The term ‘oracle’ has become quite commonly used within crypto circles across the globe in recent years, and rightly so. This is because these novel offerings are designed to connect various blockchain projects with a wide array of off-chain data, thus allowing for the advent of many novel use cases.
That said, most traditional oracles are faced with two core issues. Firstly, they require a centralized entity/intermediary to facilitate their access to external, real-time data — as a result of which third parties can potentially alter the data being supplied to it. Secondly, centralized oracles often have to forego many of the privacy advantages put forth by smart contracts, thereby posing major risks to the system’s overall security.
A smart contract can be thought of as a program/transaction protocol designed to automatically execute, administer and note relevant events and actions as per the terms of a predefined digital agreement.
Decentralized oracles explained
As highlighted earlier, centralized oracles serve as single, stand-alone entities that provide data from an external source to a smart contract operating within a set governance framework. As a result, they, more often than not, feature a single point of failure that can result in them being corrupted or being attacked.
On the other hand, decentralized oracles can be visualized as a group of independent oracles where each node operating within the network is capable of acting on its own accord — i.e., having the ability to work solo and retrieve data from an off-chain source.
Since they don’t have any sort of dependence on a “single source of truth”, the overall authenticity, and veracity of the data being supplied to the associated smart contract can be verified with an extremely high degree of efficacy.
To elaborate, most high-quality Decentralized Oracle Networks (DONs) provide their clients with highly specific security features such as data integrity proofs (that use cryptographic signatures); data validation modules using multi-layer aggregation (so as to eliminate downtime-related issues); crypto-economic guarantees as well as other optional features such as zero-knowledge proofs.
From an operational standpoint, decentralized oracles are ideal for use within a complex business environment but need a high level of financial investment — especially when it comes to setting up the project’s native infrastructure as well as paying for its general upkeep/maintenance.
The issues with oracles in their present form
While the transparency and decentralization aspect of most oracle-based platforms is quite intriguing, at least on paper, it should be noted that such propositions are only valid insofar that the information being supplied to a particular blockchain is “tamper-proof”. Now that being said, it is worth looking into the question of who really has the power to authenticate this data?
In fact, this question has been looked at in-depth by many blockchain experts and arises whenever a digital asset has to be linked to its physical counterpart.
As an example, whenever the transfer of ownership relating to a physical commodity (for example a necklace) has to take place between two people, the smart contract associated with the deal has to be supplied with data ensuring the validity of the supplied information.
To achieve this, a third party is usually required for the verification of events taking place in the real world. And while many projects have sought to alleviate this pain point in recent years, the issue is still quite prevalent today.
Decentralized Oracle solutions
One of the most popular oracle networks in the market today, Chainlink is best described as a decentralized network of nodes capable of delivering its users a wide range of real-time info from external data sources. The platform’s native smart contract architecture is automated and is able to perform actions as and when certain predefined conditions are satisfied.
Chainlink’s network is designed to help process real-world data associated with a number of feeds ranging from asset prices to sports data to shipping data to weather data. As a result of its multifaceted utilitarian structure, the platform is currently being used by a number of prominent DeFi projects such as Aave, Kyber Network, Synthetix, amongst others.
QED can be thought of as a future-ready decentralized oracle designed to connect a wide number of blockchain networks and their associated smart contracts with external data sources seamlessly. Operationally speaking, QED Oracles utilize ‘external collateral’ as a bond to their smart contract theory mitigating many systemic risks that may have otherwise entered the fray.
Furthermore, the platform uses a ‘reliability scoring’ mechanism that determines the oracle’s capital efficiency while weeding out any poor performers from within the ecosystem. Lastly, QED has been built atop a blockchain that features no single point of failure and does not make use of a centralized verification system — allowing for a higher level of operational efficacy and overall security.
Simply put, Witnet is a decentralized oracle network (DON) that not only connects smart contracts to real-world data sources but also allows third-party software to gather certain, specific info published by a given web address at any given point in time in its lifecycle, that too with verifiable proof.
It is worth mentioning that Witnet comes with a highly developed, holistic blockchain as well as a native digital asset that miners have the option of securing in lieu of retrieving, attesting and delivering web content.
