Top Stories This Week
Analysts say Bitcoin’s bounce at $36K means ‘it’s time to start thinking about a bottom’
Bitcoin had a turbulent week, its price dropping as low as $33,300 and surging as high as $38,000 before retracting back to the $36,000 region at the time of writing.
Many analysts have attributed the uninspiring performance of BTC, along with other assets such as stocks, to macro factors such as expectations that the United States Federal Reserve will embark on several interest rate hikes throughout 2022 to tame inflation.
While many people claim the Fed’s actions will put an end to the current bull market, other forward-looking individuals such as Bollinger Bands creator John Bollinger have questioned whether the market bottom is in and if it’s time to accumulate and hodl again.
“It’s time to start thinking about a bottom in cryptos,” Bollinger tweeted. “However, the ability to get outside the lower Bollinger Band repeatedly strongly suggests a retest of some sort will be needed. My plan is wait for a bottom and a bounce, then look for a retest as an entry.”
NFL star’s massive tax bill highlights problems with BTC salaries
Speaking of Bitcoin woes, someone who may be feeling the sting of the current state of the market is NFL star Odell “OBJ” Beckham Jr.
On Nov. 12 last year, OBJ signed a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Rams worth $750,000. A few weeks later, he announced a partnership with Cash App to receive 100% of that yearly salary in BTC.
At the time, Bitcoin was breaking new all-time highs around $69,044 but has since plummeted around 46% to $36,000. Sports business analyst and senior executive producer for The Action Network Darren Rovell said that OBJ’s salary is now worth significantly less than it was when he signed the deal. However, he appears to have used some fuzzy math in coming up with his numbers given that NFL salaries are paid weekly, not upfront.
Fading power? Weak DOGE spike after Elon Musk makes McDonald’s offer
On Tuesday, erratic billionaire, Tesla CEO and space tycoon Elon Musk offered to eat a Happy Meal from McDonald’s live on TV if the global fast-food giant started accepting Dogecoin as an official payment method.
The founder of Tesla, who allegedly obtained that title via intense litigation against the firm’s actual founders many moons ago, has often sent shock waves across crypto markets with a single tweet. However, it appears his influence may finally be waning.
On this occasion, DOGE only spiked a mere 7% to roughly $0.145 after his tweet and has since dropped back to $0.138 at the time of writing. Around 10 hours after his tweet, McDonald’s responded by stating, “Only if Tesla accepts Grimacecoin,” making reference to a fake coin depicting Grimace, a fuzzy purple McDonaldland mascot introduced in the 1970s.
Eth2 is no more after Ethereum Foundation ditches name in rebrand
The Ethereum Foundation revealed that it had removed all references to “Eth1” and “Eth2” this week in favor of calling the original blockchain the “execution layer” and the upgraded proof-of-stake (PoS) chain the “consensus layer.”
Individual features of the network such as the Beacon Chain, “the merge,” and shard chains are now also referred to as “upgrades.”
The foundation cited several reasons for its decision to upgrade its terminology, arguing that the previous terms provided a “broken mental model for new users” and that the rebrand helps with scam prevention, inclusivity and staking clarity. Under the new terminology, the combination of the execution layer (Eth1) and the consensus layer (Eth2) will be labeled as “Ethereum” moving forward.
“One major problem with the Eth2 branding is that it creates a broken mental model for new users of Ethereum. They intuitively think that Eth1 comes first and Eth2 comes after. Or that Eth1 ceases to exist once Eth2 exists,” the foundation wrote, adding that “neither of these is true. By removing Eth2 terminology, we save all future users from navigating this confusing mental model.”
YouTube head of gaming Ryan Wyatt to resign and join Polygon Studios as CEO
YouTube’s head of gaming Ryan Wyatt announced on Tuesday that he will be leaving the firm in February to pursue his passion for blockchain and Web3 development.
Wyatt has lined up a role as CEO of Polygon Studios, the gaming and NFT arm of the layer-2 Ethereum scaling network. Polygon reportedly has plans to support its subsidiary studio with $100 million worth of funding towards Web3 and NFT gaming projects.
“I will be focusing on growing the developer ecosystem through investment, marketing and developer support and bridging the gap between Web 2.0 and 3.0,” Wyatt said. “I’ll be leading the Polygon Studios organization across gaming, entertainment, fashion, news, sports and more.”
Winners and Losers
The top two altcoin gainers of the week are Son of Babydoge (SOB) at 385383025% and PsyOptions (PSY) at 1632684%.
The top three altcoin losers of the week are Mercenary (MGOLD) at -100%, Ruyi (RYB) at -99.99% and MYTEAMFINANCE (MYF) at -99.97%.
