Danger of scam-related crypto markets
Several months previous I did a shotgun article discussing the scam-ridden antics of NFTs and general cryptocurrency. For one, crypto is threat-adjacent to ransomware and the go-to for demanded payments. As for NFTs, ever since their inception, they’ve been swarmed by scams and outright ponzi schemes. Collections of stolen digital art such as OpenSea fell prey to simple social engineering attacks, while “celebrities” left and right made constant, incessant gambles to force NFTs and crypto into the mainstream in hopes to capture interest and new capital.
Sorry Seth Green, not even your monkey jpg is safe.
Now, however, crypto and NFTs are fizzling out. Outside of mainstream coins like BTC, other random cryptocurrencies are losing value. Lunacoin, which saw investments of hundreds of thousands of dollars, absolutely collapsed and burned the money as it went down. Its successor, Lunacoin 2.0 vaporized in value on the day of its reboot, totaling roughly $19 million in losses.
Outside of crypto fetishists, enthusiasts, and dedicated “traders,” crypto isn’t appealing. And why would it be, outside of the phantom idea you can get rich quick? Crypto doesn’t function as a currency, relying on speculative value. The wholesale idea, of course, is to trade it back higher than it was originally purchased for. In other words, leaving someone else holding the bag. If anything, the only financial powers that crypto benefits is those who already have plenty of capital to spend as is.
Doesn’t mean that cryptomarkets aren’t still desperately trying to snare new capital, though. Performer Drake, for example, livestreamed on Twitch to push gambling with crypto, since he recently partnered with Stake.
You know, Stake, a shady third-party gambling website that exists outside the United States, that while technically doesn’t allow underage gambling from the US, such a contrivance can be circumvented with a VPN. And boy, Stake does love pushing its practices on live streamers who are more than happy to advertise for them, so long as they’re getting paid. Unregulated gambling impressed upon an audience under the legal age? Nothing wrong that, right?
By the way, if you aren’t familiar, these big-name streamers can rake in hundreds of thousands per month, with contracts easily exceeding the millions (and I’m probably lowballing it). They don’t need more, they’ve got enough for a lifetime, but as always with crypto trends, it’s routed in greed. Gambling greed, which is blasted to Twitch viewers who are young and impressionable, of course, all of which coincides with Twitch’s grotesque boom of facilitating online gambling.
But how can crypto be a scam if big names are behind it?
I’m getting off track, but it’s easy to lose your place when you observe the demented roads cryptocurrencies take. In a single breath, we’ve identified crypto embedded in gambling, ransomware, phishing attacks, scams, and outright art theft. That said, despite its constant pushes and insist it’s the “next big thing,” crypto can’t seem to hold any form of stability.
It takes more than speculative trading to “be,” and once again, even after ten years of its first introduction, BTC and crypto have functionally done nothing to replace modern exchanges. Or, even operate as its own form of currency, beyond very specific markets. Again, the reason we’re seeing another brief push for cryptomarkets is because said markets desperately need new capital. Crypto is speculative, it’s based on the idea that tomorrow it’s worth more. But even if you possess the equivalent of say, $100,000 in crypto, that amount doesn’t mean anything if you can’t trade it out. Thus, you see the reason why celebrity names push for sponsorships, in hopes to engage new money for the inevitable cash out.
But, just because recognizable names tell you “crypto is safe and simple,” doesn’t make it so. As you’ve readily seen, it’s adjacent to everything from law-dodging casinos to ransomware gangs. This is nothing to say of NFTs, which thankfully, have seen a total plunge in both interest and propagation. They still exist, mind, but nowhere near what they were before.
How dare you, I like crypto!
The inherent concept, at its very basis, isn’t wrong – but it’s also a volatile, speculative entity. For those who are interested in trading, sure, you can argue there’s nothing wrong with say, BTC. After all, the very concept of cryptocurrency started as a movement against the 2008 financial crisis and proceeding “too big to fail” bank bailout. But since then, crypto has become infested with rug-pulls, ponzi-schemes, and deception. Even Tether, the crypto haven known for backing all exchanges 1 to 1 (as in one Tether coin equals $1 USD), seems to have phantom money, and never reveals its capital sources.
Unless there’s some dramatic shift in how its exchanged and used, crypto and all its adjacent to is still unsafe and uncertain.