US Congress Weighs Bill Spelling Out CFTC’s Crypto ...
Should i invest in bitcoin right now 2018 ? - quora.
How to Buy Bitcoins (with Pictures) - wikiHow
A word of caution about exchanges, privacy and your permanent history on the blockchain
I had an account restricted on a major exchange this year and it's not a pleasant experience. Just wanted to share my experience, since I see so many have been through something similar in several exchange-related subreddits. My case happened at Bittrex but I think it's important to note that this may happen on any exchange, not just Bittrex. People are depositing way too much trust in these exchanges and it may come back to bite them. Here's my experience as honestly as I'm able to put it. Bittrex is technically great, contrary to what many say the system just works. Works great in fact, fast and very few glitches in many many years. I think I must've been a very early customer back when things were very informal and until 2020 I had absolutely zero problems with Bittrex. I always thought they were above the pack when it came to system security design and reliability. Despite joining when it was very early, I did full KYC and had the top tier withdrawal limit even though KYC wasn't obligatory back when I joined. I did it all formally because I wanted to have a sort of bank account I could trust, I didn't want to be jumping from exchange to exchange like some crypto traders did. I never used as much as 0.01% of this withdrawal limit, I'm small fish but it was nice to know I could move tons of BTC like the whales if I ever needed to. So I sent them all my real data, work address and so forth. Then Bittrex got moved out of USA and into some country, don't know where. Which was fine by me, I thought it was the same people behind it, doing some formality. Then one day a person with a drawing for a profile pic and some strange username decides to contact me out of nowhere using the Bittrex tech support interface. They know everything about me, but I don't know anything about them. No contact info visible, nothing. This support person sends you a statement you must sign and then based on that they begin to ask for specific documents. I wanted to keep my relationship with Bittrex, so I filled signed and returned it. Then they dived into each item in the thing requesting more documents based on each. So if you said you previously worked for ACME, they'll ask to see ACME related stuff. I said I bought Bitcoin using Bank X, so they wanted to see Bank X statements. And so on. They begin to dig into each specific item you inform. Then it downed on me that maybe I was under some formal audit, in which case I'd have the right to know so I could hire an accountant or lawyer. So I politely asked. They don't tell you anything. You don't even know who the person is on the other side, there is no identification at all of who's contacting you. You're sending all your personal informations to someone who, as far as you know, could be a cat or a dog typing on a random keyboard. So I then asked them why so much detail was needed, since I'd provided lots already. They ignore and just say thank you for your cooperation and proceded to ask for more stuff. I said fine let's do this and went along. Then they asked for specific crypto addresses for the tokens I'd used in the past. Like the address of whoever sent me some XXXX token years ago. I then thought hey man this is too much, do you need me to fax or mail you my ID or something, I'd do it but whatever I enter in there could spell trouble for me. For example, if some guy whose ETH address did something nasty, but coincidentally paid me years ago using that same address, if I gave them my address from the past, in those several years it could mean this person is now a wanted criminal and it'd spell trouble for me, who knows what the person did afterwards, then my account would be forever linked to that rogue address. I began to reflect on this and thought wait, this is not good, I could put myself into a 'bad address' database for no reason. Then I told them I would not send the crypto addresses. They said thanks let's continue the process. It felt weird overall, it just keeps going and demanding more information. I then asked for someone to speak to or somewhere physical I could go to, to talk and show that I'm a real person, they never reply anything, they just ask for more. So I finally gave up and stopped replying and they apparently restricted my account or something. I'll have to go back and reopen the ticket and request account reactivation but then they'll probably restart the same process again. I'm not really that much of a fan of crypto these days, so I'm thinking maybe it's time to call it quits. The reason I'm writing this is to let everyone know that whatever you do in crypto gets forever linked to you. You begin thinking it's some informal thing and that there's some freedom but there really isn't. You may fool around with crypto but then someone is recording everything and will demand you make everything formal in the future. When I joined Bittrex everything was more informal in crypto, even shapeshift and others allowed you to trade crypto with no ID at all, 100% anonymous. Heck even faucets gave out free Bitcoin back in the day. Then all of a sudden everything you do in these exchanges will be audited and you'll need to provide formal documents for everything you did in the past 10 years. Some anonymous operator (this isn't specific to Bittrex, all of them do it that way) with no office has all your info but you know nothing about them in return. You don't even know where these exchanges are located at all. I saw a Facebook post about Binance not even having a formal country, they're "all over t he place". Sure that sounds cool but...who do you turn to when they demand legal stuff from you? Someone out there has all your financial information but you have nothing, you have no security, no legal protection, nothing and they have everything. So, be careful. This isn't all specific to Bittrex, any exchange can and probably will do the same. Point is crypto is a formal thing and will spell trouble for you in the future. Especially since blockchain analysis is way too primitive still, your addresses could somehow end up in a bad neightborhood. The pandemic kinda reminded me of blockchain transactions, you may end up infected because you have no way to know what others have been doing while you were doing everything right.