Castles Made of Sand Dollars: SBF, FTX, and other Three Letter Agents – Bitcoin Magazine
The story of Bitcoin has certainly had its fair share of nefarious characters, criminal activity, bad haircuts and worse wardrobes, and yet our anti-hero du jour has seemed to outdo them all. Sam Bankman-Fried, better known by the three letter acronym SBF, burst onto the scene at the peak of the 2017 bubble, founding Alameda Research that September, just four years after graduating from an internship into a full-time position at one of the world’s largest market makers, Jane Street Capital.
SBF is the son of Stanford Law professor and founder of left-wing super PAC Mind The Gap, Barbara Fried, and Stanford professor Joseph Bankman, an expert on tax shelter laws and government regulation. At the start of 2018, SBF had struck digital gold while taking advantage of the arbitrage opportunity presenting itself between a higher demand for bitcoin in the Asian market, colloquially known as the “kimchi premium”. By the end of the year, and after amassing a considerable fortune from this high-volume bitcoin/dollar spread, he officially moved to Hong Kong, formally founding the derivatives exchange FTX in the following spring.
The Bitcoin network that SBF rode from rags to riches and back again was partially launched in direct response to the fiat money experiment rearing its ugly head in the subprime mortgage, real estate and eurodollar crises that culminated into what is now known as the Great Financial Crisis of 2007 to 2009.
“??EThe Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks%”
– Satoshi Nakamoto, January 3, 2009
This now infamous inscription in the genesis block made clear the inappropriate fractional reserve banking and predatory loan fiascos of our regulated banking industry was to be put to rest once and for all by this emergent monetary protocol; a completely transparent and decentralized ledger would de-incentivize fraud and prevent obfuscation of illicit activity. A new competitor to the dollar arose from the ashes of the meltdown, and with it, a new standard for financial fairness, complete with predictable issuance, controlled once and for all by the people for the people. Yet in any system made with good intentions, criminals like SBF and his bought-and-paid-for political and media allies manage to find a way to hurt innocent people for the advantage of an unknown few. Like most intriguing stories of fraudulent financial crimes, this one starts in the Bahamas, and ends with a tidal wave of asset liquidations and broken homes.
“If you think the Bahamas has ruined your global tax system, you have a pretty terrible global tax system.”
– Steven Dean, Summer 2020 
Launching The Stablecoin, CBDC Race To The Bottom
The Bahamas seems innocuous enough, and yet there is a long history of U.S. tax avoidance, complete with rum-running bootleggers during the prohibition era. Continuing this tradition, the Caribbean banking centers, including the Bahamas and the Cayman Islands, as of August 2022, were the fourth-largest foreign holders of treasury securities, behind only Japan, China and the U.K. Shortly after the time of its founding, FTX was fully taking advantage of the free money era that began with the 2008 crash and was sustained by low-to-zero interest rates brought upon by the Trump administration.
These rate cuts were started by the Trump-nominated and Biden-renominated Jerome Powell and were further exacerbated by both of their administrations’ COVID responses. An unprecedented pumping of all things dollar denominated occurred, with real estate, stock indexes, bitcoin and a whole bunch of unregistered securities known as altcoins reaching new highs across the board. In June 2019, one month after the founding of FTX, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg announced Libra, a digital currency based on a basket of international currencies; a novel take on stablecoins. This launched the stablecoin and CBDC race in earnest, and coincidentally enough, the Central Bank of the Bahamas became the first such institution to announce its own CBDC, the sand dollar, in October 2020. The sand dollar itself was pegged to the Bahamian dollar, which is itself pegged to the United States dollar, and thus with its government-sanctioned launch, the birth of the first central bank-issued stablecoin dollar came to be on the sandy beaches of SBF’s new home.
“What is the reserve currency of the crypto economy going to be? Right now it’s unambiguously the USD. And interestingly it’s USD whether or not you’re looking at the American crypto economy.”
– Sam Bankman-Fried, November 5, 2021
While the U.S. government feigned fear of systemic risk at the time, the Chinese government understood the Libra project to be a backdoor dollarization of the G7 currencies rumored to be included in its basket. A Metaverse-held take on the 1985 Plaza Accord, this plan of coordinated central banking would spread USD network users across the internet’s biggest network, sped up by the high velocity available in centralized digital payments and globalized by the borderless nature of the Facebook user base.
