Mozilla Co-Founder Calls Crypto Donors Planet-Incinerating Ponzi Grifters

The San Francisco-headquartered non-profit organization – Mozilla Foundation – which supports the development of the Firefox browser, announced accepting donations in Dogecoin (DOGE) using BitPay. While the wider community didn’t react well, the harshes critic was none other than one of its co-founders.

Mozilla Co-founder is Not a Crypto Fan

In a fierce Twitter thread, Jamie Zawinsk, aka JWZ, blasted the browser maker for accepting “planet incinerating cryptocurrency donations.” The reason behind his harsh words is the environmental impact of these digital assets – a common criticism.

For context, JWZ co-founded Mozzila in 1998 and also coined the term “Mozilla” before exiting the project a year later. Mozilla went on to release the popular Firefox browser in 2004.

However, it wasn’t until a decade later that it started accepting cryptocurrency donations via Coinbase. Over the next couple of years, Mozilla included other cryptocurrencies for donations – Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, Litecoin, etc.

“A God Damned Planet Killer”

Zawinski is currently a nightclub owner. But that hasn’t stopped the former programmer from engaging with the tech world. In fact, he even has a Dunning-Krugerrands tag on his blog for cryptocurrency-related posts.


And he has some harsh words for the crypto industry. In one of the posts, Zawinski mentions that the business model of the crypto industry is “unrealistic and ham-handed if it was a villain on Captain Planet: they manufacture only POLLUTION, nothing else, and they turn that into money.” He goes on to add,

“They call it a ‘currency’ but the only thing you can do with it pays ransom after your computer was hacked! You can’t even use it to buy porn! And make no mistake, if you can’t use a thing to buy porn, that thing is not a currency. Cryptocurrencies are Itchy & Scratchy Money.”

Here’s what Dogecoin co-creator Billy Markus had to say about the whole fiasco:

However, cryptocurrency isn’t the only sector he is against. When asked about his views on Web 3.0, Zawinski responded:

“There are no technicals, it’s a buzzword in search of a definition, and the definition most are latching onto seems to be “but what if more cryptocurrency???”


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Shark Tank Star Kevin O’Leary Says This Nascent Sector of the Crypto Market Could Outshine Bitcoin

Billionaire and Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary says an emerging region of the crypto industry has the potential to surpass Bitcoin (BTC).

In a new interview with CNBC, the business magnate says that he believes non-fungible tokens (NFTs) could eventually outshine BTC due to their real-world use cases.

“You’re going to see a lot of movement in terms of doing authentication and insurance policies and real estate transfer taxes all online over the next few years, making NFTs a much bigger, more fluid market potentially than just Bitcoin alone.”

NFTs are unique virtual tokens that authenticate ownership of certain digital assets, such as sports memorabilia and art. However, new NFT marketplaces such as 4K are attempting to tokenize ownership of real-life physical assets, something O’Leary says is key to the industry’s growth.

In an interview with Forbes, O’Leary says he’s invested in an NFT project working to tokenize white papers for the watch industry.

“[NFTs] offer so much value around authentication, inventory management, and all kinds of use cases in different asset classes.

I prefer NFTs tied to hard assets, physical assets; the one that I’m working on developing a white paper for is the watch industry.

I’ve invested in that because we have so much fraud in watch collecting, which we can eliminate by using some very high-resolution scanning of dials linked to NFTs.”

According to data from the NFT resource website, NFTs have thus far seen just over $16 billion in sales since 2017. However, the overwhelming majority of them came in mid-2021, when the sector experienced a massive boom.

BTC is exchanging hands at $43,019 at time of writing, an 11% decrease from its seven-day peak of $48,454.


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Chainlink (LINK) Approaching Decision Time, According to Crypto Analyst Benjamin Cowen – Here’s Why

Chainlink (LINK) is starting to regain important levels it needs to recover after a rough 2021, according to crypto analyst Benjamin Cowen.

Cowen tells his 680,000 YouTube subscribers that traders should pay attention to whether LINK is above or below its “bull market support band,” a technical indicator that’s a combination of the 20-week simple moving average (SMA) and the 21-week exponential moving average (EMA).

Chainlink’s bull market support band on Tuesday ranged from $25 to $26.40, according to the analyst. LINK surpassed that level on Wednesday and is trading at $26.43 at time of writing.

LINK is a cryptocurrency designed to incentivize the use of Chainlink’s oracle network which connects smart contracts and allows any blockchain to access real-world data.

Cowen notes that LINK’s valuation against Ethereum (ETH) has tanked since August 2020. The analyst predicts Chainlink can “claw its way out of this brutal downtrend” against ETH, as long as it cracks the LINK/ETH bull market support band.

