2021-11-19-Digest-1024x683-1

Read in the Digest

  • PayPal considers listing Ethereum, Polkadot, Solana, Algorand, and NFTs.
  • A Nikeland metaverse is coming, The Sandbox jumps to new ATH, TIME magazine to educate people on the metaverse.
  • ‘DeFi’ scams and thefts have hit $10 billion in 2021.
  • Bitcoin Miner, Bitdeer, to go public after $4 billion SPAC merger deal.
  • NFT Pirate Bay hits 1.2 million users, NFTs are exploitive – Microsoft’s exec.

PayPal Considers Listing Ethereum, Polkadot, Solana, Algorand, and NFTs

2021 has been an interesting year for crypto adoption, with many FinTechs racing towards full crypto integration. PayPal has been at the forefront, expanding its services to include crypto purchases and payments.

Staying true to its promise of increasing its crypto offerings, PayPal is now actively monitoring new L1 and L2 platforms. Paypal’s senior vice president, Jose Fernandez, stated;

"I'm sure that if you ask me six weeks from now I could give you four or five different names. This is how exciting it is."

Fernandez noted that Ethereum, Polkadot, Solana, and Algorand are some of the top L1 and L2 blockchains, adding that PayPal has not listed a stablecoin on its platform because they have not seen any purpose-built stablecoins for payments.

Flipsider:

  • While confirming PayPal’s interest in NFTs, Fernandez explained that the technical complications of buying and holding NFTs could discourage many users from interacting with the sector.

Why You Should Care

By integrating more cryptocurrencies and NFTs, PayPal could play an important role in bringing crypto to the masses.

A Nikeland Metaverse is Coming, the Sandbox Jumps to new ATH, TIME Magazine to Educate People on the Metaverse

Since Facebook’s corporate rebrand to Meta, we have seen more megacorporations indicating their interest in creating virtual worlds. Joining the metaverse race, Sports giant Nike has announced a partnership with Roblox.

Teaming up with gaming company Roblox, Nike plans to create a metaverse named “Nikeland.” In the virtual world, users will be able to dress their avatars in Nike-branded apparel and sneakers.

The frenzy has driven metaverse platform “The Sandbox (SAND),” to massive gains. While the rest of the crypto market is largely correcting, SAND has gained more than 65% over the last week. SAND has now crossed the $4 mark, setting a new all-time high of $4.68 in the process.

The seven day price chart for The Sandbox (SAND). Source: Tradingview

As the quest for the metaverse intensifies, TIME Magazine has partnered with Galaxy Digital to educate readers about the virtual world. TIME has announced that it will launch the TIME100 Companies Metaverse category, which will feature builders in the metaverse.

Flipsider:

  • Microsoft President Brad Smith pumped the brakes on the metaverse hype, warning that it’s not like dying and going to heaven.

Why You Should Care

With the growing interest in VR, the metaverse will most likely become a significant part of our lives in the next 3-5 years.

‘DeFi’ Scams and Thefts Have Hit $10 Billion in 2021

The Decentralized Finance (DeFi) sector has exploded in 2021, with more money being pumped into DeFi protocols than ever before. On November 9th, the TVL in DeFi reached a new height of $275 billion, now at $250 billion, as of this writing.

The boom of the DeFi sector also served to expose some vulnerabilities in DeFi protocols, with the likes of Cream Finance, DAO Maker, Poly Network, and Yearn Finance all being exploited in 2021.

According to a new report, the levels of fraud and theft recorded so far in DeFi in 2021 has hit $10.5 billion, more than 7x the amount recorded in 2020. According to London-based blockchain analytics firm Elliptic, bugs in the code and design flaws allow criminals to target DeFi sites.

Tom Robinson, an analyst at Elliptic stated;

"Decentralized apps are designed to be trustless in that they eliminate any third-party control of users' funds. But you must still trust that the creators of the protocol have not made a coding or design mistake that could lead to a loss of funds."  

Flipsider:

  • Despite the growing number of DeFi scams, protocols continue to raise huge amounts of capital. Element Finance recently raised $32 million for its fixed-rate DeFi protocol.

Why You Should Care

While the DeFi sector has high prospects, protocols need to work on their vulnerabilities before mainstream adoption can be considered feasible.

Bitcoin Miner, Bitdeer, to Go Public After $4 Billion SPAC Merger Deal

On Thursday, leading cryptocurrency mining company, Bitdeer Technologies, announced its merger with special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) Blue Safari Group Acquisition Corp.

The deal will see Bitdeer, which currently operates five mining data centers in the U.S. and Norway, on the receiving end of $4 billion. Bitdeer is the first mining firm to reach a 1TB hashrate capacity base rate, with the deal expected to be closed in the first quarter of 2022.

According to Cision PR Newswire, the company will be publicly listed on Nasdaq with a to-be-announced ticker. The merger will be known as Bitdeer Technologies Group and remain listed on Nasdaq.

Flipsider:

  • There have been calls for a mining ban in Europe as the Norwegian minister calls its energy consumption ‘difficult to justify.’

Why You Should Care

Bitdeer has revealed that the deal will help the company provide more innovative, reliable, and easy-to-use cryptocurrency mining solutions.

NFT Pirate Bay Hits 1.2 Million Users, NFTs are Exploitive – Microsoft’s Exec

In 2021, the unique non-fungible token (NFT) market has grown by leaps and bounds, becoming one of today’s most talked about topics. Highlighting the sector’s growth, The NFT Bay, a new online repository of NFTs, was launched on Thursday, only to get more than 1.2 million visits within 10 hours.

The NFT Bay was launched by software developer Geoffrey Huntley, with 17.96-terabyte archived NFT image copies. According to the NFT skeptic, the archive is “an educational art project” that could help people purchase NFTs.

Flipsider:

  • While NFTs have claimed a major stake in the crypto market, Phil Spencer, the head of gaming at Microsoft believes some NFTs are “exploitive.”
  • He feels NFTs have become “more exploitive than about entertainment,” continuing that Microsoft and Xbox would not “want that kind of content.”

Why You Should Care

While there are differing views on the value placed on NFTs, they have revolutionized how digital art is perceived.

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