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How Blockchain Social Media Will Topple Zuckerberg – Cointelegraph Magazine

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Big tech isn’t just big anymore. It’s grown into a ravenous Cthulhu-esque beast with its tentacles wrapped around almost every data point in our lives.

But in the light of a House Judiciary report determining that “Facebook’s monopoly power is firmly entrenched and unlikely to be eroded by competitive pressure from new entrants or existing firms,” can blockchain-based social media topple these social media powerhouses, given the unchecked power these giants wield over corporations and individuals? Even beginning to challenge the omnipotence of Facebook, Apple, and Google seems a daunting, nigh-impossible task.

Yet, just as a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, many a revolution starts with a single voice before becoming a deafening chorus. 

The potential for blockchain-based social platforms is unlimited, not least because it’s hard to find a more broken system than social media, thanks to the way we’ve allowed these networks to develop.

Social media has been designed to target the vulnerabilities of our psychology, damaging our wellbeing through an experience that is highly addictive, divisive and egocentric,” sums up Eric Yang, the founder and executive director of blockchain social media platform Junto. “Its centralization has led to large security vulnerabilities and enables a small number of individuals to censor others and act as a single source of morality.”

Most significantly, our data is being aggregated at scale to fuel algorithms that are becoming increasingly precise at predicting and manipulating our behavior.

How did we get here?

We didn’t realize early on that if you’re not paying for the product, you are the product. We should have, because our parents long ago warned us there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

But we fell further and further down the rabbit hole and came to love not having to pay for things online. From free news and social sites to file sharing, dating, and streaming, all we had to do was provide a little personal information to get a wealth of digital experiences back.

Free lunches became the norm. Content no longer had monetary value and no one even considered what was happening to their personal details as they flung them into cyberspace with wanton abandon.

While we were busy sharing photos of our holidays and taking geography IQ challenges, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was making a fortune from our data. He sold our profiles to sophisticated data mining firms like Cambridge Analytica to manipulate our behavior and to influence the outcome of elections. It turned out that we were a lot more under the thumb of big tech (and Big Brother) than we previously thought.

“The biggest social platforms are also some of the biggest data miners, routinely violating our privacy in order to sell more valuable ads,” says Ankit Bhatia, the CEO and cofounder of Sapien Ethereum-based social network.

And it’s not only the tech companies misusing and abusing our data; there are ceaseless hacks and breaches spewing our sensitive information all over the internet. In 2019, some 300 million Facebook users had their phone numbers and names exposed online. That’s a ton of personal details floating out in the wild just waiting to be used in phishing attacks, social engineering, and other types of online fraud — and that’s just one example. 

It seems that constantly refilling our plates at the all-you-can-eat buffet of free content does carry a price tag after all.

Avoiding data breaches

Blockchain-based social media can help avoid these all-too-common data breaches and leaks. Decentralized systems have no single point of failure in the way centralized servers do, which helps to keep sensitive information infinitely more secure.

“Blockchain architecture provides two things: decentralization and security,” explains Saqib Ahmed Khan, digital marketing executive at Pure VPN. “Since social networks are centralized, there are risks of data breaches, DDoS attacks, and physical attacks. Decentralized architecture solves this issue as there is no single server managing the whole network, that’s why the attack is almost impossible.”

But decentralization is good for a lot more than preventing DDoS attacks. Blockchain-based social media can chip away at the omnipotence of big tech by giving power back to the people. 

Ignite.so is a decentralized microblogging platform that values freedom of speech and was designed to fight censorship. Co-founder Vladislavs Semjonovs says most of the issues with social media are caused by centralization. “Blockchain technology can benefit social networks with decentralized governance, transparency of every action, and clear usage of user-generated personal data,” he says.

Junto’s Yang agrees that many problems can be traced back to an over-concentration of power. He claims that:

The centralization of big tech has won them ownership of our data and leaves high impact decision-making like algorithmic design, moderation, privacy practices, and revenue models both opaque and in the hands of a few.

Distributing this responsibility across many more actors through the technical architecture itself is one way to achieve more balance in our digital experience.” 

This need to seize back control from centralized entities is particularly timely right now in the light of the U.S. Congress Antitrust hearings held over the questionable practices of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google, which have already yielded the recommendation that Facebook be forced to undergo “structural separation” — possibly including divesting itself of WhatsApp and Instagram

Decentralized platforms that are run by users and reward users could present a real alternative to multinational companies that prefer to buy the competition rather than compete with them, and which insist on siphoning off 30% of the profit of every single app in their store.