The digital yuan was trialed in April 2021 with great haste in reaction to this development, and by the Winter Olympics 2022, had launched for foreign attendees in Beijing. Not to be outdone by these new-look, same-shit fiat cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin made its own financial history when President Nayib Bukele of El Salvador took to the stage at Bitcoin 2021 to announce the legal tender aspirations of his small but dollarized nation. On March 9, 2022 President Joe Biden signed Executive Order #14067–”Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets”, which included aspirations for mitigation of financial risks in digital asset markets, as well as a clause stating that within 210 days, the attorney general, in consultation with the secretary of the treasury and the chairman of the Federal Reserve, must provide a formal proposal for a government-issued CBDC.
By this point, the Bitcoin financial system had been utterly and properly dollar-ified, with billions of dollars in liquidity of dollar-denominated trading pairs making up the lion’s share of market activity. The same can be said for the Ethereum network, which has seen its compliance-driven perversion by non-native assets taking the wheel from its token Ether, as stablecoin and other dollar derivatives now uphold the majority of economic weight of the system. Both stablecoin giants Circle, issuer of USDC, and Tether came out in support of the merge, further ossifying their stake in the now-nearly-70%-OFAC-compliant blockchain.  As of this article’s writing, over 15.5 million ether are currently staked without active withdrawals in the Ethereum 2.0 beacon chain, worth nearly $18 billion dollars. Fortunately for Bitcoin, the consensus weight of its system is not manipulated by user stake, and thus the Bitcoin market has been seemingly unaffected – negatively anyway – by this decade-long development. At least until scammer Do Kwon and his ponzi-scheme Luna wreaked havoc on investors at the start of May of 2022.
“[Crypto is] obviously serious…you want to do right by it in the regulatory space.”
– President Bill Clinton, April 27, 2022 (Allegedly) 
Only a few weeks after SBF hosted a keynote with former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair and President Bill Clinton at the FTX-organized Crypto Bahamas conference, one of the largest-ever over-the-counter bitcoin purchases was announced by the LUNA team.
Terraform Labs and the non-profit Luna Foundation Guard, two entities headed by Do Kwon, had begun a campaign to purchase bitcoin as a reserve asset in the event that their algorithmic stablecoin, UST, deviated from its $1 peg. Shortly before their collapse, the plan had ballooned to the lofty goal of stacking over $10 billion in the hardest known digital commodity known to man. This purchase was financed with Three Arrows Capital, or 3AC, and was facilitated by cryptocurrency broker Genesis.
“Terra’s remarkable growth has continuously reshaped crypto markets over the last two years”, said Joshua Lim, head of derivatives at Genesis. “Genesis is excited to be a liquidity partner to the Terra ecosystem, connecting it to a broader audience of institutional market participants.”
With the bitcoin reserves of Luna Foundation Guard totalling 80,394 BTC, valued at over $3.1 billion on May 5, 2022, this purchase placed LFG among the top-10 bitcoin holders in the world.  But only for a moment, for while it might feel like a lifetime ago, what happened next should look awfully familiar; the peg was attacked, the recently-purchased bitcoin fortune was liquidated, Binance, led by CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ), aptly halted all trading on LUNA and UST pairs – with notable exceptions to their own stablecoin BUSD – and Kwon seemingly fled to outside of U.S. jurisdiction to Asia. 
Thus begins our first of many repeatable points of inquiry; where exactly did this bitcoin go? According to an audit released in November 2022, over 33,000 bitcoin were transferred to Binance on May 10, 2022, and sold along with other assets while failing to defend the peg.  The same day the nearly $1 billion dollars worth of bitcoin hit Binance’s order books, bitcoin’s USD price broke below $30,000, falling from $40,000 just a week before.
On May 13, SBF purchased a 7.6% stake in Robinhood, the trading platform that came under scrutiny for halting trading during the GameStop fiasco in early 2021. Bloomberg had reported that around 40% of Robinhood’s revenue came directly from selling customers orders to firms such as Two Sigma Securities, and Citadel Securities.  Citadel had been fined $700,000 in July 2020 for front running trades placed by customers orders, and in September of that same year, Robinhood itself was questioned by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for improperly informing clients of selling stock trades to known high-frequency trading firms.
