Presenting the Insights team's Weekly Roundup #6! Apart from the original research pieces the Insights team works on, the Roundup series aims to highlight key pieces of work from the community as a whole. Along with this, we briefly describe key industry news developments that took place during the past week that community members may have missed. If you have any questions or think we missed something important, feel free to let us know!
Research and Insights
Messari Disclosures Registry by Messari
- One thing that the cryptoasset industry lacks is a way to easily source accurate and reliable information on various projects and tokens. Messari takes the industry closer to this vision with the launch of their registry where token projects can self-report and verify information. While only in its infant stages, this registry will become an essential piece for cryptoassets and the ecosystem around them.
- A constant source of confusion and debate for cryptoassets is how they are covered by mainstream media outlets. Here, Clovr analyzes the valuation of cryptoassets over time as compared to the sentiment of articles being released by outlets such as Forbes, The Economist, Business Insider, and many more. Their findings? The sentiment is 'anything but static' and is very dynamic. Further, over time and especially in recent months, sentiment has become very polarized in both directions as the price declines.
The Wood-Zamfir Governance Debates by CleanApp.io
- Warning: this is a long read! Methods of governance in cryptoassets, and even definitions of the word governance, vary widely from project to project. Two big names in the space -- Gavin Wood and Vlad Zamfir -- have starkly contrasting beliefs of what proper governance entails. CleanApp thoroughly describes each side of this debate and, while not aimed at claiming who is right or wrong, cleanly lays out positions to continue these important discussions.
An econometric model to estimate the value of a cryptocurrency network. The Bitcoin case by Nico Abbatemarco, Leonardo Maria De Rossi, and Gianluca Salviotti
- How do you value a network like Bitcoin? That is (and has been) the question on everybody's mind. This group of researchers attempt to theorize what values the network and what affects these factors may have in the future for a decentralized network. For one, they note the presence of hype and speculation in the market, but deduce a marginal cost model in an attempt to predict a minimum equilibrium price.
- When considering a decentralized model like Bitcoin, there is more to take into account than just the protocol and economic aspects. Namely, you also have to consider the social aspect of it. While the Bitcoin social contract is not necessarily new, it implements better incentives to create a market far more competitive between the users.
The “Bitcoin mining death spiral” debate explained by Arjun Balaji as a contributor at The Block
- With Bitcoin's price decreasing, opposition to the currency has used the idea of a 'mining death spiral' as a reason to why Bitcoin will fail. This theory involves the idea that as price continues to fall, miners continually drop out of mining as they are not able to cover costs until there are no miners left. To the uninformed, this theory may sound reasonable. Only problem? It is not reality. Balaji does a great job here of explaining of explaining the theory and why it is not supported by what actually happens.
Industry News Bits
Cryptoasset mining giant Bitmain is facing a class action lawsuit by plaintiffs claiming the company utilized customer hardware to mine in their own favor.
Nasdaq confirmed that it would be launching Bitcoin futures trading in the first half of 2019, among other digital asset products.
Ten of the most prominent cryptoasset companies launched the Association for Digital Asset Markets (ADAM), an organization aimed at establishing codes of conduct for digital assets and their emerging markets.
Cryptoasset consumer platform Coinbase quitely launched an OTC trading desk for institutional investors as a result of growing demand.
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Jay Clayton stated that price manipulation in the digital assets market must be solved before an ETF is approved.
For the first time ever, the U.S. Treasury sanctioned two Bitcoin addresses in relation to malicious Iranian cyber actors.
The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested the CEO of AriseBank, a company that lied to investors about its decentralized banking platform during its initial coin offering (ICO).
Billionaire Mike Novogratz's cryptoasset investment firm Galaxy Digital reportedly lost $136 million in the first 9 months of 2018.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) settled charges it brought against professional boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. and music icon DJ Khaled for their involvement in initial coin offering (ICO) investment scheme promotions.
Cryptoasset consumer platform giant Coinbase launched trading for Zcash ($ZEC), a privacy-focused coin and the first of its kind for the platform.
Microsoft's Japan arm has partnered with blockchain startup LayerX to help promote the adoption and use of the technology.
A federal judge ruled in favor of Blockvest, a project that held an initial coin offering (ICO), as the SEC failed to show that their token was actually a security.
Beijing's Municipal Bureau of Finance's Chief Huo Xuewen affirmed that security tokens and projects offering them are illegal.
Soon-to-launch cryptoasset trading platform ErisX closed their Series B funding round for $27.5 million with investors including Fidelity, ConsenSys, Nasdaq Ventures, and many others.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security noted interest in exploring ways to analyze and track privacy-focused cryptoassets such as Zcash and Monero.