Weekend Roundup: OKCoin Faces Severe Image Crisis, Ross Ulbricht Gets Life in Prison
Weekend Roundup from Cointelegraph.
John Nash, an iconic mathematician with fundamental contributions in game theory, was killed on May 23, in a car crash with his wife, Alicia. His death has prompted speculation about his possible role in the emergence of Bitcoin.
"Following his seemingly accidental death, the nature of which poignantly jars with his life spent in pursuit of logic and reason, cryptocurrency commentators are considering the implications of Nash’s work for decentralized money. Parallels between Nash’s work and the creation of Bitcoin are being made frequently, while some even suggest Nash could be Satoshi Nakamoto himself."
BitGold has acquired Goldmoney.com, a service that allows users to trade and store their assets, currently controlling over CA$1.5 billion worth of precious metals in its facilities.
Commenting on the CA$51.9 million deal, BitGold CEO, Roy Sebag, said:
"With the technology of the BitGold platform, we can expand the GoldMoney legacy of trust, security, and a client centric purpose to new markets, growing from a much stronger base and benefiting all stakeholders. Combining the first global e-marketplace for gold with the latest and most innovative, we instantly become the world’s largest and most active bullion money service."
With almost US$14 billion injected into the space in the past 12 months, investors are obviously taking an increasing interest in FinTechs.
Based on a report from KPMG and CB Insights, Cointelegraph has compiled a list of 13 FinTech startups that are valued over US$1 billion, among which American startups Square, Stripe, Credit Karma, and UK-based Powa Technologies, Transfer Wise and Funding Circle.
Before Ross Ulbricht, the alleged owner and operator of Silk Road, received his sentence, many members of the Bitcoin community commented on the case.
"My heart goes out to Lyn and the Ulbricht family. Ross, you are an incredible human being. This case is yet another among a litany of abject failures produced by the so-called War on Drugs. The truth is, Silk Road came closer to winning the War on Drugs than any government or law enforcement agency could ever hope to. No matter what happens with the appeal, this will be his legacy."
In an exclusive interview with Cointelegraph, Roger Ver, the owner of bitcoin.com, discusses the dispute with OKCoin over alleged fraud and breach of contract on the management of the notorious domain name.
"I was exploring other options, but wanted to have something else lined up before canceling. In my ideal world, OKcoin would have done what they promised, and built a useful website for the Bitcoin community. Instead, they stopped following the spirit of the contract as soon as they received all the initial positive press attention for becoming responsible for the domain."
American stock exchange Nasdaq, plans to do three or four trials on the blockchain’s application in trade processing. If successful, the technology will radically change how the entity handles its markets, reported the FT.
In a new patent application by Apple, the tech giant casually mentions Bitcoin. The patent, which covers a new method of provisioning credentials on electronic devices using a password communicated over verified channels, includes a technique to manage Bitcoin private keys.
An Australian based Think Tank has reignited a debate over the global consumption of energy by bitcoin mining. Long Future Foundation has made projections to the effect that the Bitcoin network could end up consuming a staggering 60% of all energy generated around the world, reported CoinDesk.
US government prosecutors have imposed a money judgment against Ross Ulbricht, equal to US$183,961,921. They came to the total based on the transactional records from Silk Road showing the amount of the website’s illegal drug sales to be US$182,960,285, plus the value for fake identifications that equal US$1,001,636, reported Vice's Motherboard.
New Bitcoin ATMs
This week, we've reached 400 bitcoin ATMs worldwide. Throughout the past year, a few trends have emerged, notably the rise of the number of two-way ATMs.
As part of the Simon Fraser University's (SFU) latest fintech initiative, its campuses have welcomed three bitcoin ATMs.
The one-way Lamassu ATMs are located at SFU bookstores in Vancouver (555 W Hastings St), Surrey (250 - 13450 102nd Avenue) and Burnaby (Maggie Benston, Centre 8888 University Drive). The three machines are operated by BitSent.
In Baltimore, a one-way Genesis Coin was installed this week at The Mail Shop, Satyr Hill Shopping Center, 2043 E Joppa Rd. Operated by 2043 Kiosk, the machine is limited to US$2,000 per day and charges 7% over Bitstamp.
On Monday, the first bitcoin ATM was installed in Panama. The machine is a one-way Lamassu BTM located at Virtual MallBox, 2256 Calle Goethals, in the capital city. The BTM is limited to US$1,000 per transaction and charges 3% from Coinapult.
The bitcoin price started the week trading at 240 USD/BTC, but dropped to 231 as of today, according Blockchain.info data.
This week has been rather tumultuous with news of Silk Road's Ross Ulbricht sentenced to life prison and revelations from OKCoin's former CTO Changpeng Zhao, suggesting that the Beijing-based exchange has been faking its volumes, running bots and lied about its proof of reserves, among other shocking claims.
As of today, the Chinese trading platform is facing a severe image crisis, with users losing confidence and withdrawing their funds.
Meanwhile, the bitcoin price hasn't moved significantly this week, although it might still trade sideways for some time. As we wrote in our price analysis earlier this week:
"Bitcoin is still in a primary downtrend and with all the tension in the moving averages and Bollinger Bands, a big move is still what is being looked for. The price needs to hold above US$235 and US$230. Momentum and volume continue to be at low levels."