Reddit Founder Alexis Ohanian says "Bitcoin winter is great for crypto industry"

Cryptocurrency investors “should have been thinking long term,” says Reddit cofounder and Coinbase backer Alexis Ohanian.

Alexis Ohanian, co-founder of Reddit and known crypto bull, claimed that the crypto hype is gone, leaving space for true crypto believers. Ohanian spoke on the subject in an interview with YahooFinance released on Feb. 22.

Alexis Ohanian Sr. (u/kn0thing) - Redditt
Alexis Ohanian Sr. - alexisohanian.com

alexis ohanian reddit bitcoin crypto coinbase
Reddit co-founder and Coinbase investor Alexis Ohanian said that Crypto Winter is actually good for bitcoin. | Source: AP Photo / Jeff Chiu, File

Bitcoin investors should not be discouraged by the brutal Crypto Winter because the mass purge is actually good for the long-term health of the industry. That’s the observation of Coinbase investor Alexis Ohanian, better known as the founder of social media network Reddit.

‘This Is the Spring of Crypto Innovation’

Ohanian — the husband of American tennis star Serena Williams — admits that bitcoin is experiencing a prolonged market slump.

However, despite the Crypto Winter, he says now is actually the “spring of crypto innovation.” Why? Because the people that remain in the industry after the market crash are die-hard enthusiasts, not flaky, fair-weather speculators.

“This is the Crypto Winter, no doubt,” Ohanian told Yahoo. “But a friend of mine, Brian Armstrong — who’s the CEO of Coinbase — said, ‘This is the spring of crypto innovation.'”

“What he means is, ‘Yes, the prices are depressed. The speculators have fled, and that’s great.’ Because the people who are now building on crypto are true believers. They’re actually building the infrastructure that it’s going to take to really make this happen.”

Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian: Bitcoin bear market is good for the crypto industry.
Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian: Bitcoin bear market is good for the crypto industry. (Yahoo)

Market Attrition Reveals the True Believers

While naysayers point to the market slump as evidence that bitcoin is dead, Ohanian says nothing could be further from the truth.”

“Some of the smartest people I know in tech are still working on solving these problems. They’re building companies that are built on blockchain.”

“The hype is...


How hackers can be stopped from Splitting Bitcoin Into 2 with SABRE Tech

If hackers felt like it, they could split bitcoin in two.

It wouldn’t even be that hard, according to research from 2017. Thanks to insecure technology underpinning the internet, someone with the right credentials could exploit the Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) by faking their identity and confusing the network into sending floods of data somewhere it shouldn’t. “The internet’s biggest security hole,” as it’s been called, has been used for everything from snooping on government emails to stealing cryptocurrency.

As far as splitting bitcoin, the attack is as bad as it sounds. If executed successfully, one chunk of the network would be completely sliced off from the other. No one could communicate and send transactions to people who are a part of the “other” network.

That’s where researchers from the prestigious Swiss university ETH Zurich hope to help. As described in a new white paper, they’ve invented a relay network called SABRE that they hope will one day be built on top of bitcoin.

With the same name as the curved blade common in the Napoleonic era, SABRE sounds like it would be used to slice bitcoin in half. Instead, it hopes to do the opposite. Rather, the planned network would (metaphorically) wield a saber against impending attackers, stopping them in their tracks.

Eth Zurich computer network researcher Maria Apostolaki told CoinDesk:

“SABRE is a small relay network whose nodes are strategically located such that they remain connected to each other and connected to as many regular nodes as possible, even in the presence of a AS-level adversary that hijacks traffic.”

This network would “render the partition ineffective,” she said.

When SABRE is used, the risk of a split goes down, the researchers claim. Without SABRE, it’s possible for an ISP to attack and partition bitcoin with only a “small” routing attack. But, according to the researchers’ simulations on a group of five nodes, there’s only a 3.1 percent chance probability of the attacker could hijack the network and partition it. The probability also decreases as the number of nodes increases.

To be presented at The Network and Distributed System Security Symposium this month, the proposed layer is the result of years of research. Apostolaki has been researching this specific issue since 2016 since “blockchain applications are very common nowadays making research on their routing characteristics very impactful.”

The attack

The attack strikes at the root of the internet.

Every time you click a webpage, you’re unknowingly using BGP, an internet protocol that helps get data from Point A to Point B. Say you want to get to CoinDesk.com. Your...


