NYC Meetup TONIGHT - Unqualified Opinions #16

we're talking all things decentralized data and content tonight in Manhattan

The Messari - Unqualified Opinions #16

Once per week, we curate the best content from our extended ~200 strong volunteer analyst army, and show off the work they’ve been doing to populate a free and open data library for crypto.

Before we dive in, though, WE’VE GOT A MEETUP IN NYC TONIGHT!!!

We were able to secure more space than originally planned, so if you’re free and want to talk data and transparency standards in crypto, come on by for our second community meetup at Flatiron School (11 Broadway, Second Floor - shoot Katherine an email and introduce yourself! 📩

The speakers are awesome:

  • Ria Bhutoria (Lead Analyst, Circle Research) will talk about the hassles she’s dealt with life as a crypto analyst and how she avoids pulling her hair out dealing with all the conflicting data and information in the industry.

  • Julien Genestoux (Founder, Unlock) will share details about aligning incentives for content creators (ahem, analysts?) with his new venture Unlock.

  • David Turner (Product, will talk about the work they are doing at to improve transparency and track reputation in crypto.

Should be an awesome event. See you tonight!

On to the good stuff…

One long-standing thesis in crypto says that the dominant cryptoasset will be the one that acts as the soundest money. But if we believe something like Bitcoin or Ethereum can replace fiat currencies what does the rest of the “money stack” look like?

Dan Zuller of Vision Hill Advisors dropped his firm's most recent post in our Discord the other day and it sparked a lot of conversation.

The Ethereum community has been referring to this concept as “open finance” but the general idea is that crypto networks can recreate traditional financial systems through a series of technologies that replace functions like banking and lending. Vision Hill lays out a series of charts that map how crypto can replace existing infrastructure.

After all, if new assets can replace the base layer (fiat currencies) why would the rest of the stack remain controlled by legacy institutions?

There’s a lot of work left to do. Second layer solutions like lightning, and lightning-based apps need to become easier to use. On a more macro scale, interoperability projects like Polkadot and Cosmos will need to bridge various networks.

Fascinating stuff, for sure, and you check out the full post and tweet me your thoughts on the decentralized money stack or the concept of open finance in general.

Retroactive recognition

A couple weeks back we started giving a shoutout to the most active community member during the past week. Our goal was to highlight the amazing work being done by our analysts as they help to populate the early Messari token library.

This week we wanted to give credit to the OGs who’ve been there since the beginning, helping us build the Messari data library and define data sources that might be most important to the crypto community as a whole. Some have moved on to bigger and better things (we’re happy to have helped a couple with intros), but were still a large part of getting us to where we are today.

Gianluca Sacco, Blair Marshall, Phil Bonello, and Robert Clark take the top spots for contributions. These guys helped us populate the early database with some awesome profiles like Kin, Aion, Augur, and Filecoin. Check out everything in our token library or through our asset pages on the Messari homepage.

Kojo Addaquay, Daniel, and Steve Miller have not only been active contributors but have done a tremendous job with helping us edit early profiles and moderate the community. And a final special shoutout to Dan Zuller, one of our most thoughtful community members and, of course, still providing great insight over at Vision Hill.

Go give them all a follow on twitter! They deserve it.

As always, if you are interested in helping us crowdsource token project details, or want to join our community to share your expertise, we would love to have you! Take a second to fill out an application with your details and we will get back to you soon.

Until next week…

-Eric & the Messari Team

P.S. Smash those share and subscribe buttons, and spread the love. Tweet at Messari for requests, feedback, comments, or questions.

