Here is how to play the altcoin game - for newbies & champs
I have been here for many previous altcoin seasons (2013,2017 etc) and wanted to share knowedle. It's a LOOONG article. The evaluation of altcoins (i.e not Bitcoin) is one of the most difficult and profitable exercises. Here I will outline my methodology and thinking but we have to take some things as a given. The first is that the whole market is going up or down with forces that we can't predict or control. Bitcoin is correlated with economic environments, money supply increases, safe havens such as Gold, hype and country regulations. This is an impossible mix to analyze and almost everyone fails at it. That's why you see people valuing Bitcoin from $100 to $500k frequently. Although I am bullish on the prospects of Bitcoin and decentralization and smart contract platforms, this is not the game I will be describing. I am talking about a game where you try to maximize your BTC holdings by investing in altcoins. We win this game even if we are at a loss in fiat currency value. To put it another way:
If you are not bullish in general on cryptocurrencies you have no place in investing or trading cryptocurrencies since it's always a losing proposition to trade in bubbles, a scientifically proven fact. If on the other hand you are then your goal is to grow your portfolio more than you would if holding BTC/ETH for example.
Bitcoin is the big boy
How the market works is not easily identifiable if you haven't graduated from the 2017 crypto university. When there is a bull market everything seems amazingly profitable and things keep going up outgrowing Bitcoin by orders of magnitude and you are a genius. The problem with this is that it only works while Bitcoin is going up a little bit or trades sideways. When it decides to move big then altcoins lose value both on the way up and on the way down. The second part is obvious and proven since all altcoins from 2017 are at a fraction of their BTC value (usually in the range of 80% or more down). Also, when BTC is making a big move upwards everyone exits altcoins to ride the wave. It is possible that the altcoin market behaves as an inversed leveraged ETF with leakage where in a certain period while Bitcoin starts at 10k and ends at 10k for example, altcoins have lost a lot of value because of the above things happening.
We are doing it anyway champ!
OK so we understand the risks and just wanna gambol with our money right? I get it. Why do that? Because finding the ideal scenario and period can be extremely profitable. In 2017 several altcoins went up 40x more than BTC. But again, if you don't chose wisely many of them have gone back to zero (the author has first hand experience in this!), they have been delisted and nobody remembers them. The actual mentality to have is very important and resembles poker and other speculative games: A certain altcoin can go up in value indefinitely but can only lose it's starting investment. Think about it. You either lose 1 metric or gain many many more. Now that sounds amazing but firstly as we said we have the goal to outperform our benchmark (BTC) and secondly that going up in value a lot means that the probability is quite low. There is this notion of Expected Value (EV) that poker players apply in these kind of situations and it goes like that. If you think that a certain coin has a probability let's say 10% to go up 10X and 90% probability it goes to zero it's an even bet. If you think that probability is 11% then it's a good bet, a profitable bet and you should take it. You get the point right? It's not that it can only go 10X or 0X, there is a whole range of probability outcomes that are too mathematical to explain here and it doesn't help so much because nobody can do such analysis with altcoins. See below on how we can approximate it.
How to evaluate altcoins
A range of different things to take into account outlined below will form our decision making. Not a single one of them should dictate 100% of our strategy.
It's all about market cap. Repeat after me. The price of a coin doesn't mean anything. Say it 10 times until you believe it. I can't remember how many times I had conversations with people that were comparing coins using their coin price instead of their market cap. To make this easy to get.
If I decide because the sky is blue to make my coin supply 100 Trillion FoolCoins with a price of $0.001 and there is another WiseCoin with a supply of 100 Million and price of $1 then FoolCoins are more expensive. - Alex Fin's Cap Law
This is done usually in the stock world and it means that each company has some fundamental value that includes it's assets, customers, growth prospects, sector prospects and leadership competence but mostly centered in financial measures such as P/E ratios etc. Valuation is a proper economic discipline by itself taught in universities. OK, now throw everything out of the window!. This kind of analysis is impossible in vague concepts and innovations that are currently cryptocurrencies. Ethereum was frequently priced at the fictional price of gas when all financial systems on earth run on the platform after decades (a bit of exaggeration here). No project is currently profitable enough to justify a valuation multiple that is usually equal to P/E in the thousands or more. As such we need to take other things into account. What I do is included in the list below:
Check Github. You need to make sure there is active development for the platform and it's a very bad sign if the project is either keeping the code closed source or even worse there is simply no development. No projects are "complete".
Check Website. If the website is written in bad English the Chinese google translate type it means that they are not serious enough to produce an unbreakable decentralized project. If you can't write English you can't change the world, period. That's a deal breaker.
Check Team's Linkedin. Numerous projects have either fake Linkedin accounts or the team is comprised mainly by unexperienced employees that are even shown to be working in other companies currently.
Check backers. Projects that have Binance, Coinbase or Silicon Valley VC funds backing them are way more legit but way more overpriced too!
One of my favorite ways to value altcoins that is based on the same principle in the stock market is to look at peers and decide what is the maximum cap it can grow to. As an example you take a second layer Ethereum solution that has an ICO and you want to decide if you will enter or not. You can take a look at other coins that are in the same business and compare their market caps. Thinking that your coin will outperform by a lot the top coins currently is overly optimistic so I usually take a lower valuation as a target price. If the initial offering is directly implying a valuation that is more than that then there is no room to grow according to my analysis and I skip it. Many times this has proven me wrong because it's a game theory problem where if many people think irrationally in a market it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. But since there is opportunity cost involved, in the long run, getting in initial offerings that have a lot of room to grow will pay off as a strategy.
In 2017 the sexiest sector was platforms and then coins including privacy ones. Platforms are obviously still a highly rated sector because everything is being built on them, but privacy is not as hot as it used to be. In 2018 DEXes were all they hype but still people are massively using centralized exchanges. In 2020 Defi is the hottest sector and it includes platforms, oracles and Defi projects. What I am saying is that a project gets extra points if it's a Defi one in 2020 and minus points if it's a payment system that will conquer the world as it was in 2017 because that's old news. This is closely related to the next section.
Needless to say that the crypto market is a worse FOMO type of inexperienced trigger happy yolo investors , much worse than the Robinhood crowd that drove a bankrupt company's stock 1200% after they declared bankruptcy. The result is that there are numerous projects that are basically either vaporware or just so overhyped that their valuation has no connection to reality. Should we avoid those kind of projects? No and I will explain why. There are many very good technically projects that had zero hype potential due to incompetent marketing departments that made them tank. An example (without shilling because I sold out a while back) is Quantum Resistant Ledger. This project has amazing quantum resistant blockchain, the only one running now, has a platform that people can build tokens and messaging systems and other magnificent stuff. Just check how they fared up to now and you will get the point. A project *needs* to have a hype factor because you cannot judge it as normal stocks that you can do value investing like Warren Buffet does where a company will inevitable post sales and profitability numbers and investors will get dividends. Actually the last sentence is the most important: No dividends. Even projects that give you tokens or coins as dividends are not real dividends because if the coin tanks the value of the dividend tanks. This is NOT the case with company stocks where you get dollars even if the company stock tanks. All that being said, I would advice against betting on projects that have a lot of hype but little substance (but that should be obvious!).
How to construct your portfolio
My strategy and philosophy in investing is that risk should be proportional to investment capital. That means that if you are investing 100K in the crypto market your portfolio should be very different than someone investing 1K because 10% annual gains are nothing in the latter while they are very significant in the former. Starting from this principle each individual needs to construct a portfolio according to how much risk he wants to take. I will emphasize two important concepts that play well with what I said. In the first instance of a big portfolio you should concentrate on this mantra: "Diversification is the only free meal in finance". In the case of a small portfolio then this mantra is more important: "Concentrate to create wealth, diversify to maintain wealth". Usually in a big portfolio you would want to hold some big coins such as BTC and ETH to weather the ups and downs explained in previous paragraphs while generating profits and keep progressively smaller parts of your portfolio for riskier investments. Maybe 50% of this portfolio could be big caps and 10% very risky initial offerings. Adapting risk progressively to smaller portfolios makes sense but I think it would be irrational to keep more than 30% of a portfolio no matter what tied to one coin due to the very high risk of bankruptcy.
The altseason is supposedly coming every 3 months. Truth is that nobody can predict it but altcoins can be profitable no matter what. Forget about maximalists who are stuck in their dogmas. Altcoins deliver different value propositions and it makes sense because we are very far from a situation where some project offers everything like Amazon and we wouldn't even want that in the first place since we are talking about decentralization and not a winner takes all and becomes a monster kind of scenario! Some last minute advice:
Stay out of paid telegram/discord pump groups. They are deadly for your wallet.
Avoid jumping on overhyped coins that have pumped massively during the last days without any very important news.
Don't keep coins in obscure exchanges for too long or you will get burned with certainty.
Stop thinking that your coin will 1000x and overtake Bitcoin!
P.S If you find value in reading this and want more weekly consider subscribing to my newsletterhere
If you hold your coins with Coinbase, you will no longer be able to send or receive crypto to or from just any old bitcoin address if it has been through a KYC process. Once you move your funds into a non-custodial account, you'll be free to send them to any self-custody address, but if you've never formally associated your identity with that address via a regulated entity, you won't be able to transact with a Coinbase address or one administered by any other regulated custody provider.
I've posted here a few times, warning of (obvious) developments like this. You don't understand these people. They will stop at nothing but total control over who transacts with whom, how much and how often. They reason that only by putting everyone under surveillance can they protect us from crime. This is totalitarian thinking at its finest. With this reasoning, you must put everyone under surveillance to see who is talking to whom (could be a terrorist or a pedo), you must boobytrap the entire legacy banking system to see who is transacting with whom (they could be funding terrorists or - gasp - buying vegetation to smoke online), you must lobby against end-to-end encryption which "keeps you in the dark" (they feel entitled to know everything about everyone, so in that light this sentiment makes sense) and prevents you from finding terrorists and pedos - nevermind that in the process you get to know every intimate, banal, subversive, conversation that everyone has with everyone else. Those of you less into computers don't get it. And your ignorance is costing the world greatly. They are not looking for anyone in particular most of the time (so the "I have nothing to hide" argument is just stupid), the important thing to understand is that without massive amounts of data siphoned off from as many people in as many situations as possible, their artificial intelligence won't work. It needs your data to work. Stop giving it your data. Unless we are to become digital cattle, this must be resisted with all our might. If you don't care about this, you don't understand the grave danger in having the government and its friendly big corporations knowing everything about everyone. You should come to care about this, and you should come to understand this, before it's too late. These new FATF recommendations are nothing unexpected if you understand how they think. This regulation will give them the ability to know who everyone is transacting with, which allows the artificial intelligence to start doing its thing and labeling / cataloging social connections in yet another dimension. It also sets the stage - just you wait for it - to pressure merchants, not just exchanges, to stop accepting orders from non-KYC'd addresses at a global scale, if they are feeling kind only above certain amounts. In the mean time, the artificial intelligence will be busy linking all of your addresses with your purchases too, and someone will be making a fat profit off your data, a la Google/Facebook. And you'll be powerless to stop it, because while the beast was still a baby we failed to slay it. I legitimately believe that this threat is unlike anything we've faced before in human history. We've had mass-surveillance before, but never at anything even remotely approaching this level. We've had tyrants before, but never at a global level. We've had repression, but never with the cold, precise calculations of computers making connections in a split second that would take human operators YEARS. For the sake of all that's good, this massive abuse of human rights has to be stopped. Or we're fucked. Your children are fucked. Their children are fucked. The technology will only get better. The regulations will only get tighter. These people understand very well what they're doing, they see you and your data as their property, and they would very much like to know where you are at all times, who you speak to, what about, what you enjoy reading, how you like spending your time, what your hobbies are, and most relevant to /cryptocurrency, where do you spend your money and who you transact with. The surveillance state would simply crumble without its many tentacles sucking the information out of the digital realm. Resistance has to start somewhere: I suggest Tor, getting rid of facebook, using another search engine besides google (and through Tor), using ad-blockers, encrypting your email, choosing Signal over WhatsApp. And let's not forget getting rid of built-in spyware on your phone - choose LineageOS (arguably our best bet on Android) and f-droid - choose apps that respect your privacy. Turn the damn phone off too, do you really need to be online and reachable 24/7? Trust me, it's pretty liberating not to. Time slows down without all the interruptions and impulses to check this or that online - and that's a good thing. And in the domain of cryptocurrency, I suggest you look into Monero. To quote from the article linked in the beginning:
Anyone stuck on these exchanges will not be allowed to send BTC to certain addresses deemed not in compliance. Let me be clear, this will not be enforced at the protocol level, but at the exchange and services level. Business owners will be forced to censor their users, hopefully driving a significant portion of their user bases away as they wise up and learn how to use the protocol as designed.
