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Bad Crypto

Airs weekdays at 5 am, 3 am, and 9 pm PT.

The show for people who are trying to figure out cryptocurrency, blockchain, and the future of digital payments. Technologists and crypto-enthusiasts Joel Comm and Travis Wright attempt to demystify the world of bitcoin, blockchain, Litecoin, Ethereum, alt-coins, token generation events, and ICOs in this podcast for cryptocurrency newbies. Joel and Travis are learning as they go, so this show follows them on a journey that is a learning experience for all. Informative, engaging, and irreverent, the Bad Crypto Podcast is knowledge and entertainment wrapped together in blockchain goodness.

 

Originally aired on November 15, 2023

In episode 702 of the Bad Crypto podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright cover a range of topics related to the fast-evolving world of crypto, NFTs, AI, and mainstream adoption. They discuss the impending Bitcoin halving, ETFs, price fluctuations, and the potential for mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies in the near future. The hosts also explore the latest advancements in AI technology, the rise of Bitcoin in NFT marketplaces, and the move towards cashless transactions. Overall, the episode offers valuable insights into the current state and future trends of the crypto industry.

What are the top trends in the crypto market?

  • Bitcoin halving and ETFs leading to a potential bull market
  • Rise of Bitcoin in NFT marketplaces
  • Cashless transactions and the move towards digital payments
  • Record-breaking earnings for Bitcoin miners

How is AI evolving in the crypto world?

  • OpenAI’s Chad GPT advancements, now with 128,000 tokens
  • Introduction of DALL-E 3 for image creation and vision
  • Collaboration between Mastercard and self-custody wallets like MetaMask
  • Innovative wearable tech from former Apple designers

What are the implications of Mastercard’s collaboration with self-custody wallets?

  • Enables linking a self-custody wallet to a debit card-type setup
  • Provides increased convenience for managing funds within the wallet
  • Raises questions about trust and security of self-custody wallet transactions

How is the landscape of NFTs evolving in the crypto world?

  • Ethereum still dominating the NFT market, but Bitcoin is rising
  • Potential impact on original NFTs if hosting resources go down
  • Collaboration between gaming platforms such as Roblox and NFTs
  • Broader implications for the digital asset market as a whole

How are prices and market trends shaping the future of crypto?

  • Mainstream adoption on the horizon due to upcoming developments
  • Speculation on potential bull market and price fluctuations
  • Implications of historical market trends and potential future surges
  • Impact of institutional investments and ETFs on market dynamics

What are the latest advancements in blockchain technology?

  • Grayscale launching a trust trading of Salina at a 869 per premium
  • Samsung, Amazon, and X unveiling new AI models and offerings
  • Collaboration between Visa, USDC, Solana
  • Ripple’s ongoing developments in cross-border payments

 

 

Originally aired on November 6, 2023

In episode 701 of the Bad Crypto Podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright discuss various topics in the world of cryptocurrency. They begin by sharing the news of Sam Bankman-Fried’s guilty verdict on seven counts of fraud and conspiracy. They also discuss the anticipation of Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust ETF and its potential impact on the market. Additionally, they touch on the recent indictment of the founders of SafeMoon for fraud, as well as the SEC’s scrutiny of PayPal’s stablecoin. The hosts also share personal updates, including Joel’s recent trip to Spain, Turkey, and Egypt.

Sam Bankman-Fried Found Guilty

  • Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX, has been found guilty on seven counts of fraud and conspiracy.
  • The sentencing will take place in March 2024, and Bankman-Fried could face up to 115 years in prison.

Anticipation of Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust ETF

  • The anticipation of Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust ETF has caused the market to rally, with Bitcoin reaching new highs.
  • The tripled price of Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust this year reflects investor confidence in the future of Bitcoin ETFs.

Indictment of SafeMoon Founders

  • The founders of SafeMoon have been indicted for fraud, allegedly diverting investor funds for personal gain.
  • This serves as a reminder of the risks associated with investing in cryptocurrency projects without thorough research.