Apple may have become the first public American company in history to hit a value of $2 trillion lately, but it’s done so off this hefty imbalance of power tilted in its favor.

Eliminating online advertising fraud

Centralized social media also has a major problem with fake accounts, bot traffic, and a slew of other fraudulent practices that cost advertisers some $23 billion a year.

The way current social media platforms are set up is also “destroying local news and independent journalism,” according to Salah Zalatimo, CEO of Voice tokenized social media platform. 

“Existing platforms are leveraging inflated audiences to take away ad dollars and their opaque algorithms force news organizations to bend over backwards to try to reach audiences,” he explains. 

Voice doesn’t pay its users to watch online ads like crypto-powered Brave browser, but it does provide transparency into how Voice tokens spent on advertising and promotion are used. This, according to the platform, means that “promotion and advertising on Voice are more engaging and less manipulative.”

This transparency allows advertisers to obtain honest metrics about where their budget is being spent, eliminating the advertising fraud that is rampant elsewhere on the net. It also enables users to have some agency over how they are being targeted.

“We’re building Voice to be social as it should be … Human-first: From the start, every user is a verified human (no bots, no burner accounts),” he adds.

Transparent rules

This notion of transparency is a common thread among blockchain based social media projects. At Sapien, Bhatia points out the technology allows them to eliminate the middleman between creators and audiences and enable direct payments, subscriptions, and more.

“Deploying a smart contract means that the rules of exchange are absolute and transparent, unlike with mainstream social platforms which hoard most of the value and constantly move the goalposts for getting your due piece of that value.”

Rewarding content creators is a very different strategy to simply using them to generate likes and shares. 

Zalatimo explains that the Voice community is “empowered to self-govern, to launch communities, and to curate so that quality content rises above.”

“Creators are rewarded, not exploited: We’re a tokenized social media platform which means we’re creating a new content economy where creators are valued for the content and engagement they provide.”

We are putting the power back in the hands of content creators … No opaque algorithms, no hidden agendas.

Junto has similarly lofty ambitions to put the focus back on people, rather than profits.

“We hope to create a digital culture that inspires authenticity, deeper human connection, and positive mental health,” Yang says. “We’re building on a distributed technology called Holochain, providing our members with ownership of their data and a censorship-free experience.”

Preventing censorship

Content censorship is a fiery issue that frequently comes up for debate. The ongoing censorship of crypto-related content on YouTube, for example, has given rise to blockchain-based platforms such as D.Tube, a decentralized video platform, built on top of the STEEM blockchain that can neither censor videos nor enforce guidelines.

Ignite is built on the premise that “even unpopular opinions deserve to be heard,” and Junto sees censorship as one of the key problems with existing platforms. Decentralization can defeat censorship — but come with the attendant problem that totally unmediated systems are ripe for abuse. 

Earlier this month, for example, a 10-year-old Brazilian girl who was raped by her uncle, was stalked and harassed online by religious extremists who posted her personal details on Facebook and Twitter in an attempt to prevent her from having an abortion. A Court eventually ruled that the networks must remove her information — after she’d already been forced to fly 900 miles to another clinic.

“It’s horrendous what has happened to that young girl in Brazil and Facebook and Twitter should have been more proactive from the start, instead of relying on a court to justify moderation,” says Jonathan Goodwin of Sapien. “This is yet another example of their lackluster content moderation standards and practices.” 

Yang acknowledges that “there’s certainly a real danger of malicious content” but that ultimately, there is no way of stopping people from sharing what they want, when they want. “Censoring content on specific platforms will simply push these individuals towards other pockets of the internet and opens up a host of other concerns,” he says. 

“Enabling any form of censorship from a centralized party opens the door for that power to be corrupted, and for us to rely on a small number of people to dictate what we can and cannot see. This has far more dangerous implications than allowing people to be fully free in their expression, whether we like what they say or not.” 

He believes that a better solution is to create tools that allow individuals and communities to govern themselves. “To me, this form of distributed governance is the only way to achieve moderation at scale while respecting the differences and philosophies of all walks of life.” 

Goodwin of Sapien agrees. “A decentralized social platform would be built on self-moderating communities that could weed out malicious content, including doxxing, before it could take root in a given community,” he says.

