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My $100,000 Crypto Journey and the Lessons it Taught Me

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My Crypto Journey

My $100,000 Crypto journey and the lessons it taught me

Lesson: ‘Not taking profits is a sin’

How I got into Crypto?

My first contact with cryptocurrency was when I was asked by my brother to attend a blockchain seminar. 

To be honest I was nowhere near understanding what it all meant.  

Later my brother talked to me about how he had invested a few dollars in a project called Ethereum that tripled in just a matter of weeks.

At the time this was a big deal. We were spending money on other business ideas but nothing was reaping any revenue.

And here comes cryptocurrency that tripled my brother’s small investment.  

You could say this greed got me started which led us to learn more about cryptos, and then came the ICO craze.

2017 ICO craze

Blockchain, ICO’s and smart contracts sounded gibberish

I felt like a new kid at the school. I was not able to understand what blockchain is or what ICO or smart contracts were.   

It took me quite a while to understand the concepts of this new technology. 

What helped me the most?

I found that the best way to learn about blockchain was to be active in communities such as Reddit,  Telegram, Discord.

Slack was quite active back then. And, of course, YouTube helped me gain quite an idea of what cryptocurrency, blockchain and ICOs were all about.

My first ICO

My first experience buying tokens through MyEtherWallet was Aeternity at 30cents per token. 

I still remember how MyEtherWallet, Gas, ICO, Ethereum address, Cryptocurrency, Tokens all sounded too alien to me. 

Wasn’t pretty sure why the private key was so crucial.

Aeternity

Trust me, it was so easy for anyone to just talk to me into giving my private key, that’s how naive I was back then. 

If the current giveaway scams were to happen then I would have handed over my private keys in a jiffy.  That’s how naive I was.

Mistakes I made

cryptocurrency investment mistakes

You could say I have made a lot of mistakes since 2017.  There were so many of them that I would have to categorize them.

  • FUD Missing out on an ICO 
  • Lost Keys
  • Got lured into scams
  • Missed token swaps
  • Keeping tokens on exchanges that went down
  • My Biggest losses

FUD Missing out on an ICO 

2017 saw a sharp rise in ICOs.  Projects with half baked whitepapers were selling like hotcakes. 

I was part of the investors who had their ETH ready in the wallets to take part in any ICO. 

I was ready to invest in projects like Monetha, CargoX and others. They would sell out in a matter of seconds.  I felt missing out on these ICOs that 10x’d immediately after getting listed on the exchanges.

Was ICO the best Investment?

In my experience, ICOs yielded great return if you were smart to cash out.  Those who held in the hopes of bigger moons lost their money when the project eventually failed. 

It is the project development and actual use case that will determine the price to rise or fall. 

Projects with a good team that solved a real problem were the only projects that saw some future after the ICO.

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Lost Keys  – My first Monster mistake

Mistakes are bound to happen, but when it’s a matter of your life savings, it does hurt very hard. 

One among many such incidents was Monsterbyte ICO. 

Monsterbyte ICO

I purchased around $500 (In India this is more than 2 months of income) worth of tokens. 

I did not pay attention to the mnemonic phrase which was given before creating the wallet for making the purchase. 

All I thought was my username and password was all I needed, this grave mistake meant it was impossible to access my tokens.

Looking back, those tokens would be worth nothing over time but when this incident happened it did hit me hard.  I lost sleep over this mistake for days.  

What happens if I lose the mnemonic phrase?

I know this might sound disheartening, but the fact is there is no way you can retrieve the lost seed or private keys. 

Find a way to store them safely as ownership of your tokens depends on your private keys/mnemonic phrase. 

Got lured into Scams

2017 was the year of the crypto revolution, or so I was made to believe. 

The crypto projects had their community discussions mostly on slack. At this point, the slack was so prone to phishing and was getting hacked easily. 

Slack community

Someone would hack Slack channels and lure the unassuming investors into believing that the team is giving away rewards and free airdrops.  

Many fell for this slight of hand. I was one such victim at the time.

Missed Token Swaps

This is something new to any investor in crypto. While I was aware of the mainnet and token swaps, I just missed the boat because I was not paying attention to some random announcement. 

As a result, I lost some of my tokens to the mainnet swaps.