“The key thing to watch is can it break the bull market support band?

Can it break that and at least stop the bleeding? I mean go sideways at the very least.

Just stop the bleeding and show that the opportunity cost of it is not too high.”

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This NFT Farming Game Is Clogging Up Ethereum Scaling Solution Polygon

In brief

  • Sunflower Farmers, a simple farming game on Polygon, is driving up gas fees on the network and slowing transactions.
  • Polygon is a sidechain scaling solution that enables faster, cheaper transactions than the Ethereum mainnet.

Shortly after CryptoKitties launched on Ethereum in 2017, the immense demand for the NFT collectibles game clogged up the blockchain platform, driving up fees and slowing transactions. Now we’re seeing the same kind of issue with a new NFT game released on Polygon—a network designed specifically to scale better than Ethereum’s mainnet.

Polygon’s gas fees for executing transactions have been significantly elevated over the last few days, and the culprit is Sunflower Farmers, a simplistic NFT-driven farming game that has seen a dramatic uptick in players and activity.

DappRadar reports over 434,000 unique users over the past seven days—a 3,704% increase over the previous span. That’s also a much higher tally than the second-largest Polygon app, decentralized exchange QuickSwap, which recorded over 241,000 users over the last week.

The rising demand is impacting the usability of the Polygon network. Gas fees have increased dramatically this week, with PolygonScan showing an average gas fee of nearly 764 Gwei on January 5.  That’s a dramatic increase over the average rate, which fell between 72 and 115 Gwei daily during the last week of December.

In U.S. dollars, it means that a Polygon transaction fee has jumped from what’s often a penny or less to as much as $0.50, depending on the complexity of the transaction. That’s still a fraction of the price of an Ethereum mainnet transaction, but for games and other applications that utilize a lot of transactions, the fees can start to pile up for users.

In tandem with the elevated gas fees, users have complained across social media, Reddit, and Polygon’s Discord server about failing transactions. Philippe Castonguay, product director at blockchain game developer Horizon Games, tweeted on Wednesday that 11% of Polygon network validators are failing to submit blocks amid the rising demand.

These are the types of problems that Polygon was created to solve. It’s a sidechain scaling solution that enables faster and cheaper transactions than Ethereum’s mainnet can handle. While that’s still true even with this week’s surging gas fees, the rising costs suggest that the network may struggle to handle periods of elevated demand.

Sunflower Farmers is a play-to-earn web game that rewards players with crypto tokens. According to DappRadar, the game’s surge in players came following the launch of wood chopping and stone mining features that generate rewards. Farming games have also been popular on the WAX blockchain in recent months.

According to security researcher Thomas Kerbl, Sunflower Farmers’ blockchain contract is updating the Polygon network with every player’s status approximately every 25 minutes. The frequent communication with the blockchain may be elevating the demand on the network.

Some users have described the situation as being akin to a distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack, given the impact that Sunflower Farmers is having on Polygon this week. Over the last three days, Sunflower Farmers’ has been responsible for more than two-thirds of the network’s total gas usage, according to PolygonScan.

While gas fees remain high today, the incentive for players may be rapidly declining. The price of the game’s SFF reward token has fallen sharply, dropping 52% over the last 24 hours to $0.61 per data from CoinGecko. It’s now down 89% from the peak price of $5.75 on January 4. Polygon’s own MATIC token is up nearly 7% today at a current price of $2.24.


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GameStop Shares Skyrocket Again After NFT And Crypto Market Plans Emerge


Shares of GameStop skyrocketed in after-hours trading Thursday after a report laid out some of the company’s plans to build out a division to buy, sell and trade the buzzy digital collectibles known as non-fungible tokens, reversing recent losses for last year’s hit meme stock as the brick-and-mortar game seller doubles down on the cryptocurrency space to help mint a turnaround.

Key Facts

Grapevine, Texas-based GameStop has hired more than 20 people to help build an online marketplace to trade NFTs of virtual games, a source familiar with the matter confirmed to Forbes after the Wall Street Journal first reported the plans on Thursday.

GameStop shares skyrocketed more than 31% to $173 in after-market trading within minutes of the report, its highest levels in nearly a month after the stock fell victim to a broad sell-off sparked by the Federal Reserve on Wednesday after it signaled it may move to raise interest more quickly than previously expected.  

The company also plans to partner with game developers and publishers to list NFTs—of everything from avatar outfits to weapons—on its platform, a source familiar with the matter confirmed to Forbes.