But, is it really workable in practice? Are all blockchain social media platforms following this model? And how exactly do these communities self-moderate? These questions still need to be answered as blockchain social media grows. 

The tech is not quite there yet

While blockchain brings advantages, the tech is still in its infancy and it’s a long way from being bullet-proof.

It may be totally impractical to launch a 51% attack against Bitcoin due to its enormous hashrate, but that’s not the case for smaller blockchains. Take LBRY, a content sharing platform that enables users to publish material and get paid for doing so. Built on a PoW blockchain, a malicious actor could gain control of the network by renting hashing power for around $100 an hour.

Then there’s the issue of scalability, which remains a challenge, particularly for those platforms built on Ethereum like Sapien. Reaching a Facebook-style user base of two billion people certainly isn’t on the near or even mid-term horizon when 100,000 DeFi users can bring the network to its knees.

And, while we’ve moved way beyond the days of the Parity hack, smart contracts are still only as smart as the human who wrote them. The possibility of data disasters isn’t entirely obsolete with blockchain, especially if opportune hackers are dead set on taking a platform down. 

Even once the technical problems have been solved, overcoming the network effects of current platforms like Facebook will still be a mammoth task. Blockchain security consultant and writer Reuben Jackson believes this is the biggest obstacle facing social Dapps.

Despite all of its brand issues, Facebook has ridiculous market share and recognition,” he says. “Everyone else, from Twitter to Instagram to Snapchat to LinkedIn and beyond, is small change compared to Facebook, but they’ve all been at it for several years.”

Centralized platforms are easier to use

Established platforms are currently faster, more convenient and user-friendly than decentralized alternatives. Users don’t face a steep learning curve to educate themselves about private keys and Metamask just to hang out with a handful of users when the bulk of their friends are still on Instagram. 

And, as difficult as it is to hear, most users simply aren’t as passionate about decentralization, or care as much about the abuse of their personal data, as the creators of these solutions.

“Social media users do not usually care about the issues addressed by these decentralized social media projects and/or are often too lazy to spend time and effort to switch and use something more secure and fair,” says Michał Szachno, a blockchain security expert and co-founder of VAIOT.

He doesn’t believe blockchain social media will topple current platforms any time soon. Instead, he says:

The social media space needs a “deal-breaker,” something that will excite users and encourage them to make the change.

It’s interesting to ponder just what that deal-breaker would have to be, given that having our profiles scraped for data to manipulate us into taking unconscious actions hasn’t yet sparked wholesale change.

So, should Zuckerberg be worried?

Jackson says that Dtube, Steemit, and MeWe have shown impressive user growth momentum and sparked important conversations. “But if you’re going after the big boys, then you need to offer more than simply being a YouTube clone that runs on distributed tech and isn’t owned by Google,” he says.

While many blockchain social media platforms have introduced innovative tokenized economies, there are still many battles to be won. Overcoming user apathy and educating people to care enough about their data and the abuses of big tech is probably the largest hurdle to overcome. 

While the backlash against big tech and its monopolistic, opaque practices is growing, is it enough to topple Zuckerberg from his throne? Maybe not right now. It will probably take several years for blockchain social media to grab even a small proportion of the market share. 

But the world is changing fast and the optics are beginning to shift. With big tech now on the U.S. government’s radar and growing awareness about the value of our personal data, there seems at least a glimmer of hope the oligopolies can break down just enough to allow for meaningful gains to be made by decentralized platforms.

It wasn’t easy for David to take on Goliath armed with just a slingshot, yet we all know how that story turned out. Zuck may not be losing sleep over blockchain social media right now but you can bet he’s paying attention. 

 



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Monero

Law Decoded: E Pluribus SHA-256

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New developments at the state level in the U.S. defined this week’s regulatory news.



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Big Bitcoin prediction, OKEx spooks markets, Ripple exec’s big mistake

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Coming every Sunday, Hodler’s Digest tracks every important crypto news story from the previous week. Essential reading for all Hodlers!

 

Top Stories This Week

 

Calm before the storm? Analyst says $20,000 Bitcoin is possible in three months

Bitcoin volatility has fallen to a 16-month low, indicating that a sharp move is on the horizon.

Large fluctuations tend to follow prolonged periods of consolidation, and according to a Bitazu Capital founding partner, Mohit Sorout, BTC could reach its previous all-time high if it was to break out today.

