Ripple's lawsuit is a fight for crypto. 📜

In my humble opinion...

Bitcoin's getting a bit of an ego check right now.

 

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(CRYPTO: ELA) Elastos is the world’s first operating system which uses the internet as the base-layer infrastructure. It was founded by a former senior programmer at Microsoft, who envisions a tokenized smart economy where digital products can be sold to consumers on a secure and decentralized platform. Perhaps the most significant merit of Elastos is the segregation of network communications and applications. In the past, hackers have exploited apps that have access to the network to attack users. Elastos will provide us with a secure computing experience and a platform that facilitates safe and transparent transactions. Given its promising technology and funding from big names such as the Foxconn group, Tsinghua University, and Da Hongfei, and the founder of NEO, it is highly anticipated that it will gain rapid and wide-spread adoption in China.

There's been a lot of government checking and balancing with regards to crypto, showing that you can't just slap the concept of tokenization on just anything.

This is a bit of a reality check. Remember Venezuela's oil-backed cryptocurrency, the Petro? It was notably controversial both in and out of the South American country, especially since it's been seen a perfect opportunity to perform some serious money laundering. Yesterday, Venezuela's Congress unanimously voted to nullify the Petro and released a statement claiming that the token a plan to "illegally mortgage the cash-strapped country's oil reserves," going on to say they wanted to "prevent the public opinion [from] falling into that trap." The parliament further explained that the government only wanted to evade financial sanctions and legitimize illicit transactions (sound familiar, Russia?). Another issue? The Petro claims it's backed by oil, yet if a user wanted to exchange their Petros for oil, they likely wouldn't be able to do so. Venezuela's oil production is at a 28-year-low, with little hope of a turnaround. From oil rig scarcity to physically deteriorating infrastructure, the Venezuelan economy could "collapse any moment."The United States' Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) called two companies that applied for Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETFs) and expressed their concern about the contracts. Citing a lack of liquidity and difficulty in valuation, the SEC successfully encouraged the two companies to withdraw their applications for the ETFs. Volatility is sure to be seen as an issue, as over the past two years, Bitcoin's price has increased or decreased by more than 10% in 24 hours, 26 different times. Yikes. In case you're not familiar with securities or investments of any kind...that's a lot. Oh, and vice chairman of the South Korean Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) encouraged other countries (23 to be precise) at a Financial Stability Board (FSB) meeting to improve transparency in the crypto space to prevent other illegal activity. It's well-intentioned, but how much will this translate to more regulation?

Ripple's been having a tough 48 hours, from the price taking a hit, to an ongoing lawsuit escalating. Hang in there.

You may have checked the charts recently (we hope you did, anyway) and it's pretty clear that Ripple's (XRP) meteoric rise was not long-lived. It seems as though XRP is going through a significant correction, with its price down 2% for the year (although it's still early) as crypto enthusiasts seem to rotate back into Ethereum (ETH). In the first few days of 2018, XRP was actually up over 50%, which was a substantial continuation of 2017's 37,000% increase. ETH is now up over the $1,300 mark for the first time and has moved back into its regular status of the second largest market cap, behind Bitcoin. Sorry, Ripplers.

CoinMarketCap took off three South Korean exchanges, Bitbumb, Coinone, and Korbit, due to the insane premium cryptocurrencies are currently being traded at in the Asian country. Ripple's market cap dropped $20 billion; though the entire market was impacted, XRP's price seemed to be particularly affected, falling 30%. Many other price-reporting services still include South Korean exchanges, so Ripple's price has changed much less on those sites (here's a nice variety). Coinbase crushed the rumor that they would add Ripple to their service, which causes a slight dip in the price last week as well. Like any token, traders have to be patient.

In case you didn't know, Ripple's involved in a $12 billion lawsuit. In 2016, CEO Chris Larsen signed a deal with bank consortium R3, with the agreement that R3 would purchase 5 billion XRP for less than a penny each in exchange for assistance in getting banks on board with Ripple. R3 first sued Ripple for backtracking on their original agreement, resulting in a countersuit from the crypto project. Larsen claims R3 stole information about the token and failed to inform their team that Goldman Sach, JPMorgan, and Morgan Stanley were pulling out of the consortium. Nice try taking advantage of blockchain/crypto groups, mainstream finance.

Microsoft withdrew the option to pay in Bitcoin last week, but has gone back on their decision and is now allowing BTC as payment once again. Stop playing with our hearts, Bill.

Kodak moment – Kodak announced the launch of a photo-centric cryptocurrency that allows photographers and agencies to better control image rights management.

Overstock.com mixed up Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin, allowing customers to pay in either. With different valuations, they accidentally allowed customers to buy products at a steep discount when paying with BCH.

Coin to Watch

Bancor's (BNT) been getting a lot of positive press recently, and their token reflects it. Keep an eye out, everyone.
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Spend your crypto on...

a swanky Rolex watch (oooooooh). At $8,600, you're not only paying for the brand name but the bragging rights when you tell people that a Monero moon paid for it.

Daily LOL

What a beautiful portrait!