October 12, 2023

Blockchain's Bad Penny

Blockchain's Bad Penny

Presented by CryptoLink.Tech

Volume 1 | Edition 17 | October 11, 2023

Opening Thoughts

I’m not going to open this week with some soap-box rant about what you should think about international politics.

I will, however, open with a quote from one of American history’s most decorated and honored generals.

The current situation in the Middle East is sad. Regardless of the side of the political aisle you fall on, remember Sherman’s quote.

There is a very nuance-filled history that comes with the conflict between Israel and Palestine. Nothing in this world is black and white. Morality and empathy are often found in the grey areas of life.

I can say one thing definitively—Challenge everything you see and hear online. Echo chambers are everywhere. Information and entertainment have all but completely merged into “infotainment”.

Learning how to properly sift content for the information is becoming increasingly important. News becoming entertainment has been a concept in action for some time now. The emergence of social media “citizen journalism” has only amplified that.

Social media has gamified the business of ratings.

Likes, comments, reposts, impressions.

All those concepts are gamified versions of television ratings and engagement. In fact, they took it a step further by categorizing the engagement.

Was this post positively engaging? Was it negative? Which is better?

The tailoring of content to the consumer not only created echo chambers on a mass scale, but it also incentivized the creation of infotainment over information.

Truth mixed in with hyperbole sells. The problem is that it may also be the most effective form of creating the intra-class warfare we see today.

So, the next time you stop into a Mario Nawful space (which I do from time to time, myself) try to remember what business he is in.

Enough with the sad s***. On to this week in web3.

Fun Fact: X is removing the Like and Repost metrics from the feed.

Cryptolink Connect

Here, we delve into the latest and greatest in the CryptoLink ecosystem.

Battling The MEV Chapter Two: AnyToAny Receiving Updates

Our incredible development team, Atlas and Druuu, have been hard at work as always.

This week Druuu is pulling the lever on multiple updates to AnyToAny.io that greatly improve the user experience and operability of the platform.

  • Notification for reverted transactions due to MEV attacks.

    • Previously the user would end up with PAPER and not understand why. There has been a recent uptick in MEV bot activity on the Binance Smart Chain, please be cautious when transacting there.

  • Improved settings interface.

  • Real-time transaction tracking on the UI.

  • Removal of intra-chain swap limits.

    • Previously there was a limit on intra-chain swaps like there is on cross-chain swaps. This was implemented to prevent anyone losing funds to large instances of slippage within the PAPER pools. We are now removing the limit for intra-chain or same-chain swaps.

Everyone should give Druuu and Atlas a shout out in the Discord #General chat for these awesome improvements!

So Close We Can Taste It

We have onboarded our first two CryptoLink Validators on the Ethereum blockchain.


Spread the word. Remember, every slot up to ten is the same stake of $10,000 in PAPER-ETH liquidity.

World Of Web3

This section covers major recent developments and trends in the crypto and artificial intelligence world.

Crypto’s Bad Penny: FTX Saga Worsens

If you thought that The Big Short was good just wait for whatever Hollywood spits out about this.

Anyone that has been remotely following the Sam Bankman-Fried court case has witnessed the culmination of a story that would have previously been written off as bad fiction.

First, let’s go over some of the metaphorical nukes that have been launched in that courtroom.

  • Caroline Ellison admitted that SBF directed her to take millions of dollars in customer funds from FTX to pay Alameda lenders.

  • Ellison admitted to creating false balance sheets to show investors that Alameda was less risky than they were.

  • Took millions in loans against what she calls “SamCoins” which are essentially s***oins that SBF had a considerable influence over. Admittedly, they were largely illiquid.

  • Ellison and SBF were selling customer BTC over a certain price to raise cash.

  • FTX code review showed they were creating fake numbers for the website’s “insurance fund” balance.

Most of this we knew was going on, but there is a shock value associated with verbal admittance in a court room.

What I listed is just the beginning when it comes to FTX but it drives home the essence of everyone’s concerns with crypto.

I’m not here for the doom & gloom this week, but it’s not a good look for the space. This all but confirms a lot of bias surrounding web3 regarding magic money, frauds, and laundering.

Remember, this time last year FTX was considered the gold standard of a crypto enterprise. They were set up to be the blueprint for any large entity that wanted to get involved in this emerging field.

Where does this leave us?

With the economy getting worse by the day and international conflicts increasing in severity, where does web3 end up when the music stops?

Stay nimble, my friends.

Never Let a Good Crisis Go to Waste: JP Morgan Launches Tokenization Platform from Shadows

I stole this title from Philip Mirowski, a renowned professor from the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana.

This is a title from one of his books on Neo-Liberalism, but it felt incredibly applicable here so thank you, Professor Mirowski.

JP Morgan is taking the idea and running with it. Amid the SBF chaos that has dominated the web3 vertical of media lately JP Morgan has been operating in the shadows of the blockchain.

Yesterday the banking and finance giant launched the Tokenized Collateral Network.

The TCN is a platform that enables the on-chain tokenization of off-chain assets with the goal of improving the speed and security by which an entity can transfer collateral without moving the asset from the underlying ledger.

The first public collateralized trade already happened on the TCN between BlackRock and JP Morgan. The TCN converted shares of a money market fund into digital tokens that were then sent to Barclay’s as security for an OTC derivatives trade. (Cointelegraph, 2023)

The TCN is speeding up moving collateral between parties. Before writing this, I had to do some of my own research on traditional methods for moving collateral to fully understand the need for the tech. Here is what GPT says about traditional means:

Don’t just take it from GPT or myself. According to the Head of Onyx Digital Assets at JP Morgan, Tyrone Lobban, TCN unlocks capital and allows it to be used as collateral in ongoing transactions, boosting efficiency at scale.