There are other factors at play. The U.S. dollar has been weak recently, and traditionally, this leads to strength across other “safe haven” assets. Bitcoin exchange reserves have also continued to plummet, indicating there’s a shortage of sellers… or a lack of trust in centralized platforms.

Cointelegraph analyst Michaël van de Poppe says BTC must hold $11,000 for October’s rally to continue — paving the way for a retest of $12,000 in the short term. Meanwhile, a report by Stack Funds suggests BTC has support to climb all the way to $15,000 if historic trends repeat themselves this year.

But this optimism isn’t universal. JPMorgan Chase experts believe Bitcoin is slightly overvalued and think the asset could see selling pressure ahead.

 

BTC and OKB plunge after OKEx suspends withdrawals

OKEx, a major crypto exchange, spooked the markets this week by announcing that it had suspended withdrawals.

The company said one of its private key holders was “cooperating with a public security bureau” concerning ongoing “investigations.”

In the immediate aftermath of Friday’s statement, Bitcoin fell nearly 3%, while OKEx’s native token, OKB, crashed 15%.

According to Caixin, OKEx founder Mingxing Xu — also known as Star Xu — was the executive who was questioned by authorities. The Chinese news agency also reported that he was investigated “at least a week ago” and had been absent at work for some time.

Industry executives have expressed surprise at how events unfolded. The Bitcoin Association’s president, Leo Weese, wrote: “That one person sits in China holding the keys to an entire offshore cryptocurrency exchange is probably the most surprising thing about this industry I learned this year. That customers don’t demand transparency about key management comes in at a close second, though.

Armstrong says “silent majority” supports Coinbase apolitical stance in leaked audio

Staff at Coinbase fear that the exchange’s leadership are watching their every move and monitoring their messages, it has been reported.

According to Motherboard, the exchange’s newfound “apolitical” stance has led to allegations of surveillance and censorship, but in a leaked recording of an ask me anything session, CEO Brian Armstrong said the “silent majority” supported the move.

Elsewhere, it was claimed that Coinbase’s management had “stunted internal discussion” and forced employees to delete political Slack messages. The exchange responded to Motherboard’s claims by describing the accusations as “quite extreme and absolutely false.”

During an AMA back in June, Armstrong had reportedly resisted the idea of making a public statement in support of Black Lives Matter following the killing of George Floyd by police. However, he later backtracked and posted a series of tweets in support of BLM.

Coinbase has been hemorrhaging employees of late, with at least 5% of its workforce opting to take an exit package if they were unwilling to avoid political and social issues at work.

 

Following whipsaw launch, Filecoin looks to weeklong conference for stability

It’s been a wild ride for the FIL token following Filecoin’s long-awaited launch.

FIL initially rocketed by 118% before plunging by 80% as the cryptocurrency was listed on major exchanges — three years after the project’s ICO was held.

Now, the blockchain-based data storage platform is hoping to right the ship through a weeklong digital conference that begins on Oct. 19.

“Filecoin Liftoff Week” is going to be centered on education, infrastructure, interoperability, and future plans, with each day focusing on a different theme.

Despite the recent plunge in FIL’s value, the Filecoin team remains optimistic about the project’s future prospects: “This is only the beginning for the Filecoin network.”

 

Ripple’s CTO sold 40,000 Ether for just $1 each

And we end our news roundup with a painful story courtesy of Ripple’s chief technology officer David Schwartz.

He revealed that he and his wife came up with a “derisking plan” for their crypto investments in 2012 — and missed out on millions of dollars in profit as a result.

Schwartz sold 40,000 ETH for $1 each at the time — a stash that would be worth more than $15.5 million at today’s prices.

The Ripple executive also sold a significant sum of BTC for $750 apiece, and a large trove of XRP for $0.10.

He described himself as a “risk averse person with people who depend on me financially and emotionally” but admitted that selling his crypto at this bargain basement prices “hurt.”

 

Winners and Losers

 

Gainers and losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin is at $11,435.68, Ether at $375.90 and XRP at $0.24. The total market cap is at $359,603,174,619.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are ABBC Coin (77.11%), Filecoin (44.49%) and Waves (28.70%). The top three altcoin losers of the week are Arweave (-32.22%), OKB (-23.80%) and Crypto.com Coin (-21.98%).

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis

 

Most Memorable Quotations

 

“All your funds and assets are safe. The investigation concerns a certain private key holder’s personal issue only.”

