This has been a fun, scary, and definitely eventful week for cryptocurrency and blockchain enthusiasts! It is interesting to note that the currency and trading systems which were once purported to be a potential failsafe against even 9/11 by the American filmmaker Max Keiser, are now under round-the-clock scrutiny and subject to perpetual defrauding by hackers, speculators and traders alike.
In a recent statement, the IBM Blockchain VP remarked that all digital currency does not necessarily need to be termed as ‘cryptocurrency’. The same week, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced to the world that his eleven year old (pre-teen) son was already mining Ethereum at a personal level to make money. And most notably, hackers who posed with Elon Musk’s ‘verified’ account on Twitter ran ads that promised to reward Bitcoin investments, and duped internet users massively. The trading value of Bitcoin against the American dollar has also been surprisingly static for the past three months. Bitcoin is currently trading at around $6400. The problem, as identified by the economist Robert Leshner, is that nobody (no commercially viable financial institution) will be ready to pay users to store their Bitcoin assets, which are a commodity of resistance unlike regular money, which is a fiat currency (any form of currency whose value is backed by the government that has issued it. The statement, once disregarded by Bitcoin fans, can now be taken a bit more seriously in the wake of recent developments such as the arrest of Amit Bhardwaj, whose company had offered to pay interest on Bitcoin and later defrauded users.
All digital currencies don’t need to be cryptocurrencies – IBM Blockchain VP
“We do believe that digital currency is a means to quicker and faster distribution of money, but it does not have to be in the form of cryptocurrency.” – Janine Grasso (VP of Strategy and Ecosystem Development, IBM Blockchain)
We already knew that, Mr Grasso – but thank you anyway! Other than blockchain-based tokens, several forms of digital currency, in the form of wallet-based applications (such as Airtel Money and Ola Money in India) are already active. The only takeaway is that non-blockchain digital currencies should, at least in theory, attract interest based on Leshner’s law of fiats. Which means, technically, you should ask yourself why you don’t get any interest on the money you keep in your PayTM wallet yet.
Pichai Junior is mining Ethereum!
Sundar Pichai almost never speaks about cryptocurrency. But this week, in an interview with NYT (The New York Times), the Google CEO said, “My son is 11 years old, and he is mining Ethereum and earning money.” It is notable that Google banned all ads on Cryptocurrency in June 2018, removing the ban shortly thereafter.
In the name of Musk!
Elon Musk had previously been speculated by many people as the secret identity of ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’, the legendary anonymous creator of Bitcoin, until Musk himself cleared these allegations as baseless. His name got entangled in a recent development again this week, when hackers were able to run ads backed by Musk’s ‘verified’ Twitter account, scamming internet users and luring them into paying Bitcoin.