GameStop, which raised more than $1 billion from investors last year, has previewed the move before, launching a GameStop NFT page on its website in May and linking to an Ethereum address (the blockchain platform behind many NFTs), but giving no additional details, promising instead to “change the game.”

GameStop shares have skyrocketed about 860% over the past year, valuing the firm at more than $13 billion despite falling roughly 65% from an all-time high in January.

Key Background

Last January, Reddit traders famously declared GameStop their meme stock of choice as they bought up Wall Street’s most heavily shorted companies. GameStop was among the worst-hit of brick-and-mortar retailers over the past decade as independent companies like Minecraft gobbled up market share, but its shares began to surge at the tail-end of 2019, when 36-year-old investor Ryan Cohen started buying up shares at about $6 and blasting management for “lack[ing]

tapped reported


After skyrocketing more than 800% and abruptly crashing as much as 70% in January, GameStop and other meme stocks have continued to draw massive fanfare from retail investors, despite bouts of intense volatility. “The retail force behind this movement is still strong, so it is anyone’s guess how much larger this bubble can grow,” Oanda Senior Analyst Ed Moya wrote in a recent note. GameStop’s stock price is more than double the average one-year price target among analysts on Wall Street of $83. 

Surprising Fact

NFT trading volume totaled more than $23 billion last year, reflecting a staggering increase from less than $100 million in 2020.

Further Reading

GameStop Entering NFT and Cryptocurrency Markets as Part of Turnaround Plan (WSJ)

GameStop Raises $1.1 Billion—Cashing In On 1,200% Reddit-Fueled Surge And Sending Shares Skyrocketing Again (Forbes)


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GameStop Hires 20-Person Team for Gaming NFT Marketplace, Stock Surges

Congratulations if you spotted the Easter eggs in GameStop’s job advertisements. Turns out the video game retailer really is getting into crypto.

GameStop has created a new unit for building an NFT platform and hired more than 20 people thus far to run it, according to a report today from The Wall Street Journal. The platform will allow customers to buy, sell and trade NFTs of video game items, such as clothes and weapons for player avatars. The company had previously placed ads looking for engineers and others for the team.

GameStop (GME) stock duly surged 31% in after-hours trading to reach $170, its highest price in nearly a month.

Prominent video game publishers such as Ubisoft have begun incorporating NFTs—blockchain-based deeds of ownership for digital items—into their titles. In-game NFTs open up the possibility of games becoming interoperable and players profiting from trading rare items.

Rumors have been percolating for almost a year that GameStop would jump into the NFT sphere. An April 2021 job posting on its website sought an analyst with knowledge of crypto, blockchain and NFTs. In May, a landing page for the company confirmed it was looking for “exceptional engineers (solidity, react, python), designers, gamers, marketers, and community leaders” to come aboard an Ethereum NFT project. And Loopring’s token price tripled in November on speculation that it would be involved in the marketplace.

Today’s news gives GME stock another boost as it hops aboard a multi-billion dollar trend. Reddit-based day traders promoted GME as a meme stock last January, rallying the price from a middling $20 per share to $483 at one point. It’s since come down from those highs but has used the increased interest and capital to innovate.

But it will run headlong into antipathy toward NFTs from many gamers. Ubisoft’s NFT launch was threatened by a revolt from players, many of whom argue that blockchain technology threatens the environment (though not all chains are energy-intensive) or bear hard feelings from supply chain issues that cost the price of graphics cards—also used for crypto mining—to rise exponentially.

GameStop clearly thinks it’s worth the risk as the company looks to reverse several years of losses.


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Ethereum Devs Dismiss JPMorgan Warning About End of DeFi Dominance

In brief

  • JPMorgan says that the delay of sharding may make it difficult for Ethereum to compete with rival chains for DeFi market share in the future.
  • Ethereum devs and contributors say their focus on security gives the network a solid foundation upon which to grow.

Ethereum popularized decentralized finance, and app developers on the network turned it into a $250 billion sector. But its percentage of the pie may shrink in 2022.

So says a team of analysts at investment bank JPMorgan Chase. In an investor note on Wednesday, team lead Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou wrote that sharding—a method for drastically scaling up the number of transactions that can be executed on a blockchain—”might arrive too late” for Ethereum to stave off increased market competition from alternative blockchains. Avalanche, Binance Smart Chain, Solana, and Terra have been able to provide many of the same types of applications as Ethereum with higher speeds and lower fees.

“Ethereum is currently in an intense race to maintain its dominance in the application space with the outcome of that race far from given, in our opinion,” the note reads.

