Silk Road Mentor's Arrest Rekindles Tales ... - Bitcoin News

Which type of curren(t) do you want to see(cy)? An analysis of the intention behind bitcoin(s). Part 3

Part 1
Part 2
So I have been subbed to /bitcoin since it had less than two thousand subs but haven't posted there in years. I think I took a break from researching bitcoin to take a foray into the world of conspiracy around 2014 and only got back in to it around the beginning of 2017 but with a bit of sense of skepticism and cynicism about everything. I think I returned to /bitcoin around that time but there had been a rift that had emerged in the community between those that said that bitcoin was censoring any discussion around big blocks but then also just censorship in general. This lead to the formation of /btc which became the main spot for big blockers to gather to talk about protocol development. Following the fork of Bitcoin Cash and SegWit (BTC) in August 2017 the camps were further divided when the fence sitters were denied their SegWit2x compromise. Many from the fence sitters then deferred back to the incumbent bitcoin as citing muh network effect, liquidity, and hashpower while some who felt betrayed by the failure of getting S2X through went to support BCH for some attempt at on chain scaling rather than through pegged side chains or Lightning Network.
Bitcoin cash initially went with a modest doubling of the blocksize to 2MB but implemented some other features like a new more rapidly adjusting difficulty algorithm to protect themselves against hashpower fluctuations from the majority chain. In about July of that year I had seen what I potentially thought was someone LARPing on /biz/ but screencapped, that segwit2x which was scheduled for november 2017 would be called off and then hashpower would switch to BCH causing congestion and chain death spiral on BTC and BCH would pump massively. I was partial to the idea as the game theory and incentives on a big block bitcoin should attract miners. About a month after SegWit2x was indeed called off while the BTC blockchain was hugely congested, BCH went through a violent pump reaching 0.5 BTC/BCH on a European exchange called Kraken while it also pumped ridiculously on American exchange coinbase. Shortly afterwards the market took a giant dump all over those people who bought the top and it has since retraced to roughly 30:1 or so now.
After that pump though BCH kind of gained some bagholders I guess who started to learn the talking points presented by personalities like Roger Ver, Jihan Wu, Peter Rizun and Amaury Sechet. Craig S Wright by this time had been outed as Satoshi but had in 2016 publicly failed to convince the public with the cryptographic proof he provided. To which he later published the article I don't have the courage to prove I am the bitcoin creator. In essence this allowed many to disregard anything he offered to the crypto community though his company nChain was very much interested in providing the technical support to scale what he saw as the true implementation of bitcoin. Following debate around a set of planned protocol upgrades between a bitcoin node implementation by his company nChain and the developers of another client Bitcoin ABC (adjustable block cap), the two parties both dug their heels in and wouldn't compromise.
As it became clear that a fork was imminent there was a lot of vitriol tossed out towards Wright, another big billionaire backer Calvin Ayre and other personalities like Roger Ver and Jihan Wu. Craig's credibility was disregarded because of his failure to provide convincing cryptographic proof but still people who wanted to pursue the protocol upgrades that nChain were planning (as it best followed their interpretation of the bitcoin white paper) pursued his variant, while others who followed the socia consensus deferred to the positions of their personalities like Wu, Ver, and Sechet but even developers from Ethereum and other protocols chimed in to convince everyone that CSW is a fraud. This was referred to as the hash war and was the first time that the bitcoin protocol had been contentiously hard forked.

Hashpower is the CPU cycles you can commit to the Proof of Work function in bitcoin and the majority will generate the longest chain as they have the most proof of work. To win the contentious hard fork legitimately and make sure your chain will always be safe going forward you need to maintain your version of the blockchain with 51% of the hashpower on the network and force the other parties to continue to spend money on building a blockchain that is never going to be inserted in to the majority chain. As well as this you need to convince exchanges that you have the majority chain and have them feel safe to accept deposits and withdrawals so that they don't lose money in the chaos. This is how it would play out if both parties acted according to the rules of bitcoin and the Nakamoto Consensus.

There was a lot of shit talking between the two parties on social media with Craig Wright making a number of claims such as "you split, we bankrupt you" "I don't care if there is no ability to move coins to an exchange for a year" and other such warnings not to engage in foul play.. To explain this aftermath is quite tedious so It might be better to defer to this video for the in depth analysis but basically Roger Ver had to rent hashpower that was supposed to be mining BTC from his mining farm, Jihan Wu did the same from his Bitmain Mining Farm which was a violation of his fiduciary duty as the CEO of a company preparing for an IPO. In this video of a livestream during the hashwar where Andreas Brekken admits to basically colluding with exchange owners like Coinbase, Kraken (exchange Roger Ver invested in), Bitfinex and others to release a patched ABC client to the exchanges and introducing "checkpoints" in to the BCH blockchain (which he even says is arguably "centralisation") in order to prevent deep reorgs of the BCH blockchain.
>"We knew we were going to win in 30 mins we had the victory because of these checkpoints that we released to a cartel of friendly businesses in a patch so then we just sat around drinking beers all day".
By releasing a patched client that has code in it to prevent deep reorgs by having the client refer to a checkpoint from a block mined by someone who supported BCHABC if another group of hash power was to try to insert a new chain history, this cartel of exchanges and mining farm operators conspired in private to change the nature of the bitcoin protocol and Nakamoto Consensus. Since the fork there have been a number of other BCH clients that have come up that require funding and have their own ideas about what things to implement on the BCH chain. What began to emerge was actually not necessarily an intention of scaling bitcoin but rather to implement Schnorr signatures to obfuscate transactions and to date the ABC client still has a default blocksize of 2MB but advertised as 16MB.
What this demonstrates for BCH is that through the collusion, the cartel can immediately get a favourable outcome from the developers to keep their businesses secure and from the personalities/developers to work on obfuscating records of transactions on the chain rather than scaling their protocol. After the SegWit fork, many from the BCH camp alleged that through the funding to Blockstream from AXA and groups that tied to the Bilderbergs, Blockstream would be beholden to the legacy banking and would be a spoke and hub centralised model, so naturally many of the "down with central banks anarcho capitalist types" had gathered in the BCH community. Through these sympathies it seems that people have been susceptible to being sold things like coin mixing and obfuscation with developers offering their opinions about how money needs to be anonymous to stop the evil government and central banks despite ideas like Mises’ Regression Theorem, which claims that in order for something to be money in the most proper sense, it must be traceable to an originally non-monetary barter commodity such as gold.