SEC Scrutiny of PayPal’s Stablecoin

  • PayPal’s issuance of its stablecoin, PYUSD, has come under scrutiny from the SEC.
  • The SEC is likely to investigate whether PayPal’s stablecoin poses any regulatory concerns.

Personal Updates: Joel’s Trip to Spain, Turkey, and Egypt

  • Joel shares his recent trip to Spain, Turkey, and Egypt, discussing the highlights of his travels.
  • The trip included visits to historical landmarks such as the Great Pyramids of Giza and a Nile River cruise.

 

 

Originally aired on October 18, 2023

In this episode of the Bad Crypto Podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright reflect on the bear market and discuss their experiences and lessons learned. They discuss the historical trends of the crypto market, including the previous bear market in 2018 and the recent bull run. They also touch on the importance of taking profits and diversifying investments, as well as the potential impact of upcoming events like the Bitcoin halving and the approval of crypto ETFs. The hosts also share their strategies for navigating the current market and offer advice for listeners.

The historical trends of the crypto market

  • The total crypto market cap in 2018 reached a peak of $881 billion before crashing.
  • The recent bull run saw the total market cap approaching $3 trillion.
  • The hosts discuss the potential for another bull run and the importance of taking profits before a market crash.

Lessons learned from previous bull and bear markets

  • The hosts share their personal experiences during the 2018 bear market and the recent bull run.
  • They emphasize the importance of diversifying investments and not getting caught up in hype.
  • Travis shares his regret of not selling certain NFTs at their peak value.

The upcoming Bitcoin halving event

  • The hosts anticipate the next Bitcoin halving in 2024 and the potential impact on the market.
  • They discuss the concept of scarcity and the decrease in Bitcoin rewards for miners.
  • Joel shares his belief in the long-term value of Bitcoin as a reliable investment.

The potential impact of crypto ETFs

  • The hosts discuss the potential approval of crypto ETFs, such as those proposed by BlackRock and Grayscale.
  • They highlight the importance of self-custody and owning one’s own crypto keys.
  • They caution against relying on centralized entities to hold one’s crypto assets.
  1. Selling NFTs and investing in altcoins
  • Joel shares his strategy of selling NFTs for cryptos that he believes are undervalued.
  • Travis discusses the potential for altcoins to skyrocket in value and advises listeners to research and choose wisely.
  • They emphasize the importance of building up Bitcoin holdings and considering potential economic instability.

The future of AR and VR

  • The hosts discuss the potential of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies.
  • They predict that AR will surpass VR in popularity, especially with the release of Apple’s Vision Pro.
  • They anticipate the merging of the physical and digital worlds through AR lenses and the potential for new landscapes created by AI.

 

 

Originally aired on October 11, 2023

In this episode of the Bad Crypto Podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright interview Jameson Lopp, a Bitcoin expert and technologist, to discuss the importance of self-custody and securing Bitcoin. Lopp shares his journey into the crypto world and emphasizes the need for education and understanding in the space. They also explore the factors that could impact Bitcoin’s relevance and potential failure, as well as the significance of privacy and security in the cryptocurrency industry. Lopp introduces his company, Casa, which offers user-friendly, secure Bitcoin self-custody solutions. Overall, the conversation revolves around the growth of Bitcoin and its impact on the global economy.

CRYPTO EDUCATION:

  • Lopp emphasizes the importance of investing in education about cryptocurrencies and recommends visiting his website, bitcoin.page, which offers a comprehensive collection of resources.
  • He advises newcomers to the crypto space to avoid getting caught up in the hype and instead focus on learning the fundamentals.
  • Lopp discusses the challenge of striking the right balance between security and convenience when it comes to self-custody.

