It's Not Easy to Admit You Were Wrong
Back in 2011, I came across an article describing a weird concept of a digital currency that wasn't backed by any central government or company. It was resistant to attack and could be transferred peer-to-peer in a trust-less manner for next to nothing. Plus it would free the people from the confines of the traditional banking system. I thought to myself, this must be a scam, but something told me to get out of bed and do a little digging.
Ever since that day, I have been evangelizing to anyone who would listen, about all the amazing benefits that bitcoin had to offer. If someone was interested in learning more and decided to invest I would tell them to start with an amount they were willing to lose because there are no guarantees when it comes to cryptocoins. I knew that this technology would be perceived as a threat to the banking world and they would stop at nothing to bring it down.
Fast forward 6 years and now here I am writing an article on what I believe to be the most powerful blockchain technology provider in the world and it's NOT bitcoin. I must sound like such a hypocrite to all the people who listened to me and invested in bitcoin, but at least they made a very handsome profit.
My Number One Pick
Throughout the past 6 years, I invested in countless cryptocoins that all sounded like the next best thing. All because I was chasing the next big payday. I was constantly reading articles about promising projects that would revolutionize the world with their advanced algorithms or unique usage of blockchain technology. I didn't realize until recently that I was investing into the hype, unproven technology, or non-scalable products.
Finally, one day I was looking through coinmarketcap.com and I came across a coin that I'd never heard of before. I visited their website, read through their informational material and decided to invest. At the time, I didn't think much of it but as the months went by, my investment increased by 4000%. This caused me to do even more research which led me to discover the true power that was backing my investment.
I introduce to you... BitShares
BitShares is the most diverse ecosystems I have ever come across. It offers investors more features than a Swiss Army knife which initially can be rather daunting. When you take the time to do your homework and start using the system you realize there's a rather steep learning curve. Having a smooth user journey is not one of BitShares strong suits, but that is being addressed.
BitShares is an industrial-grade decentralized trading platform designed for high-performance financial smart contracts. It looks to extend the innovation of the blockchain to more industries that rely upon the internet to provide their services. Whether it's banking, stock exchanges, lotteries, voting, music, auctions or many others. The digital public ledger allows for the creation of distributed autonomous companies (DACs) that provide better quality services at a fraction of the cost incurred by their more traditional, centralized counterparts. (1)
The BitShares blockchain is by far the fastest (2) and largest (3) in the world. As of today, BitShares has been proven to support 3300 transactions per second and 16000 operations per second with the potential to handle between 100K-180K TPS. That means at 3300 TPS is can already handle the combined transaction volume of bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin, and Visa. You have to admit that's pretty impressive.
Is BitShares a Company?
Since BitShares is a Decentralized Autonomous Company, is it registered somewhere like a traditional company? The answer is NO, it's not registered because it's actually a software protocol just like bitcoin. As with bitcoin, there is no central leadership or single point of failure.
The mastermind that created the concept of BitShares is Daniel Larimer. A few years ago he moved on to create many other amazing projects. Today his father, Stan Larimer, acts as the unofficial spokesperson for BitShares and spearheads several efforts to ensure that people learn about the power of blockchain technology and BitShares.
When people first learn that BitShares is not a traditional company it usually causes confusion and doubt. They wonder how can something like this not be regulated or governed by a central government. Again, it's being treated in the exact same way as bitcoin. Although, BitShares offers many more features and benefits then bitcoin.
Who Supports Ongoing Development
There is a core team of developers that actively work on new features, User Interface upgrades, bug fixes, and ongoing maintenance of the network. These are people just like you and me who have the skills necessary to push the BitShares technology even further.
How do these developers get compensated for their time and effort? There's actually a reserve pool of approximately 1 billion BitShares (BTS) that are used for exactly this. This reserve pool is not a slush fund for lavish vacations or expensive toys. The reserve pool is secured by a smart contract that requires shareholder approval before any funds can be released. The shareholders are any entity that owns BitShares excluding "Non-voting Accounts and Exchanges".
This reserve pool can even be used to fund new projects that will provide an added benefit to the BitShares ecosystem.
Your BitShares Account is Your Wallet and Your Gateway to the DEX
This information is extremely important for those looking to create their first BitShares wallet and transfer their cryptocoins onto it.
When you register for an account on either bitshares.org or any one of the 3rd party gateways (i.e. openledger.io) you're in fact creating more than just an account on an exchange. You're creating your wallet that will be registered on the BitShares blockchain.