What this suggests is that there is an underlying intent from the people that have mechanisms to exert their will upon the protocol of bitcoin and that if obfuscation is their first priority rather than working on creating a scalable platform, this demonstrates that they don't wish to actually be global money but more so something that makes it easier to move money that you don't want seen. Roger Ver has often expressed sentiments of injustice about the treatment of Silk Road found Ross Ulbricht and donated a large amount of money to a fund for his defence. I initially got in to bitcoin seeking out the Silk Road and though I only wanted to test it to buy small quantities of mdma, lsd, and mescaline back in 2011 there was all sorts of criminal activity on there like scam manuals, counterfeits, ID, Credit Card info, and other darknet markets like armoury were selling pretty crazy weapons. It has been alleged by Craig Wright that in his capacity as a digital forensics expert he was involved with tracing bitcoin that was used to fund the trafficking of 12-16 year olds on the silk road. There have been attempts at debunking such claims by saying that silk road was moderated for such stuff by Ulbricht and others, but one only has to take a look in to the premise of pizza gate to understand that there it may be possible to hide in plain site with certain code words for utilising the market services and escrow of websites like the silk road. The recent pedo bust from South Korea demonstrates the importance of being able to track bitcoin transactions and if the first thing BCH wanted to do after separating itself from Satoshi's Vision and running on developer and cartel agendas was to implement obfuscation methods, this type of criminal activity will only proliferate.
Questions one must ask oneself then are things like why do they want this first? Are some of these developers, personalities and cartel businesses sitting on coins that they know are tarnished from the silk road and want to implement obfuscation practices so they can actually cash in some of the value they are unable to access? Merchants from the silk road 1 are still being caught even as recently as this year when they attempted to move coins that were known to have moved through the silk road. Chain analytics are only becoming more and more powerful and the records can never be changed under the original bitcoin protocol but with developer induced protocol changes like Schnorr signatures, and coinjoin it may be possible to start laundering these coins out in to circulation. I must admit with the cynicism I had towards government and law enforcement and my enjoying controlled substances occasionally I was sympathetic to Ross and donated to his legal fund back in the day and for many years claimed that I wouldn't pay my taxes when I wanted to cash out of bitcoin. I think many people in the space possess this same kind of mentality and subsequently can be preyed upon by people who wish to do much more in the obfuscation than dodge tax and party.
Another interesting observation is that despite the fact that btc spun off as a result of censorship around big block scaling on bitcoin, that subreddit itself has engaged in plenty of censorship for basically anyone who wants to discuss the ideas presented by Dr Craig Wright on that sub. When I posted my part 2 of this series in there a week ago I was immediately met with intense negativity and ad hominems so as to discourage others from reading the submission and my post history was immediately throttled to 1 comment every 10 mins. This is not quite as bad as cryptocurrency where my post made it through the new queue to gather some upvotes and a discussion started but I was immediately banned from that sub for 7 days for reason "Content standards - you're making accusations based on no evidence just a dump of links that do nothing to justify your claims except maybe trustnodes link (which has posted fabricated information about this subreddit mods) and a Reddit post. Keep the conspiracy theories in /conspiracy" My post was also kept at zero in bitcoin and conspiracy so technically btc was the least censored besides C_S_T.
In addition to the throttling I was also flagged by the u/BsvAlertBot which says whether or not a user has a questionable amount of activity in BSV subreddits and then a break down of your percentages. This was done in response to combat the "toxic trolls" of BSV but within bitcoincashSV there are many users that have migrated from what was originally supposed to be a uncensored subreddit to discuss bitcoin and many such as u/cryptacritic17 has have switched sides after having been made to essentially DOXX themselves in btc to prove that they aren't a toxic troll for raising criticisms of the way certain things are handled within that coin and development groups. Other prominent users such as u/jim-btc have been banned for impersonating another user which was in actual fact himself and he has uploaded evidence of him being in control of said account to the blockchain. Mod Log, Mod Damage Control, Mod Narrative BTFO. Interestingly in the comments on the picture uploaded to the blockchain you can see the spin to call him an SV shill when in actual fact he is just an OG bitcoiner that wanted bitcoin to scale as per the whitepaper.
What is essentially going on in the Bitcoin space is that there is a battle of the protocols and a battle for social consensus. The incumbent BTC has majority of the attention and awareness as it is being backed by legacy banking and finance with In-Q-Tel and AXA funding blockstream as well as Epstein associates and MIT, but in the power vaccum that presented itself as to who would steward the big block variant, a posse of cryptoanarchists have gained control of the social media forums and attempted to exert their will upon what should essentially be a Set In Stone Protocol to create something that facilitates their economic activity (such as selling explosives online)) while attempting to leverage their position as moderators who control the social forum to spin their actions as something different (note memorydealers is Roger Ver). For all his tears for the children killed in wars, it seems that what cryptoanarchists such as u/memorydealers want is to delist/shut down governments and they will go to any efforts such as censorship to make sure that it is their implementation of bitcoin that will do that. Are we really going to have a better world with people easier able to hide transactions/launder money?
Because of this power vacuum there also exists a number of different development groups but what is emerging now is that they are struggling for money to fund their development. The main engineering is done by self professed benevolent dictator Amaury Sechet (deadalnix) who in leaked telegram screen caps appears to be losing it as funding for development has dried up and money raised in an anarchist fashion wasn't compliant with laws around fundraising sources and FVNI (development society that manages BCH development and these donations) is run by known scammer David R Allen. David was founder of 2014 Israeli ICO Getgems (GEMZ) that scammed investors out of more than 2500 Bitcoins. The SV supported sky-lark who released this information has since deleted all their accounts but other users have claimed that sky-lark was sent personal details about themselves and pictures of their loved ones and subsequently deleted all their social media accounts afterwards.
There are other shifty behaviours like hiring Japanese influencers to shill their coin, recruiting a Hayden Otto that up until 2018 was shilling Pascal Coin to become a major ambassador for BCH in the Australian city of Townsville. Townsville was claimed to be BCH city hosting a BCH conference there and claiming loads of adoption, but at the conference itself their idea of demonstrating adoption was handing a Point of Sale device to the bar to accept bitcoin payments but Otto actually just putting his credit card behind the bar to settle and he would keep the BCH that everyone paid. In the lead up to the conference the second top moderator of btc was added to the moderators of townsville to shill their coin but has ended up with the townsville subreddit wanting to ban all bitcoin talk from the subreddit.