Look, I love this guy, he hosts a podcast which is usually very deep and entertaining and which I highly recommend - a great recent episode to listen to if you are not familiar with it is episode 76 with Alex Gladstein, for instance. But like all bitcoin maximalists he fails to notice, because of purely ideological reasons, that it is the inherent obvious flaws in bitcoin that allow for this emerging nightmare to manifest. Bitcoin has no built-in privacy. It was only a matter of time until the usual suspects would leverage this for max impact - this process is now well underway, and as I wrote before, expect the same logic to be applied to merchants; and don't you even think about mixing your coins with something like wasabi wallet, because they will automatically be assumed dirty. The Monero community has been saying for years, and the wider brothers and sisters in the crypto community are still reluctant to comprehend: if a cryptocurrency has no privacy built-in, it cannot be fungible; if it is not fungible, it can and will be censored - and it will (has) be repurposed as a mass-surveillance tool. Look, am I saying dump all your BTC and buy Monero yesterday? Not really. Bitcoin has by far the largest network effect, the largest developer community, and the largest brand recognition. We need Bitcoin to succeed if crypto is to succeed, at least for the foreseeable future. And plenty of innovation comes out of Bitcoin. What I am trying to call your attention to is the orwellian intentions of those who would propose to get as much data about as many aspects of our lives in order to "protect" us. Listen, wake up. You're more likely to die from a bizarre accident with a lightning strike than a terrorist attack. The mass-media distorts everything, we react emotionally to things without considering the odds of it actually happening - repeating the same images over and over usually does the trick. Certain things are being used as leverage (excuses) to strip away our civil liberties and build a global surveillance state. Your government and my government come up with this sort of regulation, behind my back and your back, without having been requested by the people of their countries to do so. Is it for my own good? Is it for your own good? Cui bono ? Who benefits from a global surveillance net that continuously builds profiles about everyone and discerns ever more precise patterns in behavior? Could it be those who would very much like the status quo to remain the status quo? If you know exactly who to target in order to silence opposition.. Could it be those companies that get to make billions from predicting human behavior and selling stuff to people - precisely the right kind of stuff for that kind of person - at precisely the right time for precisely the right reasons? (Whether they actually need the stuff or not) It's time to wake up to these very important issues folks. The governments that claim to represent us have cast the dice already, and our best interests are not on the table. It is up to us to change the tide, demand privacy, and say that enough is enough. What are they going to do? Put everyone in jail? Wake up, before it's too late. TL;DR (by popular demand): Why surveillance is not OK.
Banano is a feeless and instant cryptocurrency powered by DAG technology that is rich in potassium and designed to disrupt the meme economy. It's a fork of Nano with more memes and lower PoW requirement. Banano was born on April 1, 2018, so the project is still quite young. See a very brief conceptual summary here: https://gfycat.com/MenacingPointedAmericansaddlebred
Don't want to read all the below? See a brief summary of all you need to know and all important links on one page at https://banano.how
Why is Banano?
Don't let your memes be dreams!
What is the total supply of Banano?
The total supply is 3,402,823,669.20 BANANO (which is 10x the initial Nano supply). The circulating supply currently changes a lot, as does the market cap. You can check current price estimations here: https://creeper.banano.cc/exploreexchange_rates or at our first bigger exchange, Mercatox:
We will have something even better; the yellow paper. It is yet to be released. It will contain not only the philosophy and the technology behind the Project, but also MEMES!
What's the difference between NANO and BANANO?
BANANO is running on the same technological base as NANO, although some parameters like PoW threshold and units were tweaked. The biggest difference is the governance, with BANANO being a meme coin with more fun, freedom and creative experiments.
You can be tipped free Banano here or on the discord for being active or contributing to the community. Otherwise there are regular giveaways, contests and small airdrops mostly happening on the discord server all the time. Hint: If you are new here and tell us below about your first impression and how you found us you might actually get some tasty free Banano right away ;) Banano is freely distributed and is not sold by the devs through some sort of ICO. They distribute it to their community for free! This is also why there are regular faucet game events. Apart from this, you also can buy Banano at the exchange Mercatox: https://mercatox.com/
Keep your eyes open for official announcements on the Discord. Sometimes these games can start on short notice. Mostly the start of faucet game events will also be announced via Twitter, here at Reddit and the Telegram group. Don't play the game without confirming first that an event is running!
I have played a faucet game, when will I receive the payment?
Be a bit patient, all game results are carefully checked by the devs to detect cheating/bot usage. Since they have also lots of other things to do it might take a few days or even more than a few days before you receive your Banano from faucet games. Don't worry, everything will be paid out.
Is Banano listed on an exchange?
Yes, on Mercatox, with Nano (XRB) and Bitcoin (BTC) pairs: https://mercatox.com/ Also, there is an ongoing vote for Banano to get listed at Coinex, supported by a 1000 Ban bounty for everyone who votes. More details at http://vote.banano.how
Are there any airdrops?
There has been an airdrop to Nano holders before, see https://banano.claims/. There also will be future airdrops, keep your eyes open for announcements!
Can I buy Banano?
Banano is mainly distributed to everyone for free as mentioned above. However, you can buy Banano from other users directly with Nano at the discord in the #jungle-bazaar channel. These trades are safe when using the on-board escrow bot. Check out this detailed step-by-step guide:
You can check this website for current conversion rates: https://creeper.banano.cc/exploreexchange_rates However, be aware that this price calculation (based on discord trades) will not always be 100% accurate. Otherwise check current prices at Mercatox:
My question is not listed here, where to ask for help?
You can post your question below or ask it at the discord, in the channel #the-jungle. Many community members are nice and will happily help you!
I have feedback, suggestions or ideas? Where can I leave them?
All this best goes to the reddit feedback thread you always will find here: http://feedback.banano.how Feedback is highly appreciated, and if you have great ideas, time, or special talents, you should also post there, join us and contribute!
Anything else important to know?
Yes! Be cautious! No official or dev will ever request you to send Banano or other crypto, or ask you for a password or your seed. Keep your seed safe! Be careful about scammers impersonating to be devs, team-members or official mods. Also, always be cautious about people offering you to buy Banano, only trades through the escrow bot in the Discord (#jungle-bazaar) are safe! Be careful, scammers are everywhere. Ask one of the moderators in case of any doubt! Ok, that should be the essential part for now. Any suggestions/updates? More questions? Comment below! Big thanks to the great meme artist CastrosBallsack for helping to create this FAQ. Last update: 2018-10-01
This is one of the oldest, most well known GPT (Get-Paid-To) sites. They have plenty to offer, so you shouldn't get too bored. You can earn bonus points for meeting your daily goals, and you can earn up to 300 points ($3) for meeting your goal each day. They have one of the largest selections of rewards available, so you should easily find something you like. — Payment Proof. / Is it available in my country? *The site is International, but most earning opportunities are for US, UK, CA and AU.
↪ Get a 300SB ($3) bonus if you sign up through this link and earn 300SB in your first 30 days. Points are awarded the next day after reaching 300SB. ↪ Use signup code REDDIT for a free 70SB bonus for new users. Click “I have a sign up code (optional)” which is underneath the “Confirm Password” Box. ↪ Age minimum: 13 ↪ Offers: Mobile and Desktop Videos, Surveys, Polls, Offer Walls, Tasks, Special offers, Coupons, Games, Search bar, Limited Time Codes, Download offers, Cash Back from Shopping, Swago (like Bingo) and more. ↪ Payout: [Minimum: $3] Amazon, PayPal, Prepaid VISA, Wal-Mart, PSN, Xbox, Sweepstakes, Charity and many more. TIPS: • Earn up to 300 SB ($3) for meeting your goals for 7, 14, 21 and 30 days in a row. • Once a month you can redeem a $25 gift card for 12% off. • Make up to 10 Swagbucks easily each day by playing games in the Play category. • Click And Earn List to Earn 38 Points Daily Here • Check out /swagbucks and the discord after signing up for up to date info about the best paying offers.
GAIN [US, GB, IE, SE, DE, CA, NL, NO, AU, BE, ES, FR, DK, IT, RU, SG and MY]
Gain is a high paying GPT site that allows you to complete offers, watch videos, complete surveys and more to earn coins. Gain operates in many countries. New users can start out with 100 coins by using this link. — Payment Proof.
↪ Withdrawal options include BTC, ETH, LTC, BCH, CSGOSHOP, Coinbase. Gift cards (through Tango/Rewardlink) also available in certain countries only. ↪ Free daily bonus coins from 10-100 depending on your user level, claim them every 24h on the Gain offerwall ↪ Age minimum: 13+ ↪ No screwy point to dollar conversion ratios. 1,000 coins = $1. ↪ Active, friendly and easily accessible support ↪ Earn extra coins for being one of the top 3 earners each day and each month ↪ Bet your Daily Bonus or your earnings (play responsibly) on roulette by clicking Win TIPS: • Referral Incentive: New users get 100 coins ($0.10). Referring users get 5% of the referred users earnings. • Click on the PayPal Guide link after signing up to learn how to easily convert your earnings from Crypto>PayPal with CoinBase. • 5% Earning Bonus: Sign up to the site with your Steam account and add gain.gg to the end of your steam username to earn a 5% bonus on your earnings. • Offers over 4000 coins are automatically held, message Support Chat (click Support on the top right of the chat box) to have the coins released for you.
GG2U is a GPT (Get-Paid-To) site. The website is a bit outdated looking, and it can feel clunky at times, but don't let that fool you. It has some of the highest paying rates, and has a few unique offer walls and plenty of survey routers that you rarely see on other sites. The customer support is great as well. The owner responds pretty quickly and is always willing to help out. This site is focused on gamers and has some gaming tasks, but there are plenty of things to do for non-gamers as well. — Payment Proof. *The site is International, but most earning opportunities are for US, UK, CA and AU.
