digital IDs and how dystopian they are
Newsletters 10 min read

The “Conspiracy Theories” Are TRUE!

By Guy

There have been a lot of conspiracy theories doing the rounds over the past two years. And, what’s quite alarming is that many of them have turned out to be remarkably accurate. 

One that has caught my eye more recently concerns the increasing adoption of digital IDs. Countries have been rolling these out over the past few years, but the pandemic has supercharged that process.

I bet you didn’t know that there is a US bill that looks to lay the legal framework for a digital ID? Or, did you know that the UK and the EU have introduced similar legislation?

What’s even more concerning about this is that it’s happening at a time when those same countries are beginning to roll out CBDCs. 

Could we one day really see a situation of a digital identity attached to a digital wallet connected to the state?

That’s what I cover in my video today and you can watch that here.

📊 My Personal Portfolio 📊

USDC 39.65% | ETH 26.83% | BTC 25.30% | ATOM 3.90% | DOT 1.59% | RUNE 1.40% | MATIC 1.30%

📈 Guy’s Forward Guidance 📈

It’s been a while since we’ve had a calm before a crypto storm, and it looks like one heck of a nor’easter is coming this week. In the coming days, US politicians will hold a hearing about the collapse of FTX. The Federal Reserve is going to announce how much it’s raising interest rates by and what it’s going to do next. The Consumer Price Index or CPI for November will also be released. And, all three events will happen on Tuesday, the 13th December. For the love of Satoshi, mark your calendars, set an alarm, and prepare accordingly.

Let’s take it from the top.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that the crypto market has been incredibly volatile since FTX and Alameda Research collapsed in early November. This is not only due to the liquidity effects (people selling their crypto, withdrawing, etc), but also due to the fact that regulators around the world have been scrutinising the crypto industry more than ever before. The hearing about FTX’s collapse this Tuesday will be a flash point of sorts. What’s said there could have a profound impact on crypto prices. 

Next we have the CPI print for November, which is expected to come in lower than the previous month. For reference, the October CPI was 7.7%, which was lower than expected. This caused the stock market rally in mid-November. Many investors expect inflation to continue coming down, but the Producer Price Index or PPI for November has led to some concerns. The PPI came in hotter than expected, which has led some investors to believe that the November CPI will surprise to the upside as well. Obviously, this would cause markets to crash. 

If you’re wondering why, the answer is the Federal Reserve. The Fed has been aggressively raising interest rates to fight inflation. The longer inflation stays high, the longer the Fed will continue to raise interest rates. That said, Fed chairman Jerome Powell made it clear in his recent appearance at the Brookings Institution that the Fed will begin slowing the pace of rate hikes, possibly as soon as this Tuesday. This is what investors are currently pricing in. A higher than expected rate hike would of course cause a crash, and vice versa if it’s smaller. 

Another factor to be on the lookout for this week is additional information about FTX, Alameda Research, and their relationships to the rest of the crypto industry. Most of you have probably heard that NYC regulators are investigating whether FTX and Alameda founder Sam Bankman-Fried was involved in Terra’s collapse back in May. For context, SBF crashing Terra has been one of the most popular conspiracy theories in crypto. As with many conspiracies these days, it looks like the evidence is starting to add up to cold hard facts. 

This makes me wonder what other crashes SBF had his hand in. Perhaps we will soon find out… 

🇺🇸 The Next Domino: Coinbase And Circle? 🇺🇸

When it comes to assessing which crypto company will be the next to fall because of FTX and Alameda, it’s always assumed that it will be another overleveraged crypto platform or some offshore exchange. While there has been lots of speculation about Coinbase and Circle potentially having issues, there hasn’t been any concrete evidence of this. It’s also something that’s been seen as impossible in the eyes of many… until last week. 

For those who missed the memo, Circle cancelled its plans to go public via a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC. This is something I actually predicted in earlier videos, and it’s fairly easy to explain: we’re in a bear market, and the SEC sucks. This was basically Circle’s explanation, but that’s not the interesting part. As part of the SPAC cancellation announcement, Circle revealed its Q3 financials: $274m in revenue, $400m in cash on hand, but only $43m in profits. 

If you watched our viral video about Circle, you’ll know that the stablecoin issuer makes most of its money from the yields it earns on the reserves it holds for USDC – that is, US government debt. As the Fed has been raising interest rates, Circle’s income has increased in tandem. However, the amount of USDC in circulation has been decreasing as the crypto market continues to crash. This means Circle’s income is coming down, and could soon be in the red due to expenses. 

This brings me to Coinbase, which encouraged its users to convert USDT to USDC by offering zero fees for the conversion. This may look like stablecoin competition, but it’s much more. Take a second to consider that yields on USDC reserves are also a significant source of income for Coinbase, especially as the crypto market continues to crash. This is because Coinbase and Circle run the Centre Consortium, which governs the USDC stablecoin. 