Previously in December 2020, Robinhood had agreed to pay $65 million to settle charges of repeated misstatements for failure to disclose their receipts of payments from said trading firms.  When newly-nominated Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen briefed newly-elected President Joe Biden on this conflict of interest in February 2021, she herself had to acquire an ethics waiver due to having received at least $700,000 in speaker fees from Citadel LLC the year prior.  SBF had disclosed this purchase via a filed Schedule 13-D form with the SEC, costing $648.3 billion dollars and giving him 2.8% voting power in their dual-class share structure, under the entity Emergent Fidelity Technologies; a name said to be randomly generated. 
“On July 13, Coinbase Exchange will be unifying USD and USDC order books. As part of the unification process, USDC order books will be merged under USD order books to create a better, more seamless trading experience with deeper liquidity for USD and USDC.”
– Coinbase Exchange Twitter, June 29, 2022 
Circle, the entity behind the increasingly utilized USDC stablecoin, had previously expanded their international offerings with a subsidiary operation based in Bermuda with an announcement made on July 22, 2019.  This entity, filed under the Digital Assets Business Act of 2018 (“DABA”) meant that Circle was the first major stablecoin issuer to receive a Class F (“Full”) DABA license that covered their operation of custody, payment services, exchange, trading and more financial services within the digital asset realm. Circle’s other banking partners, Signet, Signature Bank and Silvergate Capital had made USD loans to Celsius, Voyager, Block Fi, Three Arrows Capital and Alameda Research. By the time this article was written, all had filed for bankruptcy. Two of their other business affiliates, Galaxy Digital and Genesis, have also reported massive losses in the FTX collapse, with rumors of further contagion effects coming. Coinbase, a publicly-traded exchange under the ticker $COIN, announced in its Q2 2022 shareholder letter that nearly one third of total revenue was derived from interest on USD-denominated holdings, including a large USDC position:
“Interest income was $33 million, up 211% compared to Q1. The increase was primarily driven by our USDC activity, as well as higher interest rates as we generate interest on fiat customer custodial funds… at the end of Q2, we had $6.2 billion in total $USD resources. In addition, we had $428 million of crypto assets.” 
When the letter was released in late August 2022, interest on USDC holdings for 12 months was up to 4.7%, while one-month yields were an even 4%. By November 16, 2022, USDC yields were down to 0% across all time frames.
“1) Binance converts USDC –> BUSD, and we see the change in supplies. Thus begins the Second Great Stablecoin War.”
– @SBF, October 23, 2022 
On September 4, 2022, Binance announced that it would be auto-converting all USDC, USDP and TUSD, three major dollar stablecoins, into its self-issued BUSD, effective in just 25 days.  This led to continued concerns about Binance’s solvency with the preceding few months, especially July 2022, seeing the largest known outflows of bitcoin in the exchange’s history, eclipsing even March 2020’s black swan bottom.
On October 11, 216 days after Biden’s executive order with the aforementioned 210-day clause, BNY Mellon, the world’s largest custodian bank with over $43 trillion on the books, and coincidentally, the custodian of Circle’s reserves backing USDC, announced the launch of its digital asset custody program.  Involved with more than 20% of the world’s investable assets, the bank founded by the first secretary of the treasury, Alexander Hamilton, was also listed as a partner in the FedNow pilot. 
Despite these institutional developments, a continued bear market weighed heavily on the now-plummeting bitcoin price. Paradoxically, more and more Bitcoin hash rate poured onto the network. These concurrent movements saw Bitcoin’s hash price plummet to an all-time low, spurring a massive liquidation of bitcoin liabilities off mining operators books. On October 26, Core Scientific, then the largest Bitcoin mining operation in the world, filed for bankruptcy with millions of dollars in debt liabilities, thousands of ASICs, and yet in their filings, held only 24 bitcoin total when the circus came to town.  Where exactly did all this bitcoin go? On that same day, barely two weeks before the FTX collapse, Binance saw its largest single day outflow, with 71,579 coins, totalling over $1.1 billion in dollar terms.  This pushed net outflows to nearly 95,000 coins from the world’s largest exchange since just that July. Again, where exactly did all this bitcoin go? The very next day, October 27, 2022, SBF appeared on The Big Whale and announced future plans for FTX to launch its very own stablecoin. 
