1 – Quote of the Week & Utopia Trivia
“Bitcoin is the currency of resistance.”
Utopia Trivia – What was the Genesis Block’s Reward Per Thread?
Look for the answers somewhere in this edition of TheMessage.
2 – A Deeper Look Inside The Rabbit Hole of Utopia – PART IV
In Part III we reviewed the meteoric rise and fall of Napster, followed by the birth of a truly Peer-to-Peer content sharing platform in the form of the BitTorrent protocol. We discussed how revolutionary a technology BitTorrent was and how integral to the Internet it has become. Now in Part IV, we will discuss what happens when the profoundly democratizing and resilient power of Peer-to-Peer technology is brought to bear on money itself.
On October 31st 2008, the Bitcoin white paper is published and on January 3 2009, Bitcoin’s Genesis Block is mined. Previously, the idea of digital money could not be realized in a direct, trustless fashion, because there always existed the problem of multiple spending. A trusted, third party database was always necessary and that handicap held back the potential of digital money for many years. Satoshi Nakamoto proposed an elegant solution; through cryptography, a Peer-to-Peer network could maintain the integrity of the record and allow participants to transfer value between each other without having to trust any third party. The simple but profound act of one human being directly handing another human being something of unique value was now finally enabled online through the internet. The social, economic and political implications of this technological breakthrough are still be felt to this day.
To understand how consequential a breakthrough Bitcoin was, you would need to appreciate how important a role money and its control plays in the lives of human beings. Most people today are born into societies where they have little choice in the matters of money. Decisions made by others many years ago affect their day to day lives in ways most do not understand. Human history is littered with examples of those in privileged positions abusing the power to create and regulate money to the detriment of the masses. Just as the power of communication and content sharing was placed in the hands of the people through Peer-to-Peer technology and the internet, now money itself was placed in the hands of the people through the P2P technology of Bitcoin. To participate in Bitcoin was itself a kind of defiant act against the existing power structures, a form of resistance–“Bitcoin is the currency of resistance.” Max Keiser, a broadcaster, film maker and Bitcoin proponent is quoted as saying.
The modern history of the internet has taught us that with every advancement and empowering step forward for humanity, vested corporate and government interests seek to extend their domain of influence by exerting power and control in lock-step with those advancements and Bitcoin is no exception. The only solution to diminish this negative influence, projected via surveillance and its coercive power, has been the equalizing power of cryptography and the democratizing power of P2P technology. What if advancements in these two fields could be brought to bear on a new kind of internet? An internet where surveillance and censorship were absent? An internet where communication, content and money could all flow in complete security and privacy? That will be the subject of Part V, our final segment in this series of articles; the revolution of Utopia.
3 – Mining Rewards Adjustment on Block #8843
On the day of Utopia’s mainnet launch, November 18th 2019, the mining Reward Per Thread (and so the Genesis Block’s RPT) was set at 0.0128 CRP. It stayed set at a maximum of 0.0128 for approximately 3-4 weeks as the total thread count ballooned to over 30,000 and only marginally declined after 15,000 threads since the Total Reward Generated (TRG) was capped at 192 CRP per 15 minutes Block. It was because of the miner abuse associated with those initial weeks that a major update was released in mid-December mandating a bot be run on a system with a minimum specification of 4 CPUs and 4GB of RAM along with a Public IP. Once that new requirement was put in place, thread count collapsed from over 30,000 to less than 1,000. Within days, the team doubled the mining RPT to 0.0256 CRP in order to better incentivize users to operate bots on enhanced servers and support the network. Unfortunately version 1.0.5499 had serious issues with reward rate for miners and for 7 weeks users endured through inconsistent rewards until the much celebrated major update was finally released on Febraury 4th 2020. Major update version 1.0.5665 and minor update 5672 witnessed the thread count climb consistently from less than 1,000 threads to over 9,000 threads over the next 2 weeks. However, at 7,500 threads, when a number of users, this publisher included, expected to see a similar marginal decline in RPT as before, none was observed. The TRG number was apparently no longer capped at 192 as it previously had been, and the TRG saw its figure climb to as high as 230 CRP (equivalent to over 22,000 CRP per day) before the hammer came down.
