Those Chinese also do not run full node wallets or miners, if this source is correct: https://blockchain.info/nodes-globe As long as huobi and the likes fakes their volume, and people keep abusing this fud to earn a quick buck, I guess we will be goxed for the coming 10 years.
Thoughts on the current state of Bitcoin from someone who participates in much of the ecosystem [and tipping thread ;) ]
Hey guys, So this is something I've been looking at for a while now, and kind of seeing some things die and other things be born. Some things are getting easier, and other things getting more difficult. I want to take this time to outline the last few months and how my sentiment is reflected towards the market. I have to say, the market generally matches how my "emotions" playout towards the ecosystem as a whole. I'll outline just a few short things on both the bearish and the bullish sides of my sentiment, even if things don't effect the overall sentiment much (at least according to most traders and people) I'd like to point them out because I view them as notable. Some of the not so good things that have been happening:
Home Mining/Trading/Altcoins: Not too long ago mining was still fun for the home miner with nothing but a GPU. I'm talking a mere couple months. The altcoin section of bitcointalk is/was by far the most active. People didn't care if the coins were in fact pump and dumps or not, but people would bet on their horses and either flourish (like some of my friends did with Mazacoin) or, if got in at the wrong time, was utterly decimated. Darkcoin was a small revival of that hype, but now the market caps of these altcoins and "pump and dump" coins, have all been figured out by the community, and too many of us have been burned to support any alt coin much anymore. I still hold some, but I often ask myself why I even bother? I left 1 BTC worth of alts in cryptsy months ago, and now its a a mere fraction of that, as you could imagine. This sounds like a good thing, but those same months ago, I had a couple friends mining with GPU's and figuring the whole crypto world out. Now they maybe have $100 worth of bitcoins for shits, but they are most certainly not going to go out and buy any Antminer S3's or other similar relatively cheap miner. Gamer nerds are quite simply, priced out now for the most part.
Gambling World: The gambling world (up until a couple days ago, but I'll get to that later) didn't have much development or innovation, and user growth was probably (after the Just-Dice incident in particular) in a negative spiral. It seems that if you've followed the BTC gambling scene for a while, you've seen sites come and go (much like altcoins), and for those of us that don't check the forums and reddit everyday, a lot of consumers or newbies could have been burned hard by some of this.
"Good news" brings the price down: This seems to be counter-intuitive to most, but to some of us bitcoiners who trade/forecast/follow the markets a little closer, and not only that, are familiar with trading other assets as well, definitely get skid-dish of this apparent ecosystem flourishing without a quickly growing community to back it up. (Sure our reddit subscriber count is going through the roof, but how about our active users? You look at the trading volume, transaction volume, or real user growth etc. it just seems like it isn't growing that fast (But this isn't that bad, and there are things all of us can do to help that, I'll get to that below, DON'T WORRY, this isn't a whiney, complainy bear thread).
Waning enthusiasm for the broader ecosystem: It seems people are almost numb to all the good news, and the bad news just sends us into a panic. Granted, the amount of bad news since Gox/China has been pretty damn minuscule other than bigger ecosystem and development problems. The amount of sites I involve myself in the cryptosphere has been cut into a fifth or less of what I used to do. Think coindesk, The bitcoingroup talks (which seem to have dropped off a bit in popularity, no offense but it was a little corny, but I still liked it <3), I still listen to Lets Talk Bitcoin, but probably not as much as I used to, and I think a lot of the die hard bitcoiners feel similar. I mean, in a given morning it could be: 2-3 altcoin pools/sites/subreddits, cryptsy, coindesk,reddit, bitcointalk forum, ischinaawake.com, btc-e for trollbox hilarity, and many others. Now? Probably this subreddit, and the mining section of bitcointalk. I rarely check the price anymore, maybe once a day, but I'm never hoping for moon, I just want stability while we all work to get out our products and projects and things that we feel could make a difference, not only in the bitcoin world, but the rest of it too. There was an IRC channel where people would talk about cryptostalks and all the next ones and this that and the other, now I wonder if anyone even actually uses that site for anything anymore. Maybe people were scared off by regulation and Fincen? Who knows....