But several Ethereum developers and contributors told Decrypt that reports of the network’s demise are greatly exaggerated. 

“Overall, it seems a bit like a lazy / very high level critique,” said Tim Beiko, who coordinates Ethereum core developer meetings. “Rollups are live today, and sharding will lower their costs, but the tech works and is now massively derisked,” referring to a method of executing transactions off-chain that is already in place to help the network scale. 

“Ethereum is still the most used chain when you look at the data,” said Tegan Kline, who co-founded the team that built the Ethereum indexing protocol The Graph. “Of the 26 networks that The Graph supports, 66.7% of the queries are on Ethereum.” 

Decentralized finance, or DeFi, refers to blockchain-based applications that allow people to make all sorts of financial transactions they might otherwise need a bank or broker for. These apps remove intermediaries to make lending, trading, saving or borrowing possible on a peer-to-peer basis so no one else has control over your assets. The first major DeFi app to gain traction was MakerDao on Ethereum in 2017. Over the years, DeFi on Ethereum has expanded. DeFiLlama counts over 250 protocols with at least $1 million of ETH inside.

But other chains are catching up, mainly because they’ve bypassed the network congestion—and high transaction fees that come with it—by implementing proof-of-stake systems, which are more scalable.

Ethereum, too, is transitioning to a proof-of-stake system, but progress on “Ethereum 2.0” has been either deliberate or slow, depending on whom you ask. The current chain (which uses proof of work, just like Bitcoin) is scheduled to merge with the beacon chain (which uses proof of stake) in the coming year. After that, Ethereum core developers can focus on sharding.

Pooja Ranjan, who leads a decentralized project management team known as the Ethereum Cat Herders, said that while scalability (including sharding)  is important, other issues take priority.

“Ethereum is still the most used chain when you look at the data” – Tegan Kline

Ethereum developers, for instance, have consistently stressed security over speed while making sure the network doesn’t have any downtime. By contrast, the Solana network shut down for almost 18 hours in September because it was unable to handle high transaction volumes. Kline told Decrypt, “At the end of the day, chain security is incredibly important for financial transactions and for the foreseeable future Ethereum has the most security.” 

According to Kline, DeFi projects on other blockchains are “heavily driven by token incentives,” meaning that people receive tokens that they can then trade or sell as a reward for participating. “Once Ethereum layer 2 adopts those same incentives, we are likely to see a lot more DeFi activity on Ethereum,” she said.

But the head of public affairs for Parity, which built Polkadot, believes developers are getting tired of waiting for Ethereum 2.0 to be fully ready. “The Ethereum sharding roadmap has changed so many times it is difficult to understand what is actually going to happen and when,” said Peter Mauric. He pointed to a report this week from Electric Capital showing that Polkadot has the second-largest pool of developers after Ethereum—and that it’s growing faster than Ethereum did at a similar stage. 

Paul Veradittakit, a partner at Pantera Capital, is hedging his bets among multiple blockchains built for DeFi, pointing out that Solana has become a home for several DeFi gaming startups. “We have made a number of bets on Polkadot and Solana and look forward to exploring and expanding into more chains like Near and Avalanche in the coming year,” he told Decrypt.

That doesn’t mean Ethereum can’t remain top dog. Concluded Ranjan: “My naive opinion is that DeFi is there because of Ethereum and as long as Ethereum is there, DeFi sure is a strong driving force for mainstream engagement.”


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Back Again: 3rd Largest Bitcoin Whale Swallows Another $24M Worth of BTC During the Dip

While the recent plunge has put the crypto community into a state of panic, one HODLer is taking advantage. The third-largest Bitcoin whale just bought the dip, putting his stack over 121,000 BTC.

  • On January 4th, the whale’s address added another 372 Bitcoin. The sum was purchased for $17,122,242.1 at the time.
  • This was a follow-up to an even larger purchase from a day earlier, when he bought 456 Bitcoin for an average of $46,363 each.
  • Bitcoin’s price plunged below $43k on January 5th, alongside stocks. This pushed market sentiment to lows it hasn’t seen since July.
  • The whale reacted with yet another Bitcoin purchase at the time, absorbing another 172 coins for $7,793,488.82. That’s an average of $43 539 per coin.
  • With over 121,396.57 Bitcoin, the whale’s holdings rival the infamous Microstrategy’s. According to a tweet from Michael Saylor on December 30th, his company currently owns 124,391 Bitcoin.
  • According to on-chain analyst Will Clemente, the Bitcoin market is far more driven by such whale activity than it was this time last year.


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Bitcoin (BTC) $ 26,189.02 0.41%
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