↪ Age minimum: 13 ↪ Offers: Surveys, Offer Walls, Tasks, Videos, Gaming Tasks, and Promotional Link Shortener. ↪ Get paid for listening to the radio (US, CA, UK) ↪ Payout: [Minimum: $7] PayPal, BTC to Coinbase, Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Google Play, iTunes, Nintendo eShop, Playstation GC, Steam, Target, Walmart, Xbox GC ↪ Referral Incentive: The referring user earns 5% for life. TIPS: • For every 5 cash out requests, you get a Golden Token which will give you $1-7. This results in an average 7.8% higher payments if cashing out at the minimum each time. • If you contact support, you can request to have your payouts issued at the minimum cashout amount rather than for your full balance. This will let you make the most out of the Golden Tickets.
PrizeRebel is a GPT (Get-Paid-To) site. They have many offer walls and survey providers available. You can earn bonus points for meeting your daily goals, and they have bi-monthly contests that reward the top earners. They also have a Level program that allows you to earn a bigger percentage from your referrals, prize discounts, special bonuses, and automatic prize processing. Level up by earning more points. — Payment Proof. *The site is International, but most earning opportunities are for US, UK, CA and AU.
↪ Age minimum: 16 ↪ Offers: Surveys, Offer Walls, Tasks, Videos, Coupons, and Earning Contests. ↪ Payout: [Minimum: $2] Amazon, PayPal, VISA, Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Raffles and many more. ↪ Referral Incentive: 15-30% of what your referrals earn for life. TIPS: • Meet your daily goal each day to earn bonus points.
Fetch is an app available for both Android and iOS where users earn money for scanning receipts and for purchasing specific products or brands. You get points for every receipt from a grocery retailer, supermarket, club wholesaler, home improvement/hardware store, pet store or convenience stores, regardless of what you buy. You can get additional points for purchasing specific products or specific brands. Receipts cannot be more than 2 weeks old. It can also be set it up to passively collect e-receipts. — Payment Proof.
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Ibotta is an app available for both Android and iOS that gives cash back for shopping at Ibotta's retail and then scanning your receipts to prove what purchases were made. They currently support around 160 stores. Most offers are for newer brands, but they often have well-known names such as Glade or Kraft. They also regularly have cash back deals for "any item" or "any brand". You can also get cash back for shopping on sites such as Amazon and various services such as meal delivery. — Payment Proof.
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Earn for watching videos with advertisements. All you have to do is create an account, log in, visit the Rewards page, choose a loyalty rewards partner, and then start watching. You can then transfer and redeem your credits via the partner's platform. *The site is International but currently limited to United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Netherlands, Germany, Norway, Ireland, Denmark, Sweden,Romania, Portugal, Poland, Malta, Latvia, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Italy, Hungary, Croatia, Greece, France, Finland, Spain, Estonia, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Belgium, Austria, India. Ukraine, Uruguay, Brazil, Mexico, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Colombia, Malaysia, Thailand, Ecuador, Peru, United Arab Emirates, Phillipines.
↪ At the Promo Center, you can also earn points by taking surveys, downloading apps, trying products, and more! ↪ Hideout is currently limited to only one account/device per household. ↪ Hideout credits are worth different amounts depending on which site you transfer them to. Shop around to see which site/loyalty partner offers the best all around value for you. ↪ Age minimum: 13 ↪ Payout: You need to have earned at least 9 points to redeem/transfer and can only do 3 transfers per day. TIPS: • Earn daily free rewards points by watching at least one video and then going to any video on Hideout.tv, and clicking on the "Rewards" button. You'll then see a filled-in, one-use promo code. • Hideout frequently posts promo codes on their Facebook so check often because they have limited uses. • Earn more on HideoutTV's sister sites using the same login info as HideoutTV (still only one device/site at a time) ThePanda, Letscheckin and Popjoy
Mturk is a platform that allows clients to post a large number of jobs. It is a bit more professional than the typical /beermoney site. You work for "requesters" and they can approve or reject your submitted tasks, also known as HITs. You can earn a lot more money on this site than other typical /beermoney sites, but you need to pay attention to which jobs you accept. Not all HITs pay well. They do require some sensitive information from you for tax purposes. Not everyone gets approved to work here, and some people will be approved months or years after being rejected. — Payment Proof. *This site is international, but most of the tasks are only available for the USA. International users can only redeem Amazon.com balance.
↪ Age minimum: 18 ↪ Offers: A large number of tasks including Surveys, Transcription, Translation, Website Testing, Data Entry and much more. ↪ Payout: [Minimum $0.01] Amazon.com Balance and Amazon Payments Balance. Amazon Payments Balance can be transferred to a bank account. Note: All Amazon Balance is for the USA Amazon.com website regardless of your country. ↪ Referral Incentive: None TIPS: • Only do HITs that pay at least 10¢/minute. This gives you a rate of $6/hour. Mturk crowd forum and /hitsworthturkingfor are good places to check for higher paying HITs. • It is better to return a HIT than to submit to if you are unsure whether the requester will approve it. Returning a HIT will not negatively affect you, but a rejection will. • Scripts are allowed and encouraged. Checked /mturk for more tips and suggestions.
UserTesting is a usability testing site. You get paid to record your screen and speak aloud while performing a number of specified tasks. These tasks are generally related to testing a website or an app, but some tests may have you complete a survey, play a game, test new software, etc. At the start you may receive $3 sample tests, but after a while you will see $10 unmoderated tests. Moderated tests start at $30 per test, and usually require you to have a webcam. Payment arrives via PayPal exactly 7 days after your test is completed. — Payment Proof. *The site is International, but most earning opportunities are for US, UK, CA and AU.
↪ Age minimum: 18 ↪ Offers: Usability testing ↪ Payout: [Minimum: None] PayPal ↪ Referral Incentive: None. TIPS: • Completing the unpaid surveys at the top may qualify you for additional tests. • Make sure to follow instructions carefully, keep talking, and be professional. Keeping a high quality rating is essential if you want to receive plenty of tests.
GetUpside is an app available on both Android and iOS that gives you cash back on gas, groceries and restaurants. You can get up to $0.25 per gallon of gas (or up to $0.50 per gallon twice per day), 15% on groceries, and 35% at restaurants. Some gas stations offer cash back on convenience store purchases, car washes, inspections, oil changes, etc. GetUpside also gives you a map of all the participating gas stations in your area, and you can get additional points for confirming or fixing the prices.
↪ Age Minimum: 13 ↪ Offers: Cashback on gas, groceries and restaurants. ↪ Payout: PayPal ($1 fee if under $15), Check ($1 fee if under $50), Amazon, Home Depot, Target, and many more. [GC Minimum: $10] ↪ Referral Incentive: The referred user gets $0.15-$0.20 off per gallon of gas on their first purchase. The referring user gets $0.01-$0.02 per gallon from direct referrals, and $0.005-$0.01 per gallon for indirect referrals for life. Amount varies per person. As of 05/18/20 (not sure how long it will last) new users who sign up with the link above get a $7-$14(varies per person) bonus if they buy at least $10 worth of gas. TIPS: • You must make your purchase with a debit or credit card. Cash, prepaid cards, gift cards, and EBT are not eligible forms of payment. • You only have 4 hours to make your gas or restaurant purchase after claiming the offer. Grocery offers have 24 hours. All receipts must be scanned within 24 hours from when you claim the offer.
Cash Back From Shopping Online
These sites give cash back on your online purchases. Online purchases require you to click their affiliate link prior to shopping. Ebates US has in-store offers as well. In-store purchases require you to link a debit/credit card and to active the offer prior to shopping. Most of these sites are International, but your shopping opportunities may be limited, and you will only get paid in the associated currency. — Ebates Payment Proof.
TIPS: • Make sure to click on the "Shop Now" or “Get Cashback” button before adding items to your cart. Otherwise, your shopping trip may not count. • You can only use one shopping portal per shopping trip. Attempting to use more than one may cause problems crediting your account. • Disable any ad blockers while shopping. • For US Users: Sometimes you can earn more cash back on Ebates or TopCashBack than the other for a particular store. Check both sites if you want to get the most cash back for each purchase. • For TopCashBack UK Users: New users are automatically enrolled into the Plus membership. Downgrade to the Classic membership to avoid being charged £5/year.
Master Card, PayPal, BACS, Gift Cards, British Airways
Amazon Pay, NEFT, Paytm
PayPal, Amazon, UnionPay
New User Bonus
Some information is missing due to translation difficulties and signup problems. Please let us know if you know any of this missing information.
Sites to Avoid: Definitely DO NOT post these.
✖ Earnsanity — Shady owner, sketchy site. Held giveaway and then refunded the prizes after it was over. History of scamming many others. AVOID AT ALL COSTS UNLESS YOU WANT TO BE SCAMMED. ✖ Paidverts — Shady owner, sketchy site. Keeps doing debt swaps (cash to BAP). Do not post. ✖ Neobux — It isn’t really a scam, but they operate as a pyramid scheme. There’s money to be made online, but it’s definitely not there. ✖ MarketGlory — It does pay out, but the pay is absolutely ridiculous. The only way to make a decent amount of money is to have a lot of referrals, and referral whoring on this subreddit WILL result in a permanent ban. ✖ MindSumo — Not actually a /beermoney site. It’s only spam in this sub. ✖ G2A — Scam/sells stolen keys. ✖ Robinhood — This is spammed on our sub constantly. ✖ Quickthoughts — Many reports of people being banned when trying to withdraw as of 10/2018. Do your due diligence before possibly wasting your time on this app. ✖ Sites with $100+ minimum — These sites usually offer higher than normal payments for simple tasks, with a high minimum to cash out. They are always scams. ✖ Generic news sites that pay you ridiculous amounts to read an article (two euros??) — Common sense should take care of this, but in case it doesn’t, it’s always a scam. The site is usually hosted somewhere in Eastern Europe, and you will never get paid. ✖ Free bitcoin sites/"faucets" (THIS INCLUDES QOINPRO) — This is not referring to those video-viewing/task sites (although they’re still paying fragments of a penny). I’m talking about sites that give you 0.000001BTC to fill a captcha (freebitco.in, dailybitcoins). Admittedly many beermoney sites pay low, but don’t even bother with these. Also: Bitcoin mining is NO LONGER PROFITABLE. If you're really so keen on getting bitcoins, doing so through an exchange is your best option. Here are a few more scam sites and sketchy sites.
Please note that presence on this post does not imply that /beermoney or its moderators endorse the site or their views, actions, or policies. This list simply contains sites that are used by a large number of our users or are frequently mentioned on our subreddit. We frequently monitor data from all the sites on this list from various sources to ensure that users are able and interested in utilizing them and if they do, that they also are getting paid promptly and fairly for all work they do. We make adjustments to this list and the order of sites accordingly based on all the data we receive.
Please make sure you follow the Rules of our subreddit and if you ever have any questions about anything beermoney related, please take a look at our extensive FAQ which should answer almost any question you might have.
There are no words for how happy you've made me! You beautiful, beautiful people... THANK YOU!