Anyway, in many respects it feels like a lot of the bitcoin ecosystem is dying, and maybe we should all panic, cry, and shit our pants, but a few things haven't been going badly, and in fact, I'm looking optimistic that the next time a surge of new users enters the market for whatever reason, there will be a much more developed and kind ecosystem to take part of. No one is going to be touting the next 5 second confirmation coin, no more of the ubiquitous "investment" opportunities that await the uninitiated. Other than my love for bitcoin in general, this is what makes me not panic sell, and what keeps me optimistic about the bitcoin future:
The Local community has returned to where I live, in a big way: Bitcoin meetups were getting mixed turnouts, so much so that the two organizers just decided to stop having them altogether. I felt slightly guilty of this, because it was a lot of different kinds of folks coming for a lot of different kind of reasons, which is totally fine, but there never was a comfortable intermingling of all involved. Not everyone became friends after, and many of the first timers weren't hellbent on coming to the next one. However, we just had our last bitcoin meetup and there was over FIFTY people there. This was insane. Not only that, a member from the bitcoin foundation, several local startups, and businesses were there giving presentations. I got shithammered drunk and even exchanged a number while I was there. And get this, I was sitting at a table with two girls? And spoiler alert: They weren't the only two girls there. Woah. This is the bitcoin future!
Merchant adoption: is at a rabid dog pace, and Bitpay, Coinbase, and others are doing amazing. Most yC startups could only dream of getting this far. It seems to never end, and although people don't care as much, its still awesome. Like, I felt there was more hype when Jimmy Wales talked about accepting BTC, than when he actually did, granted its a weird not obvious way to donate, BUT, we are almost desensitized to merchant adoption now because its so rampant. Newegg, Dell, 5200 businesses on coinmap (ok, I lied earlier, I still totally check coinmap). But yeah, Merchant acceptance all day long. Oh, and Lyft on Gyft.... mmm life savingly awesome!
Remittances is becoming a reality: All the time we are seeing services targeting Mexico, Argentina, The Philippines and other countries trying to get things done over there just a little cheaper than Western Union. Granted some are a little more built out than others, but 37coins, and other services similar really excite me, and hold a lot of promise for an application bitcoin can really accel at. Everyone remembers Andreas Antonopoulos planting that seed in our heads a while back, and business sees it too. It's happening, but this shit doesn't happen overnight, however, we have our work cut out for us. We still have a "chicken and egg problem" when it comes to user adoption. Thats where we, the bitcoin community, needs to step in.
Some of the Dark parts of the eco-system are alive and well again: OpenBazaar (its coming), SR2, yeah its still a thing... PD3, came out over the weekend, PvPing with faucet money, was a fun time killer just to see how things are going... Nothing I want to focus on too heavily, but we all know Gambling is a great app for bitcoin, and we (the community) pioneered provably fair gambling. The best part is, the people in the space know who is honest and uses it.
Mining isn't yet extinct for the home miner and the hashrate is GROWING: I know I said that it kinda is above, but I am an at home miner with some S3's scattered about. I do fine, and am well on my way to ROI. I watch the hashrate grow everyday, and that tells me that bullish sentiment sure as hell exists on the long term. I mean, if you are willing to invest in specialized hardware to the tune of millions of dollars, you are in it for the long haul. This market is too illiquid to "cash out" of for the bigger players, so we know they are all hodling. A lot of the ASIC manufacturers are hodling as well, including Bitmain. So maybe the price is taking a dive, but the hashrate hasn't seen negative growth in a LONG LONG time Jan '13 it seems.
User Growth IS Happening: 2 million Blockchain wallets anyone? New wallets and services coming out all the time. Kryptokit, Hive, Mycelium trader, etc. etc. Maybe it isn't happening as fast as we would like, but it is happening. But this isn't like pokemon, you can't just see it on the TV and start catching your bitcoin. For the uninitiated, this shit is CONFUSING. We need to help out. And we need to casually give bitcoin, tipping in other sub-reddits as opposed to gold, helping friends get setup. Just YESTERDAY, someone asked me about coinbase and how to buy it, and I set them up with coinbase, told them about 2FA, and gave them the tools they need to fish. The past couple weeks I've actually gotten a couple people into bitcoin, which is the first time in a couple months, so for whatever reason, interest seems to be picking up again, which is cool.
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