New email extortion subject -- My device is inside your building
Received this email extortion today, which is a bit different than the common "I have you on camera doing dirty things" version. It was filtered to spam. Seems the hacker community is getting desperate or really deranged. -------------------------------------------------- There is the explosive device (Hexogen) in the building where your company is located. My recruited person constructed the bomb under my direction. It can be hidden anywhere because of its small size, it can not destroy the structure of the building, but in the case of its detonation there will be many victims. My man keeps the territory under the control. If he notices any strange behavior, panic or policemen the device will be exploded. I can call off my mercenary if you make a transfer. $20'000 is the price for your safety and business. Tansfer it to me in BTC and I warrant that I will withdraw my mercenary and the bomb will not detonate. But do not try to deceive me- my assurance will become valid only after 3 confirms in blockchain network. Here is my BTC address - bitcoin address removed You have to solve problems with the payment by the end of the workday. If you are late with the transaction the bomb will explode. Nothing personal, if you don’t send me the bitcoin and a bomb detonates, next time other companies will pay me more bitcoins, because it is not a one-time action. For security and anonymity , I will no longer enter this email account. I check my Bitcoin address every 20 minutes and after receiving the transaction I will order my man to leave your area. If an explosive device blows up and the authorities see this email- We arent terrorists and do not assume any responsibility for acts of terrorism in other places. -------------------------------------------- As you can see the grammar and spelling are really bad.
[Transcript] Crypto Zombie Interview With Anonymous Komodo Founder JL777
Crypto Zombie talks about the interview at 13:30 of his video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTOdWcuuSFA Link to full text at pages 10 to 15: https://gallery.mailchimp.com/b1c805c050ef6fca080b9d888/files/cf42e52f-5978-4f4e-b45a-241b94af4638/12_BlockchainBrief_November.pdf ------- CRYPTO ZOMBIE: It is difficult to describe the Komodo Platform in just a few words. Often confused as simply a privacy coin, KMD, is actually an incredibly robust and intricate ecosystem. With Komodo’s unique spin on smart contracts, referred to as “crypto-conditions,” and the fact that KMD has already achieved 45,000 TPS (1,000,000 possible in the near future), this platform may actually be the first crypto to solve all four of blockchain’s major pain-points: privacy, scalability, interoperability, and security. In this much anticipated AMA, I got to chat with the anonymous founder of Komodo, JL777, via the Komodo Discord. Here is what JL777 had to say... CZ: So let’s jump into this directly with the MOST requested community question: Are you Satoshi Nakamoto? JL777: Happy to answer questions of a non-personal nature. That seems pretty personal. But I didn’t arrive in crypto until late 2013, so clearly I can’t be Satoshi. Maybe there are a lot of similarities in our beliefs, but he was gone before I arrived. CZ: Just starting off with some fun! Alright, so all jokes asides let’s dive in. What exactly is Komodo (KMD)? JL777: It has many different aspects, hard to make a single statement about it. I know this drives the marketing side nuts as they need these elevator pitch things. However, I can explain how it is evolving. It starts with the desired end solution: a crypto that can handle mass market scale, has privacy, is secure, and fast. Given that just getting two of those four usually requires making significant trade-offs to decentralization. You can imagine that it is not an easy problem to solve! So, KMD starts with Zcash privacy: the best available privacy tech. So, we can check that off the list. But, it needs to be secure. So I had to invent the dPoW [consensus] to leverage BTC’s massive hashrate. That allowed us to have a lot of independent chains, all secured by dPoW, which led to the runtime forking ability that lets you launch a chain from the command line without any source code changes. PoW, PoS, some hybrid, all types of premine and emission schedules. CZ: Could you briefly explain dPoW and why it’s so secure, for those who don’t understand? JL777: dPoW is dynamically creating decentralized checkpoints to the BTC blockchain. That means that once a block is notarized, it is like having it “write protected.” No need to worry about it being rewritten. Being rewritten is a very real danger! CZ: So in other words as long as BTC is not under 51% attack it would be impossible for Komodo or any of it’s chains to be affected? JL777: I wouldn’t say impossible, but it becomes order of magnitude (or more) difficult. I wrote a description of the reorg process and can post it here if you’d like. CZ: Sure we can link to it for further research. That would be great! JL777: https://github.com/KomodoPlatform/Mastering_CryptoConditions It directly applies to explaining dPoW. It is from the documentation on the channels CC (Crypto-Conditions), which implements an improved form of Lightning Networks and addresses the latency issue, as it provides dPoW protection to mempool transactions. With the privacy and security items addressed, the next