BITCOIN’S RELEVANCE AND FAILURE:

  • Lopp believes that Bitcoin’s biggest enemy is apathy, and the key to its success lies in the number of people who find value in it and actively work on maintaining and promoting its use.
  • He acknowledges the potential challenges of a prolonged bear market and the loss of interest and engagement from the community, but remains hopeful about Bitcoin’s long-term viability.
  • Lopp highlights that Bitcoin’s survival is unlikely to be affected by cataclysmic events, such as government opposition, as the decentralized nature of the network mitigates the impact of individual nation-states.
  • He stresses the resilience of blockchain networks and the difficulty of completely killing them, even if the number of active participants decreases.

BUILDING SECURE SELF-CUSTODY:

  • Lopp introduces Casa as a highly secure and user-friendly self-custody wallet that eliminates single points of failure.
  • The company offers multisig solutions, including two of three and three of five multisig setups, to ensure robustness and resilience.
  • Lopp explains the importance of having an inheritance plan in place, as self-custody requires individuals to take full responsibility for their assets and consider potential situations such as their own death or incapacity.

MAINSTREAM ADOPTION AND THE FUTURE:

  • Lopp believes that Bitcoin is already somewhat mainstream, with millions of crypto owners in the United States alone, but acknowledges that there is still a long way to go.
  • He predicts an increase in the adoption of Lightning Network and layer two solutions, enabling faster and more efficient transactions.
  • Lopp suggests that the future adoption of Bitcoin may be influenced by the introduction of ETFs and other financial instruments that make it easier for institutional investors to participate.
  • He remains cautious about on-chain functionalities and ordinal solutions, highlighting the potential scalability and data congestion issues they may face.

 

 

Originally aired on October 4, 2023

In this episode of the Bad Crypto Podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright discuss various news and trends in the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency market. They touch on topics such as the recent rise in Bitcoin price, the loss of funds in exploits involving Oracle networks, the confirmation of John McAfee’s suicide, the ban on crypto payments by Chase UK, the legal recognition of Bitcoin in Shanghai, and predictions of massive crypto use cases by 2030. The hosts also mention the ongoing trial of Sam Bankman-Fried, the CEO of FTX, and the potential growth of crypto funds in the coming years. Overall, the episode provides a comprehensive update on recent developments in the crypto market and highlights the continued potential for growth.

KEY TOPICS DISCUSSED

  1. Bitcoin Breaks $28,000 – The hosts discuss the recent rise in the price of Bitcoin, reaching $28,000.
  2. Losses in Exploits Involving Oracle Networks – Over $892 million has been lost in exploits targeting Oracle networks since 2020, leading to concerns about the vulnerability of cryptocurrency platforms.
  3. Confirmation of John McAfee’s Suicide – Spanish courts have confirmed that the death of crypto legend John McAfee was a suicide, despite previous statements and doubts about the circumstances surrounding his death.
  4. Ban on Crypto Payments by Chase UK – Chase UK has announced that it will block crypto payments due to concerns about fraud and scams in the cryptocurrency market.
  5. Legal Recognition of Bitcoin in Shanghai – Bitcoin has gained legal recognition as a digital currency in Shanghai, with the People’s Court stating that it is a nonreplicable digital asset protected by law.
  6. Predictions of Massive Crypto Use Cases by 2030 – A Coinbase executive predicts that there will be a significant increase in crypto use cases by 2030, indicating continued growth and adoption of cryptocurrencies.

 

 

Originally aired on September 27, 2023

In this episode of the Bad Crypto podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright interview Tom Wright, the co-founder of Project Brazen and creator of the new podcast “Crypto Kingpins”. The podcast delves into the rivalry between Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) of FTX and Changpeng Zhao (CZ) of Binance, shedding light on the collapse of FTX and the upcoming trial of SBF. The interview explores the intricacies of the relationship between SBF and CZ, the allegations of fraud and misappropriation of customer funds, and the potential implications for the future of the crypto industry.

The Origins of the Rivalry

  • SBF and CZ first met in 2019 when SBF invited CZ to a party in Singapore.
  • Binance was an early investor in FTX, but tensions rose as SBF sought to overtake CZ and expand into the US market.
  • The rivalry intensified as SBF began to badmouth CZ, accusing him of being a Chinese spy and involved in illegal activities.

