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Weekly Roundup, Sept 7: Later, Gator

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It’s been a bad week, and the Internet is still mourning. No, we’re not talking about Bitcoin’s thousand-dollar plunge or Ethereum’s drop to all-year lows, but a greater tragedy: Burt Reynolds, the silver-whiskered hero of the silver screen, who died at 82 earlier this week.

We’ve had a busy time at Crypto Briefing. Between incessant watch parties for Deliverance and Hooper, we’ve also managed to squeeze in reports on on the Hypernet ICO and Monero’s price rise, while finding you the best deals on Crypto, as well as how to spend it on a Bugatti.

But, just like a favorite movie, there are plenty of moments that you don’t notice on the first viewing. Here are some of the other stories from this week:


Goldie and the Bandit

Goldman Sachs caused a minor landslide this week when rumors broke that the Investment Bank was abandoning plans for a Bitcoin desk, dashing long-held hopes for mass adoption from the world of traditional finance.

Except, not quite. The original report from Business Insider was later dismissed by Goldman figures as “fake news.” It has since emerged that rumors of Goldman’s “Bitcoin Trading” were exaggerations, as were reports of the bank’s plans to abandon them.

Chief Financial Officer Marty Chavez clarified at Tech Crunch Disrupt that Goldman’s original plans were unchanged: to offer Bitcoin-related derivatives contracts, without actual bitcoins:

These are derivatives, over the counter derivatives….They’re settled in U.S. dollars and the reference price is the Bitcoin U.S. dollar price established by a set of exchanges, the same one that’s referenced in the futures contracts…. From the perspective of custody, we don’t yet see an institutional grade custody cases custodian solution for Bitcoin.

As a plot twist to an already-contrived drama, the story followed very shortly after an unknown investor made a heavy short bet, effectively wagering millions of dollars that the price would go down. We’re not in the business of sharing conspiracy theories, and on this one we don’t have to—the entire Internet donned their gold-foil hats to find the perpetrator.

And, although we’d never accuse Goldman Sachs of market manipulation, well, it wouldn’t be the first time.


Wright Lightning

We’ve tried to stay out of the Bitcoin Cash family feud, but that’s getting harder and harder as the divorce appears more likely. Like most people on the rebound, BCH has been hanging out with the wrong guys, and Mr. (sorry, Doctor) Wright is turning out to be a patent troll.

In the latest episode of the high-pitched drama, Roger Ver and Craig Wright have stopped talking, and Dr. Wright has threatened to to hijack cryptocurrency in the most boring way possible—through patent applications.

It’s hardly surprising that the man who once claimed to be Satoshi Nakomoto would now try to claim broad ownership over a number of blockchain applications, including some that predated his company by several years. It’s particularly ironic, considering that Nakomoto—the real one—put Bitcoin under an MIT License, probably in order to prevent these kinds of legal shenanigans.

With apologies to the writers of Hooper: “If Craig Wright wanted to make somebody look like an a**hole, he did! That was him.”


Kraken Bull Run?

(Or not.) Captain Chaos came to Halifax this week, visiting Kraken’s offices and telling at least 57 employees that their services were no longer required. Here’s how one redditor described the scene on /r/Halifax:

10 AM, mandatory meeting. Security everywhere, required to hand in door fobs. Sitting in lunchroom, get told that due to volumes being down (both trading and support ticket), and in light of the opening of a new office in Asia, we need to reduce costs, and layoff of recently hired (<3 months, approx 57 people) was not enough.

Rumors of a security breach remain unconfirmed.

The author has investments in Bitcoin, Ethereum and Burt Reynolds’ movies on VHS. 

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