Blockchain Slashed Forex Trading Costs by 25% says HSBC Exec

An HSBC executive has said that the bank’s blockchain-based system has helped it cut the costs of settling foreign exchange trades.

Speaking to Reuters, Mark Williamson, chief operating officer of FX cash trading and risk management, who oversees the blockchain project, said that its HSBC FX Everywhere platform saved it 25 percent as compared with traditional methods.

Last month, the bank announced it had settled more than $250 billion in transactions using its HSBC FX Everywhere platform.

It said then that it had settled 3 million foreign exchange transactions and made a further 150,000 payments over the digital ledger system, which it has been using...


Coinbase Allows Crypto Traders to Claim Bitcoin SV

bitcoin sv coinbase crypto
Coinbase users can finally claim the Bitcoin SV tokens created by last Fall's Bitcoin Cash hard fork. | Source: Shutterstock

In a note to users today, Coinbase announced that it has finally made Bitcoin SV balances available for withdrawal. Users have been complaining for months about their Bitcoin SV, which peaked shortly after launch at over $200. It has since then been in steady decline, and the announcement by both Coinbase and Waves Platform today that BSV balances will be made available might stimulate a dumping frenzy on the coin.

Coinbase Allows Crypto Traders to Claim Bitcoin SV

bitcoin cash price
Bitcoin SV was the product of last year’s Bitcoin Cash hard fork. | Source: Shutterstock

The note reads, in part:

“The competing chain, known as Bitcoin SV, resulted in a forked coin now commonly referred to as BSV. When the hard fork occurred, the BSV blockchain used the amount of BCH associated with an address at the time of the fork to determine the amount of BSV that would be allocated to the parallel address on the BSV blockchain. As such, the amount of BSV now available in your Coinbase.com account is the same as the amount of BCH that was in your Coinbase (Coinbase.com and Coinbase...


Baidu Launches Plug and Play Blockchain Engine (BBE) platform Dapps

Chinese search giant Baidu has launched a blockchain platform aimed to simplify commercial deployment of decentralized apps, or dapps.

Officially announced by Baidu Cloud on Thursday, the Baidu Blockchain Engine (BBE) platform is touted as a kind of operating system allowing developers to produce blockchain applications “just like mobile apps,” and get around the storage and computing “bottlenecks” that are holding up blockchain’s potential.

BBE is built on what the company calls the ABC (AI, Big Data, cloud computing) technology stack, allowing customers to explore and develop ways to commercialize blockchain tech.

Hosted on Baidu’s “intelligent” cloud platform, the system uses a modular blockchain framework to provide developers with a multi-chain system including smart contract templates, dapp templates and other...


Belarus Launches Trading Platform Enabling Customers to Buy Tokenized Securities

Belarus Launches Trading Platform Enabling Customers to Buy Tokenized Securities

Belarus has launched a trading platform that enables customers to buy tokenized versions of shares, gold and other traditional assets, Reuters reported Jan. 15.

The project is reportedly backed by two companies, Larnabel Ventures and VP Capital. According to Reuters, the government of Belarus has not yet commented on the launch of the platform, but it was covered by the state news agency BelTa.

The platform will allow traders to buy shares, precious metals, foreign exchange and other traditional assets from Belarus, as well as from other countries, with cryptocurrencies.

Since its launch, the platform has reportedly issued 150 different types of tokens, with each...


Pennsylvania Dept of Banking & Securities clarifies "Crypto Exchanges Are Not Money Transmitters"

Pennsylvania’s Department of Banking and Securities (DoBS) has clarified that crypto exchanges and service providers do not require a money transmission license to operate in the state.

The DoBS published the new guidance for the local crypto industry on Wednesday, following a number of enquiries from businesses, it said.

The department explained that as bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are not “money,” the Money Transmission Business Licensing Law or the Money Transmitter Act of Pennsylvania does not apply to crypto trading platforms.

According to the act, only fiat currency or the U.S. government-issued currency is considered money. “To date, no jurisdiction in the United States has designated virtual currency as legal tender,” the department said.

The act states that parties conducting the business of transmitting money need to be licensed if they transfer fiat currency...


