Vol 5・14th September 2018
We begin our fifth edition of the HAT Newsletter wishing everyone a happy September! We’re just a few weeks away from the beginning of Q4, with many of our most important milestones on the horizon.
We’ve recently started publishing more frequent updates in the form of Newsflashes on our blog, relegating the Newsletters to more general news and ideas accumulated over the past month. Let’s start with a quick development recap.
Development & Beta Testing
Previously, we mentioned that all exchange services were completed, and that development has focused on mapping those services to the application interface. This work is still ongoing as we progress with our closed beta testing group, and prepare for the open beta release.
Regular users with the public version of the HAT wallet installed may have noticed that services were intermittently down, and balances were not displaying correctly. This is normal and not a cause for concern.
This past week, the dev team completed data migration and some maintenance which addressed various scalability concerns. Services were down for roughly 72 hours. Please be sure to follow the HAT Twitter account to receive real-time updates and alerts about any future maintenance and downtime: https://twitter.com/hat_exchange
In the event that any user needs to send their HAT to another address while services are down, remember that your tokens are stored on the blockchain and can always be accessed via MyEtherWallet or MetaMask.
Any support issues, such as withdrawing staked HAT or completing user account verification, can be addressed by opening a ticket with the HAT Service Desk at the following link: https://www.blog.hat.exchange/submit-ticket/
Editorial : Bitcoin Dominance & An Ethereum Pullback
The past week saw a decline in the price of ETH to one year lows, causing many observers to wonder what’s behind the precipitous drop. Meanwhile, Bitcoin’s dominance in the market reached an all-time high of 55%, and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) has lost almost 90% of its value since its end-of-December 2017 high.
While Bitcoin’s dominance may be less of a surprise in the context of shaken confidence and an extended bear market, Ethereum’s slide comes as more of a concern. Before we can understand ETH’s fall, it’s instructive to understand the reasons behind its steep rise.
One of the great things about the Ethereum platform and network is the ability to deploy smart contracts and Ethereum-based tokens, launching a unique project that benefits from an existing and growing ecosystem. However, the ease with which anyone can launch an ERC-20 token also brings with it an increased risk of scams and scam ICOs.
It seems likely that ETH’s price was heavily bolstered by interest in a slew of ICOs and other ERC-20 projects over the course of the past year, leading to heavy buying of ETH on the part of investors and VCs, and ICOs holding on to their ETH reserves. Now, with the market in decline, the same ICOs and VC firms are likely liquidating their ETH and converting to more stable BTC and cash.
With the proportion of ICOs now known to have been outright scams, it seems like a safe bet that in the absence of successful projects, what went up must inevitably come down. Add to this the market manipulation by whales and it’s an obvious recipe for large price swings and the current downward trend.
What is the average cryptocurrency enthusiast to do? HAT.Exchange is working toward a long-term vision, building a marketplace and trading platform we hope will contribute to the mass adoption of digital currency, so don’t invest anything you’re not prepared to lose, focus on the best business models you can imagine yourself and all of your friends using in the future, and don’t hesitate to let us know how we can improve.
Editorial : More Crypto Exchanges Move To Incorporate
User Verification Within Business Models
On September 4th, ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees announced a new “membership” program on the platform that will begin as optional and eventually become mandatory. The program will require the collection of personal information from users in order to receive certain benefits and a “better user experience,” before transitioning to full KYC (“Know Your Customer”) compliance.
The announcement was followed by criticism from the wider crypto community, and included this interesting exchange between a Twitter user and Voorhees:
Greg Slepak (@taoeffect)
@ErikVoorhees could have said, “Ok, then I’ll shut down my business” and open sourced everything. He chose to sell out himself and his users instead.”
Erik Voorhees (@ErikVoorhees)
Your opinions would be more meaningful if you risked anything…
Erik Voorhees (@ErikVoorhees)
What I write is being watched very closely. Please give us time.
Greg Slepak (@taoeffect)
Why don’t you write an honest blog post on the subject then? Enlighten us and convince us that you’re doing the right thing?
The HAT.Exchange team was able to anticipate the current trend toward regulatory compliance and incorporated the necessary compliance within the ecosystem at an early stage. This resulted in avoiding any backtracking within the business model that might have upset our supporters.
It is important to note that HAT.Exchange will continue to prioritize compliance within the evolving legal landscape, ensuring longevity and global adoption in the future. As more and more crypto-trading platforms move towards compliance, we hope that our community and those outside of it value the foresight displayed by the team.