Edit: I am so grateful to everyone who is using other methods of payment to carry on the spirit of this subreddit while I try to sort everything out with Paypal. I want to say thank you to everyone who has been dedicated to donating to the cause, even setting up bitcoin and changetip accounts to do so. You guys are seriously amazing, and I'm blessed to even be a part of this. It's been a busy weekend, but I've updated the totals for you guys and am working on unfreezing everything with Paypal. This probably means I'll be consolidating my accounts together, so it might take a minute. Again, thank you so much for everything. Paypal has demanded that I remove the link from this post as it violates the Acceptable Use Policy. This is clearly due to a misunderstanding of how /millionairemakers works, so I'll be contacting them tomorrow to see if I can re-add the button back up. I've submitted everything to verify GWallet and Paypal. Now comes the waiting game. This means that the totals below are substantially lower than what has actually been donated. YOUR DONATIONS ARE GOING THROUGH, MY BANK IS NOT WORKING AT THE SPEED OF REDDIT! Again, I'm totally breathless at all of this, THANK YOU!! I'm trying to reply to as many people as I can, thank you thank you THANK YOU all so much for everything, this is so amazing! Holy bananagrams you guys, you've made my entire year! I'm still in shock from all of this. Thank you all so much for donating and to being a part of this amazing subreddit! I'm trying as hard as I can to reply to all of you. I had lost my job a couple of months ago and was drowning in the quagmire of job searches. I started getting really depressed about a week ago, as I had just about run out of the savings I had to get a new job. The other day I posted in /millionairemakers hoping for something but not really expecting anything. I've lurked on reddit for a little while and don't really have the courage to post anything, just the odd comment here and there. After a job interview today, I went on a hike with a friend of mine and afterwards saw that my phone exploded with replies about winning this and I'm on cloud 9 right now with excitement! As for what I'll do with this money, most of it will go to taking down my student debt and living expenses...all except for one dollar, which of course goes to the future winner. If this is significant enough, you can bet that I'll be in places like /Random_Acts_Of_Pizza , /millionairemakers , etc. trying to impart the same elation that I have now. This is an amazing community and I'm so blessed to be a small part of it. I'm shaking with happiness and I hope to contribute the same feeling to the next person. Huge thanks to the mods for helping out with the logistics and verification. Another huge thanks to all the redditors of this beautiful subreddit, you have changed my life in a way that I will remember forever and can only hope to pay forward. prophecynine posted links to my address to see how much Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Litecoin y'all have donated.
17:00 EST: GOOGLE WALLET IS VERIFIED AND WORKING. I have just got off the phone with Google wallet and everything is verified. I have a bunch of transactions to claim, so I'll be back in a bit with the updated numbers. Thanks for being so patient! THE PAYPAL ACCOUNT WAS VERIFIED BUT APPARENTLY IT AUTO-DENIED PAYMENTS.
Paypal: $870Still frozen, working on it
BTC: 3.49455462 = $1064.89
Dogecoin: 944,420.14707387 = $159.88
Dogetip: 743969.22631525 = $125.61
Litecoin: 20.41007954 = $39.27
First update: $1401.32 21:58 EST: $2335.00 04:17 EST: $2460.31 Still waiting on GWallet and Paypal. You guys are incredible. 01/22 20:00 EST: $3743.80 01/24 03:23 EST: $4400.96 01/26 10:55 EST: $5190.99 This part is written by the mods: All of the amounts below should result in smallrye receiving about $1 USD Methods of payment: Tipbots
Fact: Craig lived in Australia during the Satoshi period. The time zone means that, to be Satoshi, Craig would have almost never posted between 3pm and midnight, local time. His peak posting times would have been between 2am and 9:30am. This is practically the opposite of what one would expect.
Fact: Craig’s own mother admits that he has a habit of fabricating stories.
 - This link may be relevant.  - Why would Satoshi do this?  - Sounds like Satoshi, huh?  - I urge you to read the thread and look at the person doing the critique. Compare it with Satoshi’s whitepaper Now, before the deluge of comments about how ”it doesn’t matter WHO he is, only that WHAT he says aligns with Satoshi’s vision”, I’d like to say: Is it of absolutely no relevance at all if someone is a huge fraud and liar? If it’s not, then I hope you’ve never accused anyone of lying or being a member of ‘The Dragon’s Den’ or a troll or of spreading FUD. I hope you’ve never pre-judged someone’s comments because of their name or reputation. I hope you’ve only ever considered technical arguments. That said, I am not even directly arguing against anything he’s currently saying (other than random clear lies). I’ve never said anything about Blockstream, positive or negative. I’ve never expressed an opinion about what the ideal block size should be right now. My account is over 6 years old and I post in many different subs. Compare that with these (very popular!) users who frequently call me a troll or member of the ‘dragon’s den’ (with zero facts or evidence):
A brief teardown of some of the flaws in the Lightning Network white paper
This post will perforce be quick and sloppy, because I have other things to do. But a recent comment provoked me to re-read the Lightning white paper to remind myself of the myriad flaws in it, so I decided to at least begin a debunking. When I first read the Lightning white paper back in early 2016, the sheer audacity of the author's preposterous claims and their failure to understand basic principles of the Satoshi paper just offended the living shit out of me. I presumed - incorrectly - that the Lightning paper would be soon torn to shreds through peer review. However Core was successful in suppressing peer review of the paper, and instead inserted Lighting as their end-all be-all scaling plan for Bitcoin. I'm sorry I didn't post this in 2016, but better later than never. Let's start with the abstract.
The bitcoin protocol can encompass the global financial transaction volume in all electronic payment systems today, without a single custodial third party holding funds or requiring participants to have anything more than a computer using a broadband connection.
Well now, that's an awfully gigantic claim for someone that hasn't even written a single line of code as a proof of concept don't you think? This is what's called "overpromising," the Nirvana fallacy, or more appropriately, "vaporware" - that is to say, a pie-in-the-sky software promise intended to derail progress on alternatives. In the very first sentence, the authors claim that they can scale Bitcoin to support every transaction that ever happens, from micropayments to multibillion dollar transfers, with no custodial risk, on a simple computer with nothing more than broadband. It will be perfect. Honestly everyone should have put the paper down at the first sentence, but let's go on.
A decentralized system is proposed
The authors claim that the system proposed is decentralized, but without even a single line of code (and indeed no solution to the problem they claim is the issue, more on that later) they have zero defense of this claim. In fact, the only known solution to the problem that Lightning cannot solve is centralized hubs. We'll get back to this.
whereby transactions are sent over a network of micropayment channels (a.k.a. payment channels or transaction channels) whose transfer of value occurs off-blockchain. If Bitcoin transactions can be signed with a new sighash type that addresses malleability, these transfers may occur between untrusted parties along the transfer route by contracts which, in the event of uncooperative or hostile participants, are enforceable via broadcast over the bitcoin blockchain in the event of uncooperative or hostile participants, through a series of decrementing timelocks
So right here in the abstract we have the promise: "support the entire world's transaction needs on a measly computer with just broadband, totally decentralized, and... (drum roll please) all that's missing is Segwit." Yeah right. Let's continue. First sentence of the paper itself reads:
The Bitcoin blockchain holds great promise for distributed ledgers, but the blockchain as a payment platform, by itself, cannot cover the world’s commerce anytime in the near future.
So the authors have constructed a false problem they claim to solve: scaling Bitcoin to cover every transaction on Earth. Now, that would be neato if it worked (it doesn't) but really, this is like Amerigo Vespucci claiming that the problem with boats is that the sails aren't big enough to carry it to the moon. We aren't ready for that part yet. . In infotech we have a saying, "crawl, walk, run." Lightning's authors are going to ignore "walking" and go from crawling to lightspeed. Using the logic of this first sentence, Visa never should have rolled out its original paper-based credit cards, because "obviously they can't scale to solve the whole world's financial needs." Again, your bullshit detector should be lighting up. Next sentence. So why can't Bitcoin cover all the world's financial transactions?
The blockchain is a gossip protocol whereby all state modifications to the ledger are broadcast to all participants. It is through this “gossip protocol” that consensus of the state, everyone’s balances, is agreed upon.
Got it. The problem is the "gossip protocol." That's bad because...
If each node in the bitcoin network must know about every single transaction that occurs globally, that may create a significant drag on the ability of the network to encompass all global financial transactions
OK. The problem with Bitcoin, according to the author, is that since every node must know the current state of the network, it won't scale. We'll get back to this bit later, because this is the crux: Lightning has the same problem, only worse. Now the authors take a break in the discussion to create a false premise surrounding the Visa network:
The payment network Visa achieved 47,000 peak transactions per second (tps) on its network during the 2013 holidays, and currently averages hundreds of millions per day. Currently, Bitcoin supports less than 7 transactions per second with a 1 megabyte block limit. If we use an average of 300 bytes per bitcoin transaction and assumed unlimited block sizes, an equivalent capacity to peak Visa transaction volume of 47,000/tps would be nearly 8 gigabytes per Bitcoin block, every ten minutes on average. Continuously, that would be over 400 terabytes of data per year.
I'll just point out that Visa itself cannot sustain 47K tpscontinuously, as a reminder to everyone that the author is deliberately inflating numbers to make them seem more scary. Again, is your bullshit detector going off yet? Now we get to the hard-sell:
Clearly, achieving Visa-like capacity on the Bitcoin network isn’t feasible today.
So the author deliberately inflates Visa's capabilities then uses that to say clearly it just can't be done. But really, Visa's actual steady-state load can be accomplished in roughly 500MB blocks - which actually is feasible, or nearly so, today. 500MB every ten minutes is actually a small load of data for a decent-sized business. There are thousands of companies that could quite easily support such a load. And that's setting aside the point that we took 7 years to get to 1MB, so it's unlikely that we'll need 500X that capacity "in the near future" or "today" as the authors keep asserting.
No home computer in the world can operate with that kind of bandwidth and storage.
whoopsie!! Did he say, home computer?? Since when did ordinary Bitcoin users have to keep the whole blockchain on their home computers? Have the authors of the Lightning white paper ever read the Satoshi white paper, which explains that this is not the desired model in Section 8? Clearly the Lightning authors are expecting their readers to be ignorant of the intended design of the Bitcoin network. This is a classic example of inserting a statement that the reader is unlikely to challenge, which completely distorts the discussion. Almost nobody needs to run a fullnode on their home computer! Read the Satoshi paper!
If Bitcoin is to replace all electronic payments in the future, and not just Visa, it would result in outright collapse of the Bitcoin network
Really? Is that so? Isn't the real question how fast will Bitcoin reach these levels of adoption? Isn't the author simply making an assumption that adoption will outpace advances in hardware and software, based on using wildly inflated throughput numbers (47K tps) in the first place? But no, the author makes an unfounded, unsupportable, incorrect blanket assertion that -- even in the future -- trying to scale up onchain will be the death of the entire system.
or at best, extreme centralization of Bitcoin nodes and miners to the only ones who could afford it.
Again, that depends on when this goes down. If Bitcoin grows at roughly the rate of advancement in hardware and software, then the cost to . independently validate transactions - something no individual user needs to do in the first place - actually stays perfectly flat. But the best part is that his statement:
centralization of Bitcoin nodes and miners to the only ones who could afford it
Ummm... mining and independent validation has always been limited to those who can afford it. What big-blockers know is that the trick isn't trying to make Bitcoin so tiny that farmers in sub-Saharan Africa can "validate" the blockchain on a $0.01 computer, but rather to expand adoption so greatly that they never have to independently validate it. Running scalable validation nodes at home is dumb. But, there are already millions of people with synchronous gigabit internet at home and more than enough wealth to afford a beefy home computer. The problem is that none of them are using Bitcoin. Adoption is the key!
