but it is hidden, according to the review. The site could just as easily be located in Panama or in the US. There has also been a lot of speculation that Cryptonote.org and Bytecoin.org are operated by the same crew. Should we then expect the CryptoNote.org site to shut down next? According to others, Bytecoin and CryptoNote parted ways some years ago and therefore Bytecoin.org going silent at this juncture, should not cause any troubles on CryptoNote.org.

Since many of the CryptoNote coins are related, I checked the following websites:

Aside from Pebblecoin and Quazarcoin, the above websites are easy to find and active. There are more CryptoNote coins, but they are essentially “dead” coins. In other words, many of the CryptoNote websites are alive and well. This makes me think that we are simply experiencing some kind of upgrade to the Bytecoin.org website. Again, if you will recall — at least for those of us who follow Bytecoin and the CryptoNote coins in general — we were advised about a forthcoming “colored coin” update by the Bytecoin Team about a month ago. We were not advised, however, that the website would blackout for a time. And, this new bit of news was a long time coming. About a year. And…it seemed repetitive. Are we being led by the nose? The long con?

There is no news on the CryptoNote.org website about Bytecoin.org’s current hiatus. There is no recent activity on Github, but I would not expect any if this is just a website upgrade. But I would expect this if the Teto-Team is upgrading BCN. You would think with all of the money flowing into BCN of late, that the TetoTeam can now focus on some serious development. Or maybe a seriously long vacation?

This of course brings up the 80 plus percent Bytecoin premine allegation. These days, with all of the ICO’s about, it does not strike us as odd, that any type of big premine is a big deal. It’s only about our acceptance of the coin — if it works as advertised. And it has always worked for me.

A recent piece on Reddit, if it can be believed, advised of an older exchange with the one of the previous Bytecoin Team members. What I got out of it was that there were about a 1000 or so early miners of BCN and the coin was really released in 2012, but the post did not go into the specifics — nothing about the fudged White Paper dates or the non-existence of a website back then.

If the Redditor in question stumbled upon a truth about Bytecoin, it would seem to imply several things. First, that over a thousand individuals have over 80% of the coins, which means it is not a small group of people and that is probably a good thing. Secondly, that the core Teto-Team may not know each other, personally. Now, take this as you may, but the most successful secret operatives work using the cell theory. They often do not know the organization they work for and only have one other contact — a vague one at that. In the new world of the internet, the developers of cryptocurrencies can work completely — or almost completely — anonymously. They do not need to identify their other team members at all.

Like I’ve mentioned before, this ability to work independently and anonymously, within the international financial environment, makes Bytecoin, if it survives its christening by fire, a force to be reckoned with. No other POW (Proof-of-Work) cryptocurrency on earth has ever accomplished such privacy and independence before; and had such success. (Please correct me if I am wrong.)

There has been much praise for the “coding” as well. Bytecoin is not a *bleep*coin, as it were. There have been recent issues with mining, however. This problem allowed someone or a group of them, to mine extra coins — beyond the perimeters set up in the code. It appears as if the Bytecoin Team has refused to undo these added coins and this stand has probably angered some. In the final analysis, however, when a cryptocurrency invalidates transactions after the fact, which would be required if a blockchain was rolled-back in order to reverse the creation of these extra coins, you end up with things like Ethereum Classic. Bytecoin avoided this rift. Full ahead, they said —  then they fixed the workings on the fly, as I understand it.

And please do not mention Monero. We know at least one player in that space. It is not unimaginable that other, less moral characters (our governments), know a lot more about the Monero developers. I’d say, in a world controlled by government money, that allowing one’s identity to leak out in this arena, is like to planning to go to prison in the future. Or, at the very least, sending a public invitation to the regulatory agencies the world over to plant electronic eavesdropping devices on your dog. (Hint: check their floppy ears.)

There is a side note here. Something that is causing a lot of concern on the internet. The Net Neutrality debate is raging. This could be one of the reasons that many websites have slowed over the past 48 hours. Of course those who support neutrality aren’t really supporting free and fair internet usage. They are supporting the institution of force. How so? If you are an internet company, under the idea of neutrality, you are required not to act in the interest of your own business. You may not charge other companies extra for use of your servers. You can’t offer special deals or market products of your choice by slowing down or limiting the access of competitors. You must allow every company connected to the internet — which really does not exist at all since it is simply computers connected to each other — free and unfettered access to your equipment. After all, under this alleged neutrality, the internet, which might use your equipment, your electrical power, your time — whether you agree to allow it or not — does not belong to you. It is some virtual thing, afloat in a sea of electricity — like the air we breathe. Nuts. It’s like Johnny Mnemonic all over again. “Information should be free!” Okay, but who will pay for it kids? Silence. Haven’t you heard? There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch, Jethro. Okay, the above is over-simplified, but ain’t that the gist of it?