Many of the BCH developers are now infighting as funding dries up and they find themselves floundering with no vision of how to achieve scale or get actual real world adoption. Amaury has recently accused Peter Rizun of propagandising, told multiple users in the telegram to fuck off and from all accounts appears to be a malignant narcissist incapable of maintaining any kind of healthy relationship with people he is supposed to be working with. Peter Rizun has begun lurking in bitcoincashSV and recognising some of the ideas coming from BSV as having merit while Roger has started to distance himself from the creation of BCH. Interestingly at a point early in the BCH history Roger believed Dr Craig Wright was Satoshi, but once CSW wouldn't go along with their planned road map and revealed the fact he had patents on blockchain technology and wanted to go down a path that worked with Law, Roger retracted that statement and said he was tricked by Craig. He joined in on the faketoshi campaign and has been attempted to be sued by Dr Wright for libel in the UK to which Roger refused to engage citing grounds of jurisdiction. Ironically this avoidance of Roger to meet Dr Wright in court to defend his claims can be seen as the very argument against justice being served by private courts under an anarchocapitalist paradigm with essentially someone with resources simply being able to either flee a private court's jurisdiction or engage a team of lawyers that can bury any chances of an everyday person being able to get justice.
There is much more going on with the BCH drama that can be explained in a single post but it is clear that some of the major personalities in the project are very much interested in having their ideals projected on to the technical implementation of the bitcoin protocol and have no qualms spouting rhetoric around the anti-censorship qualities of bitcoin/BCH while at the same time employing significant censorship on their social media forums to control what people are exposed to and getting rid of anyone who challenges their vision. I posit that were this coin to become a success, these "benevolent dictators" as they put it would love their new found positions of wealth/dominance yet if their behaviour to get there is anything to go by, would demonstrate the same power tripping practices of censorship, weasel acts, misleading people about adoption statistics and curating of the narrative. When the hashrate from Rogers minging operation on BCH dropped dramatically and a lot of empty blocks were being mined, his employer and 2IC moderator u/BitcoinXio (who stepped in to replace roger as CEO) was in the sub informing everyone it was simply variance that was the reason when only a few days later it was revealed that they had reduced their hash power significantly. This is not appropriate behaviour for one of the primary enterprises engaged in stewarding BCH and encouraging adoption nor is the inability to be accountable for such dishonest practices as well. It seems treats btc as their own personal spam page where Roger can ask for donations despite it being against the sub rules and spin/ban any challenge to the narrative they seek to create.
Let's see how the censorship goes as I post this around a few of the same places as the last piece. Stay tuned for the next write up where I take a deep dive in to the coin that everyone doesn't want you to know about.
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Cryptocurrencies and their Characteristics

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Get familiar with Ethereum, its founding principles and major improvements/limitations upon the initial Bitcoin Blockchain!
Did you know that due to the nature of the cryptographic community from which cryptocurrencies have been developed, it is only natural that the adoption of cryptocurrencies in the digital sphere has dwarfed that in the traditional business world? Cryptocurrency adoption has firmly permeated the online gaming sphere with offerings such as Experience points (XP) for purchasing incentives in games and educational content, as well as GameCredits (GAME), which aims to be a universal currency for gamers worldwide and STORM, a kind of Blockchain Mechanical Turk, a crowdsourcing Internet marketplace. In the online gambling space, Funfair (FUN) aims to be the go-to currency for all online gaming, and Edgeless (EDG) supposedly offers a gambling experience with no edge for the house, a project all gamblers would surely welcome and support.
Cryptocurrency projects have already provided use cases for conventional businesses and enabled existing commercial operations to improve their performance with the implementation of Blockchain technology. Thus far, Bitcoin is the cryptocurrency that has most readily made inroads into the public consciousness. Microsoft, for example, has begun to accept Bitcoin payments in Windows and XBox stores, and Expedia has teamed up with Coinbase to allow Bitcoin to be used to book hotel rooms. Much like Iconomy in the crypto asset management sphere, NapoleonX (NPX), is allowing crypto investors to buy into Decentralized autonomous funds which focus on conventional markets. As we have already covered, one of the main reasons that Blockchain technology is causing so much excitement is because of the great number of ways the technology might be developed and applied in business.
The Canadian-Russian boy genius named Vitalik Buterin first envisaged the next stage in Blockchain technology as a scripting language for Bitcoin. But this particular idea failed to reach a consensus with the community. That is what stimulated development of a totally new platform with a more general type of language. Initial development on the Ethereum project began in Spring 2014 with the core team of Vitalik Buterin, Mihai Alisie, Anthony DiIorio, and Charles Hoskinson, working through the Swiss company EthSuisse. Subsequently, the Ethereum Foundation was created in the run up to the July 2014 crowd sale. Then, the Ethereum project’s currency Ether was distributed to participants who purchased the token with Bitcoin.
The initial questions about the security of the project were proven to be warranted after an infamous entity called the DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization) led to the loss of $50 million of the $150 million dollars raised in the Ethereum crowdsale. The Ethereum Blockchain then underwent a very contentious hard fork resulting in the Ethereum, ETH, we know today being separated from its parent chain, Ethereum Classic, ETC. By the end of 2016, the Ethereum Blockchain had forked twice more resulting in increased DDoS protection, that de-bloated its Blockchain, and thwarted further spam attacks by hackers.
The true cost of the financial crisis for the world economy is still being calculated and may never actually be known, but conservative estimates put the cost at approximately $20,000 per America citizen. Satoshi Nakamoto, the anonymous creator of the most famous and infamous digital currency, sought to create a means of transmitting value that did not require a trusted third party to oversee the transaction or guarantee the value. By using distributed ledger technology on the Blockchain he laid the foundation for a trustless decentralized financial system that did not rely on central banks to mediate transactions. This is a “peer-to-peer version of electronic cash…. sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution”. With no trusted third party, each individual becomes a self-sovereign, one-person-bank, responsible for his or her own transactions and security.