The rails are being built and launched.

One day they will decide to flip the switch and you won’t see anything but positive press about crypto and blockchain.

Funny how that works.

Digital Gold: Zimbabwe Bank Tokenizes Gold-Backed Currency

Zimbabwe has gone all in on tokenization of its gold-backed currency, launched in April of this year.

The Reserve bank of Zimbabwe launched a tokenized asset that was tied to its gold reserves. The digital asset is tied to the price of the gold coins that back it.

Recently the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe announced that the digital token can now be used, domestically, as a method of payment.

How about that?

Zimbabwe is trying to combat its crippling inflation by going to a gold-backed currency and tokenizing it digitally to track the gold reserves that the bank holds.

Another day, another real-world crypto story. It doesn’t always have to be doom & gloom!

Interchain Intel

Updates and insights from across different blockchain networks.

Competitive Markets: Polygon Facing Hard Truth

Just because you are the first doesn’t mean you’ll be the winner.

Polygon seems to be feeling the full effect of this right now amid rising popularity with other layer-2 solutions and thin liquidity.

The MATIC token saw a nice jump in price following the launch of the Polygon 2.0 testnet on October 4th, though most of the 16% increase has retraced back down.

Polygon is in an interesting position. They were early to the layer-2 craze but have seen a significant amount of competition join that market in the last couple of years. Their value proposition has been diluted and their latest tech upgrade to Polygon 2.0 is not exactly new.

It boasts of being cross-chain but it’s only cross-chain within its own ecosystem. Polygon 2.0 is a collection of zero knowledge subnets under the Polygon blockchain.

The way I see it, it’s like Avax subnets and Cosmos had child. The problem? It’s not solving a whole lot. And it doesn’t seem to be enough to propel it back to its old glory.

TVL Data on DeFiLlama.com

Polygon has less than half the TVL of Arbitrum and is quickly losing steam to stay ahead of Optimism and the newcomer, Base.

Active Address Data Top 12 Protocols on Polygon on DappRadar

To add on to the tough times, most dapps on Polygon have seen a significant decline in active user addresses over the last 30 days.

To be fair that last statistic may be indicative of the entire space but when you pair it with the other data on Polygon things don’t look great.

Sorry for the “FUD” Polygon maxis, I used to love the chain. But the data speaks for itself. Sometimes honesty is the best policy.

Tech Trends

Here, we explore the latest technological advancements and innovations in the blockchain space.

Democratizing Maps: OVER’s Augmented Reality Journey

Venturing into the realm of 3D mapping, the blockchain-based platform OVER is breaking ground by democratizing map creation and spurring real-time exploration through augmented reality (AR).

The system, named OVER's Mapper, is a beacon of community-driven innovation, offering a “visual position system” that trumps conventional GPS systems in accuracy, which is a linchpin for generating reliable, up-to-date maps.

The allure of OVER doesn’t end at mapping. It's morphing the mapping narrative, making everyone a cartographer, and rewarding them for their efforts through a model termed Map2Earn.

This initiative isn't merely about updating outdated maps; it's about fostering a community of explorers and mappers… and rewarding them for it.

The fruits of OVER are already manifesting. With an arsenal of about 20,000 3D maps of vital locales globally, the platform is not just a concept but a burgeoning reality.

Its blockchain underpinning ensures map creators have rightful ownership of their creations, epitomized in non-fungible tokens (NFTs), thus incentivizing and democratizing the mapping process even further.

Those that contribute and map an area own that digital representation of it. They could then sell it to a game or a metaverse of some sort if they’d like.

To take it a step further creatively, a user could take their mapping and use AI to enhance it into something even more.

Overall, this tool is cool. Assuming the tech continues to evolve and enhance I can see this type of tool being around for the long haul.


In this section, we decode complex blockchain and cryptocurrency concepts into understandable language.

Synthetic Assets: Digitizing the Real World

Crypto synthetic assets are digital twins of real-world financial instruments, created and managed on blockchain platforms. They are designed to replicate the value and performance of traditional assets such as stocks, commodities, or currencies, all without requiring the actual ownership of these assets.

They are birthed through the magic of smart contracts and complex financial derivatives primarily within decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystems.

The charm lies in their ability to enable access to a variety of asset classes and financial markets, all while ditching the reliance on traditional intermediaries.

These synthetic concoctions come in diverse flavors like synthetic stablecoins, tokenized commodities and equities, leveraged and inverse tokens, and yield-bearing synthetic assets.

Embracing crypto synthetic assets opens doors to a realm of trading and investment opportunities. They also bolster liquidity in DeFi platforms, facilitating smoother trading, lending, and borrowing. However, the complex nature of these assets and the associated risks call for a thorough understanding and a cautious approach.

Final Byte: Wally’s Wisdom

Week 17 is in the books.

Stay tuned for all the remarkable things we are going to be doing over the next month or so. Media is going to have a fresh look and feel here soon.

I appreciate you for stopping in this week. I hope the coffee is bold this morning, it’s time to get moving and find ways to maneuver in this weird world we live in.

The best we can do is wake up with a bit of ambition and savvy.

I don’t have much else for you this week. I couldn’t make a fun clip this week, but I promise you will get another very soon!

Enjoy your weekends and keep an eye on current events. There is a lot going on right now and it’s always best to stay informed.

I love you all!




ZEALY CODE: Wen Zealy Distribution, Gary