When you ask someone what superpower they would like to have, they usually have the opportunity to fly, read minds, or maybe see through multiple layers of clothing.
This year we just wanted the opportunity to hibernate.
To introduce! At some point go to sleep around the Australian forest fires … take a look outside in mid-March and think “Ooooh, no, I’m not sure at all” and snuggle up in a warm, happy bed until the US elections are over.
But think what you would have missed in crypto! 2020 was another decade in a year for the industry, jam-packed with characters who charmed, hackers who inflicted damage, and degens who farmed.
To celebrate a year that ended on a high level for the Hodlers, the Cointelegraph artist team created a limited edition poster-sized NFT that recalls some of the biggest stories of 2020.In crypto, the review is 20/20“” and is available for only 0.02020 ETH.
Of course there will only ever be 2,020 copies.
Get your 20/20 retrospectively limited edition here
How many of the stories can you spot? We’ll start you with some of our favorites …
January: Telegram against the SEC
Here is a story that could have been published in the first few months of the year. The Securities and Exchange Commission questioned Telegram’s $ 1.7 billion private sale, and eventually Pavel Durov abandoned the network’s launch.
While the technology hasn’t died – it was revived and just made mainnet status thanks to the Free TON community – it was further evidence that Jay Clayton’s SEC 2020 would maintain an activist stance on crypto. At least he’s gone now and a good rescue.
February: Exploits for bZx Flash Loan
Back in February we deliberately asked whether DeFi would come to an abrupt end, as bZx had been attacked twice. And when we say “willfully” we mean “wrong”.
DeFi didn’t go away, the exploits continued year-round, and the profits multiplied into a downright orgy of productive farming that allowed the Degens to find their way to untold fortunes … and then lose them again when Pickle got moody.
From 2020 this cycle continued throughout the year.
The acceleration of the global pandemic brought two key concepts into focus at the heart of the crypto community. It became clear that government control over the monetary tap means that no fiat asset is safe (and that it makes a kind of brrrrrrr sound when turned on) and that Bitcoin’s narrative shift from medium of exchange to warehouse of value could actually be the most Improve the credibility of the digital asset.
The disastrous response to the pandemic has turned out almost nothing good. While Hodler may have benefited financially from evidence that their thesis about Bitcoin as hard money was correct, the politicization of the virus means the world has suffered a year that threatened democracy itself.
Let’s all hope for a better and healthier 2021.
April: Binance buys CoinMarketCap
Despite the wild rumors spread by sources who will have to go nameless if they are fact checked, Binance did not pay $ 400 million for CoinMarketCap. Or something close by.
But it was still a mega-deal that showed a trend for 2020: the slow dissolution of public worship for Binance. The response to the deal has been cautious to say the least, and the upstart who became incumbent has been embroiled in controversy as changes in rank unfairly benefited him after promising the data aggregator’s independence.
CoinGecko is catching up quickly these days. Bobby Ong was rumored to be on the verge of selling the site for $ 5 million earlier this year. He must be grateful for his friend’s unusual lack of eyesight …
May: Bitcoin halves
The third halving (or halving for those who prefer the Westron language of Middle-earth) was almost entirely devoid of drama.
It should happen. It happened. Code is law.
Of course, the aftermath was more intriguing than the event itself (though our video team certainly threw it for a loop).
Plan B’s stock-to-flow model predicted a spike in the price of Bitcoin as a direct result of the halving and subsequent supply crisis, and despite the naysayers, it’s right on schedule.
Law. On. Time schedule.
June: Wirecard goes bankrupt
The hope for the mass adoption of crypto as a payment solution is often based on debit or credit cards, which make it easier to spend. When Wirecard, which included customers like Crypto.com and TenX, appeared to misplace $ 2.1 billion, there were… concerns about the future of the sector.
Those concerns didn’t detract from the ambitions of Crypto.com, which will soon replace Wirecard with PayrNet, while some viewed Wirecard’s case as a net positive for the industry.
July: Start of Yearn.finance
A man and a worthless mark can change the world.
Of course, that one man is now working with a dedicated team of DeFi developers. The worthless token was $ 43,678, and the world was already changing … but don’t let the details fool you.
The story of Andre Cronje’s contribution to technology and finance can be told over a drink in the boardroom for decades to come.
At least the Wright brothers had each other.
August: MicroStrategy enters, stage on the left
Michael Saylor may be a genius (he invested over $ 1 billion of his company’s treasury in Bitcoin) and he may be a maniac (read his Twitter feed), but we can safely say he goes where he is brave no big company went before.
Saylor’s dramatic announcement was heralded as the moment when mainstream corporations, beyond funds and investment banks, faced a new reality. If MicroStrategy’s wager was successful, other corporate treasuries could be at immediate risk – particularly the risk that they cannot claim similar portfolios due to Bitcoin’s limited supply.
There is often a fine line between courage and madness. Perhaps Saylor is the best crypto example of this truth in 2020.
September: PayPal goes cryptographic
If MicroStrategy was any indication of increased institutional adoption of crypto, PayPal was the biggest indication yet that Josephine Public would soon be exposed to digital assets.
Crypto assets cannot be traded outside of the PayPal ecosystem, but that hasn’t stopped the company from buying an estimated 70% of all newly issued bitcoins in reserve.
And while PayPal’s own stocks rose on the news that they would support Bitcoin, it also gave rise to an increasingly parabolic price move for the leading digital asset … which quickly lowered the company’s market cap.
October: McAfee eats his own … words
“Taxes are illegal,” said John McAfee in January 2019, making it clear (for those who might have a legitimate interest) that he hadn’t filed a tax return in eight years.
“No, you are illegal,” replied the IRS – we rewrite it – and had him arrested and thrown in a Spanish prison.
It has certainly been quite a year for crypto-related arrests.
November: Bitcoin all-time high
Gradually then suddenly. In this way, Bitcoin has recaptured the territory it had lost since the FOMO days in December 2017.
While Bitcoin “dies” over and over again (at least in the minds of critics), it now sits comfortably well over $ 25,000 and enjoys a growing consensus that it is a viable alternative to gold.
Even the most conservative forecasters drop by.
Gradually then suddenly.
December: Ethereum 2.0
Speaking of gradually … Ethereum has come a long and winding road to the next iteration of the leading smart contract platform. As the deposit agreement was filled, the prospects for a successful start on December 1st finally became clearer.
Many of the top trends of the year – from DeFi to the rampant adoption of NFTs – show Ethereum as the main player. It’s hard to imagine any other platform conquering their crown in the near future.
Although Ethereum 2.0 will take much longer to fully deploy, the roadmap for it is shiny and bright.
As is the price, which has increased 576% since the depths of the first COVID crash.
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