More Sand Than Dollars
“CIA and Mossad and pedo elite are running some kind of sex trafficking entrapment blackmail ring out of Puerto Rico and caribbean islands. They are going to frame me with a laptop planted by my ex gf who was a spy. They will torture me to death.”
– Nikolai Muchgian, October 28, 2022 
On October 24, 2022, the MakerDAO approved a community proposal to custody nearly $1.6 billion USDC with Coinbase Prime.  Four days later, Nikolai Muchigan, the co-founder of MakerDAO and inventor of Rai, a DAI-fork stablecoin, tweeted that his life was in danger due to a Caribbean island blackmail ring, supposedly backed by Israeli and U.S. intelligence agents. Three days later, on Halloween, the 29-year-old coder Muchigan was found dead, having drowned in the sea off Condado Beach in Puerto Rico. 
Two days later, on November 2, 2022, CoinDesk reporter Ian Allison released findings that over a third of all assets – around $5.8 billion of $14.6 billion – on the balance sheet of SBF’s Alameda Research was intrinsically, and soon to be fatally, linked to FTX’s exchange token FTT. A “bank” run commenced, and after three days of nearly $6 billion in withdrawals, FTX was left with literally one single bitcoin. Where exactly did all this bitcoin go? The next day in an interview with Fortune, Coinbase founder and CEO Brian Armstrong made note that USDC will become the de facto central bank digital currency in the U.S. 
“The policymakers in the U.S. will set the framework that need to be followed so that the private market will actually create the solutions, and USD coin has been on a really rapid rise… the regulatory environment is one of the biggest unlocks we’re going to have in terms of growing this industry and perhaps even getting the prices to go back up in the right direction”
– Brian Armstrong, November 3, 2022
On November 6, CZ announced Binance would liquidate a remaining portion of FTT it had acquired from exiting FTX’s equity, having received around $2.1 billion in BUSD and FTT. Minutes after his announcement, Caroline Ellison, SBF’s partner and the CEO of Alameda Research, offered to purchase the tokens at $22 each, in an over-the-counter fashion.  By November 8, CZ and SBF had a phone call and seemingly came to a tentative deal for acquisition, reserving the right to back out of the deal at any time, while interestingly also leaving both U.S.-based proprietary exchanges, Binance.us and FTX.us, outside the scope of the deal.
“Things have come full circle, and FTX.com’s first, and last, investors are the same: we have come to an agreement on a strategic transaction with Binance for FTX.com (pending DD etc)”, SBF tweeted. 
Later that evening, FTX officially suspended all asset withdrawals. As part of the conditions of the acquisition, SBF was forced to open the FTX books and show the bottom of his pockets; seeing more sand than dollars, CZ backed out of the deal. A few important statements were made in the 48 hours or so that led up to this sudden cataclysm, including from the awfully-quiet U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission itself.
“Liquidating our FTT is just post-exit risk management, learning from LUNA. We gave support before, but we won’t pretend to make love after divorce. We are not against anyone. But we won’t support people who lobby against other industry players behind their backs. Onwards.”
– CZ, November 6, 2022 
On November 7, 2022, the SEC officially deemed LBRY, or Library Coin, an unregistered security offering, setting a devastating precedent throughout the extended cryptocurrency market.  In the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire, the memorandum and order read, “The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) contends that LBRY, Inc. offered and sold unregistered securities in violation of Section 5 of the Securities Act of 1933”, the act colloquially known as The Howey Test.
Due to LBRY reserving a pre-mine of nearly 400 million LBC tokens, and the knowledge that the company to date had spent approximately half of its pre-mined LBC, the SEC determined common enterprise complete with a lack of disclosure and proper filing of its now alleged security offering through required channels in the Gary Gensler-chaired SEC. The implications of this filing sent shockwaves across the pre-mined token industry, including exchanges listing these tokens as well as the entities behind their issuance. Conveniently, the next day was November 8, the United States’ midterm elections, with the balance of the senate and the house — and perhaps the regulatory path of the digital asset industry — once again at stake.
Searching for FTX on FEC.gov brings up 456 individual campaign contributions from SBF, CEO Ryan Salame, and others.  Salame’s contributions total over $14 million towards GOP candidates, while SBF’s “effective altruism” contributed over $20 million in donations to DNC politicians. Having been the second leading donor to the Biden campaign, by the time the final tallies from election night rolled in, SBF’s bankroll had finally caught up with his morals, and he found himself nearly completely bankrupt.