This centralization would then defeat aspects of network decentralization that make Bitcoin secure, as the ability for entities to validate the chain is what allows Bitcoin to ensure ledger accuracy and security
Here the author throws a red herring across the trail for gullible readers. It is not my ability to validate the chain that produces trustlessness. If that was the case, there would be no need for miners. Users would simply accept or not accept other people's transactions based on their software's interpretation of validity. The Satoshi paper makes it quite clear where trustlessness is born: it is in the incentives that enforce honest mining of an uncorrupted chain. In other words, I don't have to validate the chain, but Poloniex does. And, newsflash, big companies can very easily afford big validation nodes. "$20K nodes" is a bullshit number I hear thrown around a lot. There are literally hundreds of thousands of companies that can easily afford $20K nodes in the event that Bitcoin becomes "bigger than Visa." Again, the trick is getting many companies in every jurisdiction in the world onto the blockchain. Then no individuals ever need to worry about censorship. Adoption! let's continue. I'll skip a few sentences.
Extremely large blocks, for example in the above case of 8 gigabytes every 10 minutes on average, would imply that only a few parties would be able to do block validation
If this were written in 1997 it would have read
Extremely large blocks, for example in the above case of 8 megabytes every 10 minutes on average, would imply that only a few parties would be able to do block validation
Obviously, we are processing 8MB blocks today. The real question is how long before we get there. At current rates of adoption, we'll all be fucking dead before anyone mines an 8GB block. And remember, 8GB was the number the authors cooked up. Even Visa can't handle that load, today, continuously.
This creates a great possibility that entities will end up trusting centralized parties. Having privileged, trusted parties creates a social trap whereby the central party will not act in the interest of an individual (principalagent problem), e.g. rentierism by charging higher fees to mitigate the incentive to act dishonestly. In extreme cases, this manifests as individuals sending funds to centralized trusted custodians who have full custody of customers’ funds. Such arrangements, as are common today, create severe counterparty risk. A prerequisite to prevent that kind of centralization from occurring would require the ability for bitcoin to be validated by a single consumer-level computer on a home broadband connection.
Here the author (using his wildly inflated requirement of 8GB blocks) creates a cloud of fear, uncertainty, and doubt that "Bitcoin will fail if it succeeds" - and the solution is, as any UASFer will tell you, that everyone needs to validate the chain on a weak fullnode running on a cheap computer with average internet connectivity. How's the bullshit detector going? Now the authors make a head-fake in the direction of honesty:
While it is possible that Moore’s Law will continue indefinitely, and the computational capacity for nodes to cost-effectively compute multigigabyte blocks may exist in the future, it is not a certainty.
Certainty? No. But, we should point out, the capacity to actually approach Visa is already at hand and in the next ten years is a near certainty in fact. But, surely, the solution that the authors propose is "around the corner" (- Luke-jr) ... /s . No, folks. Bigger blocks are the closest thing to "scaling certainty" that we have. More coming up....
To achieve much higher than 47,000 transactions per second using Bitcoin requires conducting transactions off the Bitcoin blockchain itself.
Now we get to the meat of the propaganda. To reach a number that Visa itself cannot sustain will "never" be possible on a blockchain. NEVER?? That's just false. In fact, I'll go on record as saying that Bitcoin will hit Visa-like levels of throughput onchain before Lightning Network ever meets the specification announced in this white paper.
It would be even better if the bitcoin network supported a near-unlimited number of transactions per second with extremely low fees for micropayments.
Yes, and it would also be even better if we had fusion and jetpacks. The thing is, these things that are promised as having been solved... have not been solved and no solution is in sight.
Many micropayments can be sent sequentially between two parties to enable any size of payments.
No, this is plain false. Once a channel's funds have been pushed to one side of the channel, no more micropayments in that direction can be made. This is called channel exhaustion and is one of the many unsolved problems of Lightning Network. But here the authors declare it as a solved problem. That's just false.
Micropayments would enable unbunding, less trust and commodification of services, such as payments for per-megabyte internet service. To be able to achieve these micropayment use cases, however, would require severely reducing the amount of transactions that end up being broadcast on the global Bitcoin blockchain
Now I'm confused. Is Lightning a solution for all the world's financial transactions or is it a solution for micropayments for things like pay-per-megabyte internet?
While it is possible to scale at a small level, it is absolutely not possible to handle a large amount of micropayments on the network or to encompass all global transactions.
There it is again, the promise that Lightning will "encompass all global transactions." Bullshit detector is now pegged in the red.
For bitcoin to succeed, it requires confidence that if it were to become extremely popular, its current advantages stemming from decentralization will continue to exist. In order for people today to believe that Bitcoin will work tomorrow, Bitcoin needs to resolve the issue of block size centralization effects; large blocks implicitly create trusted custodians and significantly higher fees. . (emphasis mine)
"Large" is a term of art which means "be afraid." In 1997, 8MB would have been an unthinkably large block. Now we run them live in production without breaking a sweat. "Large" is a number that changes over time. . By the time Bitcoin reaches "Visa-like levels of adoption" it's very likely that what we consider "large" today (32MB?) will seem absolutely puny. As someone who first started programming on a computer that had what was at the time industry-leading 64KB of RAM (after expanding the memory with an extra 16K add-on card) and a pair of 144KB floppy disks, all I can tell you is that humans are profoundly bad at estimating compounding effects and the author of the Lightning paper is flat-out banking on this to sell his snake oil. Now things are about to get really, really good.
A Network of Micropayment Channels Can Solve Scalability “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”
Here's where the formal line by line breakdown will come to an end, because this is where the trap the Lightning authors have set will close on them. Let's just read a bit further:
The above quote questions the relevance of unobserved events —if nobody hears the tree fall, whether it made a sound or not is of no consequence. Similarly, in the blockchain, if only two participants care about an everyday recurring transaction, it’s not necessary for all other nodes in the bitcoin network to know about that transaction
Here and elsewhere the author of the paper is implying that two parties can transact between them without having to announce the state of their channel to anyone else. We see this trope repeated time and time again by LN shills. "Not everyone in the world needs to know about my coffee transaction" they say, as if programmed. To see the obvious, glaring defect here requires an understanding of what Lightning Network purports to be able to do, one day, if it's ever finished. Payment channels, which Lightning is based on, have been around since Satoshi and are nothing new at all. It is and has always been possible to create a payment channel with your coffee shop, put $50 in it, and pay it out over a period of time until it's depleted and the coffee shop owner closes the channel. That's not rocket science, that's original Bitcoin. What Lightning purports to be able to do is to allow you to route a payment to someone else by using the funds in your coffee shop channel. IN this model, lets suppose Alice is the customer and Bob is the shop. Let's also suppose that Charlie is a customer of Dave's coffee shop. Ernie is a customer of both Bob and Dave's shop. Now, Alice would like to send money to Charlie. This could be accomplished by:
Alice moves funds to Bob
Bob moves funds to Ernie
Ernie moves funds to Dave
Dave moves funds to Charlie
or more simply, A-B-E-D-C Here's the catch. To pull this off, Alice has to be able to find the route to Charlie. This means that B-C-E and D all have to be online. So first off, all parties to a transaction and in a route must be online and we must know their current online status to even begin the process. Again: to use Lightning as described in its white paper requires everyone to always be online. If we accept centralized routing hubs, then only the hubs need to be online, but Lightning proposed to be decentralized, which means, essentially, everyone needs to always be online. Next, we need to know there are enough funds in all channels to perform the routing. Let's say Alice has $100 in her channel with Bob and wants to send this to Charlie. But Bob has only $5 in his channel with Ernie. sad trombone . The maximum that the route can support is $5. (Edit: not quite right, I cleaned this up here.) Notice something? Alice has to know the state of every channel through which she intends to route funds. When the author claims
if only two participants care about an everyday recurring transaction, it’s not necessary for all other nodes in the bitcoin network to know about that transaction
That's true -- unless you want to use the Lightning Network to route funds - and routing funds is the whole point. Otherwise, Lightning is just another word for "payment channels." The whole magic that they promised was using micropayments to route money anywhere. If you want to route funds, then you absolutely need to know the state of these channels. Which ones? That's the kicker - you essentially have to know all of them, to find the best route - and, sadly - it might be the case that no route is available - which requires an exhaustive search. And in fact, here we are over 18 months since this paper was published, and guess what? The problem of the "gossip protocol" - the very Achille's Heel of Bitcoin according to the author - has been solved with drum roll please --- the gossip protocol. (more info here) Because, when you break it down, in order for Alice to find that route to Charlie, she has to know the complete, current state of Bob-Ernie, Ernie-Dave, and Charlie-Dave. IF the Lightning Network doesn't keep *every participant up to date with the latest network state, it can't find a route. So the solution to the gossip protocol is in fact the gossip protocol. And - folks - this isn't news. Here's a post from ONE YEAR AGO explaining this very problem. But wait. It gets worse.... Let's circle around to the beginning. The whole point of Lightning, in a nutshell, can be described as fixing "Bitcoin can't scale because every node needs to know every transaction." It is true that every node needs to know every transaction. However: because we read the Satoshi white paper we know that not every user needs to run a node to validate his transactions. End-users should use SPV, which do not need to be kept up to date on everyone else's transactions. So, with onchain Bitcoin, you have something on the order of 10K "nodes" (validation nodes and miners) that must receive the "gossip" and the other million or so users just connect and disconnect when they need to transact. This scales. In contrast, with Lightning, every user needs to receive the "gossip." This does not scale. Note something else? Lightning purports to be an excellent solution to "streaming micropayments." But such micropayments would result in literally millions or billions of continuous state-changes to the network. There's no way to "gossip" millions of micropayment streams each creating millions of tiny transactions. Now, there is a way to make Lightning scale. It's called the "routing hub." In this model, end-users don't need to know the state of the network. Instead, they will form channels with trusted hubs who will perform the routing on their behalf. A simple example illustrates. IN our previous example, Alice wants to send money to Charlie, but has to find a route to him. An easy solution is to insert Frank. Frank holds 100K btc and can form bidirectional channels with Alice, Bob, Charlie, Dave, Ernie, and most everyone else too. By doing so, he places himself in the middle of a routing network, and then all payments come through Frank. Note that the only barrier to creating channels is capital. Lightning will scale, if we include highly-capitalized hubs as middlemen for everyone else to connect to. If the flaw here is not obvious then someone else can explain. Well. As Mark Twain once quipped, "if I had more time I would have written a shorter letter." I'll stop here. Hopefully this goes at least part of the way towards helping the community understand just how toxic and deceptive this white paper was to the community. Everyone on the Segwit chain has bet the entire future of Segwit-enabled Bitcoin on this unworkable house-of-cards sham. The rest of us, well, we took evasive action, and are just waiting for the rest of the gullible, brainwashed masses to wake up to their error, if they ever do. H/T: jonald_fyookball for provoking this Edit: fixed wrong names in my A-B-C-D-E example; formatting
Among the more frequently mentioned G+ alternatives at the Google+ Mass Migration community, and others, is MeWe with over 250 mentions. The site bills itself as "The Next-Gen Social Network" and the "anti-Facebook": "No Ads, No Political Bias, No Spyware. NO BS. It is headed by professed Libertarian CEO Mark Weinstein. As the site reveals no public user-generated content to non-members, it's necessary to create an account in order to get a full impression. I thought I'd provide an overview based on recent explorations. This report leads of with background on the company, though readers may find the report and analysis of specific groups on the site of interest.