Elections Canada says there has been “a growing interest” in cryptocurrency donations

Jessie Willms is a planet earth based former government and political researcher and communications officer helping to document the FinTech revolution and its impact on traditional institutions and governments. You can follow Jessie on Twitter at @WILLMS_.

 Elections Canada Consults With Political Parties on Crypto Donations
Elections Canada Consults With Political Parties on Crypto Donations

According to Elections Canada, the agency that runs federal elections in Canada, there has been “a growing interest” in cryptocurrency donations. This trend has prompted some political parties to ask for a ruling on how best to manage bitcoin and other cryptocurrency political donations and how to navigate the various reporting systems required by both Elections Canada and the parties so that they comply with the Canada Elections Act.

Election season is just beginning in Canada. There are three federal by-elections called for February 25, 2019; these will fill vacant seats, including a seat for one of the party leaders. A full federal election will be called before October 21, 2019.

On the legality of accepting cryptocurrency donations, an Elections Canada (EC) official told Bitcoin Magazine that “the Canada Elections Act does not prohibit political entities from accepting cryptocurrency contributions. Political entities are therefore currently able to accept such contributions.”

Elections Canada is taking the initial position that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are non-monetary, in-kind contributions, i.e. property or a commodity, but not a currency, a similar position taken by the U.S. Federal Elections Commission (FEC) and the Canada Revenue Agency.

However, Elections Canada has left the question of whether to classify cryptocurrencies as monetary or non-monetary open for the parties to consider in the current consultation process.

Is Bitcoin Legal in Canada?

Chetan Phull, a Toronto lawyer, founder and principal of Smartblock Law Professional Corporation, has written about the seemingly murky area of the legality of using cryptocurrencies as money in Canada.

Phull told Bitcoin Magazine that the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as money (legal tender) is, strictly speaking, illegal under Canada’s Currency Act.

However, he acknowledges that “Canada may be opening up to treating crypto as a type of non-fiat money, despite the current statutory definition of money.”

He points out that, to date, “there has been no actual enforcement action against the use of crypto as ‘money’ in Canada — not even against the Calgary Digital Dollar, where enforcement would be supported by long-standing precedent of the Supreme Court of Canada. Nor has there been any significant government pursuit of taxes not charged on trades...


The best Bitcoin Lightning apps live today

So we continue our journey into the wonderful (and sometimes weird) world of Lightning Apps (LApps). And as a testament to how far the market has come, my quick ‘listicle’ has morphed into a two-part behemoth.

If you haven’t already, then check out Part 1, covering wallets, marketplaces, content monetization, and tip jars. If you have, then let’s get on with the ride.

Messaging via Lightning Network

International SMS messages cost a small fortune, but with Insms, the price comes down to that of a small lightning transaction. Ideal for anonymously stalking someone in another country. Or, if you need to receive an SMS, but don’t want to reveal your mobile number, Receive SMS has you covered. Temporary numbers to receive messages are currently available only in the US, with more countries coming soon.

But if you think terrestrial messaging is just a little passé, why not send a message via satellite.

I've written a tool to relay messages via the @Blockstream satellite. Data rate is charged through lightning network. https://t.co/FJnMYmpGtI pic.twitter.com/bzuERkEWFJ

Gaming and Gambling

Hammerland is a MineCraft lookalike MMORPG, using lightning for in-game payments (and rewards). Or if you prefer your MineCraft to be more… MineCraft, then BitQuest is...


Ethereum Price Analysis: ETH/USD: Here come the bears "Daily Gravestone Doji Candlestick"

  • The Ethereum price is at risk of giving back the large gains from December 2018 – January 2019.
  • Saturday’s daily candlestick closure produced a bearish gravestone doji.

The Ethereum price has continued to be a victim of narrowing trading, however signs are starting to show of the bears readying to regain full control. ETH/USD has been stuck within consolidation mode since 11th January, which has very much been observed across the crypto market. Over the last six sessions however, the range has tightened up even further. This type of behavior signals that an explosive breakout is near. Odds appear to be stacked in favor of the market bears for the next move.

At the close of Saturday’s close, a bearish gravestone doji was produced. Going by the textbook, this typically suggests another drop is imminent. Another deep drop wouldn’t be too surprising, given the hard fall earlier in the month. A fast period of aggressive market selling is usually followed by some range-movement, which its way of having a cooling off period. The pickup in downside momentum, after such a development, this time with greater intensity, is something that could very well be seen.