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Sia Once Blasted Ethereum for Foundation. Now It Wants One

The decentralized cloud storage network thinks creating Sia Foundation can bring more attention to the network. But getting there involves a hard fork.

Republished by Plato

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In brief

  • Sia has proposed hard forking the decentralized cloud storage network’s protocol.
  • Doing so would allow for a portion of each block reward to go to a Sia Foundation.
  • Sia has criticized the Ethereum Foundation for being too heavy-handed with protocol developments.

Just over three years ago, Sia co-founder David Vorick took to Medium to pen an ethos for the decentralized cloud storage network. In it, he called out the Ethereum Foundation for inserting too much centralized control into what was meant to be a decentralized blockchain.

Today, however, to counter sluggish growth, Sia proposed creating its own foundation.

The basic premise of Sia, launched by Nebulous, Inc. in 2015,  is that most people don’t need all the hard drive space they have. Just as someone might rent out an extra room on Airbnb, they can sell that hard drive space on Sia for Siacoin. Boom: decentralized storage.

But despite several networks forming around the concept, including Storj and Filecoin, decentralized storage hasn’t found much of a foothold in the blockchain world. Siacoin is currently trading for less than a cent, according to CoinMarketCap, and its 24-hour trading volume is in the low 3 million range. That said, it still ranks within the top 75 cryptocurrencies in terms of market cap, with $142 million, meaning there’s some value to the proposition.

In May 2017, when Sia’s market cap was just beginning its first big boost in interest, a month-long climb to $522 million, co-founder David Vorick explained the company’s ethos in a Medium post. Bitcoin, Vorick said, is incredible because it “operates in the absence of trust.” He aspired to make Sia stand apart from other altcoins by ensuring it held tight to a decentralized M.O. 

Vorick contrasted this with the Ethereum Foundation, which, he said:

“…has taken full control of the protocols [sic] future, including the rights to make sweeping changes to things such as the consensus algorithm, the coin supply, and even chain rollbacks. Most devs in the altcoin ecosystem maintain the same amount of control, which means users of this ‘decentralized’ ecosystem typically end up placing absolute trust in the dev team.

“This is not what we want for Sia.”

The problem, he insisted was that “once a person or group has power, they will almost never relinquish it voluntarily.”

Fast-forward to today. Sia’s other co-founder, Luke Champine, posted a proposal to reddit calling for the creation of the Sia Foundation, with Champine as president. Though posted by Champine, the proposal refers to “we” throughout, suggesting that it comes from the entire Sia team and/or Nebulous. (Champine has not yet responded to a request for comment.)

The foundation would theoretically play a large role in pushing the Sia blockchain forward, but to fund it, Champine proposes a hard fork of the protocol. Each block reward would be doubled from the current rate of 30,000 Siacoins (roughly $94) so that an additional 30,000 goes to a Foundation Fund. There would also be a one-time transfer of 1.57 billion Siacoins ($4.94 million) after the hard fork.

In other words, Champine et al are proposing expanding the coin supply; annual inflation for 2021 could run as high as 10.4%though the proposal calls for capping the amount in the fund at 5% of total supply and burning any unused coins. 

Additionally, the foundation would be tasked with maintaining and improving the core software, controlling a legal defense fund, deploying security upgrades to defend from attack, promoting adoption of the coin, and getting it more exchange listings. Twenty-five percent of the funds would go to things like “grants, bounties, hackathons, and other community-driven endeavours.” All funds, Champine wrote, will be managed by a multisig. 

To be fair, Champine et al. aren’t ramming the proposal down people’s throats. It’s been posted to reddit, where users are actively discussing its merits. One of those merits is a more pronounced split with Nebulous (Champine would divest from the company before taking his new post). Another is getting money into developer hands, akin to how Blockstack created the Stacks Foundation to spur innovation on the blockchain it invented.

One dissenting voice is Marcin Jachymiak, who worked at Nebulous until this July. He says the proposal, which leaves 12 days for discussion, is too rushed. Moreover, he said, it departs from the Sia ethos. 

Jachymiak told Decrypt, “One of the things that made Sia different from other altcoins was the lack of pre-mine.” Now, it effectively wants to do one to jumpstart development. 

That’s neither a bad nor malicious reason. But it does point to the fact that, when it comes to decentralization, maybe you have to have a strong foundation to build from.

Source: https://decrypt.co/41262/sia-once-blasted-ethereum-for-foundation-now-it-wants-one

Blockchain

Members of WallStreetBets Forum Alleged in Telegram Crypto Scam Stealing $2M in BNB and ETH

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Members of the popular WallStreetBets Reddit forum were suspected of a presumable cryptocurrency fraud that could have caused losses of no less than $2 million. By creating a designated Telegram group, they duped investors by guaranteeing remarkable returns through capitalizing on the recent crypto market rally.

The Core of the Hoax

Per a report by Bloomberg, alleged members of the WallStreetBets Reddit Forum used the Telegram messaging service to execute a blatant scam. A particular account by the name of ”WallStreetBets – Crypto Pumps” presented users the chance to purchase a new token certified as WSB Finance before it was listed on crypto exchanges. The operation is known as a pre-mine sale.