The Collapse of FTX

  • FTX’s downfall began when Coindesk leaked documents revealing the heavy reliance on FTT tokens, which were artificially propping up the value of the hedge fund.
  • CZ realized the vulnerability of Alameda, SBF’s hedge fund, and decided to sell his FTT tokens, causing a significant blow to FTX.
  • The collapse of FTX was further exacerbated by the broader bear market in the crypto industry.

The Trial of SBF

  • SBF is facing seven felony charges, including misappropriation of customer funds and co-mingling funds.
  • Witness testimonies from former colleagues who have pled guilty will likely strengthen the prosecution’s case.
  • The trial will shed light on the regulatory challenges of the crypto industry and the reach of regulators in the US.

CZ’s Legal Challenges

  • CZ is currently facing 13 charges from the SEC but has not been indicted by the Department of Justice.
  • Binance has been under investigation for money laundering, although no criminal charges have been filed.
  • The outcome of CZ’s legal challenges remains uncertain, but his political donations may play a role in the proceedings.

The Implications for the Crypto Industry

  • The trial of SBF and the legal challenges facing CZ highlight the need for increased regulation and oversight in the crypto industry.
  • The debate over the classification of tokens as securities and the protection of less sophisticated investors will be central to the legal proceedings.
  • The outcome of the trial will impact the confidence of investors and the future regulation of cryptocurrencies.

Other Upcoming Projects by Project Brazen

  • Project Brazen is working on various other podcasts and adaptations, including an art heist series called “The Professor” and a DEA origin story show.
  • They are also developing podcasts like “Fat Leonard” and “Curtner and the King” into TV shows and films.
  • Project Brazen aims to explore corruption and white-collar crime across different industries.

 

 

Originally aired on September 7, 2023

In this episode of The Bad Crypto Podcast, hosts Joel Comm and Travis Wright discuss a new podcast app called Fountain.fm that allows listeners to earn Bitcoin while listening to podcasts. They are joined by Fountain co-founder Nick Molster, who explains how the app works and its potential for connecting creators with their audience. Fountain is built on the Bitcoin Lightning Network and offers features such as boosting podcasts with Satoshis, sharing clips, and leaving comments. The app aims to decentralize podcasting and provide a practical way for podcasters to monetize their content. The hosts express their enthusiasm for the app and encourage listeners to try it out.

The Problem with Podcasting:

  • Nick Molster explains that podcasting has been held back due to its fragmented ecosystem and reliance on centralized platforms like Apple. Podcasts can be easily deplatformed, creating a need for a decentralized podcasting solution.
  • Apple’s centralized library controls the distribution of podcasts across different apps.
  • Adam Curry’s Podcasting 2.0 movement aims to decentralize podcasting and create new standards for the industry.
  • Value for Value is a specification that integrates Bitcoin payments into podcast apps, allowing direct payments to podcasters.

Fountain’s Features:

  • Nick Molster introduces Fountain.fm, a podcast app built on the Bitcoin Lightning Network that allows listeners to earn Satoshis for listening, sharing clips, leaving comments, and boosting podcasts.
  • Listeners earn daily rewards for their first hour of listening, earn extra Satoshis by listening to promoted episodes, and receive tips from other listeners for their clips and comments.
  • Podcasters can claim their show on Fountain and receive direct Bitcoin payments from listeners, driving podcast discovery through social interaction and boosting.

Boosting Podcasts with Satoshis:

  • Fountain’s boosting feature allows listeners to send Satoshis along with comments to show their support for a podcast episode.
  • Boosting a podcast not only supports the podcaster financially but also drives podcast discovery through a social layer.
  • Boosted episodes are visible to the user’s followers, incentivizing engagement and creating a network effect.

Future of Decentralized Podcasting:

  • Nick Molster discusses the future of decentralized podcasting and the addition of music to the Fountain platform.
  • Fountain plans to support music podcasts, allowing musicians to publish tracks to an RSS feed and earn Satoshis from listeners.
  • Combining music and podcasts opens up new possibilities for creating music radio shows and DJs to engage with their audience.

