- Bitcoin maximizers continued to cause partitions in the crypto space in 2020.
- Twitter’s nickname personalities enjoyed trolling the community in the midst of making profitable returns throughout the year.
- Regulators could pose a serious threat to the future of the industry.
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If you’ve been following the cryptocurrency space closely in 2020, you’ll know that this was one of its busiest years to date. Although the community rallied behind a few heroes, several villains emerged during this year’s frenzy.
Top 10 Crypto villains
With Bitcoin gaining renewed mainstream attention and DeFi showing early promise, the industry experienced rapid growth, giving many investors significant returns on their cryptocurrency holdings.
Any place that has significant amounts of money is guaranteed to rock hearts and minds. Although crypto had a few standout heroes this year (Andre Cronje, Michael Saylor), it was not free from bad actors tarnishing the industry’s reputation.
Many teams were victims of large-scale hacking, rug pull, and flash loan attacks, as unknown criminals escaped with millions. SushiSwap’s “Chef Nomi,” for example, would have reached this list had they not returned the $ 13 million received by dubious means.
It’s worth noting that these attackers were the crypto’s worst villains of the year, and many others are likely to join them as the space attracts more capital in the future.
But while most of the hackers remain unknown, other prominent figures joined the dark side.
Here are the 10 candidates who reached our list for the year.
1. Rohan Gray
Rohan Gray is one of the architects behind the STABLE Act, a bill that is labeled as a safeguard against the “risks posed by emerging digital payments” such as Libra and DAI.
The Act could technically make anyone running an Ethereum node liable for possible prosecution, which naturally provoked a strong backlash among Bitcoiners a Ethereans. But when in Gray he took to Twitter to argue for the Act, he clearly stated that he does not understand how blockchains work.
The STABLE Act is not a cause of death – yet – but it has highlighted the importance of educating those who might have their say in legislation.
2. Kirby Green
The Blue Kirby saga was one of the most spectacular events of a wild summer for DeFi. The Twitter pseudonym personality first caught the attention of the community for their efforts to promote Yearn.Finance through Twitter and the NFT series, but their intentions seemed unclear when they sold a share of YFI as the price dropped to a peak late summer.
They also proceeded to promote Andre Cronje’s ill-fated Eminence project just before it was drained of $ 15 million, raising questions about how responsible their promotion had become. Later, they would launch a dubious project of their own called OFF BLUE, leveraging the reputation of the newly-acquired brand to sell another NFT series on Rarible.
The account ended blocking in accordance with Rarible’s terms of service, but by then, Blue Kirby had already netted over $ 1 million in profits from their sport. The user has since deleted his account and disappeared altogether.
If nothing else, Blue Kirby’s story is a lesson in buying the hype that Crypto Twitter is so prone to.
3. Samson Mow
Samson Mow earns a spot on this list only for his pitiful appearance on the What Bitcoin Did podcast in August.
Mow joined Peter McCormack’s show for the “Bitcoin vs” debate. Ethereum ”with Vitalik Buterin, when he chose to get involved in crypto tribalism rather than engage in a real debate.
At one point, he made the dubious assertion “Ethereans prefer to use wrapped Bitcoin [wBTC] in Ether [ETH] to do their DeFi stuff. ”In another, an irrelevant attack in the Ethereum-based project, Raiden, starred in the 2017 bull race that never got off the ground.
Buterin (and, in fairness, McCormack) stayed polite in the middle of Mow’s bait, though that didn’t change the episode’s sour atmosphere.
YouTube video comments highlighted how many people felt after listening: “Samson is just crazy,” voted the top one who read it. “Seems very insecure and threatened by Ethereum.”
4. Peter Schiff
Peter Schiff is generally considered a feme among Bitcoin fans, a voice that resolutely refuses to accept that digital-rare assets may have some value.
In a space driven (and often held back) by a zealous devotion to Bitcoin, Schiff is an almost perfect antithesis to the movement. In 2020, he announced that his son had bought into the crypto and remained stable on pushing gold even as it fell against Bitcoin.
For the “digital gold” believers, Schiff remains a boring cynic that has stuck in the past.