In general, the projects give you a certain time frame to swap your tokens with their mainnet tokens and once the time is elapsed then un-swapped tokens will be burnt, in other words are useless. 

I missed swapping a couple of projects and lost my tokens. 

To avoid this, I suggest you to get on their telegram or social channels from time to time to keep upto date with the project.

My biggest losses

In spite of my due diligence, I did fall for a few elaborate advertising tricks, scams and some projects that never took off.  Here are my big bad decisions:

  • CoEval (Monkey Capital): This ICO was my second biggest investment in 2017. There was so much promise and hype surrounding the project.  

Some websites even regarded it as Platinum ICO.  Who knew, you could buy that ‘status’ to screw the investors.  

  • Bridge Protocol: One of my biggest single investments in any project to date, Bridge Protocol is not a scam but it never took off.  It did manage to turn my $18000 into $380.  

It is easy to lecture my past self to NEVER go all in.  Hindsight is always perfect.  However, 3 years later I am still paying the loan that I took to get invested.  

  • HODLING:  While Bridge Protocol is a single biggest investment failure story of mine, it doesn’t come anywhere close to the losses I incurred because of FOMO. 

I lost a fortune for not having an exit plan.  I kept hodling even when some of the projects I picked 130X.  Yes, that’s right.  I was so naive in the space that I did not know that I should cash out.  

Which is why I say ‘not taking profits is a sin.’  If there is any bigger sin than not taking profits then it is ‘trying to time the market’.  

Now, I just have a target price to enter and exit.  I am usually on the money with these targets and I simply get out.  Never to look back.  

This may not be a great strategy but it is a strategy that works for me.

Never trust exchanges

Cryptopia newsI was too lazy and let my tokens sit on exchange and paid the price. 

Remember Cryptopia? 

When Cryptopia shut down it took my tokens with it.  

This is not an exchange problem though.  

It is a problem of not having discipline when I knew the crypto commandment: “not your keys, not your tokens.” 

Even the biggest exchanges are not safe to hold your crypto. 

Exchanges are just meant to trade your crypto and once done you have to safely move your tokens to a wallet that has your private key.

Jackpots I hit and the Coins that went Boom

ICON ICX ICO

My story is not all doom and gloom.  

In 2017, I got into ICOs like ICON and Bitquence.  

The ICON was sold around $0.11 per token in ICO and it went up to $12.64 during the bull run. However, I did not cash out. 

Bitquence which is now called Voyager was sold at $0.04 per token during ICO and it went up to $10, which is a staggering 250X. And I did not cash.

Free Crypto

Ontology Airdrop

I was fortunate enough to subscribe to Ontology airdrop and got free 1000 tokens. At one point, these free tokens were worth $10,000.

As you may have guessed, I did not cash out.

You could say I used to suffer from a serious case of FOMOtitis.

Lessons learnt

The Golden rules of Crypto

rules of Crypto

When all is said and done.  While I am sad that I did not cash out when I should have or avoided the investments in scammy ICOs, I do not regret my journey so far.

In the past 3 years, I have grown as an individual and never had a boring day, thanks to the Cryptos.

Even those who are making millions may not say that they never had a boring day with the same gusto, sincerity and confidence that I can. 

Crypto continues to educate me and I am wiser because of it.  

I am passing on my hundreds of thousands of dollars worth lessons that I learned so far below.  

Not to preach you.  No.  Just for your consideration or amusement or both.

  • FOMO – Don’t fall for the hype

If it is too good to be true, especially in the crypto space, it may not be true. Tread carefully.

  • FUD

Lack of research is the number one reason why people fall for FUD.  

If the fundamentals are strong and nothing indicates otherwise, there is simply no reason to fall for FUD.

Another thing is to always have target entry and exit prices.  If you are in something for the long-haul then always use the ‘dollar cost average’ to keep stacking.

It is a better strategy to accumulate over time instead of buying all at once.  If you get lucky, you could buy all in at a low price but what if the prices go even lower?

Dollar cost averaging seems to address that issue.

Once you have set the target for entry and exit, always execute on it.  Never let your emotions come in between your trades.

You can pour your heart into a project but always trade with your mind.

Here is an article on FUD and FOMO you could benefit from.