By November 9, the day after the elections, SBF had reportedly lost 94% of his net worth, down to $1 billion from more than $15 billion, leaving him with the largest single-day loss by a person according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index.  Early in the morning of November 10, SBF took to Twitter to explain what happened, writing “I’m sorry. That’s the biggest thing. I fucked up, and should have done better”, before making a specific note that “THIS IS ALL ABOUT FTX INTERNATIONAL, THE NON-US EXCHANGE. FTX US USERS ARE FINE!” 
“The administration […] has consistently maintained that without proper oversight, cryptocurrencies risk harming everyday Americans…The most recent news further underscores these concerns and highlights why prudent regulation of cryptocurrencies is indeed needed.”
– White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, November 10, 2022 
On the eleventh day of the eleventh month, FTX and Alameda Research officially filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and SBF stepped down as CEO. In addition, 130 affiliated companies connected or associated with FTX also commenced voluntary proceedings under Chapter 11.  The tide had gone out, and nearly everyone involved got caught swimming naked, as a near-endless tidal wave of dollar-denominated liquidations made quick work of SBF’s Caribbean empire.
While the first trickles of a dollar CBDC may have started in the Bahamas, the monsoon of coming regulation and contagion of the Second Great Stablecoin War is far from over. The dollar, having fallen 10% off 35-year DXY highs since September, looks for new ways to innovate and further dollarize markets across the globe.
On November 15, just four days after the SBF tsunami crashed to shore, BNY Mellon, as well as a dozen or so other banking institutions, announced the start of a twelve-week digital dollar pilot program with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.  On the very same day, BlockFi announced plans for bankruptcy filings, only five months after taking a $250 million loan from FTX, and Circle announced users would now be able to settle payments by accepting Apple Pay. [37,38] With a significant 43% discount now showing on the highly-regulated Grayscale Bitcoin Trust, further community requests for proof of reserves are growing around Genesis and Grayscale, both owned by the Digital Currency Group, and even their custodian, Coinbase Custody. [39,40] As of this writing, these requests have so far been denied for security reasons.
While appearing to be riding the wave of the booming digital asset revolution, gathering celebrity endorsements and political allies alike, it turns out SBF was drowning in debt and capital misallocation amongst the loud, mainstream praise. Later that month, on November 30, SBF was set to appear in person at a New York Times event, sponsored by Accenture, alongside Secretary Yellen, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, TikTok CEO Shou Chew, former Vice President Michael Pence, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy, Netflix co-founder and CEO Reed Hastings, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, and others; tickets for the event were listed at $2,499 per attendee. The interview between SBF and Andrew Ross Sorkin was streamed as advertised, albeit with both parties shooting remotely.
Bitcoin tends to be a ballast of truth, bringing all sorts of ballooning fraud rushing to the surface. FTX and Alameda Research will take their place amongst the seemingly too-big-to-sink players that ended up doing just that. They will certainly not be the last. However the following weeks, months, and years play out, it is clear that SBF was but a small fish in an ocean-sized, dollarized pond. And as he quickly found out, there is always a bigger fish.
“At some point I might have more to say about a particular sparring partner, so to speak. But you know, glass houses. So for now, all I’ll say is: well played; you won.” 
– Sam Bankman-Fried, November 10, 2022
censorship resistance and nodes disrupting tech giants
In the twenty-first century, blockchain is the only practical route to privacy and censorship resistance
Privacy and censorship resistance are not the same things, but they are closely related. When the government or another organization, like an advertiser, has complete access to your activities, they can punish you for misbehavior.
It might be time to move quickly to ensure that seismic cracks in Web2 aren’t repeated in Web3. This would be preferable to going backwards and trying to patch up Web2 flaws with duct tape. The so-called internet of the future might actually safeguard our private information and stop zealous or oppressive censorship by taking proactive measures before these problems get out of control.
Encryption is used to send the message
Suppressing open communication and free speech in nations battling for civil liberties and human rights makes it harder to overthrow repressive governments. Here, the blockchain technology’s transparency and encryption features can help to protect sensitive data. File-sharing platforms like the InterPlanetary File System and Web3-based email extensions like ShelterZoom’s Document GPS may be able to assist activists and citizens in hotspots for human rights in avoiding censorship and unauthorized surveillance.
