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Crypto Flipsider News – ETH 2.0 Testnet Launched, Grayscale BTC at Discount, Record Crypto Outflow, Crypto Bill Delayed, Instagram Exploring NFTs, FTX Partners with Sports Teams

Read in the Digest

  • Ethereum prepares for merger as ETH 2.0 testnet Kintsugi goes live.
  • Grayscale Bitcoin Trust drops, record crypto investment outflows.
  • Cryptocurrency bill withheld from parliament, pro-crypto SEC commissioner to step down.
  • Instagram is “actively exploring” NFT integration to increase availability.
  • FTX partners with sports teams, Gwyneth Paltrow’s $500k Bitcoin giveaway.

Ethereum Prepares for Merger as ETH 2.0 Testnet Kintsugi Goes Live

All year, the Ethereum community has been anticipating the launch of ETH 2.0 which will transition the network to the proof-of-stake consensus model. The long-awaited ETH 2.0 has been brought one step closer with the launch of Kintsugi, a public testnet.

The Kintsugi testnet will help developers merge Ethereum’s mainnet with the Beacon chain to create a more efficient and scalable blockchain. Kintsugi is a Japanese word that refers to the art of repairing broken pottery with gold lacquer.

According to the announcement, the Kintsugi Testnet is merely a beta phase of the experiment. Developers will be testing Kintsugi in order to provide feedback before the ETH 2.0 Testnet is officially launched in Q2 of 2022.

Flipsider:

  • Initially launched on December 1st, 2020, the transition to the proof-of-stake mechanism, which has taken a long time, has led to many developers leaving the network.

Why You Should Care

ETH 2.0 is much anticipated as the leading Altcoin hopes to end its ongoing plague of high transaction fees and scalability issues that have riddled the Ethereum network for years.

Grayscale Bitcoin Trust Drops, Record Crypto Investment Outflows

The sell-off that has persisted for five weeks has dragged the world’s largest Bitcoin fund into record discounts. Since November’s record high, the $30 billion Grayscale Trust (GBTC) fund has lost nearly 37% over the same period

The prolonged sell-off, which has seen Bitcoin lose 33% of its ATH value, has widened the difference between GBTC’s share prices and the underlying value of its Bitcoin holdings. As a result, GBTC shares are at a 21% discount, the largest since its launch in 2013.

Bitcoin’s less than ideal period has bled into investments, where outflows have been recorded for the first time in 18 weeks. The crypto industry recorded $142 million in total outflows last week, topping the previous record of $97 million which was set in early June 2021.

Flipsider:

  • According to a new study, 0.01% of Bitcoin addresses hold roughly 5 million of the total 18.9 million BTC in circulation.

Why You Should Care

Despite the current bearish sentiments, crypto investment inflows for 2021 peaked at a record $9.5 billion, compared to $6.7 billion of 2020.

Cryptocurrency Bill Withheld from Parliament, Pro-Crypto SEC Commissioner to Step Down 

The regulation of cryptocurrencies has become a major concern for many countries in 2021. India, a country with a patchy regulatory history, which was recently tipped to enforce a blanket ban over the industry, could see the date of the decision moved forward.

According to reports, India’s much-talked-about Cryptocurrency Bill is not expected to be presented to Parliament during the winter session. This means that the future of crypto in India could be decided in the Budget session, which is expected to take place in February 2022.

In the United States, a pro-crypto SEC commissioner has announced his imminent resignation in January 2022. According to Elad Roisman, a Republican member of the SEC, serving as commissioner has been “the greatest privilege” of his career.

Roisman’s presence in the SEC was celebrated by the crypto community due to his favorable comments regarding crypto and blockchain. However, just weeks after criticizing Chairperson Gary Gensler’s regulatory agenda, Roisman has announced his departure from the SEC in January.

Flipsider:

  • The IMF has called for the global regulation of cryptocurrencies as they are bound to see even more adoption in 2022.

Why You Should Care

2022 is shaping up to be a decisive year for cryptocurrencies, as regulations could entirely determine the direction of the industry.

Instagram is “Actively Exploring” NFT Integration to Increase Availability

Non-fungible tokens (NFT) have remained a constant hotbed of activity in the crypto industry. As more firms become involved in the sector, we have seen the weekly sales of NFTs surge by 12,780% since the beginning of the year.

According to Instagram’s chief executive officer, Adam Mosseri, the social media giant is currently exploring the potential integration of NFTs and the methods by which to make them more accessible to its burgeoning user base.

While Mosseri explained that, though Instagram is yet to officially make an announcement about NFT integration, the move would help content creators should it come to fruition. The news does confirm the screenshots leaked by app developer Alessandro Paluzzi in June, who alleged that Instagram was working on the integration of collectibles. 

Flipsider:

  • The official wallet of Meta, Instagram’s parent company, has faced many challenges, with senators calling for a halt to its development.

Why You Should Care

Integrating NFTs will expose Instagram’s estimated 1.41 billion users to the purchase and possession of digital arts.

FTX Partners with Sports Teams, Gwyneth Paltrow’s $500k Bitcoin Giveaway

Crypto derivatives exchange, FTX, has entered a monumental partnership involving four sports teams. The partnership with Monumental Sports Entertainment (MSE) involves NHL’s Washington Capitals, NBA’s Wizards, WNBA’s Mystics, and Capital City Go-Go.

As part of the agreement, the FTX NFT platform will have exclusive rights to any future token drops developed by the four teams and the official crypto exchange for MSE. In addition, the exchange will be a partner for an in-game highlight series called “Big Block-Chain.”

Gwyneth Kate Paltrow, an American actress famous for her role in the Marvel franchise, Iron Man, is the latest to turn to Bitcoin. The actress, after announcing a partnership with Cash App, declared that Bitcoin is here to stay.

Paltrow explained that her partnership with Cash App will help Bitcoin become easier to acquire for the general populace. As part of the partnership, the actress will be giving away $500,000 worth of Bitcoin this holiday season.

Flipsider:

  • FC Barcelona and Manchester City ended sponsorships deals with blockchain companies in November due to concerns around legitimacy.

Why You Should Care

As adoption increases, more firms are bound to get involved with cryptocurrencies.

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