It's EXTREMELY important that you SAVE your password because if you lose your password you will lose your funds FOREVER. The only way around this is by choosing to initially create an account via the "Local Wallet" option and then save your "brain key".
Regardless of which type of account you create, make sure you save your password manually. Write it down or save it on a thumb-drive and then back it up. DO NOT USE A PASSWORD MANAGER TOOL. I've already seen cases where people used LastPass and it didn't save the password. The customers didn't realize it until it was too late.
BitShares Compared to the Top Five Cryptocoins
The top five cryptocoins (BTC, ETH, LTC, BCH, XRP) don't even come close to the performance power of BitShares.
Bitcoin can now handle 6-7 TPS but maybe 12 TPS after SegWit2X
Ethereum can now handle 7 TPS but may be pushed to 20 TPS with Raiden
Litecoin can handle 28 TPS
Bitcoin Cash can handle 56 TPS
Ripple 1000+ TPS but only focused on the financial industry
All of these cryptocoins are marketed as being the best of the best. Even though when you take the time to dig a bit deeper you soon discover they are unable to support global demand. Of course, these cryptocoins are all working on new upgrades which sometimes leads to forks or increased decentralization, but the changes are mediocre at best. There's no telling how long it will take them to achieve the same performance level as BitShares. I don't know about you, but I'm not that patient.
In addition to their inadequate performance, they don't even offer the same amount of remarkable features.
Some of BitShares features are:
- Market-Pegged Assets: (Think Tether, but 1 billion times better) These are actually backed by real collateral.
Examples: 1 bitUSD = 1 USD which is backed by AT LEAST 2x worth of BTS as collateral, 1 bitEUR = 1 EUR, 1 bitSILVER = 1 oz. of Silver
- User-Issued Assets: UIAs allow individuals and companies to create and issue their own unique tokens for anything they can imagine.
Examples: Simple event tickets deposited on the customer’s mobile phone to pass the entrance of a concert or used for crowd funding. Also ownership tracking or even to sell equity of a company in form of stock. (4)
- Decentralized Exchange (DEX): BitShares was the first DEX on the market. Kind of like bitcoin was the first cryptocoin on the market.
The phrase DEX was coined by the BitShares creator Daniel Larimer.
You maintain possession of your cryptocoins at all time (unless you lose your password). Therefore, there's no risk of the exchange running away with your money.
You will never have to worry about BTS being delisted from the BitShares DEX.
Network fees to execute trades is only .01213 BTS for non-Lifetime Members and .00243 BTS for Lifetime Members.
You can create your own interest-free loans through margin trades. Investors typically use as much as 4x collateral to back their loans. Below is a great video that explains how to create your own loans.
- Voting Rights: Each BTS that is held in a BitShares wallet is worth one vote which can be used to support the development of new features, funding of new projects, and many other things. You can select a proxy if you wish to allow that person to vote on your behalf.
- Delegated Proof of Stake: A new method of securing a crypto-currency’s network. DPOS attempts to solve the problems of both bitcoin’s traditional Proof of Work system, and the Proof of Stake system of Peercoin and NXT. DPOS implements a layer of technological democracy to offset the negative effects of centralization. (5) Basically, the bitcoin network requires the same about of electricity as Azerbaijan to operate. How is that sustainable? (6) BitShares doesn't require any mining and is supported by 19 witnesses/nodes which requires significantly less energy to function. (7)
- Referral Program: BitShares offers a generous referral program. Lifetime members qualify to receive up to 80% of all network usage fees paid by individuals who join their network. An important fact, this is not a multi-level marketing scheme because the program only applies to the 1st level of referrals. Example, I refer Tom and he refers Jane. I get a percentage from what Tom pays in network usage fees but not from Jane.
You can read up on all the financial asset features offered by BitShares here.
Why is BitShares Value Priced so Low?
I get asked this question almost every single day. I can understand why because people who do their research can't wrap their head around the idea that a software this powerful is valued at $.053 USD/BTS.
For those who have followed BitShares for a while, they know that the market treats BitShares like someone with leprosy. Maybe people think it's too good to be true. For those of us who use the BitShares system, we know that's absolutely not the case.
For now, BitShares reached an all-time high of $.42/BTS on June 10th, 2017 which equates to a market cap of $1.2 billion USD. What happened after June 10th was entirely out of BitShares control.
First, there was the ban on ICO's by the Chinese government and fear that the Chinese government wouldn't stop there. Before June 10th, there was a massive spike in CNY being invested into BTS so naturally when this news broke Chinese investors did what they felt was right and sold their positions.