Other lessons I have learned include:

  • Invest only what you afford to lose
  • DYOR before investing
  • Have an entry and exit targets and execute on them (yeah, I know, it bears repeating)
  • There are no free lunches – never fall for free giveaways
  • Until the crypto space figures out a way to avoid this misfortune for investors, stay up-to-date on projects so you don’t miss on the swaps
  • Never trust exchanges
  • Always have two factor authentication
  • Keep track of your trades and get your taxes done.

Taxes, do not forget them

Keep track of your trades for taxes

  • If you think you can track your trades manually, think again
  • Use crypto tracking and tax calculator software like Cointracking.info
  • Do not try to evade taxes, millions are not worth your peace of mind
  • Although death and taxes are not inevitable – only one of them you can anticipate

It is easy for someone reading this to pity me.  Please do not.  I was sad for sometime but I never regret my crypto journey so far.  In fact, I am more excited now than I was in 2017.

Why shouldn’t I be?  I have the life lessons to carry me through now.

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. Stay safe and healthy!

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IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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5 questions we want XRP army to answer!

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xrp investing news

What follows is our opinion.  

Let’s not be hostile.  

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

We are simply posing some questions based on the information we came across and our own limited interpretation. 

It is quite possible that the sources we are referring to are at fault or our interpretation is. Either way, just answer these questions for us so that we can learn new things about XRP that we did not know.

Our readers know that we have been anti-XRP for a long time. We got trolled, mocked and called ignorant. Well, to each their own.

Our questions to the entire XRP army are simple, here they are:

Question 1: If crypto was to replace (or at least reshape) the entire banking business then what does a token whose sole business model is based on ‘accommodating’ banks have any future?

To put differently, when the world starts conducting commerce via text messages why do we need banks and Ripple which wants to serve banks?

Our basis for this question: 

In the future when we will start doing business with each other over text messages, wallets and email signatures, why do we need a payment gateway from Ripple?

We know that WeChat payment enables users to transact over chat.  Other companies are trying to catch up with this (primarily why Facebook was looking at creating its own currency, Libra).

However, once we have a digital dollar, we do not even need an outside stablecoin since one could, in theory, use the digital dollar directly.                  

Question 2: Why do you have to pay businesses to use XRP if it is so superior?

Our basis for this question: 

Financial Times reported that Ripple paid Moneygram to use Ripple technology.

Here is a direct quote:

It turns out Ripple has been paying a significant amount of subsidies cash to MoneyGram’s business since buying into the company in June. In the third and fourth quarter alone the Ripple benefits amounted to $11.3m.

What’s more, until a consultation with the SEC**, MoneyGram had been more than happy to book these cash flows as revenues. Due to the SEC guidance, however, it has now had to restate fourth-quarter guidance to account for Ripple payments as “contra expenses”.

XRP Twitter

Question 3: What is Ripple’s revenue worth without the ‘selling’ XRP?

Our basis for this question: 

The question seems to be answered by the XRP’s CEO himself. Here is an excerpt:

Asked if XRP was keeping everything cash flow positive at Ripple Labs, Mr Garlinghouse answered: “Well XRP is one source. I don’t know how to answer that because if you took away our software revenues, that would make us less profitable. If you took away all our XRP, that makes us less profitable. So I don’t think about it as one thing.” 

He clarified later: “We would not be profitable or cash flow positive [without selling XRP], I think I’ve said that. We have now.”

In our opinion, we think that the only reason Ripple (XRP) is even operational is because of the billions upon billions of XRP tokens that they keep dumping on the unassuming investors.  

Is this a wrong assumption?

Question 4: If Ripple does not need XRP, why is XRP needed?

Our basis for this question: 

This is based on our understanding that Ripple’s technology can be used by the businesses without having to use XRP.  It is recommended but not ‘required’.

Is this accurate?

Ripple’s solutions can work without XRP (its native token).  So, if XRP is not a utility token in strict sense, how are its creators able to mint and sell them at will without tripping any security laws?

Question 5: If Ripple [XRP] is to act as the ‘stable’ value while the transactions take place on Ripple network, why should anyone trust XRP which is backed by nothing instead of stablecoins like USDC that are backed by real world assets?