The Ether token’s authenticity is guaranteed by its Blockchain, which is a continuously growing list of records connected and secured using cryptography. Like Bitcoin, the Ethereum Network is an open and distributed ledger that records transactions between two people in a confirmable and permanent way. The Ether token is superior to bitcoin in that its blocktime is approximately 15 seconds compared to 10 minutes with Bitcoin. Mining generates new coins at a usually consistent rate, and the average transaction cost in December 2017 was $0.33 compared to $23 for Bitcoin. As alluded to above, Ethereum initially aimed to become both a decentralized internet and a decentralized app store supporting a new kind of app (dapp). In order for the network to function correctly, a novel piece of code “ether” was created in order to pay for the computational power needed to run an application on the Ethereum network. Ether is a digital bearer asset like BTC, and does not need a third party to verify or mediate transactions. “ERC-20 Token: The Ethereum Request for Comment -20 token is standard set of rules used for smart contracts on the Ethereum Blockchain for executing new tokens. It defines a uniform set of rules on how a new token will function within the Ethereum Blockchain. The creation of this token has made it very easy for start-up companies to create their own token within the Ether ecosystem. That was a very significant advancement that caused the 2017 ICO boom in newly issued tokens.
Monero: This fork of Bitcoin is focused on privacy and decentralization. It obfuscates the sender and recipient’s addresses, as well as the amount of the transaction. The original Monero (the name is Esperanto for “coin”) author, Nicolas van Saberhagen, sought to make mining rewards more egalitarian as an additional benefit of being part of the Monero ecosystem. The very private nature of the Monero architecture, which mixes sender “ring signatures” with many others, makes the deciphering of the destination and recipient address increasingly difficult. This has made the Monero cryptocurrency the go-to coin for illicit transactions on the Dark web. There is, however, another way to look at this. Although Monero’s intensely private nature and deliberate obfuscation of transaction destinations and sources is undoubtedly used for criminal and corrupt purposes, the exact opposite effect may occur if its privacy characteristics are placed within the context of third world countries where corruption is already rife. In developing countries, it has proven much easier for people to obtain devices with an internet connection than it is for them to open a bank account. With 2 billion people worldwide without a bank account, much of them in Sub-Saharan Africa, privacy coins like Monero could play a key role in distributing aid to the needy without having to deal with any potentially corrupt and inefficient organizations or state institutions standing in between.
Ripple: Ripple is well-known as one of the very first big Blockchain projects. In fact, its predecessor, RipplePay dates all the way back to 2004. The modern version of the Ripple payment protocol (conceived by Jared McCaleb and built by Arthur Britto and David Schwartz) enables instant peer-to-peer transfer of money. The protocol and the facility to avoid the banking system, results in drastically reduced fees and transaction times compared to international transfers by conventional banking methods. Ripple is currently known as the cryptocurrency of the financial services industry, with major involvement by Santander, American Express and RBS, amongst many others. Ripple has also teamed up with Moneygram to speed up the process of cross-border payments. Ripple is aiming to send money across national lines “as quickly as information” in the words of its CEO Brad Garlinghouse. The almost laughable inefficiencies and delays in sending money to friends or loved ones in foreign countries is a major pain point for banking customers the world over. Now, with the implementation of Blockchain technology through Ripple’s XRapid initiative in partnership with Moneygram, international transfer times will go from being measured in days to being measured in seconds.
NEO: This is often described as the “Chinese Ethereum”. NEO is similar to Ethereum in that it is a Blockchain platform that is designed to be a scalable platform for the construction of decentralized applications. The NEO Blockchain project was founded by Da Hongfei in 2014. Like Ether (ETH) in the Ethereum network, the NEO token is the base asset of the NEO Blockchain. But unlike Ether, it is indivisible, and it accrues a GAS token when stored in a wallet. The GAS token can be used to pay transaction fees on the NEO Blockchain. The NEO cryptocurrency was rebranded from Antshares in 2017, and has started to produce highly successful ICOs on its platform, most notably Ontology (ONT) and RPX which will make use of the NEP-5 token. In the immediate aftermath of rebrand from Antshares, the all-encompassing vision of NEO 2.0 was laid out as follows: “We hope the platform can be used for different front-end scenarios, such as the Digital asset wallet, Forum, Voting, Profile management and Mobile applications. The platform also features an open API that can be used for integration with other systems.” One of the main alterations made to the NEO project was the addition of more up-to-date digital identity management protocols which employed Public Key Infrastructure(PKI)X.509 digital identity standards. NEO’s verification of identity when issuing digital identities includes fingerprint, voice and facial feature authentication methods.
IOTA’s code architecture is not in the same mold of Bitcoin or Ethereum, both of which could be described as existing on and making use of a Blockchain to order their transaction history. IOTA, and its token, the MIOTA, are embedded in a code structure called “The Tangle” which is a form of Direct Acyclic Graph data architecture. This particular architecture enables the code to function with no fixed block and each transaction carries its own proof of work. These types of transactions are enabled by “storing the most recent transactions in a fast cache, and by using checkpoints such that older transactions cannot be references. Thus, the system can be made as fast as Bitcoin, or faster”. IOTA’s main use case is for the transmission of information and value between Internet of Things enabled devices, in an automated manner. This project is truly one oriented toward the future, when many more IoT devices will be online, and there is a great need for such devices to communicate and transact without any human intervention. One weak point in DAG code architecture is that much less than a 51% attack is sufficient to compromise the network. It would be theoretically possible to bring about double spending on a DAG network with a 34% attack.
TenX (PAY) TenX was founded in 2014 as part of a PayPal incubator program. It sought to bridge the gap between Blockchain assets and everyday commerce, providing an efficient solution for the liquidity problems of many cryptocurrencies. The project will eventually be centered around a debit card that makes use of the COMIT protocol that enables many different Blockchains to interact with one another without having to issue a different token. That could be another milestone event in the crypto ecosystem. The project roadmap presented to investors began with the ICO in July 2017. They famously raised $34 Million in the first 7 minutes. The roadmap will conclude when they obtain their banking license in the middle of 2020. At that point they also aim to issue FIAT tokens fully backed and issued by a government. So far, the TenX project is on course to meet its stated targets. They brought out their highly rated IOS and web apps at the end of 2017. This serves as a fantastic example of how a well-run ICO can help both the investors and the startup streamline the capitalization process to the benefit of all parties involved.