thing to do was scaling. Along the way people kept asking for smart contracts. With the notarization process in place, it enabled us to create a solution that non-notarized chains are unable to do. That is creating a reference set of hashes that allow you to verify that a transaction on any chain has been confirmed, on any other chain. It uses a method that is very similar to SPV validation. It’s all about merkleroots and merkleroots of merkleroots from many different chains all being combined. This is sent back to the notarizer and ends up in the notarization data. Once it’s there, then any notarized chain is able to validate the raw data from a transaction that actually happened on a different chain. What that allows is a burn protocol to burn coins on one chain and recreate them on another. So, the total coins across all of the fungible chains are constant. That means you can have however many chains you need for the transactions per second (TPS) needed. Anytime you need to transfer coins from one chain to the next, you use the burn protocol. Reading it, it does seem pretty deep technical... sorry... I guess it can be summarized as using notarization to create a cluster of chains whose total coin supply is held constant. This forms our scaling solution. Instead of having to create some cutting edge networking protocol that can handle some crazy TPS, with our solution you just spawn a new chain. It is similar to building more roads if your existing roads are congested. No need for any magical maglev vacuum tube high throughput high ways. Just a bunch of normal roads, if you have a bunch of cars... Just a bunch of normal blockchains if you need a bunch of TPS. I much prefer the simple solutions, as I can fully understand those. CZ: Exactly! Such a simple solution, but yet you still see so many people going crazy over TPS! On the topic of tech, I’m curious what your thoughts are on some of these newer solutions, such as the rise of DAG protocols? JL777: When it gets so complex and you need some math jargon to prove that it works... well, how can I know that it does? Code isn’t exactly a math proof. I think there are many very interesting experiments. However, I prefer to stick with the tried and true Bitcoin protocol and extend it. Why reinvent the wheel? Especially when so much work has been done already to make Bitcoin work as well as it does. It only breaks down at high load and isn’t very easy to program. Though I did make an atomic swap system called BarterDEX, which does utilize the Bitcoin script. CZ: Yes! Let’s expand on that! What is the difference between atomic swaps and etomic swaps? JL777: Etomic swap was just my way of quickly getting ETH into the BarterDEX. BarterDEX uses the Bitcoin protocol to do swaps. ETH doesn’t do Bitcoin protocol so I made an ETOMIC coin and you swap that using the protocol. We implemented a 1:1 lock/unlock of ETH/ERC20 for the ETOMIC. It does add a new layer and with mm2, we will directly implement atomic swaps between ETH and Bitcoin protocol. CZ: With so many blockchains now switching from ERC-20s to their own mainnets (native blockchains), does this mean that some blockchains will never be interoperable through the BarterDEX? Or do you think it’s a possibility in the future? JL777: With there being so many totally incompatible new protocols, it seems unlikely that they will interoperate very well and will go off and create their own island. Isolated from the rest of crypto. Maybe some will be very big islands though. Unless they have enough usage on their “island” it would seem it will eventually become a problem... CZ: This does make you wonder if TRUE interoperability between all blockchains will ever be possible... JL777: I think if these islands wanted to be interoperable, they can add this, but I suspect some don’t want to be. They maybe have dreams of becoming the only crypto. Which, of course, is an unrealistic expectation when the barrier to create a new crypto is so low. You don’t need a nation state to create a crypto! Even with such a big barrier, we end up with hundreds of fiat currencies. There is no single global currency, so how on earth can anybody truly believe there will be some single crypto? I try to base my decisions on common sense and simplicity. It ends up being quite complex as it is, even if it is created out of simple components. Now that KMD is getting the CC extensions, it completes all the technical requirements. The Crypto Conditions is mainly for the scaling solution, but I started experimenting with it a couple months ago and it started surprising me with its power! CZ: This is true! I know you have a unique way of handling smart contracts. What are Crypto-Conditions and what makes UTXO-based smart contracts such a breakthrough for the future of blockchain? JL777: To call it smart contracts is really understating what it is. Consider that it is possible to have a single CC (Crypto-Condition) transaction type mean “run the associated smart contract using the interpreted language.” What the CC does is create a new vout type, like p2pk, p2pkh, p2sh, there is a new CC vout type. This is an output that needs to satisfy the specified CC script, which can handle the industry standard Crypto-Conditions specification. But I had it extended a bit so we can have custom functions that also need to be satisfied. By making it a custom function, it allows essentially anything to be implemented. And