Second, on October 3rd Bittrex, which is a centralized exchange, made the decision to delist BitShares effective 13 October. This caused massive confusion amongst BTS shareholders as they couldn't understand why a top 15 by volume cryptocoin would be delisted out of the blue. Thousands of customers reached out to Bittrex and BitShares requesting justification for the decision. BitShares development team attempted numerous times to reach out to Bittrex to see if there was a way to reverse their decision. As of today, no reason has been given to the customers of Bittrex or BitShares.
Rumors started to spread about what could have led to the delisting. Ranging from a pending SEC investigation against BitShares to network disruptions caused by unfixable code and finally my favorite, that BitShares was susceptible to a 51% attack just like bitcoin. All of these reasons are untrue and here's why.
According to the Howey Test BitShares does NOT qualify as a security.
In case you were wondering, here are the test results for Ethereum.
Bittrex has been informed in the past of ways to reduce the amount of RAM needed to run a BitShares node. They have yet to implement the recommended changes.
BitShares can't be mined. Any and all decisions have to be voted on by the shareholders prior to them going into effect. Any attempts to overthrow the system would be identified beforehand and thwarted.
So again, why is the price of BitShares so low? That is the $1.2 billion USD question.
Since the 10th of June, BitShares has NOT released any negative news that could justify the dramatic drop in price. In fact, BitShares only has positive news to share.
The development team has been releasing regular updates to the BitShares client/wallet file to improve the customer experience. This work is not done which is why the dev team is currently 6 weeks into a 6 month project that will dramatically redesign the entire BitShares wallet.
BitSpark.io has officially launched their Zephyr Token ITO and it's being supported by the BitShares blockchain. BitSpark is a remittance platform for money transfer businesses. They are switching from the bitcoin blockchain to BitShares because of how slow the bitcoin network is and how high the fees are. Watch this video to hear it from the CEO himself.
The Billion Hero Campaign (http://billionherocampaign.com/) was launched and will teach people about investing in cryptocoins and understanding the significance of blockchain technology. In addition to the educational aspects of the BHC, participants will be identifying how a $1 billion USD prize will be split amongst 12 different charities of their choosing.
The BitShares DEX Telegram channel has grown dramatically since June 10th. Now there are nearly 4500 members. You can join the group via this link: https://t.me/BitSharesDEX If you would prefer to use the Discord App please use this link: https://discord.gg/GDp4Rm5
You can read up on the latest BitShares developments on the weekly "State of the Network" articles that @steempower posts on Steemit.com. Here's the link to the latest article. https://steemit.com/bitshares/@steempower/bitshares-state-of-the-network-3rd-october-2017
Now my assessment is that investors are still licking their wounds from the dramatic drop since June 10th. Those who still have faith in the BitShares system are looking for the right time to buy back in. Once that day comes I imagine we will see new ATH's being set on a regular basis. It's not a question of if, but when?
What the Future Holds for BitShares
BitShares doesn't have to promise you that it will have XYZ features developed within the next few months so you can begin using it. BitShares has a long track record of providing its customers with a working product that is way ahead of the competition. It may not be the most pretty or easiest to use, but that is being updated on a regular basis. The most important aspects of this system have been fully functional for years.
The main issue that BitShares has to overcome right now is liquidity and that is solved by higher usage of the DEX by those who understand the true power of a decentralized trading platform.
I strongly believe that BitShares will continue to grow as centralized exchanges become a thing of the past and it will establish itself as one of the top, if not the top, cryptocoin(s) in the market today.
How can you help?
You can help by joining the community.
Learning as much as you can about the awesome power of this system and spread the word with anyone that seems interested.
You could start MeetUp groups to create a professional way for people to come together and learn what you know.
Share any Tweet about BitShares that you feel is worthwhile. You can follow me on Twitter: https://twitter.com/kevinmesserly
Transfer your BTS to the BitShares DEX and exercise your right to vote and start trading if that's your cup of tea.
Talk to businesses about all the great ways that they can utilize the features offered by BitShares.
Remember there's no central team to blame if BitShares doesn't become a world-famous decentralized trading platform.
It's up to all of us to make this happen.
Image Source: bts-bourgeoisie (Keep up the outstanding work! You're creativeness is exactly what BitShares needs to gain the attention of interested users.)
I hope you found this information beneficial. If you see anything that's not factual please comment below and I will update accordingly.
If you would like to join my BitShares network then please use this link to create a new wallet. http://bit.ly/kimchi-king
If you're interested in translating this article into another language just let me know.
The Spanish version is being worked on already and will be posted here on Steemit by @dineroconopcion.
Currently coordinating the translation into German and French as well.