Founder & CEO Mark Weinstein. Co-Founder & Chief Scientist, Jonathan Wolfe (no longer with company). Weinstein previously founded SuperFamily and SuperFriends, "at the turn of the millennium". Weinstein's MeWe biography lists articles published by The Mirror (UK), Huffington Post, USA Today, InfoSecurity Magazine, Dark Reading, and the Nation. His media appearances include MarketWatch, PBS, Fox News, and CNN. He's also the author of several personal-success books. His Crunchbase bio is a repeat of the MeWe content.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee: Inventor of the World Wide Web.
Jack Canfield: Legendary Founder, Chicken Soup For The Soul.
John Friedman: Founding Partner, Easton Capital.
Cullen Hoback: Director, Terms and Conditions May Apply.
Dianne Morrison: Partner, MorrisonMcNabb, LLC.
Colin Sebastian: Director, Equity Research/Internet, RW Baird.
Brett Shevack: CEO, Brand Initiatives; Former Vice Chair, BBDO.
Marci Shimoff: author, Happy for No Reason.
Sherry Turkle: Professor, MIT; author Alone Together.
Ownership & Investment
MeWe is the dba of Sgrouples, a private for-profit early-stage venture company based in Los Angeles, though with a Mountain View HQ and mailing address, 11-50 employees, with $10m in funding over five rounds, and a $20m valuation as of 2016. Sgrouples, Inc., dba MeWe Trust & Safety - Legal Policy c/o Fenwick West 801 California Street Mountain View, CA 94041 Crunchbase Profile. Founded: 2012 (source) Secured $1.2M in seed funding in 2014. 2016 valuation: $20m (source] Backers:
John Friedman, venture capitalist, founder & MD, Easton Capital, New York, NY.
Do you have friends still on Facebook? Share this link with them about Facebook wanting their banking information - tell them to move to MeWe now! No Ads. No Spyware. No Political Agenda. No Bias Algorithms. No Shadow Banning. No Facial Recognition.
MeWe provide several policy-related links on the site:
California Disclosures -- Do Not Track, 3rd-party cookies, and California Privacy Rights.
Your Identity: We protect it to the extent the law allows
Linking to Third-Party Sites: These are your decisions and responsibilities
Security: HTTPS and Encryption
Terms of Service
The ToS addresses:
Allowable Content and Acceptable Use
Who Our Services are For
User Content Ownership
Misuse of Usernames, Page names, Group names
Fake Accounts (pseudonyms allowed, misleading is not)
More on Spam
Our Commitment to Data Security
MeWe Content Data
MeWe Log Data
Your Data Portability
Deleting Your Account -- Right to Erasure
MeWe Secret Chat
MeWe Invitations and "Add Automatically"
Additional Policies for Pages, Groups, and Events Notifications of Requests for Account Information
Guidelines for Law Enforcement Seeking Customer Data (Worldwide)
Ownership In and To the Site and Services
Effective: November 6, 2018.
The FAQ addresses:
What is MeWe (emphasises privacy)
The Politics of MeWe ("absolutely no political agenda")
How can MeWe be free and make money? (additional services/freemium)
Which devices is MeWe available on? (Android, iOS)
What content can I share on MeWe (photos, videos, documents, voice messages, privacy mail, chats, gifs, memes, doodles)
What are some unique features of MeWe?
Who can see the posts I share?
Can I delete my MeWe account and is it easy to do this?
This emphasises that people are social cratures and private people by right. The service offers the power of self expression under an umbrella of safety. It notes that our innermost thoughts require privacy. Under "We aspire...":
MeWe is here to empower and enrich your world. We challenge the status quo by making privacy, respect, and safety the foundations of an innovatively designed, easy-to-use social experience.
Totalling 182 words.
Privacy Bill of Rights
A ten-item statement of principles (possibly inspired by another document, it might appear):
You own your personal information & content. It is explicitly not ours.
You will never receive a targeted advertisement or 3rd party content based on what you do or say online. We think that's creepy.
You see every post in timeline order from your friends, family & groups. We do not manipulate, filter, or change the order of your content or what you see.
Permissions & privacy are your rights. You control them.
You control who can access your content.
You control what, if anything, others can see in member searches.
Your privacy means we do not share your personal information with anyone.
Your emojis are for you and your friends. We do not monitor or mine your data.
Your face is your business. We do not use facial recognition technology.
You have the right to delete your account and take your content with you at any time.
There are a few mentions of MeWe in the press, some listed on the company's website, others via web search.
The following articles are linked directly from MeWe's Press page:
The page also lists a "Privacy Revolution Required Reading" list of 20 articles all addressing Facebook privacy gaffes in the mainstream press (Wired, TechCrunch, Fortune, Gizmodo, The Guardian, etc.). There are further self-reported mentions in several of the company's PR releases over the years.
Facebook Alternative MeWe Raises $5.2M, Los Angeles Business Journal (July 7, 2018) "The latest round, as well as MeWe’s total $10 million in fundraising, was predominantly backed by celebrity investors, such as author Marci Shimoff, Rachel Roy, and Lynda Weinman, founder of Lynda.com, which sold to Linkedin in 2015 for $1.5 billion. Jack Canfield, creator of the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book series, also invested in MeWe."
Is building a Facebook alternative worth the effort? MeWe thinks soVentureBeat (July 5, 2018) "[T]here are still companies hoping to make their mark in the social networking realm with “Facebook alternatives.” One of those is MeWe, a “next-generation” social network that positions itself as the anti-Facebook: “Your private life is not for sale. No ads. No Spyware. No BS,” its website proclaims." Continues to mention "modest $5.2 million" funding round. Also a "sister product", MeWePRO, a Slack competitor.
Startup MeWe Launches Free, 'No Ads' Social NetworkeWeek (March 16, 2016) "MeWe, a new network engineered with its users' data privacy built in, is betting that a lot of people will say yes to both of those questions. The Mountain View, Calif.-based startup, whose parent company is Sgrouples.com, launched its freely available social network out of beta March 9 with more than 200,000 members already using it.... Sir Tim Berners-Lee, co-architect of the World Wide Web, found out about MeWe on his own and approached the company about getting involved."
Facebook Alternative MeWe closes $5.2M Series A Yahoo/PR Newswire (July 5, 2018). "The investment brings MeWe's total funding to $10 million, to support the engineering of MeWe and the enterprise version MeWePRO.... The company has relied on high net worth individuals for all of its funding including Lynda Weinman, founder of Lynda.com ...; Marci Shimoff, a #1 New York Times bestselling author ...; Rachel Roy...; and Jack Canfield."
Exactis Data Leak 2018: 340 Million Records ExposedInvestorPlace (June 29, 2018) "'Today's cookies can link your mobile phone to your laptop, to your home monitoring devices, and much, much more. Creepy? Scary? Orwellian? Yes, yes, yes,' Mark Weinstein, the privacy expert and founder of social media company MeWe, told MarketWatch. 'So imagine that Exactis, like Facebook, knows everything about you — really.'"
MeWe Raises $3M in FundingFinSMEs (March 9, 2016) "Sgrouples, Inc., the Mountain View, CA-based developer of MeWe, a social network with neither ads nor tracking, raised $3m in funding."
This section is a basic rundown of the user-visible site technology.
The site is not natively accessible from a mobile Web browser as it is overlayed with a promotion for the mobile application instead. Selecting "Desktop View" in most mobile browsers should allow browser-based access.
There are both Android and iOS apps for MeWe. I've used neither of these, though the App store entries note:
MeWe Android 4.4 rating (13.1k ratings). Permissions: Contacts (read), Location (approximate/precise), SMS (receive), Phone (read status & identity), Photos/Media/Files (read, modify, & delete contents), Storage (read, modify, or delete), Camera (take pictures/videos), Microphone (record audio), Device ID & Call Info (read status & identity), and numerous elements under Other.
Crunchbase cites 209,220 mobile downloads over the past 30 days (via Apptopia), an 80.78% monthly growth rate, from Google Play.
Either selecting "View Desktop" or navigating with a Desktop browser to https://www.mewe.com your are presented with a registration screen, with the "About", "Privacy Bill of Rights", "MeWe Challenge", and a language selector across the top of the page. Information requested are first and last name, phone or email, and a password. Pseudonymous identities are permitted, though this isn't noted on the login screen. Returning members can use the "Member Log In" button. The uMatrix Firefox extension reveals no third-party content: all page elements are served from mewe.com, img.mewe.com, cdn.mewe.com, or ws.mewe.com. (In subsequent browsing, you may find third-party plugins from, for example, YouTube, for videos, or Giphy, for animated GIFs.) The web front-end is nginx. The site uses SSL v3, issued by DigiCert Inc. to Sgrouples, Inc.
The onboarding experience is stark. There is no default content presented. A set of unidentified icons spans the top of the screen, these turn out to be Home, Chats, Groups, Pages, and Events. New users have to, somehow, find groups or people to connect with, and there's little guidance as to how to do this.
Generally there is a three panel view, with left- and right-hand sidebars of largely navigational or status information, and a central panel with main content. There are also pop-up elements for chats, an omnipresent feature of the site. Controls display labels on some devices and/or resolutions. Controls do not provide tooltips for navigational aid.
My Cloud - Seamlessly organize all your content in My Cloud; it's your personal cloud. My Cloud offers an interactive dashboard for you to control everything you’ve posted or shared - making it simple to delete or reshare.
Unique profiles - Be yourself, free from any tracking and spying. Customize your profile for every group you create or join.
Voice integration (on any or all content) - Post pictures, videos, or documents and include a voice message. Respond to a shared post or just chat. MeWe’s voice integration works for you and your contacts throughout the entire platform.
Universal tagging - This is a new, convenient way to sort and organize all the content you receive and share, making it easy to find everything, anytime.
Enhanced permission control (patent issued) - Manage permissions on a granular level and decide exactly who sees what. You can also remove yourself from the search directory, make yourself invisible to other members online, and much more.
Much More – join MeWe today and take a look inside! MeWe is the next-gen social networking experience designed for you to have fun, stay in touch, collaborate, organize, and simplify.
A key aspect of any social network is its community. Some of the available or ascertained information on this follows.
Weinstein claims a "million+ following inside MeWe.com" on Twitter. The largest visible groups appear to have a maximum of around 15,000 members , for "Awesome gifs". "Clean Comedy" rates 13,350, and the largest open political groups, 11,000+ members. This compares to Google+ which has a staggering, though Android-registrations-inflated 3.3 billion profiles, and 7.9 million communities, though the largest of these come in at under 10 million members. It's likely that MeWe's membership is on the whole more more active than Google+'s, where generally-visible posting activity was limited to just over 9% of all profiles, and the active user base was well under 1% of the total nominal population.
MeWe do not publish active users (e.g., MUA / monthly active users) statistics.