Influence upon Traditional Merchants around the world. Due to the inherent volatility of cryptocurrency, the adoption of crypto payment methods by traditional businesses has generally been slower than in the online sphere. Although some major companies have in fact begun to come around to the idea of integrating digital currencies into their methods of accepting payments, the volatility of crypto is still a serious impediment for most. Microsoft has led the way by incorporating Bitcoin payment systems into the Window Store, as well as adding the ability for game players to purchase credit on the Xbox live network with Bitcoin. Overstock began accepting Bitcoin payments on January 9th, 2014, and saw a significant uptick in orders immediately. They received 900 new orders for $126,000 worth of BTC. Electronic retailer NewEgg, and online gaming site Zynga, also now take Bitcoin payments. There are even certain Subway outlets in South America that have started to accept Bitcoin as a method of payment too. On a far smaller scale, Coingate has partnered with Prestashop, to take Europe to the verge of a widescale cryptocurrency payment method. Merchants of any size need only apply for a Coingate account, and then have a crypto payment module installed, in order to accept payment in Bitcoin, BCash, Ether, Litecoin and nearly 50 other cryptocurrencies. The price is locked in immediately at the time of the transaction, which solves the volatility issue, and the whole process can be completed without the merchant having to deal in anything other than Euros. CryptoCredit card projects Monaco and TenX help to bridge the gap between the worlds of fiat and crypto, allowing a card holder to spend their cryptocurrency anywhere in the world.
Decentralization & Our Financial World In the Financial World, decentralization would radically alter the roles of, and creation of value by, our modern day ‘too-big-to-fail’ financial institutions. The capping of the supply of most major cryptocurrencies is itself an idea nothing short of revolutionary, in the truest sense of the word. All developed economies are oriented around a Central Bank that, through the system of fractional reserve banking, has power to create loans or investments and accept deposits, but is only required to hold reserves equal to 10% of its total liabilities. This in effect empowers central banks to print money as they see fit, a mechanism which gives central banks massive power in contemporary society. Any move toward decentralized ledgers, and any number of finite decentralized currencies, would upset the balance of power between central banks and the individual in a way that has never occurred before. The role of central banks in the economy, and the traditional means of solving common financial problems by having the central bank manipulate the money supply, for example, would need to be radically rethought. Consider the recently used machinations such as quantitative easing, negative interest rates, etc. These are present-day “solutions” that would no longer be able to be applied to the economic and financial problems they are attempting to solve.
If Blockchain technology was meaningfully deployed in the political arena it is conceivable that political corruption and vote-rigging could be severely curtailed or even eradicated. By providing a clear, transparent and incorruptible method of vote recording and counting, voter fraud and election rigging could be eliminated. The political climate could be detoxified and faith could be restored in both fledgling and established democracies. The idea of being able to present a publicly available digital ledger would allow journalists to maintain lists of sources that would be able to be shared between peers without compromising the source’s identity. The possibilities for the application of the Blockchain founding principles are truly revolutionary and just may be the largest leap forward for society since the computerization of the work force or the globalization of trade. The Cryptocurrency Ecosystem Overstock is a large e-commerce company that has successfully adopted a Blockchain solution for its business needs. The Silk Road was one of the most widely known early beneficiaries of the mass adoption of cryptocurrencies. Purpose of Cryptocurrencies -Ethereum was developed after the original creator’s suggested changes to Bitcoin were not implemented by the community. -Ethereum is a completely separate cryptocurrency. -DAO Hack & the Ether Token. -Monero, Ripple, NEO, Stellar & Iota. -Microsoft has begun to accept Bitcoin on the Xbox live network store.
If there is a wide-scale expansion of the mechanism of asset-tokenization we could see stocks, bonds, synthetic instruments and commodities being brought on-chain in the future. This would allow traditional assets to be easily integrated with smart contracts, and facilitate their interaction. This would cut down transaction times, and even more importantly, dramatically slash legal fees to a fraction of what they are today. It can cost up to $1,000 an hour or more to hire corporate lawyers to preside over a deal, draft contracts, or give advice on the intricacies of high finance. So, the potential savings involved for big businesses, if smart contracts and asset tokenization became the norm, is an amazing thing to think about at this time. The ASX is the first exchange in the world to implement a solution that would change the settlement of equities transactions from two days, to mere minutes. This radically changes how traders on both the buy and sell side, as well as companies, would be able to trade their securities, manage their risk and leverage their positions.
Learn more on the role ICO tokens play as a part of Blockchain backed solutions. What is a crypto token? How do security tokens work? How to market an ICO?
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If BitCoin transactions are 100% public, why would anyone use it for illegal transactions?

I owned a BitCoin mining rig, I have done some research on Tor, I understand the distributed nature of BitCoin and I just cannot wrap my head around the recent $1,000,000 Romney tax return extortion. The blackmailers were smart enough to steal some highly coveted documents, but how the hell do they think that BitCoin will help them move the money? BitCoin is distributed and thus all transactions are public record. I can understand small transactions (like those on the silk-road) and the BTC "bank" hacks because no law enforcement will take BTC seriously. If anything BTC only makes it worse because everyone will be watching the blockchain, only law enforcement would be involved in traditional money laundering.
So what the hell, am I missing something or do these people just not understand BitCoin?
Update: Laundry services are not anonymous. I've done some real research on strengthening the anonymity of the Tor network and all of the current services are riddled with newbie mistakes (like random timing, etc). Even quants have a hard time getting this stuff right: if a service cannot provide mathematical proof of it's anonymity guarantee, assume it's not anonymous at all.
The fundamental flaw with all of theses services is their use of a security model designed for nodes that are unable to coordinate with anyone beyond their immediate neighbors (i.e. Tor). BitCoin's transactions are all out in the open, each node knows what the other nodes have done. Even if the entire BTC network adopted a mix net, the number of nodes is small enough that a motivated attacker could easily perform a correlation attack.
submitted by indolering to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

BIP39 Words list

Nothing special, just a copy of the current list (for the future) of what can be found at
submitted by lowcarbjc to btc [link] [comments]

[Table] IAmA: We Are A Blackmarket Internet Vendor that's sold over SR, BMR, and survived throughout! AMA!