by anything, I mean ANYTHING. At first I wasn’t 100% sure of this, but my first four CC extensions I made were: faucet, rewards, dice, and assets. The faucet is a blockchain enforced faucet. Rewards is a blockchain enforced rewards plan. Basically what most people want masternodes for. Lock funds... get some extra percentage. Dice is a blockchain enforced real-time dice game, just to show that such things can be done. Assets is a token creation system that allows a user to create new tokens with a single transaction. I also implemented functions needed for a DEX. So, basically counter-party functionality. These were the first four and I did it in several weeks as I was learning about how to do it and doing them for the first time. My thinking is that after we get a critical mass of CC extensions, the vast majority of dApps can be created just via RPC calls. No need to code a new CC extension, no need to code a smart contract, just issue RPC calls (or just click buttons and forms in a GUI). The next iteration of CC, I came up with oracles, gateways, prices and channels. Oracles creates a market driven data market for “oracle-izing” data on-chain. Gateways uses the oracles and assets to automatically tokenize BTC to an on-chain asset and also allows for automatically process withdraws. Basically the proxy DEX model of trading BTC equivalents, but it will be protected with a multisig custodians and all the tokens are locked in a contract until released with a valid deposit. The prices CC will use the oracles and gateway CC to implement a cash settled BitMEX type of leveraged betting on the BTC price. The channels CC is being debugged by one of the new devs who just started last week and it will be a better form of Lightning Network, as it uses a backward compatible transaction format, doesn’t require nodes to be online, and is secured by dPoW. CZ: Thats crazy! Most people really have no idea the Komodo platform is this robust. Komodo seems like it has already achieved so many things: scalability, privacy, interoperability, and security. So why do you feel it often gets overshadowed by newer, more “flashy” tech, that may in fact be inferior? JL777: I think the problem is that it has too much for any “elevator pitch,” so nobody who makes decisions in elevators decides to buy KMD! I don’t think there is any flashier tech than KMD, considering it solves all the crypto issues that other projects are struggling to do just a couple aspects of, when we can implement the entire value add of some project with a single CC that takes a few weeks to do... If that isn’t flashy, not sure what is! CZ: So, I recently spoke with PTYX from Chainzilla. Will Komodo platform continue offering services to premiere partners or will you be “passing the torch” over to other Blockchain-as-a-service platforms like Chainzilla? JL777: I just write code, so no idea what will happen regarding the non-coding side of things. I also don’t do GUI, so no idea when any of that will be done. I am just a simple C programmer. So I write C code to solve the deep tech issues that are otherwise unsolved. CZ: Gotcha... But you know that’s VERY important, especially for user adoption. JL777: Ideas by Nature I am trusting will solve the GUI issues. Much, much better than I could. I have to rely on others to get such things done. CZ: Yes I’m excited to see how that turns out! Let’s discuss adoption. You always hear people speak about “mass adoption,” but what do you feel it will REALLY take in order for this technology to reach the masses? JL777: Games. Realtime crypto games. That is why I did dice CC. We also have plans for a lotto CC. But, really any sort of game can be made blockchain enforceable now by using the CC tech. And, being UTXO-based, it is much more secure and so far it is much faster to code and debug. CZ: I’m so glad you said that because I feel games will be a huge proponent as well! Are you guys looking to also be able to deal with non-fungibles? For example ERC-721s? JL777: Already done. We just need a lot more coders, domain specific CC, to take the reference CC I am making and customizing it into some specific dApp. My role is to show the type of things that can be done, but we really need a big ecosystem with projects doing the various games and specific use case dApps. CZ: Do you make any decisions outside of just the coding? How does the governance within Komodo work? JL777: People like to ask me for my opinion, even on things like colors and such things, but I try to stay out of it as much as possible. Let each person with expertise make the decisions. If there is some deadlock, then maybe I let my opinion be known. But, I don’t have any special powers, other than the common sense thing, and people when they hear a good common sense solution to a problem they are battling with, it is usually adopted. But, I stay out of the team meetings and let them do their thing. Things are centralized around me too much as it is, so I try to reduce it as much as possible CZ: That’s good to know. Seems quite fair. Everyone has a say and anyone can expand on the ecosystem how they see fit to the best of their abilities. JL777: Yes, totally open community. CZ: So, this is another community question: What is your relationship with ØCryptoUnion? JL777: There is no formal relationship. They are working on some sort of gateway project, like several other projects. But, there are dozens of projects in the