MeWe is principally a group-oriented discussion site -- interactions take place either between individuals or within group contexts. Virtually all discovery is group-oriented. The selection and dynamics of groups on the site will likely strongly affect user experience, so exploring the available groups and their characteristics is of interest. "MeWe has over 60,000 open groups" according to its FAQ. The Open groups -- visible to any registered MeWe user, though not to the general public Web -- are browsable, though sections and topics must be expanded to view the contents: an overview isn't immediately accessible. We provide a taste here. A selection of ten featured topics spans the top of the browser. As I view these, they are:
Health & Fitness
Cars & Motorcycles
Fashion and Beauty
Specific groups may appear in multiple categories. The top Groups within these topics have, variously, 15,482, 7,738, 15,482 (dupe), 7,745, 8,223, 8,220, 1,713, 9,527, 2,716, and 1,516 members. Listings scroll at length -- the Music topic has 234 Groups, ranging in size from 5 to 5,738 members, with a median of 59, mean of 311.4, and a 90%ile of 743.5. Below this is a grid of topics, 122 in all, ranging from Activism to Wellness, and including among them. A selected sample of these topics, with top groups listed members in (parens), follows:
Activism: QAnon+++ (2,572), PATRIOT PREPPERS USA (2,430), Deplorables Republic (2,48), The War Drummer (1,898), Patriots for a United America. (1894), Anonymous (1,700).
Alternative Energy: Reiki, Crystals, and alternative healing (2,114), 💜Starseeds & Empaths💜 (345), Living in Colour (365).
Alternative Lifestyle: Natural Healing and Home Remedies (3,045), Backyard Farming of All Things (2,696), WeTheSheeple (2,251).
Alumni Connections: Google Plus Refugees (271), Google+ Refugees (186), Frog Pond (156), Carlsbad NM High School alumni (57).
Animals: I Love My Dog (4,421), Pussy Shots (4,619).
Astronomy: Spherical Earth Truth, Flat Earth is Wrong (278), Nibiru, Nemesis, Hercolobus, The Destroyer (187).
Biology: Trees (344), Field of Birds (104), Patriots of Australia (51).
Personal Improvement: For Introverts. (1,214), Anarchy, Philosophy, Psychology, and Spirituality (679), Positive Affirmations (447).
Philosophy: In5d Esoteric Metaphysical and Spiritual Database (1,764), Thought Bouncing (1,137), Obtectivists - Galts Gulch - Ayn Rand fans (561).
Poetry: Dead Poest (1,407), Palacio de Poetry (451), Poets Corner (412).
Politics: Donald J. Trump 2016 - Present (11,486), The Conservative's Hangout (8,345), Qanon Follow The White Rabbit (5,600), Drain The Swamp (4,978), Libertarians (4,528), United We Stand Trump2020 (4,216).
Pop Culture: The Loftus Party (116), The Walking Dead: The Stalking Dead (100), Tyler, Texas (71).
Privacy: Join the Open/Privacy Movement (3974), Kingsport tn gun trader (1,157), Safer Computing (555).
To be clear: whilst I've not included every topic, I've sampled a majority of them above, and listed not an arbitrary selection, but the top few Groups under each topic.
Google Plus expats (1,862)
Google+ Refugees (186)
G+ Refugees (101)
my Google+ expatriates
The Google Plus expats group seems the most active of these by far.
It's curious that MeWe make a specific point in their FAQ that:
At MeWe we have absolutely no political agenda and we have a very straightforward Terms of Service. MeWe is for all law-abiding people everywhere in the world, regardless of political, ethnic, religious, sexual, and other preferences.
There are 403 political groups on MeWe. I won't list them all here, but the first 100 or so give a pretty clear idea of flavour. Again, membership is in (parentheses). Note that half the total political Groups memberships are in the first 21 groups listed here, the first 6 are 25% of the total.
Donald J. Trump 2016 - Present (11486)
The Conservative's Hangout (8345)
Qanon Follow The White Rabbit (5600)
Drain The Swamp (4978)
United We Stand Trump2020 (4216)
The Right To Self Defense (3757)
Alternative Media (3711)
Hardcore Conservative Patriots for Trump (3192)
Bastket Of Deplorables4Trump! (3032)
Return of the Republic (2509)
Infowars Chat Room Unofficial (2159)
Donald Trump Our President 2017-2025 (2033)
Berners for Progress (1963)
Sean Hannity Fans (1901)
The American Conservative (1839)
I Am The NRA (1704)
Tucker Carlson Fox News (1645)
We Love Donald Trump (1611)
MAGA - Make America Great Again (1512)
news from the front (1337)
Basket of Deplorables (1317)
Payton's Park Bench (1283)
Convention of States (1282)
Britons For Brexit (1186)
MoJo 5.0 Radio (1180)
MeWe Free Press (1119)
The Constitutionally Elite (1110)
WOMEN FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP (1032)
AMERICANS AGAINST ISIS and OTHER ENEMIES (943)
#WalkAway Campaign (894)
ALEX JONES (877)
The Lion Is Awake ! (854)
We Support Donald Trump! (810)
The Stratosphere Lounge (789)
TRUMP-USA-HANDS OFF OUR PRESIDENT (767)
Official Tea Party USA (749)
Mojo50 Jackholes (739)
Yes Scotland (697)
"WE THE DEPLORABLE" - MOVE ON SNOWFLAKE! (688)
Judge Jeanine Pirro Fans (671)
Ted Cruz for President (650)
No Lapdog Media (647)
Q Chatter (647)
Daily Brexit (636)
Tucker Carlson Fox News (601)
The Trumps Storm Group (600)
QAnon-Patriots WWG1WGA (598)
100% American (569)
Ladies For Donald Trump (566)
Deep State (560)
In the Name of Liberty (557)
Material Planet (555)
Trump NRA Free Speech Patriots on MeWe Gab.ai etc (546)
Magna Carta Group (520)
Constitutional Conservatives (506)
Question Everything (503)
Conspiracy Research (500)
Bill O'Reilly Fans (481)
Conservative Misfit's (479)
Canadian politics (478)
HARDCORE DEPLORABLES (454)
Tampa Bay Trump Club (445)
UK Politics (430)
Bongino Fan Page (429)
Radical Conservatives (429)
RESIST THE RESISTANCE (419)
The Deplorables (409)
America's Freedom Fighters (401)
Politically Incorrect & Proud (399)
CONSERVATIVES FOR AMERICA ! (385)
Political satire (383)
RISE OF THE RIGHT (371)
UK Sovereignty,Independence,Democracy -Everlasting (366)
The Patriots Voting Coalition (359)
End The Insanity (349)
Coming American Civil War! (345)
Constitutional Conservatives (343)
United Nations Watch (342)
A Revival Of The Critical Thinking Union (337)
The New Libertarian (335)
Libertarian Party (official ) (333)
DDS United (Duterte Die-hard Supporters) (332)
American Conservative Veterans (331)
America Needs Donald Trump (326)
The UKIP Debating Society (321)
Coalition For Trump (310)
FRIENDS THAT LIKE JILL STEIN AND THE GREEN PARTY (292)
2nd Amendment (287)
Never Forget #SethRich (286)
Green Party Supporters 2020 (283)
It seems there is relatively little representation from the left wing, or even the centre, of the political spectrum. A case-insensitive match for "liberal" turns up:
104: Conservatives Against Liberal Beliefs C.A.L.I.B (273)
184: Progressive and Liberal Politics (119)
301: Liberalism is a Mental Disorder (33)
302: Resistance Against Liberal Socialism (33)
358: NOT For Liberals (17)
367: Drinking Liberally Houston (14)
400: Stephanie Miller's Sexy Liberal Army (6)
Mainstream political parties are little represented, though again, the balance seems skewed searching on "(democrat|republic|gop)":
391: Saving The Republic: Video News & Opinion (8)
The terms "left" and "right" provide a few matches, not all strictly political-axis aligned:
7: The Right To Self Defense (3757)
80: RISE OF THE RIGHT (371)
150: POLITICS ON THE LEFT (156)
157: 1st Amendment Rights Protected By The 2nd Amendmen (141)
209: On The Left With Jeremy Corbyn (84)
262: Eyes-Left Labour & PP - Social Media (49)
300: Gather Left (33)
385: Defend Washington State Gun Rights (9)
390: Left Coast Conservatives (8)
Socialism and Communism also warrant a few mentions:
121: Revolutionary Socialists United (204)
216: Socialist Thought (79)
220: Stories Of Communism (76)
262: Eyes-Left Labour & PP - Social Media (49)
288: Snuggly Wuggly Socialists (38)
302: Resistance Against Liberal Socialism (33)
And there are some references to green, laboulabor parties:
97: FRIENDS THAT LIKE JILL STEIN AND THE GREEN PARTY (292)
100: Green Party Supporters 2020 (283)
262: Eyes-Left Labour & PP - Social Media (49)
320: Green Party of Ohio Issues & Discussion Group (29)
Whilst there may not be a political agenda, there does appear to be at least a slight political bias to the site. And a distinctive skew on many other topical subjects. Those seeking new homes online may wish to take this into account.
