This Week in Crypto 10-23-23

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Welcome to This Week in Crypto, your source for the latest developments in the ever-evolving world of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. In this week’s edition, we’ll dive into the brief spikes in Bitcoin’s price amid fake reports and public anticipation. We’ll also explore the sudden decision by Reddit to discontinue its Community Points feature, causing some upset among users and crypto enthusiasts. And lastly, we’ll cover the remarkable fusion of art and blockchain technology as the Norman Rockwell Museum delves into the world of NFTs, offering collectors a unique opportunity to own digital and physical works by the legendary American artist. Stay tuned for a comprehensive overview of these and other intriguing stories from the crypto realm.

BTC Price Spikes Amid Fake Bitcoin ETF News and Anticipation

Bitcoin’s price has witnessed substantial surges in the last couple of weeks, briefly touching $30,000, a level not seen since earlier in the summer. These price spikes occur amid a growing anticipation of a spot Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) gaining approval. If you don’t know what that is, a spot Bitcoin ETF is an investment product that allows investors to invest in cryptocurrencies without the need to hold the assets themselves. In the last week, notable companies like BlackRock and Fidelity have made noteworthy amendments to their ETF filings, acknowledging the intense competition in the race for approval. 

In a separate development earlier last week, Bitcoin’s price briefly surged 10% amid a fake report on X (formerly known as Twitter). This misleading information originated from a tweet by crypto news publication Cointelegraph, falsely stating that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had approved BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust ETF. The tweet was deleted, and an apology issued as experts and news outlets confirmed that the SEC had not granted approval. The anticipation of a Bitcoin ETF approval has caused excitement in the crypto community, with the potential for capital inflow from institutional investors.

Reddit's Decision to Discontinue Community Points Sparks Crypto Community Controversy

Reddit recently made an official announcement that it will be discontinuing its long-standing blockchain-based rewards service known as “Community Points”. This decision, which was unveiled on October 17, was attributed to concerns regarding the scalability of the platform. Although Reddit acknowledged the potential for future opportunities related to Community Points, they deemed it unfeasible to expand this feature widely across their platform. The shutdown of Community Points, along with its special membership function, is scheduled for November 8. Following this date, users will no longer have access to Points in their Reddit Vault, nor will they earn Points in various communities.

Community Points were introduced in May 2020 to incentivize positive engagement in specific subreddits and enhance the overall quality of content on the platform. These points were Ethereum-based ERC-20 tokens, and they were stored within Reddit’s in-house cryptocurrency wallet service, referred to as the “Reddit Vault”. 

This decision to discontinue Community Points sparked controversy within the crypto community, with many describing it as a “rug-pull.” The value of community tokens like MOON and BRICK plummeted in response to the news, prompting disappointment and anger from Reddit users and crypto enthusiasts alike.

In addition to the sudden announcement, questions arose regarding the timing and potential insider trading related to the discontinuation of Community Points. Some subreddit moderators claimed they were unaware of the decision, but on-chain data suggested otherwise. It was revealed that several moderators, who held significant amounts of Moons, had initiated transactions to convert these tokens into Ether shortly before the official announcement. This prompted speculation that they may have used privileged information to their advantage.

Despite Reddit moderators stating that they were informed only an hour prior to the public announcement, the actions of these three moderators raised suspicions of possible misconduct in relation to the discontinuation of the community points program.

Norman Rockwell's Legacy Embraces Digital Age with "Studio Sessions" NFT Collection

The Norman Rockwell Museum and the Norman Rockwell Family estate are set to introduce their inaugural NFT collection, “Studio Sessions: The Norman Rockwell Collection,” on November 1. This digital art series, created in collaboration with Iconic, a platform specializing in helping traditional art institutions embrace emerging technologies, offers an exclusive glimpse into the creative process of the late iconic American artist. Each part of the series delves into specific Rockwell masterpieces and includes NFTs along with limited-edition, museum-quality prints.

While the collection’s specific artworks remain undisclosed, it has generated significant anticipation in the art community. NFT purchases can be made through credit card transactions or Ethereum payments, with pricing details to be revealed closer to the release date. The proceeds from this collection will further the Norman Rockwell Museum’s missions, ensuring public access to Rockwell’s art and preserving his extensive body of work to inspire a new generation of illustrators.

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