Utopia Monetary Policy
At this point, it’s worth reviewing the 1984 Group’s purported monetary policy for Crypton and Utopia. In their own words:
“Multi-faceted and highly-professional approach to liquidity support and stable market rate of Crypton is well-organized with 3 main levers:
- Adjustable amount of issued Cryptons per 15 minute block for regulating emission
- Adjustable Proof-of-Stake Rate for storing Cryptons that can be positive or even negative if it’s necessary for market rate stability
- Adjustable fees settings for all paid services available within Utopia ecosystem
All of three adjustable settings listed above are currently controlled by Utopia development team but after implementation of decentralized referendum, self-governance and voting systems the full control of adjustable settings will be transferred to society.”
The Hammer of Block #8843, RPT vs TRG
On Block #8843 the team reduced the RPT from 0.0256 to 0.0096, a contraction of 62.5%, or a factor of 2.67. This happened on February 19th midday UTC time. According to a message sent by the team, “This measure is necessary for optimal total balance of mined Cryptons and for efficient CRP value support in current market conditions.”. Based on the team’s explanation, they did this in order to control the trajectory of total CRP in circulation (“optimal total balance of mined Cryptons”) as well as to provide support to the value of CRP in the market, (“efficient CRP value support in current market conditions”). Why they chose to exercise control at the RPT level rather than the TRG level is the most fascinating question to consider. Capping the TRG has the additional effect of marginally disincentivizing new threads, whereas reducing the RPT doesn’t have that negative marginal effect, it simply makes each thread less productive. While both would have a similar monetary or economic net effect, they provide different incentives to miners. By reducing RPT, miners are incentivized to find more cost-effective servers in the long run, while the addition of new threads continues to be incentivized in a similar fashion. Therefore, we can conclude that the team wants to see the thread count continue to multiply, but did not want to compromise the inflation of CRP to accomplish this. Furthermore, because the reward rate of mining bots is already relatively high, it can be concluded that the RPT is unlikely to ever see an increase again.
4 – Updated CRP Price Structure at TheMarket
With the cost of mining CRP having increased by a factor of 2.67, TheMerchant is updating the price structure at TheMarket in order to better accommodate potential investors with different price sensitivities.
The Normal high-volume selling price will now be $2.50/CRP. This will be the default price around the clock when not in the 14:00 to 22:00 UTC time slot on Saturdays.
The Once-Per-Week high volume selling price will now be $2.00/CRP. This will be every Saturday except the final Saturday of the month, from 14:00 UTC to 22:00 UTC. (February 22, March 7, 14, 21, etc.)
The Once-Per-Month high volume selling price will now be $1.50/CRP. This will be on the final Saturday of the month, from 14:00 UTC to 22:00 UTC. February 29, March 28, April 25 etc.)
The reason for this price structure is that until a low-friction, high-volume exchange is established, there needs to be a reliable and predictable way to meet the needs of potential investors at different price points. Some investors have a long enough investment horizon that buying at $2.50 or $2.00 or $1.50 is not as important as being able to accumulate as much CRP as possible from a trusted source before the supply is exhausted. This investor would be considered more time-sensitive and less price-sensitive and more likely to acquire TheMerchant’s supply before others. Whereas other investors may have a shorter investment horizon and patiently waiting until the end of the week on Saturday, or quite possibly even until the end of the month on the final Saturday is more appealing to them, even at the risk of the supply having been reduced to completely exhausted, because they are more price-sensitive. In all cases, buy orders will be prioritized on a first-come, first-served basis.
5 – Personal Note from The Publisher
Here’s where to find the “Rabbit Hole” that is Utopia for those who may be reading on the surveillance landscape of the clearnet: https://u.is
TheMerchant Public Key: 0093DEFD354D78D4F035CF04A935DD211A9765B8779C68D30A9DA0B3EB06554F
Request contact authorization from TheMerchant to receive uMail versions of TheMessage and to purchase CRP, the future of private P2P commerce.
TheMarket Channel ID: E95109799EC5047783C867F6AF6D4568
Utopia’s leading forum for the exchange of both CRP and uNS records. Zero-Profit Escrow Service is available from TheMerchant to help establish trust.
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