ecosystem and no formal relationship. This is old style crypto, not the new style corporate. At least that is how I am “managing” the open source side of things. There is a different side, that I am not involved in, so I can’t speak to how things are done there. CZ: You bring up a good point, however, given the reality that we live in a world that is controlled by few (governments, institutions, etc), do you think a truly decentralized future is realistically possible? JL777: A much more decentralized future is possible. But, it is also possible for a global totalitarian state. We already are close to a global surveillance state... very dangerous CZ: I think the biggest problem is getting people to actually CARE. Most people just want the easiest, most convenient thing and often are willing to sacrifice privacy over convenience. JL777: Well, when it comes to MONEY, people do CARE. Especially in the parts of the world where basic survival is not easy. But yes, privacy has been sacrificed a lot, to the point where people think you must be some sort of extremist if you just want to keep some privacy. But, a lot of writers of novels used pen-names. Nobody went accusing them. When the police can’t be trusted to be fair, then everybody cares about hiding as much as possible, since anything can and will be used against you! And we know we can’t trust criminals, since they ignore the law.. So why advertise to the world who you are? CZ: I agree. People always say “well if you have nothing to hide, then who cares?” I think thats the wrong attitude. So, before we go I just wanted ask one final question. Ultimately, what is your grand vision for the Komodo Platform and what can we expect in the near future? L777: Like you said, mass market adoption will need nice GUI. The low level tech in my mind is basically done. We just need to do a bunch more CC, which can, and will be done. Then people can make dApps via RPC calls. So with the easy to use GUI that gets mass market adoption, that achieves the goal of the scalable, secure, private and fast crypto. Likely KMD will be the first to achieve all four and have an atomic DEX to interface with many other cryptos. It has been a long journey, but within a year or so, I think I will become much less important. Things shift into the “GUI-zation” side of things. Maybe I can take a vacation... CZ: I have no idea how to code but I can only imagine that vacation will be WELL deserved! JL777: Just imagine writing a novel where if you make ANY mistake it crashes! Not just spelling or grammar, but character development, plot, or any error and BOOM! It’s DEAD! CZ: Great analogy! Well, thanks so much JL777 for taking time out of your busy schedule to have this chat. You are clearly an intelligent person and I’ve really enjoyed this. There is so much more we could talk about, but unfortunately there is only so much time! JL777: It was fun to chat! Feel free to stop by the Discord anytime. There is an “Ask-JL777 channel” here. Just post there anytime and I will answer.
INFO: How to buy Bitcoins, How to use wallets/ mixers/ etc.
Hey Ents! Glad my previous post was of help to a few people! Many of you have messaged me to help on particular topics, and especially bitcoins, so I will be covering a bit about the alternative currency in this post. Without dwelling much into historical facts, let me first say that bitcoin could very well be the currency on the future, and it is intended to replace paper money - and most importantly, government’s and legal fraudsters like bank’s control over our economy. How is bit coin produced? It is the financial value derived through computing power. For example, A computer processing data at a hash-rate of 15 GHS (Giga Hertz per second) may produce 1 bit coin each month. Here, electricity costs and computing power costs are converted into Bitcoins which has inherent value. Okay enough of all that, how to get bitcoin? The easiest way is to buy bit coins from www.localbitcoins.com (LBC). This is somewhat similar to a stock exchange and you can buy and sell bitcoins from reputed vendors using IMPS/NEFT/Cash transfers. Important things to look out for are - make sure the person you are buying from has 100% rating. Any less could spell trouble. Make sure the listing is an escrow listing. Escrow is a term used a lot on DNM’s. It simply means the coins/money is in control of a third party and is not released to the vendor till you are satisfied. It protects both the buyer and the seller. If you are not satisfied, you can raise a complaint and get your coins back. Always use LBC only through a normal browser. Never through a TOR browser. But what about anonymity, you may ask. The fact is that buying bit coins is completely legal and you do not need any anonymity to purchase coins. There are several legit purposes for bit coins including shopping for clothes, on Dell website, and several other electronic stores. You only need to be anonymous when you are making a deal on the DNM’s So; once you have purchased your coins - if you are using the coins to buy drugs, you need to maintain anonymity. The best part about LBC is that it offers a certain degree of anonymity built in to its systems. For very small transactions, you can send the coins directly from the LBC wallet into your darknet market wallet. What is a wallet? A wallet is a storage medium for your bitcoins. Simply put, it is a ‘bank’ for all your coins. The wallet