Verified? (This bot cannot verify AMAs just yet)
Date: 2013-11-11
Link to submission (Has self-text)
Questions Answers
What is your views on 2.0? Will you be waiting to set up shop on there? Also, do you have confidence in the administration to run a safe market? We are staying far from it. They were supposed to be a decentralized open source platform that ran on .onion and .2ip. They claimed they would release their source code open source.
As of now they have yet to deliver on some of the fundamental framework they (claimed) to be setting up.
They also rely heavily on the fact ehy were SR Admins - they are not Silk Road admins. They are the forum moderators, which have very little if nothing to do with the actual Silk Road backend.
They post a picture of the FBI SR bust is just a sign that they are immature and trying to "poke" LEO.
They have failed to address the fact that their staff should be highly scrutinized with the recent flips, but they do not seemed concerned.
Lastly they claim to be professional yet are trying to roll out a un-developed platform - the admin is actively changing the code as he releases new features as some do not work as intended.
This is SR2.0 - why no testing? Why so eager to roll it out undeveloped? Why stagger features claiming it to be to control traffic yet they are resorting to changing fundamental site coding.
We are staying far away from the major markets for the time being.
Also I don't know how you can say the developers are being unprofessional when your landing page directs users to connect to your site via tor proxy. Our .com landing page has our direct .onion and .i2p as well as a .to proxy that is highly advised against.
I believe there was always a silent developer besides DPR on the old silk road team, while what I say is conjecture I think it's not fair to say "they are not Silk Road admins." Apologies, we did mix up the two. The points remains that the admins were not admins of the site but rather moderators.
Well put. Single developer that is slightly misguided. He wants to release 24/7 video streaming over .i2p and .onion and does not seem to know how to remain bandwidth efficient. This includes "situations that are not conspiracy theories" which seem to us like they may be broadcasting conspiracy theories as well. Aside from that they do seem promising although they do need a redesign on their site and subreddit.
How about /silkroadreloaded.
Please show where sr 2.0 said it was going to be 'a decentralized open source platform that ran on .onion and .2ip. They claimed they would release their source code open source.' We mixed up 2.0 and reloaded to some extent, apologies. Original statement corrected.
If it's highly advised against then why do you supply it? We don't supply it, it's a proxy extension. It will work with any .onion site.
We offer the link because simply visiting our site is not illegal, the backend does not log any data, and orders have the option of being placed through PGP encrypted email separate of the site.
Last question, what market in your opinion holds the most promise? Bad wolf? Bad Wolf.
The Marketplace.
Link to bad wolf? They are still developing their site(s) but they have a subreddit at /badwolfhosting
Did you had any legal issues envolving those transactions or were some members of your staff busted by the police? Are you affraid that someday that might be an issue? We had no legal issues from the bust as we were on vacation (we cashed out our BTC bank to buy more grow equipment, increasing our yield) and received news of the SR bust 3 months into our vacation. Needless to say we were relieved.
None of our staff have ever had any legal issues related to this operation.
We are concerned about possible future issues involving staff, however the group we have is reliant on each other and has equal involvement. There are very few situations where one member of our staff would have to rely on releasing confidential information as we have moved completely away from domestic transport (non-blackmarket) sales.
How do you see the future of the drugs business, do you think this will become the go to method for selling and buying drugs? The future is quite promising as long as people that use these services start practicing personal security. This is absolutely the best, safest, and the future go to way for drugs.
While you do trade off convenience for anonymity and less risk, you also usually end up with a better product as well.
Why is everything so damned expensive? Our products or blackmarket items in general?
How do you vet your new staff? Ever turned down someone on a gut instinct? We have two types of staff - the ones that physically know each other are as close as family (quite literally), and we have very no personal staff that we question beyond the normal capacity (we are blackmarket vendors, we all get overly paranoid sometimes).
As far as remote staff, we simply maintain anonymity and make sure that no information is given that could ID us. These are mostly just IT outsourcing for data entry or small scripts.
We have turned down several members that have either accepted a job or those that simple message us asking if we need staff. Most of these have been blatant LEO.
LEO. Law Enforcement Officers
If you don't mind me asking, how much profit did you acquire?
Simply investing $5,600 in BTC when they were around $10 and selling at around $190 made us $110,000 - and this was entirely legal (although the actual amount received was much lower, to the amount of around 70%).
As of 6 months ago we had 1,270BTC total transaction over both sites. This equates to, at the current market rate of $320 per BTC, an amount of $406,400. However, we traded when they were multiple rates so the actual amount is closer to $200,000 in the last year.
DO you save your money to invest in your operation or do you save and spend on luxurious items? We save for business ventures, although paying 4 staff makes it considerably less per person.
Why? How can you feel so safe when you promote yourself like this? (actual question, not rhetorical) We do not expose ourselves in any way, and assume that in any possibility exists of data leaks then we assume that data compromised.
We use TOR and I2P over VPN. For some applications we use TOR over I2P over VPN.
We always use PGP encryption, and have native live encryption for all of our terminals.
Lastly cops are not our concern, intelligence agencies are. Despite the view on Law Enforcement we (in our own view) support our local law enforcement in our area (not suggesting all police departments are as fine and to the books as ours), so we don't have the "We Hate Cops" attitude - they are simply doing their job and are the lower level of enforcement.
When you say "TOR Over I2P over VPN" do you mean that you combine them or do you just prefer to use TOR and I2P on different situations. And thanks for doing this AMA. In extreme situations we connect to a VPN, then connect to I2p, then configure TOR to run through I2P.
By making this thread and reddit account i assume you could still not be traced? Of course not.
How do you justify using VPN after the NSA PowerPoint came out and revealed a few dozen of the top VPNs were already compromised, back in 2007 or so. Do you just ignore the threat of intelligence agencies and hope they wouldn't risk exposing "parallel investigations" to bust you? We are not effected as we only use private VPN's.
Do you feel like what your business does is ethical? Do you thinnk law enforcers trying to catch you are in the wrong? We do feel it is ethical. We don't supply anything other than cannabis, a drug that has been proven time and time again to not be the horrible substance as portrayed by 1930's culture. We take to a more modern culture in the belief (and supporting scientific evidence) that while cannabis does has negative side effects, it's positive side effect outnumber the bad effects significantly.
THC and CBN can not only shrink but help prevent some cancer growth.