Since @michael_saylor made the mistake of announcing its $ 650 million Bitcoin purchase in advance, traders can buy first, pushing price up #Bitcoin now so that they can sell later at a higher price, leaving Mircrostrategy shareholders possibly as the ultimate bagholders.
– Peter Schiff (@PeterSchiff) December 13, 2020
5. Crypto Finally
Crypto Finally is Rachel Siegel, a self-described “influencer” with a following of more than 85,000 across various channels.
Siegel’s main point of focus is Bitcoin, though that doesn’t stop her from filling her feed with positive photos similar to the native customers on Instagram she likes to own. On her Rarible account, she has gone so far as to put her selfies for sale as NFTs. His ‘I’m in it for the money.’ a ticket is listed for 10 ETH, while another one-of-a-kind piece is available for a cool 75 ETH (about $ 47,835).
It says it is “incredibly undervalued” compared to digital currencies such as BTC and ETH.
Siegel has suffered a torrent of abuse and undesirable misogyny due to the nature of its content at times. It’s fair to say that it’s putting forth a commendable effort to promote cryptocurrencies (and it’s certainly not the only one cringe stimulation Bitcoin Advocate).
But in a space that suffers from being so dominant by men, the community should also consider the many other insightful women which pushes the industry forward without the goggling. If crypto is to attract more talented women as needed, focusing on the technology over the self portraits would be a good place to start.
6. Adam Back
If regulators fail to kill crypto innovation, bitter loaders might do first.
It’s easy to see that from following Adam Back, the founder of Blockstream who refuses to accept the potential value of any cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin (he works at Blockstream with Samson Mow).
Back was a key figure in the early cypherpunk era of Bitcoin and had earned its debts in space in many ways, but his online presence often gives the impression of someone living on the glories of the past.
He spends a great deal of effort denying other world-changing projects like Ethereum, offering another example of the kind of supremacy that Satoshi Nakamoto would likely be opposed to if he were on the scene today.
7. Degen Spartan
Degen Spartan it doesn’t fit in with many others on this list – it’s more “DeFi pro” than “boring maximalist.”
His nickname is King Leonidas with a crypto twist, and he is mostly featured on Crypto Twitter, where he has built a following following thanks to his impressive trading record and tongue-in-cheek demeanor (he is especially known for making a lucrative early call. on SNX).
But he’s also earned a reputation as a villain – he likes to use his platform to roam the market, and he’s not shy about joking about it.
If anyone knows how to play the Crypto Twitter game to their advantage – whatever the consequences – it’s Spell Degen.
lay the foundation for my alibi now so when I later use an epic rug, no one will doubt me 🧠 https://t.co/NlHjNRMtkD
– 찌 G 跻 じ ⚡️ 🔑 (@DegenSpartan) December 13, 2020
8. Jay Clayton
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is one of the most important bodies for crypto regulation in the US
The current chairman of the SEC is Jay Clayton, who announced that he would end his tenure at the end of 2020. Clayton has often been criticized for his undisputed approach to the digital currency space, giving an opaque leadership of ‘ r ahead and block any chance of a Bitcoin ETF.
For those who follow closely, his decision to leave is the best thing he could have done for the future growth of cryptocurrencies.
9. Janet Yellen
The news of Joe Biden’s upcoming presidency has been celebrated by many in the crypto space, but some of his decisions should raise alarm bells.
An important one is his election of known Bitcoin skeptic Janet Yellen as Secretary of the Treasury.
Yellen used to be chairman of the Federal Reserve, so it’s no surprise that she may have taken a vocal stance against Bitcoin in the past. If it does not change its position, it could pose a real threat to the industry over the next few years.
10. Steven Mnuchin
In November, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong posted a tweet revealing that Steven Mnuchin had submitted a proposal to introduce KYC checkpoints on self-sustaining wallets.
Mnuchin is the Treasury Secretary until Yellen arrives, and the law would be devastating to DeFi and the cryptocurrency space as a whole if it were introduced.
Of all the threats that crypto faced in 2020, this could be the most significant.
It confirms what many crypto believers have feared since 2009: regulators are watching.
Disclosure: At the time of writing, this author included ETH owned by several other cryptocurrencies.
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