has a bitcoin address which is similar to your bank account number. You can send and receive bit coins using this address and the transaction will be processed within 30 minutes (usually 2 confirmations). I suggest using a wallet on TOR browser to remain anonymous. https://blockchainbdgpzk.onion/wallet/ The blockchain.info wallet on TOR is once of the most secure onion wallets. You can create a free wallet here; remember to never forget the wallet seed and password else you may risk losing your bitcoins. For larger purchases, I suggest sending coins from LBC onto a Blockchain wallet, and then from the block chain wallet onto the DNM market. Adding few steps between the source of the coins and the destination helps maintain anonymity and obscuring the fact that the coins are involved in a drug marketplace. This is known as mixing coins. (LBC has an inbuilt mixer - this is the reason it is safe to use LBC to send coins directly to DNMs) Coinb.in is also a good alternative wallet: http://4zpinp6gdkjfplhk.onion/ So, can I directly use my bank account, pay via IMPS to buy bitcoins and use them on a DNM? Yes, as long as it is a small transaction (<< Rs. 40,000) no eyebrows will be raised whatsoever. For larger transactions I suggest using the mixing technique above, and also adding couple of other intermediary wallets and maybe even a standalone mixer service. What is a standalone mixer? A mixer’s purpose is to obfuscate the trail of money - in this case, coins. Generally a mixer will receive several thousands of coins from various addresses, and send these coins out to different addresses after an interval of time. There will be no trail of the source of the coins and the destination because the mixer processes several large transactions. For a real world example, you can consider going to a bank and depositing a particular Rs. 1000 note. When you want to withdraw from an ATM, the odds of you getting the same note which you deposited are negligible. This is the outlining principle of using a mixer. Helix Light is a cheap and efficient mixer which works at a 2.5% fee. http://grams7enufi7jmdl.onion/helix/light Mixing is really required only in the case of big transactions; or if you really want to feel 100% secure. For the normal DNM transaction involving a fee grams of this or that, this is highly unnecessary. So, by now you should be able to buy bit coins, mix them if required using a TOR wallet or a mixer, and be ready to send them into a DNM for your purchase. While using DNM markets, make sure that the market link is the correct link - you can verify it from dnstats.net or set up 2-factor authentication on your account along with a login phrase. All these steps are to prevent phishing attacks which may try to steal your coins by redirecting you to a malicious TOR link. Once the coins are sent from LBC/Mixer wallet into the market, you are ready to make the purchase. Always do your homework on the vendor and never deal without escrow with unreputed vendors. This is called FE - Finalize Early. This means you are choosing not to use escrow,and are sending the coins directly to the vendor. Use this only when the vendor has good feedback and a reputation. While placing an order and sending your address, always remember to use PGP. Hope this was helpful; Please review the information I have posted and if I have missed out anything let me know. You can also ask me any questions or suggest methods of your own. Also I request to leave this thread informational and ask all your questions on drug sources and advertising on other threads.
We could use a few more Spartans. Here's what you can do to help Bitcoin today!
BTC is being tossed around like a sex slave by traders lately. This is a guide to quickly investing in a small long position in BTC on Mt. Gox. This essentially raises the ante for the players. If you believe in BTC bu don't have any, this is how to put your money where your mouth is, and now is as good a time as any. On e person with deep pockets is nowhere near as powerful as a multitude of little people in this scenario, and the market is on an enforced pause. If you have Bitcoin but don't want to sell them(or even open your wallet), this method will also work for you. If you have Bitcoin and do want to sell them, it doesn't surprise me that you are reading a wall of text that.....well, what can i say. First the disclaimers. First, there are some who believe that BTC dropping in value could be the best thing for it. I see why that is a possibility, but my counter is that i don't care about the price, i care about stability. Increased stability will lead to more adoption on all fronts (anyone want to do a merchant guide?) and increased likelihood of success. I am not encouraging day trading, i am explaining how to take a long position (a long term bet that BTC will go up vs. $USD). We are just trying to build a decentralized 'floor' to ease the sharp drops. Second, i am not a financial or legal expert. I have read the so called 'guidance' and am very sure that this method is well within the law. I am just describing what has worked best for me so that you can hopefully avoid some of the many missteps i have made along my bitcoin journey. YMMV. Third, yes i know that Mt Gox is having trouble lately, and not the best place to put your money. However, like it or not, Mt Gox is currently the public face of BTC value and where the battle for public opinion is