Popular Podcast Categories on Fountain:

  • Nick Molster mentions that Bitcoin podcasts have been quick to adopt the Fountain app, but other categories, such as gaming, politics, and liberty-focused podcasts, have also gained popularity.
  • Fountain provides a space for podcasters to monetize their content and a platform for listeners to support their favorite shows.
  • The app creates a bridge between the Bitcoin and podcasting communities.

The Bum Gun: Joel shares his experience with the “bum gun,” a spray hose commonly found in Southeast Asian countries for personal hygiene after using the toilet.

  • The bum gun provides a more hygienic alternative to toilet paper and has become a popular method of cleaning oneself in those regions.

 

 

Originally aired on August 16, 2023

In this episode of the Bad Crypto Podcast, host Joel Comm is joined by his guest, Davin Michaels, to discuss the benefits of living in Puerto Rico and how it offers significant tax advantages. Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, and by becoming a resident, individuals can pay only 4% in federal income tax and zero capital gains and dividend taxes. The episode also introduces the San Juan Social Club Cruise, where residents of Puerto Rico and those interested in the area can network and learn about the opportunities and benefits the island has to offer. The cruise will feature notable speakers from various industries, including the cryptocurrency sector.

What are the benefits of living in Puerto Rico?

  • Puerto Rico offers significant tax advantages, including a 4% federal income tax rate and zero capital gains and dividend taxes.
  • Act 60 combines various government programs and incentives, such as tax breaks for entertainment ventures, hospitality credits, and the opportunity to invest in designated opportunity zones.
  • Puerto Rico’s charm and friendly atmosphere, along with its beautiful beach and year-round pleasant weather, make it an appealing place to live.

What is the San Juan Social Club Cruise?

  • The San Juan Social Club Cruise is a networking and educational event for residents of Puerto Rico and those interested in the area.
  • The cruise will take place in April 2024, departing from San Juan, Puerto Rico, and visiting Aruba, Curacao, Martinique, and Saint Kitts and Nevis.
  • Participants will have the opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals, including notable speakers from various industries, such as Joel Comm, John Lee Dumas, and crypto billionaire Brock Pierce.
  • The cruise will include Michelin-star inspired dining options, ample opportunities for networking, and access to the latest information on Puerto Rico’s resources, benefits, and services.

What is the outlook for the cryptocurrency market?

  • Despite the current bearish period in the cryptocurrency market, there is optimism that a turnaround is approaching.
  • The introduction of BlackRock and mainstream adoption through ETFs is expected to drive an influx of money into the market, potentially leading to a new bull run.
  • The previous bear market was turned around by significant announcements from Michael Saylor, PayPal, and Elon Musk. The consensus is that BlackRock’s involvement may have a similar effect on the market.

 

 

Originally aired on August 9, 2023

In this episode of the Bad Crypto, hosts Joel and Zach talk with Dan Mapes, co-founder of the spatial web, about the future of the internet and its potential to revolutionize the way we live, work, and communicate. They discuss the concept of the spatial web, which envisions a 3D internet where the physical and digital worlds merge, and the power of AI and blockchain in enabling this new technology. Dan emphasizes the importance of autonomy and decentralization, highlighting how the spatial web gives power back to the people and reduces the influence of central authorities. He also discusses the role of active inference in AI and the need for robust governance models to navigate the challenges of the evolving technology landscape.

What is the spatial web?

  • The spatial web is a 3D internet where the physical and digital worlds merge.
  • It is a vision of the internet where the Internet of Things becomes a reality.

How does the spatial web empower individuals?

  • The spatial web gives power back to the people and reduces the influence of central authorities.
  • It allows for more autonomy and decentralization.

What is active inference in AI?

  • Active inference is a different approach to AI that focuses on real-time decision-making based on the interaction with the environment.
  • It enables AI to make more accurate predictions and decisions by using real-time data from IoT devices.

How can the spatial web address governance challenges?