Jay Hao, OKEx CEO

 

“That one person sits in China holding the keys to an entire offshore cryptocurrency exchange is probably the most surprising thing about this industry I learned this year. That customers don’t demand transparency about key management comes in at a close second, though.”

Leo Weese, The Bitcoin Association president

 

“The Chinese government is cracking down on money laundering using cryptocurrency for telecom fraud, and centralized exchanges are in a very dangerous state.”

Colin Wu, crypto reporter

 

“I do believe we’ll be seeing a relatively boring and corrective quarter on the cryptomarkets. In history; $ETH frequently bottoms out in December, to start running the quarter after. $BTC dominance to run up, to have an altseason in Q1 2021. Continuing the patience.”

Michaël van de Poppe, Cointelegraph analyst

 

“You can only try to win the hand with the high hand: gold, silver and Bitcoin. You can’t win playing the low hand unless you’re a sovereign state or a major investment bank, and that’s the game today.”

Max Keiser, broadcaster

 

“We’d like to keep tabs on what other central banks are doing and learn from them, not just from China but from other countries.”

Kazushige Kamiyama, Bank of Japan’s CBDC head

 

“Our eyes are peeled on the $12,000 key resistance level, as we expect further consolidation around current levels going into the elections before breaking into the upside going forward.”

Stack Funds

 

“So if I am to buy the dip, where would the perfect dip be? Well, the perfect dip would be… around $11,000.”

Tone Vays, trader

 

“It’s definitely sending a message to the crypto world that when there are U.S. users of a product or a service, there’s going to be enforcement of U.S. laws.”

“Crypto Mom” Hester Peirce, SEC Commissioner

 

 

Prediction of the Week

Could there be a massive Bitcoin shortage?

Rapid growth of institutional investments in crypto has prompted 10T Holdings co-founder Dan Tapiero to warn that shortages of Bitcoin could be on the horizon.

He warned: “SHORTAGES of Bitcoin possible. Barry’s Grayscale Trust is eating up BTC like there is no tomorrow. If 77% of all newly mined turns into 110%, it’s lights out. Non-miner supply will get held off market in squeeze. Shorts will be dead. Price can go to any number.”

Institutional demand surged rapidly after March when Bitcoin suffered one of its steepest falls in recent history. This indicates that big players see staying power in the world’s biggest cryptocurrency. 

The speculation about a potential supply-side crisis around Bitcoin also coincides with the post-halving cycle. Bitcoin went through its third halving on May 11, and historically, halvings lead to extended bull runs in the two years that follow.

Bitcoin may fall upwards

FUD of the Week

 

G7 will oppose Libra launch until regulations in place

The G7 has warned that it will initially oppose the launch of Facebook’s Libra project.

In a statement that pulled few punches, the Group of Seven wrote: “The G7 continues to maintain that no global stablecoin project should begin operation until it adequately addresses relevant legal, regulatory, and oversight requirements through appropriate design and by adhering to applicable standards.”

The statement was co-authored by central bankers and finance ministers from the United States, Canada, Japan, Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom.

The G7 has previously raised concerns over how to ensure digital assets comply with Anti-Money Laundering laws, consumer protection rules and other regulatory matters.

Last October, one of its reports also warned that global stablecoins pose a threat to the global financial system.

G7 issues warning to stablecoins

16 countries join forces to clamp down on money laundering crypto criminals

Europol has announced that 20 individuals suspected of working for the “QQAAZZ” criminal network have been arrested in an operation that spanned 16 countries.

The organization is accused of laundering tens of millions of euros for top cybercriminals since 2016. About 40 homes were searched as part of “Operation 2BaGoldMule,” with arrests made in Australia, the U.S, the U.K, Portugal, Spain, Latvia and Poland.

On the same day, a 40-year-old man was arrested in New Zealand for using cryptocurrency to launder more than $2 million for criminals — as well as by purchasing luxury vehicles including a Lamborghini and Mercedes G63.

And in the U.S, six individuals have been charged for their participation in a conspiracy to “launder millions of dollars of drug proceeds on behalf of foreign cartels.”

 

Deadline for Mt. Gox trustee rehabilitation plan extended again

The trustee of the now-defunct Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Mt. Gox has obtained another approval to extend the deadline for submitting a rehabilitation plan — this time to Dec. 15.

As reported by Cointelegraph, Nobuaki Kobayashi received a number of similar deadline extensions in March 2020 and April 2019.