News & Analyses

Quick Bits (Don't read that, I read it for you)

Choke Points (Exchange News)

  • 🇰🇷 Korea's largest crypto exchange, Bithumb, sold a 38% stake to BK Global Consortium, a Singapore-based blockchain investment firm for $350 million. The largest previous stakeholder, BTC Holdings, gave up controlling interest, but retained a large chunk of its stake. (Messari | Source)

  • Litecoin is now available on Gemini, making it the fourth crypto available on the exchange. (Messari | Source)

  • ❌  Crypto exchange Coinbase is shutting down its institutional-investor focused index fund product by the end of the month, due to weak interest from investors. It has decided to focus on its Coinbase Bundle product, which is open to all Coinbase customers—the minimum investment requirement is $25 and it doesn't require accreditation. (Messari | Source)

Startup Signals (ICOs, Cryptos, and Startups)

  • 🚀 Fidelity announced its new institutional crypto platform. Read more from our newsletter yesterday.

  • 🌐 Blockstack announced its plan to decentralize itself, creating a number of independent entities that form a wider ecosystem. The first step is to create a non-profit, U.S.-based entity, and a Hong Kong-based entity. (Messari | Source)

  • 🍑 The hacker who stole 165.38 ether ($ETH) from the SpankChain platform has returned the funds, SpankChain announced Thursday. After speaking with CEO Ameen Soleimani on a phone call, the hacker also helped SpankChain recover the 4,000 BOOTY tokens that were frozen as a result of the attack. In return, SpankChain sent the hacker $5,000 in rewards, $4,000 for the BOOTY tokens, and the 5.5 ETH used to execute the attack. (Messari | Source)

  • 🛑 Ethereum's Constantinople upgrade stalled on testing. After developers confirmed expectations for a November release on Friday, Ethereum's main test network, Ropsten, ground to a standstill Saturday. The Constantinople hard fork was set to activate on Ropsten at block number 4,230,000, but block creation was stalled at 4,299,999 due to a lack of miners upgrading their clients on the network. In response, Afri Shoedon, release manager of Parity Technologies, tweeted, “no Constantinople in 2018, we have to investigate.” (Messari | Source)

The Powers That Be (Legal/Reg/Policy)

  • 😡 The North Dakota Securities Department issued cease and desist orders against three companies — Crystal Token, Life Cross Coin, and Advertiza Holdings—for offering "unregistered and potentially fraudulent securities in the form of ICOs." The agency claimed that the three companies placed fraudulent statements on their websites with claims of excessively high returns, insufficient disclosures, and misrepresentation of facts. (Messari | Source)

  • Former chief economic aide to Trump and ex-president of Goldman Sachs Gary Cohn has joined blockchain startup Spring Labs as an adviser. (Messari | Source)

Did I miss something?

Send me the link, your twitter handle and your best imitation compression algorithm write up. If I like it, I’ll include your bit next issue (with attribution).

Community Updates

Podcast Recap

ICYMI, KWu’s latest and greatest Messari podcast #9 is an interview with Tony Sheng on his writing process. Last week, KWu was on the ground at Crypto Springs taking names and doing interviews in #8.

Listen to 1 (or all 9) on Apple Podcasts here, Spotify here, and Google play here. Happy learning!

Shameless Plugs

We want your feedback!

We know Messari can feel like a couple different products right now, and we're working to unify our features into one overarching whole. To the end, We’ve made a Trello board to take in any and all of the feedback you have for us! Have at it

We're Hiring:

  • We need data engineers who want to bring transparency to crypto!

  • Join a fast growing team in NYC; work with crypto OGs, and former Bloomberg/Palantir engineers; & access a network that sets you up for the rest of your career. Apply here!

Upcoming Travel:

  • Hit us up in these locations:

    • Money 20/20, Las Vegas, October 21-24th.

    • DevCon, Prague, Czech Republic October 30–November 2, 2018.

Join Our Community:

  • If you are interested in helping us crowdsource token project details, or want to join our community to share your expertise, wed love to have you on board! Take a second to fill out an application and we will get back to you soon.

  • Going forward, we’ll be capping new members at 15 each week to keep things running smoothly. If you haven’t heard back, you are probably in the queue.

  • Like what you read? Share it! Hate what you read? Let me know @MessariCrypto.