The essence of the fraud was connected to the recent cryptocurrency boom as bitcoin and most altcoins skyrocketed in value lately. With some of the digital assets reaching 1,000% gains, the targeted WSB members conned investors into sending money without asking questions and with the potential of netting huge profits.

The notorious account also urged users to transfer popular cryptocurrencies such as Binance Coin (BNB) and Ethereum (ETH) to a designated crypto wallet and then to reach its ”token bot” to gain WSB Finance coins.

However, the perpetrators never dispatched those coins. Furthermore, another message on Telegram revealed that the people who had already issued a payment had to send an equivalent amount again or they would risk losing their initial investment.


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The Aftermath

After executing the hoax, more than 3,451 Binance Coins were withdrawn on Tuesday (May, 4th) from the wallet inside the Crypto Pumps messages.

Since the price of BNB at that point was approximately $625, the fraud caused losses of more than $2.1 million. Following the scam, thousands of people expressed their frustration and tried to expose the individuals behind the account. Moreover, the quantity of the other cryptocurrency – ether – still remains a mystery.

Two weeks ago WSB admins warned about offers that might try to take advantage of the forum’s name in order to allure the crypto audience. The ”WallStreetBets – Crypto Pumps” account has been removed from Telegram but whoever managed it left a message that might stun the affected victims:

”Buying Lambo now.”

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/members-of-wallstreetbets-forum-alleged-in-telegram-crypto-scam-stealing-2m-in-bnb-and-eth/

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Blockchain

South Korean Crypto Exchange Accused Of $1.5 Billion Scam

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The South Korean cryptocurrency exchange platform V Global was accused of luring 40,000 people into illicit multi-level deceit. The entire scheme amounts to more than 1.7 million won, which equals $1.5 billion.

The Investigation

As reported by the Korean officials, the police raided many places in the country related to a virtual cryptocurrency exchange, and its notorious CEO – known as LEE – alleged to fundraising without regulatory permission. The authorities blocked the exchange’s cash deposits as a part of the investigation.

In total, the Gyeonggy Nambu Police Agency reported that it searched the exchange’s headquarters in southern Seoul along with 21 other places and froze more than $214 million left in the account.

Another report from today shed more light on the developments. According to Yonhap News, the name of the organization is V Global. The Korean police are examining the accusations against them for fraud under the Certain Economic Crimes Weighted Penalty Act, the Similar Receiving Act, and the door-to-door sales business.

The main accusation against the exchange is gaining a deposit of 1.7 trillion won ($1.5 billion) from 40,000 members in the period between August 2020 and January 2021. The announcement revealed that most of the people were elderly or housewives with no experience in cryptocurrency trading.


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Too Good To Be True

The investigation revealed that the exchange urged investors to entrust their funds to an account and lured the members that the expected return would be three times higher than the initial investment. According to the authorities, there was a pyramid element in the scam as the exchange promised to grant an introduction fee of 1.2 million won ($1,065) for every newly recruited member.

The report affirmed that the trading venue paid some members in the form of a block. Therefore, people who signed up earlier received funds from individuals who entered the exchange later.

Moreover, the Korean police seem confident to deal with the fraud case as it revealed its intention to confiscate 240 billion won ($214 million) left in the V Global account as of the 15th last month, even before the prosecution process.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/south-korean-crypto-exchange-accused-of-1-5-billion-scam/

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Blockchain

Georgia’s central bank is exploring ‘Digital Gel’ CBDC

Republished by Plato

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The National Bank of Georgia said that it is considering launching a central bank digital currency.

In an announcement today, the central bank hinted at the issuance of a central bank digital currency, or CBDC, in an effort “to enhance efficiencies of the domestic payment system and financial inclusion.” The National Bank of Georgia, or NBG, said it would be inviting fintech firms and other financial institutions to participate in the project, named Digital Gel after the symbol for the country’s fiat currency, the lari.

“CBDC holds the promise to unlock the tremendous value of innovative business models for the benefit of society,” said the announcement. “The introduction of CBDC could increase financial intermediation efficiency, help introduce new financial technologies, facilitate financial inclusion, and reach previously unbanked populations.”

However, the bank mentioned the possibility of risks in the launch of a CBDC in the Republic of Georgia given the “new and potentially disruptive technology.” The NBG said it may conduct extensive testing of the CBDC in a controlled environment to ensure a smooth rollout, but did not provide any details regarding a timeline for launch.

With a population of roughly 4 million and a gross domestic product of approximately $15 billion, a nation like Georgia falls at the smaller end of countries exploring CBDCs. The Bahamas officially rolled out its Sand Dollar central bank digital currency in October, while China has been piloting its digital yuan in select cities prior to a full-scale launch. In the United States, Fortune 500 company Accenture announced this week it would be partnering with the Digital Dollar Foundation to conduct CBDC trials.

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Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/georgia-s-central-bank-is-exploring-digital-gel-cbdc

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