The Mt. Gox crypto exchange is known for encountering the largest cryptocurrency hack in history. The exchange lost a total of 1.35 million Bitcoin in two hacks in 2011 and 2014.

Despite the hacks happening years ago, Mt. Gox customers have still not received compensation for their stolen funds. 

Kobayashi, a Japanese lawyer who was appointed to oversee the civil reimbursement process, reportedly has 150,000 BTC to repay users, but the refund process has been delayed multiple times since 2019.

 

Best Cointelegraph Features

 

The curious case of Coinbase — Employees driven out by “apolitical” stance

Coinbase’s new “apolitical” culture has led to some employees taking severance packages, as the crypto community reacts with ambivalence.

 

The next big treasure: Corporations buy up Bitcoin as a treasury reserve

The entry of firms like Square, MicroStrategy and Stone Ridge may open the BTC floodgates and provide “confidence for the rest to follow,” writes Andrew Singer.

 

Game theory meets DeFi: Bouncing ideas around tokenomic design

Andrew Fenton talks to Jack Lu about his new DeFi platform Bounce, which has been described as a decentralized version of eBay, Sotheby’s or Christie’s.



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BTC, NEO, XMR, ADA, LINK

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The total crypto market capitalization has recovered from the Sep. 6 lows near $314 billion but it is struggling to sustain above the $350 billion mark, which shows that higher levels continue to attract sellers.

Bitcoin’s (BTC) dominance fell from above 68% in mid-May to about 56% in the first half of this month as DeFi tokens embarked on a strong bull run. 

However, in the past few days, the DeFi assets have witnessed sharp corrections and their volatility has increased. This could possibly shift traders’ attention back to Bitcoin. It’s also possible that Bitcoin’s inability to hold above the $11,000 level could also be negatively weighing on the confidence of altcoin and DeFi-token traders.

Crypto market data daily view. Source: Coin360

Although Bitcoin has been struggling to find momentum, a positive is that the volume of Bitcoin futures trading on Bakkt has been increasing and the exchange whale ratio is near yearly lows. This suggests accumulation by the whales and institutional traders.

Currently, most major cryptocurrencies are not following a general trend as the price action has been mostly coin specific. This has opened up opportunities both on the short side and the long side. Hence, in today’s list, two short ideas have been discussed for the traders who are bearish on the crypto markets.

BTC/USD

The relief rally in Bitcoin is facing stiff resistance near the 50% Fibonacci retracement level of $11,147.60. This shows that the bears have used the current relief rally to initiate short positions.

BTC/USD daily chart

BTC/USD daily chart. Source: TradingView

If the bears can sink the price below the uptrend line and the $10,625 support, it will signal weakness. If the BTC/USD pair sustains below $10,625, it will increase the possibility of a retest of $9,835.

However, if the pair rebounds off the $10,625 support sharply, this will be the first sign that the correction might be over. Trading momentum is likely to pick up after the rally breaks above the downtrend line.

If the price closes (UTC time) above the downtrend line, the possibility of a rally to $12,460 increases. Even though there is resistance at $12,000 it seems likely that it will be crossed.

BTC/USD 4-hour chart

BTC/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

The pair is currently attempting to rebound off the uptrend line, which suggests that the bulls purchased the dip to this support. The buyers will now make one more attempt to push the price above the $11,147.60 resistance.

If the bounce fizzles out and the bears sink the pair below the uptrend line, a drop to $10,625 could occur. This is an important support for the bulls because selling is likely to intensify if this level breaks down.

If the pair rebounds off $10,625, a few days of range-bound action is possible. The flattening moving average on the 4-hour chart suggests a balance between supply and demand. 

NEO/USD

NEO is currently facing stiff resistance at $25.23, which shows that the bears are aggressively defending this resistance. However, as it is in an uptrend, traders are likely to view the dips as a buying opportunity. 

NEO/USD daily chart

NEO/USD daily chart. Source: TradingView

The immediate support on the downside is at $23 and below that at the 10-day simple moving average ($22.26). If the NEO/USD pair rebounds off either support, it will indicate that the bulls are not waiting for a deeper fall to buy which is a positive sign.

If the bulls can push the price above the $25.23–$25.78923 resistance zone, the uptrend is likely to resume. The next target on the upside is $29.

A break below the 10-day SMA will be the first sign that the momentum is weakening and a drop below $20.9633 will signal a possible change in trend.