CBD is a natural pain reliever. Just CBD does not get one "high".
The Law Enforcement are absolutely in the right. We do not expect even a LEO that may side with us to have that effect his job. We are doing something blatantly illegal in US jurisdiction ad we expect nothing less than them doing their job as required.
While we are not open about this business, we do support our local Police Department in events as they have a generally "by the books" reputation compared to some more corrupt areas.
What do you mean you "support our local Police Department in events?" Monetarily? If so, why? How does this benefit you? Our local PD still has police events/charities/fundraisers.
Great food and upstanding charitable members of the community are not suspected of international trafficking.
By "Great food" do you mean Los Pollos Hermanos? We believe that's reserved for DEA charities.
How do you export your 'goods' safely across the world without them being intercepted? private shipping companies? or do you only supply nationally and use private mailing companies such as fedex? United States Postal Service & meticulously careful packaging.
USPS requires a warrant to search, and with the recent bankruptcy of USPS they are even lower staffed than ever.
With a mix of around $10 spent on packaging alone (not postage) we make sure no orders are detectable.
I am wanting to order from one of these types of sites, but I am worried about the receiving end, and the risks. What can you say to alleviate those concerns? First, always research your vendor. All the security in the world doesn't matter if the end recipient is untrusted.
That being said, always use PGP. Never send messages without encryption.
If you are concerned with your home address being shipped to then we've never had issues with PO boxes, just make sure a signature is not required.
Never order to a fake name, vacant address, or large distributed mailing centers such as dorm rooms.
Why is it a bad idea to order to a fake name? After all, there's plausible deniability either way. USPS keeps a constantly updated address database. If the name doesn't match the address you run the risk of a package being flagged.
Why do you ship bud? Is it for the money? Ethics or some other personal reason? Money for sure. Locally we can sell cannabis for around $10 a gram, however we would much rather keep a streamlines anonymous exportation plan rather than deal on the "streets".
I'm guessing you're from a state that has legal medicinal bud at the very least, so why not go legit and sell to dispensaries and/or other legal persons? Sure, the money may not be as great, but you lose a lot of risk of LE busting you. On a side note, what kind of money do you make legally vs illegally? $1000 per pound more when you sell online? I'm curious. We make around 25% to 40% more selling online. We feel that the risk is worth the benefits.
If drugs were legalized, would you see that as ultimately a good thing or a bad thing for your business? Good. Cannabis sales don't seem to be hurt as much as harder drug trades.
How does shipping work? (Of course I don't expect you to reveal your secrets, maybe an example of how it could look like hypothetically) Multiple layers of mylar and vacuum seal, opaque layers, and false items.
Was any of your packages ever discovered before reaching it's destination? In our individual days we had a few intercepted, but this was before we were even selling online. We have since improved very much.
At that point, doesn't the government try to arrest you? No, they don't have any information. No fingerprints, biological material, legit but false return address, anonymous tracking.
What's BMR? Black Market Reloaded.
Can you talk about how common it is for your customers to encrypt their address when they message you? What proportion of your customers would PGP encrypt ordering instructions, and what percentage would send you their address in cleartext? About 10% of customers encrypt their address. That's why we implemented automatic encryption on our order form.
Would it be likely that anyone who had a plaintext shipping address in a dealer's inbox when the cops imaged the SR server had their address compromised? Absolutely. You'd be surprised how many based on our personal experience, there are a large amount of buyers that are probably quite nervous at the time.
How did you get into all of this (deep web?)? One of our members was a technically oriented individual that was looking into Bitcoins as a means to invest in our grow operation. We were a couple hours away from going to CVS to drop off money for BTC when we stumbled across the alternate BTC uses - including Silk Road.
From there we bought an account next day, and started probing everything we could about the site trying to prove it was a scam or LEO.
When we couldn't, we started vending. The first week was one of the only times we came too prepared - we expected 4 pounds and got around a quarter pound ordered our first week, grams and 8ths.
The second week we met 2 pounds and had enough to establish our "lifetime goal".
Over the last 2 years we have seem over 1000 BTC in sales, markets rise and fall, over 2000 unique customers an over 3000 unique shipments, 1,293 PGP keys (although most are not longer valid for contact as they use tormail), and almost enough cannabis to fill up a deuce and a half.
What do vendors do when a package gets lost? Has this ever happened to you? Refund. The return address isn't our address so no worries on us being busted.
We hd a few packages get lost before we were online vendors.
I guess by implication this means you write a return address on the package, presumably to avoid raising suspicions?? if so - what sort of address?? Every package should have a return address, not putting a return address is a very obvious flag.
Whose address do you use? Are you using a real person's address, someone not connected with your website? If so, don't you feel guilty that you might get them into trouble? Always use a legitimate return address, never a fake one.
But is it yours (or someone connected with your business), or someone else's? The return address is a valid address that checks out with USPS by comparison of the name and address. False return addresses can flag a package.
Okay, you're clearly using someone else's address, since you won't give me a straight answer. I don't agree with you doing that; if you did that to me and a package were opened, I would lose my professional licence. You are asking a blackmarket vendor about specific address details and where they ship their items from, no reputable vendor would give you a detailed answer.
That being said, the return addressee is not liable as every single vendor uses a return address that is not theirs.
Do you expect us to use our personal business address?
I used to use a vendor in Holland until shipments failed to show. Are your customers protected against this and if so how? That experience put me off buying from nets- although I'm thinking about having another go. Do you ship to Europe? We do ship to Europe, we offer tracking and if the tracking indicates a package does not arrive we send an automatic refund after 12 days or at request. We previously offered reshipments on BMR and SR, however we found that often it is simply a logistics problem that cannot be fixed by a reship.
Whats your grow set up like and are you planning any breeding projects so you could sell your own specific strains? Eb And Flow with drip ring setup, (16) 10 gallon grow containers per 55 gallon reservoir. All natural nutrients used, chilled and decontaminated water (we have water table issues in our area), redundant water pumps and overflow prevention.
Each system (pumps, electricity, sensors) are redundant in at least 2 counts, meaning if one pump or sensor fails there is always a second to take over.
In the event of a power outage we have a manually started 10,000W generator for extended power failures.
We have 2 separate buildings for sativa and indica, with one having a large amount of floorspace and low overhead, and the other having massive overhead for tall plants. Feminized seeds means we don't have to worry as much about isolation.