being fought. That's where we nee d the Spartans the most. Last, please post how long this process took you in the comments so that we can get a solid estimate on how fast Spartans can be added to the line in the future. You will need: Pen & paper, cell phone, computer(not smartphone), two hours of time and a little money that you are willing to lose. DO NOT make a bigger bet than you can afford to lose. This is NOT A SURE THING, but every extra Spartan helps, especially right now. Step 1. Go to Mt. Gox and create an account. It's been a while since i made mine, so i don't know how long this takes these days. Don't bother with verification or anything you don't have to. The object is to acquire a Mt. Gox account number. It will be in the form of M********X, where *=numeral. Step 2. Move some money in to the account. If you live outside the control of the US gov't, just do what any normal person would do and move the money into an exchange with a debit or credit card. Enjoy your freedom. Otherwise...... This is the pain in the ass part where you will start to understand what 'freedom' really means. Some will disagree with me, but IMO right now BitInstant->Moneygram->Zipzap->Mtgox is the quickest way. It is the difference between 2 hours (24/7) and two business days. If you want to use a different method, more power to you. Go to bitinstant.com, select your country, and select 'Cash Deposit' on the left. The drop down menu will list Moneygram vendors (CVS, Jewel/Osco, 7/11,Stater Bros, WalMart, etc). Select a vendor that is convenient. The right side should be defaulted to 'Mt Gox',which is what we want. Call the Moneygram vendor to A) ensure that they are open B) ensure that they have a dedicated RED PHONE at their Moneygram station. If they have a kiosk instead of a phone, you're gonna have a bad time, so select another vendor and try again. Grocery stores seem to be the best. While you are on the phone you can continue with the dat entry. Enter your information. They will ask for your Mt Gox account #, your legal name, a contact e-mail, and your date of birth. Don't lie, it's important to follow the law to the letter in a public environment. If you are looking for anonymity, this is not for you. Enter the amount you wish to move. Low numbers are easy, big numbers are problematic. The butter zone seems to be $500. Anything higher and you are likely to get rejected further down the line, and have to start the process all over. The transaction limit seems to be 2/day. The truth is that there has been a lot of 'variance' in people's experience with this transfer, and there i no rhyme or reason to it. I am trying to show you what has worked for me. At $500 your transaction fees will end up at 4.75%, at other amounts it will vary because of the $3.95 fixed fee per transaction. If you have a better deal than 4.75% that can be done in less than 2 days, i would love to hear about it. Play the little game to prove you are human by clicking and dragging the objects around. Vote for your favorites in the comments; i just got 'Put the animals on the ground' which i hereby down vote. There are much better ones. Once you are certain that you Moneygram vendor will meet your needs (RED PHONE!), click the send funds button to move onto the next screen, which redisplays the info and gives you some transaction codes. Take a screenshot or copy the info(or not) and click 'Go' to move to the next screen. Now we are at ZipZap. Enter your phone number and your area code and hit search. You will see a google maps style interface displaying Moneygram vendors. If you select any vendor other than the one you selected back at Bitinstant, you're gonna have a bad time. If your vendor is not available on the list, take note of the ones that are and go back to Step 1. Click 'Pay Here' next to your vendor and then click 'Create Payment Slip'. The two most important numbers are the AMOUNT ($503.95 in my example) and the ACCOUNT NUMBER OF BILL TO PAY, the 9 digit number. If your 9 digit number contains any letters, stop and go back to Step 1. You will not be charged any money if you stop now, but if you try to use letter in the account number you're gonna have a bad time. The 4 digit RECEIVE CODE is also important, but it is a constant 9611. Go to the Moneygram vendor. Tell the cashier you are there to pay for a money order, and ask if they are going to need a manager to complete the transaction, i.e. make sure they have their shit together BEFORE you pick up the red phone, otherwise your gonna have a bad time. If the transaction times out because they aren't ready to take your money, congratulations, you get to go back to Step 1 (tens timeouts seem to be getting longer, around 10 mins, but again, YMMV. My budget is 5 mins, just to be sure. the fine print is something ridiculous like 120 seconds or something). Pick up the red phone and get ready to take the red pill. Follow the prompts with the keypad to enter all your information. This will include your phone number, the amount, the receive code (9611) and the 9 digit acct #. Most likely that will not be good enough (you may get lucky, but definitely not your first time) and so you will be connected to a live Moneygram operator. They will repeat all the info you just entered back to you verbatim and ask you to confirm it. They will also ask for your address. They are looking to check against the address your driver's license (your tax dollars