NEO/USD 4-hour chart

NEO/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

The 4-hour chart shows that the bulls pushed the price above the $25.23 resistance twice but they could not sustain the higher levels. This shows that the bears are attempting to stall the rally at this resistance. 

However, on the downside, the bulls have not allowed the price to sustain below $23, which shows that the buyers are accumulating on every minor dip. 

This could keep the pair stuck between $23 and $25.50 for a few more days. The moving averages have flattened out, which suggests a balance between supply and demand. 

XMR/USD

The recovery in Monero (XMR) from the Sep. 5 low of $74.1012 has been strong and the bulls have pushed the price back above the moving averages, which increases the possibility that the correction might be over. 

XMR/USD daily chart

XMR/USD daily chart. Source: TradingView

However, the bears are unlikely to give up without a stiff fight at the $97.4615 resistance. If the XMR/USD pair turns down sharply from the current levels and breaks below $84, a drop to $74.1012 is possible.

Conversely, if the bulls can arrest the next dip at the 20-day exponential moving average ($89), it will increase the possibility of a breakout of $97.4615. Above this resistance, a move to $105.9131–$107.3742 is possible. A break above $107.3742 can result in a rally to $120.  

XMR/USD 4-hour chart

XMR/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

The 4-hour chart shows that the recovery from $74.1012 has been gradual. Although the bears broke the pair below the 30-EMA on several occasions, they could not capitalize on it and intensify the selling. 

This shows that the bulls are accumulating on dips. Currently, the price has again dipped back below the 30-EMA. If the pair rebounds off the current levels, the bulls will try and drive the price above the overhead resistance at $97.4615.

The short-term momentum is likely to weaken if the bears can break and sustain the price below the immediate support at $87.5629. 

ADA/USD

The relief rally in Cardano (ADA) from the lows of $0.0855982 on Sep. 6 hit a stiff resistance at $0.0997444 on Sep. 13. The moving averages are sloping down, which suggests that the bears are in command.

ADA/USD daily chart

ADA/USD daily chart. Source: TradingView

In a downtrend, the bears short on pullbacks to resistance levels as that improves the risk to reward ratio of the trade. Currently, if the bears can sink the ADA/USD pair below the $0.0855982 support, the decline might resume.

Traders can consider taking positions on the short side with an appropriate stop-loss to benefit from the likely down move. The next support on the downside is at $0.074 but if this support fails to hold, the drop can extend to $0.05. 

This bearish view will be invalidated if the pair rebounds off $0.0855982 and the bulls drive the price above $0.10. Such a move will suggest that the downtrend might be over. 

However, it is not necessary that a new uptrend starts as soon as a downtrend ends because many times, the price remains range-bound as it tries to form a bottom. 

Therefore, traders can step aside and wait for a new bullish setup to form if the price breaks above $0.10.

ADA/USD 4-hour chart

ADA/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

The 4-hour chart shows that the pair has been gradually declining towards the critical support at $0.0855982 and a close (UTC time) below this level is likely to start the next leg of the down move.

However, if the pair rebounds off $0.0855982, the bulls will make one more attempt to propel the price above $0.10. If they succeed, a quick relief rally is possible.

Conversely, if the price again turns down from $0.10, the pair might remain range-bound for a few days.

LINK/USD

Chainlink (LINK) is in a downtrend and it has been making a lower high and a lower low pattern for the past few days, which shows that the bears are using the relief rallies to sell. 

LINK/USD daily chart

LINK/USD daily chart. Source: TradingView

The down sloping moving averages suggest that the trend favors the bears. If they can sink the LINK/USD pair below $9.65, a drop to $9 is likely. This is an important support to watch out for because a break below this level is likely to resume the downtrend.

The next support on the downside is $7. Therefore, traders can consider benefiting from the possible down-move.

This bearish view will be invalidated if the pair turns up from the current levels or rebounds off sharply from the $9 levels and breaks above the downtrend line. 

LINK/USD 4-hour chart

LINK/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

On Sep. 5 and 6, the bears were unable to sustain the price below $10.50, which shows that the bulls were attempting to defend this level. 

However, during the current fall, the price has been sustaining below $10.50 for the past two days, which suggests that the buying has dried up.

The moving averages are sloping down gradually and the price is below the averages, which suggests that the advantage is with the bears.

A break above the 30-EMA will be the first sign that the bears are losing their grip. Until then, the path of least resistance is to the downside. 

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.



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