We primarily run a sea of green with 40 - 60 plants at any given time (overall, not harvesting) and around 10-30 plants in their own cycles.
Thats an awesome sounding setup man, you quite obviously know very much what you are doing, do you plan to ever go 'legit' so to say? We are Caregivers in our state, we just don't let our patients or the State onto our "extra" plants. All products are either grown by us or another state approved medical facility.
EDIT: Caregivers are not registered in any way. Caregivers are not state registered dispensaries/growers, they are not doctors - they are normal people who grow cannabis in a legal state.
We are legitimate Caregivers in our state. Yes, to the already obvious cannabis friendly state. Beyond that caregivers are not registered - growers and dispensaries are but caregivers are not and can be nearly anyone, they just have to grow cannabis.
Doesn't that narrow down your location some? We are not a business, state registered dispensary, or state registered grower.
Do they not question how you made X amount of money per year with no real/legal job listed? We claim all money made and pay the appropriate taxes, although we do have cash reserves that we do not claim.
Do your parents know? :) Of course not.
Do you keep your customers data? (shipping address, bitcoin address, etc, ) If so why and how do you keep it safe? Temporarily yes. Our order form stores orders until we delete them or if no action is taken in 14 days. All stored data is encrypted via PGP, and upon package arrival all information is destroyed.
We do keep customers emails for future reference with repeat customers.
Would you ever do it again? We never stopped, we just made our own vendor store.
How do you see yourselves as different from other established clearnet cannabis websites such as We ship both to the USA and internationally ( does not ship to US, Sweden, or Norway) and use an encrypted form of hosting.
Why dont you see BMR as one of the top upcoming prospects..? backopy already proved loyalty by refunding all BTC when the site was taken down, due to a potential security flaw. Don't get us wrong, the vendors can be A+ on BMR however the fact that backopy A) Used a VPS to reduce amount of work B) Chose a unreliable VPS and C) never address the amateur coding issue.
Since we got the root we have since distanced ourselves as we saw that it was relatively insecure coding from what the index page indicated.
What are some of the legal problems your customers face? Have you had any reports on these? We've never had any reports of customers that have legal issues regarding our services.
How do you ship out 10lbs a week without alerting authorities? I understand if you can't go in depth here but any attempt at an answer would be appreciated :) We have never shipped 10 pounds at once - everything is quarter pounds to pounds. We simply make sure we can drop it off anonymously (dropbox or blue bin).
How long does that free shipping take domestically? Generally 3 days, however it can take up to 5 days.
What are your views on the sheep marketplace? Out of the major markets (SR, BMR, SMP) it's the best looking and, from what we can tell, has the best coding. That being said it is still a unstable site and many, many people widely regard it to be a honeypot.
We've sold on there before (previous to SR bust, not under same alias), it's not all too bad but we feel that it's simply trying to compete with BMR (and then SR) with it's features.
I understand the honeypot concept but surely if vendors move BTC daily out of the site then all they've lost is the vendor fee. Why do you believe its called a honeypot? Most answers seem to be because its called sheep. Honeypot means Law Enforcement Sting.
Yes i understand that, but if vendors and customers are safe then they have nothing to worry about. Im wondering why sheep is regarded as a honeypot. The only answer i have seen is because of the name 'sheep'. Why do you believe its a honeypot? Out of curiosity could you link us the discussions where these assumptions were based off of the site name?
Heres a few on reddit - Link to It seems most are simply speculation, and most arguments are literally because the sites name is sheep.
The reason for my questions are that I am considering heavy investment in becoming a vendor myself, so I am weighing up my options as to which is the most suitable marketplace. Thanks for your answers so far. The downside to sheep is that it is a foreign hosted site (India) and support can be a bit touchy, but otherwise if you use PGP for orders you shouldn't run any risk.
Interesting how did you find its hosted from india? Linguistics from Support.
Is it possible to insert packets of malware into Tor, as it is being downloaded? It would be quite hard if the end user validates the download. Download spoofing would be a more likely malicious method.
Bad wolf. We heavily expected a Dr. Who reference.
Just because you intercept a package doesn't mean you know where it came from. A single intercept also does not warrant a warrant.
Yes, that was a ridiculously stupid thing to say. There is more than enough information in this thread to narrow down the identity. Caregivers are not registered - growers and dispensaries are but caregivers are not and can be nearly anyone, they just have to grow cannabis.
The OP here may as well call the DEA hotline and leave his name. We are not a business, state registered dispensary, or state registered grower.
What makes you think this is a single person, or at that that Modern Culture would not know about handwriting forensics prior to doing an AMA?
It takes much more than a paragraph, current analytical techniques use several thousands of words to build a rudimentary analysis.
My suggestion: say nothing, do nothing, don't infer anything, etc.
How do you not get caught in the Deep Web if the Govt. own a portion of Tor. Source - Times Mag. Because the Govt. does not own a portion of TOR and TOR has yet to be shown as insecure.
The tor project gets government funding. In and of itself that should tell you something. That should tell you that TOR was developed by the US Navy and nothing more. Government funding =/= owning portions of TOR. Most likely a private company owns the majority of TOR exit nodes. I2P is recently reguarded a safer because of the misconception that any of the pasts busts have been at fault of TOR, which is false. All vasts were social busts, where admins made mistakes in withholding their identity. I2P has just as many theoretical flaws as TOR does (actually quite a few more) but neither TOR nor I2P have ever shown to be insecure. I2P is no safer than TOR if you don't practice personal security. Both are secure and (currently) unbreakable as of this time.
I believe the future of darknet markets is in .I2p. It is much more secure than tor. This isn't my opinion. I am too uneducated to have one. This comes from those much more well versed in programming and net sec issues.
Cops. Not a concern to us.
Would it be like He logs into Tor then from there logs into I2P OR would it be like Him saying that he would use I2P before he would use Tor. I'm so confused sorry. Log into your VPN, then log onto OTR or I2P. In exteme situations you can tell I2P or TOR to use a certain port to forward it though it's counterpart (TOR through I2p or I2P through Tor)
I'm too stup-itt use TOR. Can I get some pot anyway? We have a .com site that explains everything and provides links on how to download and use TOR and I2P.
Last updated: 2013-11-15 19:05 UTC
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