Our basis for this question: 

We would personally trust USDC more or even Facebook’s Libra rather than XRP which is backed by nada.

This is what Demelza’s opinion was during our interview:

“The main point is that if XRP were able to back their currency with financial assets and stabilize the purchasing power of the currency, then that would mean XRP coins should have no price appreciation. In fact, only the equity shares of Ripple Labs would profit from XRP’s adoption as a global reserve currency. But Ripple Labs is a privately held company. After fully understanding what XRP is, one realizes that XRP’s investment pitch does not make sense at all.”

Conclusion

We are trying to convince ourselves as to why we need Ripple in the crypto space if:

  • Future of payments is going to be ‘self-bank’ & over the chat
  • There are better stablecoins in the market 
  • Ripple itself as a technology doesn’t need its own native token, XRP

For this very reason, our opinion is that the money will flow out of XRP and the creators will keep dumping their bags into the market until the market can no longer absorb it and then it will be ‘lights out’.

We await for the XRP army to provide us insights that we did not know and our opinion changes…

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. We appreciate you.

Stay safe and healthy!

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

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IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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DeFi is Not the Holy Grail of Crypto, Here is Why

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Defi Yfi

DeFi has been making millionaires overnight and turning millionaires broke at the same speed.

Those who are on the bandwagon are rejoicing and those who either missed out or got burned by one of the fake projects are yelling ‘Scam’ at DeFi.

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

Our views are a bit different on the subject.

We do think DeFi is going to be a successful vertical among the blockchain (and crypto) solutions.

It will not be THE holy grail for the redemption of crypto status though.

Supply Chain, Crypto Lending, Insurance, Financial Services, Accounting, Identity, and many more verticals will collectively take blockchain and crypto to the masses.

Shifting our focus back on DeFi, here are some of our thoughts on the current state of DeFi. We do appreciate you dropping any insights you have that we might have missed.

DeFi is not a ponzi, here is why

If the DeFi project you are eyeing meets the following conditions, it is not a ponzi:

  • Audited code: Is the code on which DeFi runs is audited by reputable blockchain auditors? 
  • Reliable team: Who is behind the project? Do they have the know-how? Do they have a history of running scams or leading successful projects? 
  • Actual (sustainable) revenue model: What is the revenue model?  Is it too ‘scammy’ sounding or is it based on sound mathematical (and algorithmic) models?
  • No lock-in periods: Is it easy to get in and out of the platform without any restrictions or lock-in periods?

If you answered yes to ALL of these questions then there is a 100% certainty that the DeFi you are dealing with is not a ponzi (or scam).

However, a caveat is due here.  

Just because the project is not a ponzi doesn’t guarantee its success. Lot of well intentioned companies fail, that’s just the nature of business.

So, do not be one of those guys who sells their home to invest in crypto or DeFi (and that itself is not advice, just an opinion).

If you don’t want to hear it from us, listen to what Yearn Finance creator has to say about DeFi tokens (not all, obviously) having ZERO value.

Source: Crypto Culture

DeFi on Ethereum is not sustainable, here is why

Ethereum DefiMost, if not all, DeFi projects that are making the news today are on Ethereum. 

Ethereum is not a reliable blockchain when it is overloaded.  It gets choked and crashes.  

People are already complaining about exorbitant fees on the network due to the DeFi craze.  

DeFi itself as a crypto vertical is quite new and we are sure there are going to be a lot of ‘killer apps’ that will show up on the scene.

We are currently looking at the DeFi solutions that are being built on other blockchain networks (subscribe for free to know when we post that article).

PolkaDOT is not the end all be all, here is why

Polkadot Defi EcosystemMany are turning to the DOT as the next big thing after Ethereum.

It may very well be.

However, it has not had the chance to prove itself, not yet.

Ethereum’s resilience (or lack thereof) was revealed only during the ICO craze (and then later during CryptoKitties debacle).

What monsters lie in the DOT’s belly?  We don’t know and we would be weary of anyone who claims to know with certainty.

Other things to consider

Entire DeFi space is pretty new and we do not know what we do not know about potential vulnerabilities.

While this is true of Bitcoin itself, Bitcoin has withstood assault for over a decade and still stands stronger.  

Same cannot be said about DeFi.  