As with most cryptocurrencies and crypto companies, Coinbase’s stock is 90% down from its all-time high, and the crypto bear market bottom arguably isn’t in yet. If Coinbase stock continues to collapse, it could soon fall victim to a hostile takeover from a megabank like JP Morgan, or an asset manager like Blackrock. On that note, it’s very possible that Circle called off the SPAC deal in part out of fear that it would also be the target of a hostile takeover bid. 

In any case, Coinbase and Circle could be in trouble very soon. Be on the lookout…  

🤖 ChatGPT & CT 🤖

Is the age of Jarvis upon us?

That seems to be the predominant question on everyone’s mind after OpenAI’s ChatGPT took the internet by storm this past week. From conspiracy theories to fully functional imaginary virtual machines, ChatGPT delivered them all.

If you have no clue what I’m talking about then it’s safe to assume you’ve probably spent the past week practising some form of social media detox. Something I reckon everyone in the crypto industry sorely needs, especially during these trying times. Don’t worry though, here’s a quick rundown to get you up to speed…

Last week, OpenAI, a leading research institute focused on artificial intelligence technology, announced that it was opening public access to its latest product – an AI Chatbot called “ChatGPT”. ChatGPT is a large language model based on the popular GPT-3 model.

The words “Large Language Model” is software-speak for an AI tool that can accurately mimic human speech and writing styles by reading, summarising, translating and predicting words in a sentence. In this case, ChatGPT is an AI tool that allows users to engage with it in a conversation-style dialogue and answers any queries posed by users.

The general user experience of ChatGPT seems to be a mixture of awe and frustration, as it provides surprisingly coherent and in-depth responses to questions and requests, which can sometimes be factually incorrect or questionable.

A prime example is its recent response to a question regarding the decentralisation of Ripple’s XRP Ledger (XRPL). ChatGPT’s answer seemed to suggest that Ripple had “abilities that are not fully disclosed in the public source code” that allows Ripple to have “ultimate control” of XRPL, regardless of the blockchain’s decentralised consensus mechanism.

That’s right, an AI bot sparked a conspiracy theory. I never thought I’d live to see the day. Well, thankfully Ripple’s CTO David Schwartz quickly pointed out that by ChatGPT’s absurd logic it’s reasonable to suggest that Ripple has secret control of the Bitcoin network as well, given how it might also have secret backdoors that cannot be determined from the code. As they say, just because something is possible does not make it probable.

But it just goes to show just how early in development the bot actually is. OpenAI CEO Sam Altman made it quite clear upon its release that ChatGPT was currently in its “early demo” and is “very much a research release.” Interestingly, ChatGPT does seem to be more human in its thinking than other machines by the simple demonstration of its answers being more intuitive than calculative.

Not surprising considering that the data set used to train the model is primarily made up of human responses that can contain human biases. While OpenAI definitely took steps to mitigate these biases, I’m sure it is not possible to completely eliminate them from the model. It only makes sense then that it displays typical human biases while solving problems.

Having said all that, ChatGPT does show incredible promise. There have been several reports of people using it for a variety of applications. Some of these include generating blog pieces, writing original songs, and even creating a trading bot. Granted, of course, that these results aren’t always accurate. It does show promise for the future of large language models.

There’s some speculation that data-related and creative jobs could even be purely AI-generated in the future. Imagine that, an AI-generated Coin Bureau video! For some reason, that doesn’t sit so well with me. I wonder why.

Thankfully, it doesn’t seem like that day is anytime soon. Overall, large language models represent a significant advancement in the field of AI and natural language processing. I’d be lying though if I said there isn’t a bittersweet feeling when thinking about how these technologies might continue to evolve and improve.

🎄 Coin Bureau Store Xmas Sale 🎄

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. It’s not only a time to show your appreciation of family and friends, but it’s also a guilt-free way to treat yourself to that special thing you have had your eye on all year.

At the Coin Bureau store we are running a special 12 days of Cryptmas promo!  Every day for 12 days there will be a different Coin Bureau store product with a special discount applied!

Starts 13th of Dec!

📍 Find out the discount of the day on our store or IG account!

All purchases will help Team Coin Bureau to create even more crypto content. Everyone at CB HQ thanks anyone who buys our merch for helping us pursue our passion and calling in life 🙏

🔮 Video Pipeline 🔮

  • Digital Dollar Project: What does it mean?
  • Russian Oil Price Cap: What Impact will it Have?
  • Global crypto tax: Time to panic?
  • Cardano update: ADA Potential in a Bear Market

🏆 What’s New At CoinBureau.com This Week? 🏆

OKX vs Kraken Review 2022: Top Exchanges for Crypto Trading Compared!

OKX Wallet: Non-Custodial Multi-Chain Web3 Portal

That’s all for this one.

The whole Team at Coin Bureau hopes that you are enjoying this festive season (despite how dire the markets). Your support in these testing times means the world to us.

Guy your crypto guy

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