Now we wait. The thing is, customers hate waiting. In fact, we find other, better suppliers — ones who are up to the job. (There, I just had to get that last Bytecoin dig in.)

Get off of your duff Bytecoin — if you’re still live.

Are you under attack?

Seriously, I hope that Bytecoin.org is “under reconstruction” as some have speculated. If true and if the new site comes up with some great new tech, well then, we might be in for a wild rocket ride.

I know…a lot of “ifs.”

Curiously, a few hours after posting this, the Bytecoin.org website once again showed itself. ScamAdviser indicates that the site is currently “94%” safe. There has been no official word from the Teto-Team as to why the site disappeared for over a day.

 


Image Source: Flickr

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is Bytecoin Making a Comeback?

Bytecoin - Copy

Over a year of relative silence and now Bytecoin is making a comeback?

Many cryptocurrency enthusiasts noticed on or about May 17, 2017, when the following “blog” was posted on the Bytecoin website, the value of said currency jumped. This may have been a coincidence, however, since a lot of other cryptocurrencies also surged and then unceremoniously lost over half their gains.

Here was a recent headliner:

Untraceable Tokens

Cryptocurrency market has been developing drastically, bringing more and more innovations to explore. The Bytecoin team understands the importance of keeping a finger on…

The point was: “activity.” We finally had some. But why the delay?

Many of us had written-off Bytecoin when they stopped minding their forum. It became bloated with advertisements and there did not appear to be much activity — or easy to find information.

Others of us have read the profanity laced debates on the other forums about the alleged deeds of the bad Bytecoin developers. Was it true?

Here is the link:

 Blowing the lid off the CryptoNote/Bytecoin scam (with the exception of Monero)

Bytecoin allegedly forged the dates on their whitepaper(s) in order to make it appear as if they had completed a fair release. Meaning, to be fair, you must work hard and allow every “miner” access to your product at the same moment. (Not fair to the developers.)

Bytecoin creators may not have fairly given away their invention and instead, allegedly mined over 80% of their own coins before letting anyone in on their plans. In any event, the coin languished. Relegated to the heap of junk coins, but it never quite died. Just hung out. Waited.

Months went by. Then years of anemic trade. Few if any improvements came. Bytecoin’s Github account was boring. Then lately, after bit of a screw-up — more activity. Somehow a bit of mining software allowed someone to mine extra Bytecoins. This was fixed (allegedly), but still, Bytecoin was accused of not taking action quickly enough.

Actually, the accusations flew.

Monero supporters hinted the Bytecoin developers intentionally mined extra coins using a flaw in their system. Bytecoin supporters then retaliated. Monero supporters knew of the flaw, they said, and took advantage of it. They created more Bytecoins and used that as leverage to expose Bytecoin’s flaws. Why? To sew distrust. Make Bytecoin look bad. Turn the community against them. All of the above.

Once the dust settled, it was back to the business of smear. Monero, with all of its improvements of the CrypotNote or CryptoNight Protocol (Algorithm), against Bytecoin — which dared to rear its scammy head once again. It was the original CryptoNote against the (allegedly) new and improved CryptoNote.

The Bytecoin pre-mine allegations are still there as well.

These days, ICO’s (Initial Coin Offerings) and pre-mines are commonplace. The results are mixed. Some developers fly the coop with the cash and some actually continue to tweak their coins. Some monitor their Github accounts making changes to at least let us know that they are still around.

Monero was not pre-mined, according to their documentation. They were a community driven program, forked originally from Bytecoin and after a some early growth pains  (community internal disagreements) a certain sect ended up with the keys to the code. Today, Monero enjoys a relatively stable existence, enjoying recent valuations, even if they do not have the best “wallets” or mascots.

If Bytecoin did “pre-mine,” within the last week they may have covered their initial expenses. In other words, the pre-mine has helped to support the development of Bytecoin. Unless, like the Monero supporters claim, Bytecoin will simply dump their coins and leave everyone hanging. So far, they appear to sticking to their guns.

Bytecoin has experienced a massive resurgence on one exchange especially: Poloniex. But the trading, other than having lined the pockets of Poloniex, since they charge for the service of trading, is missing something. And that is the ability to deposit or withdraw any Bytecoins. Currently, you can only trade Bytecoins with other cryptocurrencies on Poloniex. All I have been able to verify so far is that Poloniex is performing  “maintencance.”

If Poloniex finally re-enables Bytecoin it could be seen as a vote of confidence. Perhaps we should all realize that Poloniex just wants to earn a profit, however. Keeping the customer happy and the money flowing is a no-brainer. If they think Bytecoin is too much of a distraction they could delist it.

One hopes that Poloniex is watching Bytecoin closely. Certainly they can see who owns the most of Bytecoins on their exchange. If a large player has made some attempt to dump or trade enormous amounts of Bytecoin, they should know about it.