  • The spatial web can provide a platform for developing guardrails and standards.
  • It allows for the identification and regulation of malevolent AI applications.

What role does cryptocurrency play in the spatial web?

  • Cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin, can be used as a native currency for the digital economy enabled by the spatial web.
  • It offers a decentralized and efficient means of conducting transactions within the 3D internet.

What is the future of AI governance?

  • The future of AI governance lies in creating robust regulations and standards.
  • It requires collaboration between various stakeholders, including governments, organizations, and individuals.

 

 

Originally aired on July 19, 2023

The Looming Threat of Quantum Computers to Bitcoin and Blockchain

This episode explores the potential impact of advancing quantum computer technology on the future security of Bitcoin and blockchain. Quantum physicist Pierre-Luc Dallaire-Demers provides insight into how quantum computers work and why they pose a threat to current cryptography methods used in blockchain and finance.

While quantum computers are not faster in terms of processing speed, they enable calculations using the uncertain properties of subatomic particles that allow exponentially more computational complexity. This gives quantum machines the power to eventually break types of encryption previously thought secure, including the cryptographic signatures used in Bitcoin.

Dallaire-Demers explains the exponential growth in qubits and operations per second that quantum computers will achieve in the next 5-10 years. Though the timeline is debated, he warns Bitcoin’s signatures are among the easiest for quantum algorithms to crack. Upgrading blockchain cryptography will be challenging due to coordination difficulties in decentralized systems.

Dallaire-Demers advises cryptocurrencies must prepare now with “quantum-resistant” cryptography or risk losing user confidence as quantum supremacy draws nearer. He believes opportunities may arise for quantum-resistant coins if Bitcoin does not adapt. The episode concludes with a discussion of combining quantum computing with AI, and concerns over unknown advances taking place out of public view.

How do quantum computers differ from classical machines?

  • Leverage quantum properties like particle uncertainty
  • Allow exponentially more computational complexity
  • Enable calculations impossible via classical means

Why does advancing quantum computing threaten blockchain security?

  • Will break encryption previously thought computationally infeasible
  • Includes signatures used to secure Bitcoin transactions
  • Timeline to “quantum supremacy” over classical computers debated

What cryptographic risks do quantum computers pose to Bitcoin?

  • Bitcoin signatures among easiest for quantum algorithms to crack
  • Could reduce confidence even before attacks feasible
  • Upgrading blockchain cryptography presents coordination challenges

What potential opportunities does quantum resistance offer?

  • “Quantum-resistant” cryptographic coins could arise
  • Chance for new projects if Bitcoin does not adapt cryptography
  • But quantum-resistant upgrades advised for most chains

What concerns exist around unknown quantum progress?

  • Quantum and AI may also combine in unforeseen ways
  • Military may possess undisclosed advanced quantum capabilities
  • True capabilities and timeline cannot be predicted
 

Originally aired on

Sheila Warren, CEO of the Crypto Council for Innovation, discusses which countries are paving the way for crypto and blockchain innovation and how to advance these technologies globally. Warren highlights the challenges of navigating crypto governance and economics, connecting disparate systems, and working with policymakers in Washington.

Which countries are leading the way in crypto and blockchain innovation?

  • Sheila Warren discusses which countries are doing a great job of stimulating innovation in the crypto and blockchain space.

How can we advance crypto and blockchain technology globally?

  • Sheila Warren shares her insights on advancing technology both domestically and internationally by connecting different systems and advocating for sound crypto policy.

What are some challenges of navigating crypto governance and economics?

  • Warren shares her thoughts on navigating the complex world of crypto governance and economics, which involves understanding technical nuances and making a case for why crypto is so important.

How do we connect disparate systems?

  • According to Warren, connecting diverse systems is key to making the case for crypto and blockchain, including pointing out where legacy systems are not working and where friction remains a problem.

How do we work with policymakers in Washington?

  • Warren explains that policymakers in Washington have limited understanding of crypto and web 3.0, and that the crypto community needs to find ways to access information and educate them on the importance and potential of these technologies.