When files are placed on a ledger, the sender has complete control over visibility and permissions and has access to a time-stamped record of all actions involving the file. Imagine it as Google Docs or DocuSign on steroids.
It’s simple to see how these blockchain-based tools are essential in a system with strict surveillance and censorship laws. Blockchain is also used in these kinds of solutions to address the censorship blind spots in cryptocurrency. Contrary to the widespread belief that cryptocurrencies are inherently private, transactions are stored on an open, transparent distributed ledger. Because of this, they can be tracked even more precisely than conventional financial transactions.
The truck convoy blockade in Canada, which accepted donations in Bitcoin, which could be easily tracked and sanctioned, learned this lesson the hard way. Crypto is much more transparent than traditional finance, according to Michael Gronager, CEO of the blockchain data company Chainalysis.
Crypto is far more transparent than traditional finance. […] We follow the funds
Why then is crypto known for being censorship-resistant? The decentralized ledger, which is very hard to take control of and makes transactions immutable once they are recorded, is part of the solution.
Tomi, a producer of Web3-based decentralized solutions and assisted-computing hardware, is one network working to provide total anonymity. With the help of 72 developers and eight anonymous senior crypto veterans, Tomi is creating TomiNet to enable the unrestricted exchange of information between journalists, activists, and generally law-abiding citizens. While the anonymity features of TomiNet are comparable to those of the dark web, the network is controlled by the Tomi community via a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) to ward off undesirable or harmful activities.
The basic tenet of DAO governance is to keep corporations and governments out while still providing a means of combating violence.
Decentralization is more than just a theoretical necessity
The controversial right-wing social network Parler being banned from cloud-based web hosting services like Amazon Web Services is another noteworthy instance of gatekeeping in Big Tech. The cloud is hailed as a truly advantageous component of internet infrastructure. However, the problem is that only a small number of cloud providers offer essentially all necessary infrastructure, giving them the authority to serve as gatekeepers.
Whether or not you support Parler’s ban, the incident shows how a business can be effectively barred from using the internet because a cloud service wouldn’t work for them.
A critical fix might be provided by decentralized web hosting. Businesses like Akash and Flux provide a variety of cloud services that are essential in the internet age, but by utilizing decentralization, they limit the ability of the cloud service to exert control over users.
The instances of powerful governmental and private organizations stifling free speech and communication are increasing daily. The time has come for Web3 to step up, but this time with more vigor and clarity than before. Privacy and censorship resistance are mutually dependent; without the other, neither is meaningful. If the cryptocurrency industry is to live up to the lofty expectations placed on it, it must keep this in mind.
Nodes will depose tech oligarchies like Google and Apple
Marc Andreessen’s seminal 2011 essay, “Why Software Is Eating the World,” was well-regarded even at the time it was written and has since proven to be even more prescient than it seemed. Andreessen argued that every company was now ostensibly a software company, whether the company liked it or not, at the beginning of a decade in which software would prove invaluable to almost every aspect of modern life.
His ideas eventually applied to businesses that either hadn’t fully defined their markets or didn’t even exist yet but would go on to generate billions in market share, including Uber, Lyft, TikTok/ByteDance, Robinhood, and Coinbase, to name a few. He adapted his argument to many of the market leaders at the time. Software was probably going to be a crucial component of becoming a unicorn in the twenty-first century.
The emergence of true cloud computing and cloud giants, an industry in which Andreessen himself had been a pioneer at a time when many inside and outside computing were scoffing at the notion, was the covert force behind this complete disruption of modern economies and life.
But making so many aspects of life so simple came at a high price
They had stopped scoffing entirely by the second decade of the twenty-first century. Global spending on cloud computing increased by more than quintupling in the 2010s, going from $77 billion to $411 billion. The computer in our pockets relied on it to make everything available at the touch of a button.
As with anything else, the mobile-powered software revolution had trade-offs even though it made life as simple as pressing a button. Software has taken over the world, making very few, very large cloud hosting companies the dominant force. Currently, 65% of the market for cloud hosting is dominated by Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.
