Here are the top stories in Bitcoin this week: Bitcoin breaks towards $20k, A Korean schoolboy’s “Bitcoin Platinum” scam is exposed, Bitcoin Jesus makes a millionaire through mockery, American are mortgaging their homes to buy bitcoin, and a Japanese tech giant intends to pay thousands of their workers in Bitcoin.
Japanese company plans to start paying employees in Bitcoin.
GMO Internet, a Japanese tech giant which operates a range of web-related business, has expressed their desire to start giving their employees the option to be paid in Bitcoin if they so choose. Their aim is to gain a wider and more comprehensive view of how the Gold standard for virtual currency works. This offer will be available to over 4,000 of GMO’s workforce, says company spokesperson Harumi Ishii. Employees of GMO Internet will have the option to be paid up to 100,000 yen (£660/$890) monthly through Bitcoin as well as receiving an extra 10% bonus from the company on top of their salary if they choose this payment method.
GMO already started trading and exchanging Bitcoin in May, and they also have plans to get into the actual mining of Bitcoin – helping to keep the network secure by approving transactions and receiving Bitcoin as a reward. The Tokyo-listed company has announced that in the first six months of 2018 they plan to spend $3 million solely on mining. GMO believe that Bitcoin is a universal currency for the future and that it will create a “borderless economic zone”
Mortgaging of homes across America, fueled by the “mania” of Bitcoin.
Americans have been caught up in the “mania” surrounding Bitcoin, according to director of the Alabama Securities Commission Joseph Borg in an interview with CNBC. Citizens across America have been scrambling to find funds to invest in Bitcoin, some even going as far as taking out mortgages to support their hopes and speculation that Bitcoin will continue its explosive upward trajectory in price. “This is not something a guy who’s making $100,000 a year, who’s got a mortgage and two kids in college ought to be invested in,” says Borg.
Borg believes that Bitcoin is currently on a “mania curve” and thinks that while Crypto and Blockchain are here to stay, at some point there has to be a “leveling off” which may result in some investors getting burnt. Borg also doesn’t think that futures contracts have actually legitimized Bitcoin, as while the futures contracts themselves are regulated Bitcoin is not.
“As [technology] continues to accelerate and continues to increase, regulators have got to understand what it is that the innovation’s coming up with and we’re still trying to get educated”.
Bitcoin Jesus makes a millionaire through mockery
Andreas M. Antonopoulos has had quite the week. For those unaware, Andreas is a well-known advocate and promoter of Bitcoin and has been involved in the promotion and adoption of Bitcoin from the early days of Cryptocurrency. He is in the spotlight this week as he has been “bitshamed” by Roger Ver, a man know to the Bitcoin world as Bitcoin Jesus. Bitshaming is a term used in some Bitcoin circles which essentially means to shame or mock someone who has been involved in Bitcoin but has not made enough money out of it to be deemed successful.
This lashing out from Roger Ver did not go unnoticed, sparking an outrage from thousands of Reddit users. Supporters rallied together and organized a campaign to reward Andreas for his hard work and his altruistic service to Bitcoin over the past few years. Remarkably, the campaign resulted in approximately 100 Bitcoins (approx. $1,777,439.95) being donated to his account, significantly increasing his wealth overnight. Andreas was blown away, understandably so, and took to Twitter to express his gratitude; “Words are my craft but tonight I am speechless”.
Korean schoolboy scam exposed as Bitcoin Platinum
In other news this week a number of Korean media agencies have reported this week on a controversial Bitcoin scam, fabricated by a South Korean teenager. According to JoonAng, the largest mainstream media outlet in South Korea, the planned hard fork to make Bitcoin Platinum was, in fact, a hoax performed by a Korean schoolboy with the intention of making a quick buck riding on the ignorance of potential investors. The teen intended to make a profit of 5 Million Korean Won (approx. $5000).
Skepticism grew around the fact that @bitcoinplatinum, the official account of the Bitcoin Platinum project, had not provided any public information about supporters, developers, miners, and investors. Furthermore, suspicion arose from the projects vague description and vision. Bitcoin Platinum copied the vision of Bitcoin Cash, claiming to achieve “Satoshi’s original vision of Bitcoin as decentralized electronic cash”. It was revealed by JoongAng and other South Korean news networks that the creator of the Bitcoin Platinum project, now deemed to a scam, was, in fact, a South Korean Teen who contrived the idea to try to find an opportunity to short Bitcoin in the South Korean Bitcoin Exchange. The teenager later apologized via Twitter for creating the project which sought to benefit from the impulse of likely buyers, “Please forgive me. Bitcoin Platinum is a scam coin”.
Bitcoin breaks towards $20k
Following the much-anticipated opening of the futures market on CBOE last Sunday, the commonly volatile Bitcoin price swings seemed to show a bit more stability and held a more stable figure for the majority of the week. On the inverse, altcoins such as Zcash, Monero, and Dash experienced a large and unforeseen growth in the same period.
Next week should be an interesting one, it will be intriguing to see how the second futures market from CME will affect the price of Bitcoin and the altcoins which follow in its wake. Perhaps Bitcoin will benefit from its recent stability and will surge towards the long desired $20k figure.