hard at work, the irony is delicious) before the send the money on to Ukraine, who will send it to Japan. They will also ask if you iive in a house or an apartment, IDK why but they do. Once they are satisfied, they will tell you to pay the cashier. Pay the cashier. Cash, debit or a combination of the two. Credit cards may work, too, but idk for sure. Go back to the Mt Gox website. Log in and click on Settings. The second menu item will allow you to be notified every time a trade is completed, which is what you want. Wait for the money. IME it has been 10 to 30 minutes. If you missed ANY detail in the previous steps (i.e. omitted a middle initial in you name as it appears on your debit card, incorrect address spelling, etc...) you're gonna have a really bad time. You will get your money eventually, but you are going to end up in the customer service queue, and they are a wee bit busy at the moment due to this complicated process. You will be waiting a while, and your money will be trapped in transit. Step 4. Set the position. I don't want to get into the details of trading or Mt Gox, i just want to keep it simple. Feel free to expand the discussion below. Here is the gist: you are going to buy low and sell high. Novel concept, i know. Set your floor. This is the crux move. The floor is the price below which BTC will not drop, no matter what, its minimal market value. We want that to increase so that the volatility that just shut down Mt Gox goes away, and sane people start to consider entering the market. Your floor price is your floor price, and every individual person is different, but we can floor $100 if 1,000 follow these steps. Last time the floor was $5. It could get really ugly. That is what we are trying to prevent. So, using my $500 example, i immediately spilt the position, meaning i buy $250 in bitcoin. I know it sounds crazy, but the price doesn't matter. You can duke that out in the comments, but it is true. Now i have $250 in bit coin and $250 in cash, and i'm going withdraw the bitcoin out of mt gox to somewhere else (newbs seem to like blockchain.info). Now i have a minimal (but not zero) investment in bitcoin that is not on mt box. Using my example again, i am going to bid(try to buy) 2 bitcoins at $100. If i am successful, i will still have $50 left, and therefore some cash in reserve. Now it doesn't really matter whether i buy a bitcoin or not at this point, because i have succeeded in establishing the THREAT of buying at $100, which the speculators can see. If enough people do this (and there are already a ton, maybe even enough, but it is too close to call, hence the volatility and the market shutdown) they won't even try to push that low, and we have established a floor. Pick your own floor number. Seriously, you have to pick the number that you really believe in for this to work, that way everybody's floor number is a bit different from everyone else. Now instead of a hard floor at $100 (speculators push price to $101 and then allow growth again) we have a soft floor that is more difficult to see and react to. It is the advantage of being decentralized, which we must continue to use. The last piece of the puzzle is to ask to sell 10 bitcoins. You have none to sell, but mt gox will let you place to order all the same. Don't be greedy here! $60 is plenty of reward for your effort. If you try to take $100 out each time right now, you're gonna have a bad time. The last important point is that every time you get an email that says a trade has been completed on Mt Gox, go back and reset the EXACT SAME trade, even if you lack the funds. So, in my example, i have a bid of 2 coins at $100 and an ask of 10 coins at $140, and $250 cash and 0 BTC in my account, along with some BTC in reserve. Let's run through all the possible scenarios. PRICE goes DOWN and STAYS DOWN. I end up buying 2 BTC. PRICE goes DOWN and then UP. I buy two coins at 100, then sell them at 140. I pocket the $80. If the price goes down again, we can do it again. PRICE goes UP and STAYS UP. We win. There are more fights ahead but they are of a different nature. Cross that bridge when we get there. PRICE goes UP and then DOWN. I end up buying 2 BTC. PRICE dosn't move. This is what we want most. As long as they keep manipulating the price, you keep pocketing $80. This is how the tool that is BTC works. You can't stop them from manipulating price, but they can't stop you from extracting money from them when they do. The less stable the market, the more WARNINGS!!!! Here are the best ways to fuck this up! 1. Getting greedy. If you don't sell at 140 and try to hold on, you risk not having the funds to maintain your floor. don't be greedy. 2. Forgetting to reset the trades. Once a trade is made, you have to reset it to have it available again. 3. ????? Am i missing something? Let us know??? OK, my head hurts form typing, but that't the gist of it. I am sure i missed some details, particularly about Mt. Gox, cuz it's really not my thing, and i appreciate any clarifications y'all may have. Also, i'm not going back and proofreading this, so i am sure the grammar police will visit, and i thank them in advance. If 1,000 do this in the next 8 hours we can start to be taken seriously as a currency, and we will surpass silver in terms of fixed value. Once BTC are worth more than silver, it's only one more step to being worth more than gold.
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