Where will Bytecoin go from here? Your guess is a good as mine. We have a nice, easy to use software wallet.  One which has always worked for me — and apparently renewed interest in the coin itself.

Volatility is an issue now. Bytecoin, if the past is any teacher, may be cutting its teeth on the “whales” right about now. Big ups and downs. Money is certainly changing hands.

The question is, are the users getting pummeled at the expense of the anonymous developers of Bytecoin or are unrelated parties just having fun with all the investors trying to pile on?

As always, time will tell. If privacy and security gains traction, Bytecoin could be sitting pretty.

 

(Note: This author is not associated with Bytecoin.org or any of its developers.)

Will Coinbase Survive?

(Updated)

This seems to be the burning question…

Will Coinbase Inc. survive one of the most unprecedented moves by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in recent years — its overreaching and unreasonable attempt to search and seize millions of private financial records and kill bitcoin — our digital gold?

It’s nothing new. They’ve done it before. The IRS has gone after deep pockets. And they are doing it again.

Deep pocket in question: Coinbase. But not all that deep.

Coinbase – according to their website:

 

  • Founded in June of 2012
  • Digital currency wallet and platform
  • Merchants and consumers can transact with digital currencies
  • Currently offers bitcoin and ethereum
  • Based in San Francisco, California       

No doubt the IRS has been investigating cryptocurrency exchanges for some time. The Coinbase investigation is just another domino, in a long line of dominoes, from the United States to China, from Russia to Australia and beyond. The very public Coinbase investigation is meant to strike a very real financial fear into the hearts of the American cryptocurrency enthusiast.

According to the Coinbase website, they have about 5,000,000 users on their platform. These users have 11,000,000 electronic wallets, which may or may not actually contain bitcoin or ethereum cryptocurrencies. Add to that mix, 45,000 merchants utilizing their platform and thousands of software applications from developers.

Again, according to their website, over $5,000,000,000 in cryptocurrency has been exchanged on Coinbase. The number is high, but are we talking about fours years of exchanges?

Coinbase is also in over 30 countries worldwide. Which means that only portion of profits and losses were had by Americans. Which means that foreigners probably owe the IRS money for doing business with an American Company. Foreigners who will now likely ignore the IRS, but whose banks and financial houses will likely not.

Why? Just ask UBS Bank in Switzerland. No longer are Swiss banks the go to gurus for wealth management and privacy. The IRS went after those who failed to report their foreign bank accounts at UBS, cited them for filing false tax returns. The result? Millions of dollars in fines, federal probation and prison sentences.

And the list goes on. We’ve all heard of the Panama Papers, where another two trillion dollars sought a tax haven, but a data leak exposed the process.

But why did the IRS investigate such a small company? Coinbase Inc. and UBS are like the proverbial elephant and mouse. With over two trillion in assets, UBS had far deeper pockets. Look at the larger picture.

UBS took years to accumulate the wealth it managed. Bitcoin transactions or sent bitcoins in 24 hours, approaches about 1.5 million  — in bitcoin. In today’s dollars, it would take over two years, at that rate, to send a trillion dollars worth. Not even Panama Paper worthy.

What about the world’s biggest holder of bitcoin? It’s probably still the million bitcoin owned by Satoshi Nakamoto. Current dollar value? It fluctuates, but as of January 1, 2017 it approaches a cool billion dollars.

Eliminating the non-U.S. based cryptocurrency exchanges would certainly help plug the fund hole many banks are no doubt reporting. How many wealthy citizens are moving their money, not to foreign lands, not under the mattress, but on a ledger kept by millions of people the world over. Then going abroad to trade that cryptocurrency for local currency or other property? Maybe.

Another hint that things are not what thy seem? Constant dribbles of news about how companies like Circle are jettisoning bitcoin sales, but are also continuing to investigate the technology behind bitcoin. Whose on their side? Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

Given just these brief snippets of information, can we assume that the IRS will also apply the foreign bank rules when American bitcoin users choose to hold their bitcoin in online wallets abroad?

In the end, if Coinbase continues to deny the IRS access to essentially all user records, expect a raid on the main offices in sort order and frozen accounts, as a result. It would be advisable for one to remove any cryptocurrencies stored at Coinbase. It would also be advisable that Coinbase encrypt all user account information and hand the keys over to their customers. At that point, only banks would have information as to who sent money to Coinbase.

Alas, the hope that Coinbase would keep customer accounts private and not allow the IRS access, is a mere pipe dream. People would need to go to jail or flee the country and be chased by the Feds for the rest of their lives. Not worth the sacrifice, unless these people have the backbone of Thomas Jefferson and pledge their freedoms — and fortunes.

If anyone thinks this is no big deal, think again. One of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges on earth is about to go down — in the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Next on the agenda? Bitstamp? Kraken? Poloniex? Just wait.

(Image compliments of flickr.)