Various typos and tagging corrections. 2018-11-29 - 30
Added G+MM references count for MeWe to lede paragraph. 2018-12-2
PGA: No Frills DFS Data - Honda Classic Recap & Discussion of Golf Metrics
https://rotogrinders.com/blog-posts/pga-no-frills-dfs-data-honda-classic-recap-discussion-of-golf-metrics-2945909 So, this slate was fantastic. I had a player pool of 22 guys and only 3 missed the cut with another as an MDF. While I only had 1 guy in the top 5 this time, it was one of my most exposed players in Lucas Glover. I had 3 more at T9 so 4 of the top 11 guys and a bunch more T20 or better. I didn't have any lineups packed with the top 5 so didn't have any huge individual scores but when most lineups went 6/6 or 5/6 with a bunch of T20 or better players, it's always going to be a very good week despite not hitting yahtzee. Again, to recap, here was my player pool in order of exposure. T30 Justin Thomas T4 Lucas Glover MDF Graeme McDowell T9 Sergio Garcia T59 Zach Johnson T36 Daniel Berger T16 Michael Thompson T59 Vaughn Taylor T36 Gary Woodland T51 Russell Knox CUT Adam Scott T20 Chesson Hadley CUT Luke List T16 Billy Horschel T20 Brian Stuard T36 Byeong Hun An CUT Cameron Smith T36 J.T. Poston T9 Jason Kokrak T9 Jim Furyk T20 Matt Wallace T20 Talor Gooch My model once again pushed Furyk (it tends to really like him, Chez Reavie and Phil Michelson) but this time it wasn't overboard about it. At the end I didn't use him in any of the purely model driven lines but ended up trusting the model when I created the "homer line" where I choose 1-2 guys I really want added in and exclude a few I'm already heavy on so I could jam in Adam Scott again and the lineup said fill it out with Furyk. Was pleasantly surprised with a T9 from the guy and it will give me a little bit more faith when the model recommends him. Now back to Adam Scott, this is why I limit my ability to directly construct a lineup to only 1 dart. The only things in Scott's favor were course history, tout coverage and Vegas odds. Everything else said he's a fine golfer but way too overpriced and since my model works rather holistically, all those things were already accounted for so I already had a smittering of him out there. Yet I bought into the narrative and jammed him in there. I don't regret the decision, I'd do it again. But this is exactly why I build a model, because if I built my 10x gpp lineups by hand, I'd likely have gone with him in a lot more lineups because his narrative was very compelling. The other guys to miss the cut in Smith and List, well, I stand by those choices as well. Half the field needs to be cut, so even if everyone golfed the game of their lives you'd still get half the field get cut despite hitting peak form. Kind of like if everyone went to an Ivy League then we'd have Yale PhDs flipping burgers kind of scenario. In short, don't worry about it. Even the best golfers will miss the cut. You may also recall the model was suggesting Ortiz and Blayne and I vetoed them because I didn't feel the data was reliable. They both missed the cut. I would have been about 1/3 exposed to each had I not manually sifted through and error checked my lineups, something I sometimes don't get a chance to do because I didn't start running the model until near lock. It would have been disastrous had I not seen those unfamiliar names and decided to take a closer look. My cash games went exceedingly well as I chose one of my lineups that did fairly well to use in cash. I cashed in every 50/50 and double up (sometimes outright winning them) and won all but 2 of my h2hs. There's a good story here about why, despite that I play most of my volume in cash, that I go with only 1 lineup. There's one specific player I've been matching up with quite a bit. It started out in lower stakes and I believe he's now tilted and trying to recover because he keeps upping the stakes but I keep taking em. This past slate he posted a $100 h2h and I took it. He then matched up with me in another one for $5. He decided to go with 2 lineups, one of them performed pretty poorly, another would have done very well in a GPP. Given how pleased I am writing about this, I bet you can imagine which one of those I lost and which I won. This is why I just create one cash lineup and stick with it because I've been on his side of things in the past. If he wins both then it wouldn't matter, if he loses both then it wouldn't matter. If he loses the $5 wins the $100 it doesn't matter... but if he loses the $100 but wins the $5 then he goes on crazy monkey tilt. It doesn't matter at all that mathematically speaking it doesn't make a difference (so long as both lineups had equal assumed expectations), emotions still run high in this and unless you're doing very high volume at leveled stakes (not 2 matchups of 20x difference in size) and not going to track the individual results but look at the big picture then it's fine. But nobody does this, we aren't androids, when you win you win, when you lose you lose. This is why although I put way more in cash than gpp and bad cash lineup can sink me, I'm still taking a binary approach with cash games. I'm not taking a 75% indifference with a 25% chance of losing my god damn mind because the h2h that mattered was the one that failed. Fail like a stoic with a single cash lineup that gives 100% indifference. Now then, some people have been asking me to go into more detail about about the data that use to create the lineups. I'll just reiterate again that I'm never going to explain how the sausage is made. But I will be serving plenty of sausage and give you a general idea what animal it came from. Today I'm going to talk about specifically how most of my research really demonstrates just how stupid most golf stats are. I really want to be 100% sure and am in the process of scraping an absurdly large database containing several decades. And since I'm doing this on my free time, it'll take some time before I parse and analyze everything. I don't want to make the very bold claims I already believe to true without further studying the matter and really ensuring my thoughts are real and it's not the product of bad calculations or insufficient sample size. But, what I've discovered thus far, is that all those stats are just window dressing. Saying someone led the field shots gained x is fundamentally no different than saying "they did well and had a good tournament." Things like shots gained track results not process. So it's much like tracking wins and rbis. Yes, the best hitters and the best pitchers in baseball often lead the league in those metrics, but we all know why they aren't good predictive tools. For example, when my beloved Red Sox signed Dante Bichette in 2001, there was all this talk about him having led the major leagues in RBIs the past few seasons. He just had his epic year, two years ago driving in 133 runs and the year before got 90. While he was aging and slowing down, I distinctly remember a lot confusion over why we signed this elite hitter but then used him in a platoon. I'd be at Fenway and as the Red Sox lost, people would openly question the wisdom of having one of the best hitters in the game ride it out on the bench. This was 2 years before Moneyball was published and while front offices knew the reality of the situation (third team in 2 years and out of the league after that season), the average hard core Red Sox fan would just scratch their head wondering why we didn't give Dante a little more of a chance to show he still had it. I feel this is the situation today with golf and golf statistics while what we have today is an improvement of the past - we take it for granted that it comes with the same authority as so wOBA or usage. We know that the winners won, but we don't know much else and shots gained is basically more or less a fancy way to say someone did a better job. If someone gets a birdie on a par 4, their SG will improve by about... drumroll please... 1. So you could just simply compare scores - IE look at end of tournament standings. Yes, there is definitely some nuance and they do factor in the relative difficulty of that specific par 4 and if I didn't feel like there was some actionable data out there I wouldn't bother with any of this. But I believe that way too much weight is put into this, whether I'm right or wrong, I will follow up on this in much more detail once it's no longer a hunch but rather indisputable. The reason why gathering this data is difficult is that it's restricted - which itself should be a bit of a red flag. I'll also be reading "Every Shot Counts" soon, which is a book written by the creator of the Shots Gained metric. I really don't want to make any further and sweeping judgements until I read the author's long and detailed explanation of the metric. But really, we can all see the smoking gun https://registrations.pgatourhq.com/forms/shotlinkintel/ for ourselves to see that the process by which they used to record shots gained is kept a secret and they don't disclose the data. Even prior to them ghosting us, access to the statistics themselves was restricted - you need to apply for access. The twitter account still exists and it's like everyone vanished into thin air, the last tweet https://twitter.com/ShotLink/status/893531791297978368 was well over a year ago and simply a picture of a golf course as if nothing was about the change. Also, the PGA still insists "All strokes gained statistics are calculated using ShotLink, the PGA TOUR's real-time scoring system powered by CDW. https://www.pgatour.com/news/2016/05/31/strokes-gained-defined.html But since it's so secretive, we really don't know much about it. I'm not talking conspiracies or anything, they could have a very good data collection system that's phenomenal, but the very notion that the PGA doesn't even bother telling anyone how the data is collected and yet nobody is asking any questions should tell you this isn't exactly the most objective market. So basically, I'm very confused by Shots Gained as a metric, can find very little information on it and what I can find is out of date and contradictory and seems to imply it's more or less no different than a nuanced version of looking at the final standings. I want to say it's bullshit, but I'm just reserving final judgement and simply labeling as sketchy for now. So then we should look at results yeah? Yes, but this is largely what pricing is based upon, so not much of an edge there. So shall we look at ranking? Yes, let's take a look at OWGR. When I first started with golf, I knew nothing and had nothing to base anything on other than seeing their pricing and recent point accumulations. Since Tiger Woods wasn't playing in that event, it was all entirely new names, just names I'd hear in passing while switching off ESPN as they were starting their golf coverage. So naturally, when I saw each golfer had a world ranking, I viewed that as a cheat sheet. From the very beginning, one of the formulas I've used to develop lineups was as simple as putting together the golfers within budget that collectively had the lowest aggregate world ranking number. Why am I suddenly speaking in such specifics you ask? Because it's a horrible DFS metric and nobody else is doing it (I track gpps lineups to see what others are doing, there are a few of these more simple formulas that pop up periodically, this is not one of them) so it's not exactly as if disclosing this information will make my opponents that much stronger. My OWGR lineup has in fact been the single worst performing in cash and the 2nd to worst performing in gpps of the dozens of lineup models I have. Thankfully, I don't play it because it's so bad but I keep tracking it and recording how it would have performed just for fun these days. The only lineup that performed worse than the OWGR lineup in GPPS, well that one heavily factors in OWGR as well :). OWGR is just a terrible, terrible metric for DFS. Yes, it will give you the cream of the crop like the Dustin Johnsons, but you can never afford a lineup of Dustin Johnsons, you'll have to start digging deeper and pulling up min priced guys like Satoshi Kodaira - mr bitcoin himself. Someone who if you've been reading my stuff, is the entire reason I stopped playing any lineup that had OWGR as a primary indicator. Now Satoshi, despite being a pretty horrible DFS play most of the time, is a great example of everything wrong with OWGR. His Fedex Cup rank is currently 160 and has never been better than 93, but his world rank is perplexingly 59. In 2018, he played 18 tournaments and finished under par only twice. He missed more cuts than he made as well. I could be mistaken, but it seems that he got into some majors via a sponsor in 2017 and 2018 and managed to do alright in them. He also ended up winning one of the tournaments he played in last year. When researching OWGR to figure out how it came about and how it is calculated, I learned a lot. Basically, it's nothing more than party planning. A golf course in Scotland wanted to figure out whom to invite to compete in their tournament and invented the system. It weighs the strength of the field very heavily in rewarding points- and the strength of the field is - yup - you guessed it - determined by people already ranked by the system. So if Dustin Johnson cloned himself and kept playing tournaments exclusive to him and his equally ranked clones, they'd forever hold onto the top rankings. If OWGR was an excel sheet, the creator would get an error popup upon loading it up each day due to circular references. So, Satoshi I'm sure is a great golfer, anyone there should be, but his ranking is very artificially skewered up because he managed to make the cut and finish around 50th in some really packed majors that had a lot of heavy hitters. In fact, the ranking system is so completely absurd, that any millionaire can get themselves world ranked pretty easily. They just need to do something like sponsor a Pro-Am at some odd but counted tour like the Alps Tour and then invite the guys ranked 1st, 2nd and 3rd to compete and filling out the rest of the field with toddlers and yourself. You would be assured a 4th place finish. Yet you didn't beat any of the top 3 golfers in the world. You just beat 100 toddlers. Yet you still get the high ranking because they get 45, 37 and 32 respective points for strength of field, which is greater than if you had a tournament of the golfers ranked 93rd through 200 playing. Finishing 4th behind the only 3 adults and beating 100 toddlers has the same impact as finishing 4th in a field of 107 of the greatest golfers in the world. http://www.owgr.com/about Finishing 4th and beating 100 toddlers will grant you the same amount of points as finishing 20th at a major. That's how utterly stupid this rating system is. Obviously I'm using some extreme edge cases, it's very likely they would see through that scheme and not count it, but you get the idea of how inconsistent the system is. If you simply altered the PGA tour to the top 3 golfers and then a bunch of amateurs, those amateurs would soon arbitrarily be some of the highest rated in the world themselves, thus feeding itself. This is why I call my OWGR model Ouroboros https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ouroboros Dustin Johnson doesn't play defense. He isn't jumping out of the sand trap and blocking your approach shot. Him finishing in front of you has zero impact on how well you performed compared to him. Yet if you simply show up and play in enough events where he easily beats you, you'll end up with a solid world ranking. This is an absurd system. When I researched OWGR, I was simply shocked it was how some random guy created an invitation list for a tournament and because golf feels the need to be so full of tradition they just made that the official world rankings. Don't get me wrong, the top OWGR guys are all very good DFS plays because they are winners. However, after a certain point you're not dealing with anything at all reliable. I'm not sure at which point it gets diluted, but after a certain point, that metric becomes just as unstable as Bitcoin. I find it very amusing that the indicator that showed me the flaws with OWGR after a certain stage is named Satoshi. I'm also fully aware of how difficult it is to quantify something so intangible as golf. However, there's no doubt in my mind that there must be a significantly better manner than what is currently used. But, whether or not my hunch is right or wrong, we still have a system where the data is all secretly gathered and stored by the PGA. That's something everyone should be aware of as they set their lineups. Good luck everyone. Will dive deeper into the shots gained after I get around to buying and reading the book and finally finish analyzing that data. I could very well come back here in two weeks apologizing for my ignorance that gave me the gall to question such genius. In the meantime, good luck grinding out there and I'll post again in a few days with my player pool for the next event.
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