Most Memorable Quotations
“Overall, the Fed is comfortable with equity and risk markets selling off as it tightens financial conditions and so could reduce inflation. Bond yields have risen after the meetings, equity and crypto markets have given back gains. The Fed continues to add downside risks to risky markets.”
Bilal Hafeez, CEO and head of research at Macro Hive
“Facebook seems to be the antithesis of what actual consumers want their digital futures to look like. […] Mark [Zuckerberg] and his team are not the best custodians of our digital futures.”
Michael Auerbach, founder of Subversive Capital
“We need simplicity of usage. We need easy programmability. We need composability that is natural to the applications. I don’t see the current Ethereum evolutions targeting any of those goals.”
Illia Polosukhin, co-founder of Near Protocol
“Of course, we also have certain competitive advantages here, especially in the so-called mining. I mean the surplus of electricity and the well-trained personnel available in the country.”
Vladimir Putin, President of Russia
“We’re not necessarily out there looking for celebrities, but when they make a blatant or open comment that says ‘Hey, IRS, you should probably come look at me,’ that’s what we do.”
Ryan Korner, IRS criminal investigation agent
“El Salvador just bought 410 Bitcoin for only 15 million dollars. Some guys are selling really cheap.”
Nayib Bukele, President of El Salvador
“I will eat a Happy Meal on TV if McDonald’s accepts Dogecoin.”
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla
“When it comes to custody, customers want to wake up in the morning knowing their assets are still there. Security in the digital asset space has evolved over the last few years to provide better control and better transparency — that’s why most of us are using multi-party computation today,”
Michael Shaulov, CEO of Fireblocks
Prediction of the Week
ETH to hit $20-trillion market cap by 2030: Ark Invest
Cathie Wood’s Ark Invest bullishly predicted that Ether could reach a total market cap of around $20 trillion within the next 10 years, suggesting an average ETH price of between $170,000 and $180,000.
The optimistic prediction came via Ark’s “Big Ideas 2022” report, with the firm highlighting the Ethereum network’s rapid rate of adoption and growth in utility and efficiency over the past couple of years as key indicators for future price targets.
According to Ark, smart contracts and decentralized applications on Ethereum are “usurping traditional financial functions at the margin.” The report highlighted that banking and lending, exchanges, brokerages, asset management, insurance and derivatives can all be found on Ethereum-based smart contracts.
FUD of the Week
Qubit Finance suffers $80 million loss following hack
It was reported on Friday that Binance Smart Chain-based protocol Qubit Finance was hacked, resulting in an estimated loss of more than $80 million worth of digital assets.
The addresses linked to the assault stole 206,809 Binance Coin tokens from Qubit’s QBridge protocol. According to blockchain analysis firm PeckShield, the protocol was hacked to create “a huge amount of xETH collateral” that was subsequently used to drain the entire quantity of BNB stored on QBridge.
The Qubit team released a statement notifying clients that they are still monitoring the hacker and their impacted assets. The post explained that the team has contacted the attacker to offer the maximum reward as determined by their bounty program. There may be some hope in getting a large portion of the funds back, as supposed white hats lately have been returning the funds in exchange for decently sized bounties.
Indonesian regulator takes cue from Islamic NGOs, bars crypto sales for institutions
Indonesia’s financial watchdog Otoritas Jasa Keuangan (OJK) has come out with an anti-crypto stance, warning local financial institutions on Tuesday against offering or facilitating any crypto asset sales.
OKJ’s official Instagram account posted the warning, sounding the alarm over the usual negative crypto tropes such as the growing number of Ponzi schemes and market volatility-related risks.
The post also quoted the chairman Wimboh Santoso, who stated that financial institutions are strictly prohibited from offering crypto sale services in any form.
“OJK has strictly prohibited financial service institutions from using, marketing, and/or facilitating crypto asset trading,” he wrote in an official Instagram post.
More evidence game devs hate NFTs and crypto
Data from the latest edition of the annual “State Of The Game Industry 2022” by the Game Developers Conference revealed that most game developers and studios have no interest in developing or working with NFTs or crypto payments.
The survey polled 2,700 game devs, and 72% of respondents indicated that their studio is “not interested” in integrating crypto as a payment tool, while 70% stated that they had no interest in NFTs. Furthermore, a mere 1% outlined that they were already working with NFT tech or crypto.
There were also 14 comments posted from respondents in the survey regarding NFTs and crypto, with only one input holding positive views. Regarding NFTs, one developer in particular wrote:
“How this hasn’t been identified as a pyramid scheme is beyond me.”