Can you imagine someone investing their life-savings into DeFi only to have funds taken because of a bug in the code?

Needless to say, many folks are exploiting the looping system in the DeFi where they take loan against their deposit then lend it back to the platform to take another loan against their deposit, and ad infinitum.

This is causing the DeFi systems to show more liquidity than what truly is.

Conclusion

We think DeFi is an exciting development, however, we still put it alongside ICO craziness for now.

When this space matures and we see reliable solutions emerge – DeFi has the potential to drive a trillion dollar vertical on its own.  

That is just the potential, all the trials and tribulations that we have to go through to get there is going to be one hell of a ride.  

So buckle up and enjoy (and please do not lose your shirts on the ride)!

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. We appreciate you.

Stay safe and healthy!

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

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IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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These forgotten gems could resurge during this bull run

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Forgotten Crypto Gems

Forgotten Crypto Gems

Disclaimer:  We own few of these tokens and there is no guarantee that these coins will actually resurge. Everything you are about to read is an opinion.  Our intention is to put some projects that have taken the backseat in recent times.

If you are curious as to why we give away so much for free – please check this Crypto Freebies page.

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

Crypto market is quite weird.  

It deceives the onlooker as if it’s learning from its past mistakes but it’s really not.

For instance, during the 2017 ICO craze, anyone could pitch any half-assed idea and raise millions from unassuming investors.

This bull run in 2020 is all about DeFi and Data Oracles.

Just slap ‘DeFi’ to any project without an actual product or even a single line of code written and you will make a boatload of money.

Because the ‘pump and dump’ practices are not closely monitored in the crypto space, many YouTubers are dumping their bags on their viewers.

It is so blatant that the YouTuber will start out saying “I loaded my bags with this” and then go on about all the mooning stuff and throw in a small disclaimer somewhere and voila. 

They make hundreds of thousands or even millions each day. And we are not exaggerating about that.

You contrast that with what you find here.  

We are giving away all the information we are digging up for free (including our Top 5 tokens for the next decade that we hope will 100x).  If you are curious as to why we give away so much for free – please check this Crypto Freebies page.

We recently started the microcap gems series where we are looking to dig up projects with a decent team, an actual product and lower market cap (usually under $5 Million, sometimes even less).

Because of the $$ limit on the microcap gems, there are some projects that we couldn’t cover in that series.

However, we wanted to float these projects in front of the discernible audience (and newbies who may not have looked into these).

This article’s sole aim is to ‘point’ you to these projects. It will not be a deep dive and as always we encourage you DYOR before investing.

Dragon Chain

Dragon Chain price prediction“Dragonchain is an enterprise and start up ready platform to build flexible and scalable blockchain applications.”

Like most projects we pick, Dragon Chain has solutions ready for business today.  This is not a pipedream or a 15 year roadmap.  That is why we think this is a forgotten gem.

This project is still going strong in the background in terms of development and traction.  They released a video in August about how their anti-fraud and transparency proof systems are used by an exchange.

Website: https://dragonchain.com/

Ticker: DRGN

ATH: $5.27

ATL: .02

Current Price: $0.079

Cindicator

Cindicator CND price prediction

“Cindicator builds predictive analytics by merging collective intelligence and machine learning models. Cindicator’s analytical products are available exclusively to holders of CND tokens.”

Market pays top dollar for prediction data.  Cindicator is one of the first projects to build an AI based market intelligence platform on blockchain.

Cindicator boasts over 135,000 analysts from over 135 countries.

In our opinion, Cindicator is a viable project, although it has not gained traction.

Website: https://cindicator.com/

Ticker: CND

ATH: $0.347

ATL: $0.002

Current price: $0.011

FunFair

Funfair Price Prediction

“FunFair is a revolutionary blockchain technology platform that provides low cost, high quality, transparent casino experiences that are Guaranteed Fair.”

The space that FunFair is targeting is a massive one and is expected to grown even more in the coming years.

Ticker: FUN

ATH: $0.33

ATL: $0.0010

Current price: $0.0052

This page will be updated with future ‘forgotten gems’, so please consider subscribing

Acronyms used: 

ATH: All Time High

ATL: All Time Low

DYOR: Do Your Own Research

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. We appreciate you.

Stay safe and healthy!

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

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IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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