By using cloud hosting, this established a monopoly of sorts. For instance, hosts can remove services from clouds when using cloud hosting, as Amazon did with the infamous social media service Parler. The Apple App Store also prohibited Parler from using it.
Whether or not you concur with a service like Parler doesn’t matter when it comes to the bigger issue at hand. The incident proved that, in the post-software world, it only takes two corporations—Amazon and Apple—to completely shut down a service, effectively forcing it out of business.
What happens if a developer or service violates a less serious Amazon policy or term of service? The internet has been forced into a corner where it can no longer truly function as a marketplace for free ideas and development, especially if that development is in some way seen as a threat by businesses like Amazon and Microsoft.
A new world can be created by nodes
Newer blockchain protocols have the potential to “break” data in a world consumed by software and oligopolistic companies, allowing us to think about the exchange of that data in new ways, just as Bitcoin “broke” money and allowed people to think about the exchange of value in new ways.
Web3 and the initiatives it will spawn promise to fundamentally alter how information lives and is transmitted through the internet in a transparent and self-sufficient manner. Ecosystems that prioritize decentralization and the community promise to return control to programmers and, by extension, the users of their decentralized applications (DApps) and software. This will make it possible to create a common framework that supports best practices and economies of scale and can compete with the biggest centralized internet entities.
This is not to say that a decentralized utopia has already been attained. Ironically, despite the fact that decentralized systems are also ostensibly “trustless” systems, both users and developers still need to develop trust in these systems. Whatever the drawbacks of relying on corporations like Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Apple, they have built up decades’ worth of that trust, credibility, and familiarity that makes it challenging for users and developers to adopt a completely different way of doing things.
Rewiring the incentive model that has supported the last several decades of the internet is a part of establishing that trust. In order for a new decentralized internet to function, users will need to invest in nodes, and developers will need to make the most of those nodes by creating software that is as easy to use on a phone as Uber or Wordle.
We can rebuild the world that was destroyed by software, one node at a time, if the decentralized Web3 community is successful in doing that.
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Sushiswap developers propose to divert 100% of fees generated to Sushi’s multisig
Sushiswap developers have submitted a new governance proposal to the community.
The proposal seeks to divert 100% of fees generated on the platform to Sushi’s multisig.
The funds would be used for Sushi’s multisig for a year or until new tokenomics are implemented.
Sushiswap developers want to divert trading fees
Developers of the decentralised finance (DeFi) protocol, Sushiswap, have submitted a new proposal to the community. According to the proposal, 100% of the fees generated on the platform would be diverted to Sushi’s multisig for one year or until new tokenomics are implemented.
This latest cryptocurrency news comes as Sushiswap is currently facing a significant deficit in its treasury. The deficit threatens the protocol’s long-term operational viability.
In his proposal, the Head Chef, Jared Gray, said;
“After reviewing expenditures, it’s clear that a significant deficit in the Treasury threatens Sushi’s operational viability, requiring an immediate remedy. In my original proposal, Sushi operated with an annual runway of 9M USD. However, after my detailed review, we reduced that requirement to 5M USD. We made the reduction possible by renegotiating infrastructure contracts, scaling back underperforming or superfluous dependencies, and instituting a budget freeze on non-critical personnel and infrastructure.”
Despite reducing the project’s annual runway requirement from $9 million to $5 million, the treasury still provides for only about 18 months of runway.
The developers are now proposing to set up Kanpai, a fee-diversion protocol. The proposal, if accepted, will lead to 100% of fees diverted to the Treasury multisig for one year or until the project’s new token distribution and reward schemes become active.
Sushiswap’s fee-diversion solution is temporary
The developers pointed out that the proposal is a temporary solution to a long-term problem. The proposal was put in place because new tokenomics will take time to implement
The Head Chef said;
“Kanpai is a temporary solution to a long-term problem, and a new tokenomics proposal is on the horizon, which will help address the long-term value proposition of Sushi for stakeholders. Sushi must implement a holistic token model that allows the rebuilding of the Treasury and delivers value for all stakeholders while reducing the fiscal liability carried solely by the protocol.”
In addition to Kanpai, the Sushi team said it increased its funding by securing several multi-million dollar partner deals.
However, the developers added that relying on business development deals is only part of a successful business model to secure Sushi’s future. In October, asset management firm GoldenTree invested $5.2 million in Sushiswap.
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