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  • 🦧 Is Decentralisation a MEME? The Wormhole Counter Exploit Debate

🦧 Is Decentralisation a MEME? The Wormhole Counter Exploit Debate

plus Tapioca DAO's beta goes live, nftperp Odeshi airdrop & a sneak peek at BTC-Fi

GM, legends!

Aaaaand like Tuesday… Bitcoin is stablecoining at $23,500, while Ethereum is glued to the $1,600 mark ahead of the Shanghai update later this month.

The counter-exploitation and recovery of the stolen Wormhole hack funds have led me to question - is decentralisation now actually just a meme? Kinda like Bitcoin being the hedge against inflation or being digital gold.

Let’s take a look, shall we?

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Here's what's inside today.

🔥 The big topic. Decentralisation is a meme thanks to the counter exploit

🗞 Hot crypto news. The Robinhood wallets launch on iOS, Binance introduces Bicasso AI NFT generator, Mt Gox repayments begin March 10th AND MORE.

👀 Updates across the bloc. nftperps season 3 trading competitions (plus Odeshi airdrop), Tapioca DAOs beta goes live, The Honey Jar Ooga Booga event on March 4th AND MORE.

🛡 Chart of the day. Is $BADGER gearing up for a BTC-Fi narrative?

🧵 Thread of the day. Chief Librarian, Zoomer Oracle, breaks down the BTC-Fi narrative.

🔥 The big topic.

Decentralisation just became a MEME!

It’s confirmed. Decentralisation is now officially a meme.

The idea that crypto is for the people, by the people has just been shattered.

Satoshi's trustless state is no more thanks to the relentless efforts of TradFi.

Ok, maybe that's a little dramatic.

On February 21st Oasis (DeFi Platform) and Jump Crypto were given the green light to counter-exploit the original Womrhole exploiter recovering $140m… ooft!

Since then it’s brought up many questions about decentralisation and how decentralised it actually is.

Now picture this, SEC Gary Chair walks into a US court, and makes a few larpish remarks to get given the green light to be added to a multi-sig wallet because it's “for the protection of the people.”

Yeah, let that one sink in.

A crypto history lesson.

In February 2022 a group of anon hackers hacked Solana’s Wormhole bridge for over $325m. So the network didn’t get completely rekt, Jump Crypto “aped life savings” into the reserves so that the Ethereum wasn’t left unbacked causing protocols using wETH as collateral to go insolvent.

Fast forward 12 months, Oasis (DeFi platform) received a court order from the High Court of England and Wales giving them a thumbs up to “take all necessary steps to retrieve certain assets associated with the Wormhole exploit.”

This ultimately led to the original Wormhole exploiter being counter-exploited and Oasis recovering some of the initial stolen funds after adding an ‘authorised third party’ to the multi-sig wallet.

That should be it, right? Happy days. But what about decentralisation? Is it now a meme? Has it just been rugged? And what about the hidden power behind multi-sig wallets and proxy contracts?

We just hope that Wormhole can fix their tech after having won the vote to be UniSwap’s governance bridge over to BNB!

Proxy contracts and good cop, bad cop

Proxy contracts provide upgradability to a protocol’s set of smart contracts and can be controlled in three different ways:

  1. By use of a private key

  2. Through on-chain votes

  3. Via a multi-sig wallet

Good cop: Institutions and protocols getting rugged daily have the god-tier capabilities to re-steal their stolen crypto aka a “counter exploit.”

Bad cop: For users like you and me, upgradeable proxies contracts can lead to malicious wallet drains. So remember to revoke approvals once you’re finished trading.

It took a group of white hat hackers slipping into the DMs for Oasis to realise a “previous vulnerability” that was in the multi-sig proxy contract. That one tip-off led to this whole debate and recovery of funds.

Obviously, the High Court of England and Wales were in as much favour of this as Jump Crypto, who had originally back-stopped the original Wormhole hack before the unwinding of the whole ecosystem could take place.

Is decentralisation now just a meme?

Yes, no and everything in between.

By definition, decentralisation distributes authority from a centralised point and disperses it across the network.

Kinda like Robinhood taking from the rich and then giving it to a bunch of merry apes.

Do we now need to move to a centralised state of decentralisation whereby we do in fact have a controlling centre point that allows the very essence of decentralisation to occur?

But then who has that centralised decentral authority? The Courts? The Fed? Apes and Punks?

This a tricky question to answer. But someone somewhere needs to slam their boot of authority down and make a decision so that we can implement the right stack of regulations to give us a code book that we can use to not get rugged, file our taxes on time and most importantly, bring the masses into our little wonderful world of crypto.

Our Take

This is one of those unique situations where god mode was activated to play TradFi games, but at what price?

It brings into question what decentralisation actually is, who’s technically in control (TradFi, duh!) and the underlying tech that has allowed this counter-exploit to happen.

Oh, and let's not forget the original tech that got us into this situation in the first place. So, dev, if you’re reading, let’s fix that before another $6bn of crypto gets exploited in 2023.

The Blockworks Research Analyst Dan Smith recently said:

The UK gov forced Oasis to let this counter-exploit happen. People are not immune to regulation just because they build on blockchain rails.”

What happens next? Centralised decentralisation? Situation regulation? Or just let us do crypto, bro?!

Was this a based AF move by Jump Crypto or the green light for Gensler to rug us some more?!


🗞 Hot crypto news.

🐮 Bullish News

The Robinhood Wallet launched on iOS with capabilities for Android following shortly. The app supports 50+ ERC tokens that users can buy, hodl and sell. And all of these can be traded without transactions fee across a variety of dAPPs via wallet connect. The wallet will also support NFTs which, according to Robinhood, are not subject to Apple’s 30% commission.

Ethereums new ERA of smart contract goes live. News of the ERC-4337 contracts will be shared at an Eth Denver side event. The key feature is Account Abstraction, which could make recovering lost or stolen crypto much easier. A very topical time for the update to be deployed!

Introducing Bicasso, the Binance AI NFT generator. Despite all the FUD CZ still has a good sense of humour, as Bicasso goes live with the first pilot seeing 10,000 mints in 2.5 hours. It must be noted that the poor bot did get a little stressed and tired with the volume of mints. NGL, CZ looks straight thuggin here.

🐻 Bearish News

The SEC crypto strike force continues to grow in strength as they ramp up their efforts in the battle against crypto by adding 20 new tactical reinforcements to the team.

Mt Gox early repayments begin on March 10th. This is obviously good for those who have been waiting for them, however, what impact will unleashing the locked Bitcoin have on the market? While the total amount is unclear, there are 140,000 Bitcoin sitting on their balance sheet.

SandBox users get phished in the latest attempt by hackers to steal our loot. ALWAYS double-check what you are opening. If it looks phishy… it probably is!

👀 Updates across the bloc.

Project Updates

CoinBase lists ParallelTCG, a Sci-Fi world and trading card game, $PRIME token. Could this spur movement within the GameFi space?

GMD officially launch the YFX token. The big question now is how well will they fair up in comparison to Camelot DEX and how successful their presales be. According to this tweet, “something big is brewing.”

IPOR Labs added close to $50m TVL in 5 weeks with their first trading competition coming to an end with over $160,000 up for grabs. If you participated you can find out more about reward distribution here. If you are a Diamond Hander or the Biggest Loser you’ll get a reward.

IVX an on-chain options protocol built on top of GMX hosted on Arbitrum has released its docs ahead of its up-and-coming launch. No date confirmed but worth watching.

Nftperp’s season 3 trading competition goes live. You have 30 days to have some fun trading perp NFTs. PS… competitors will also become eligible for the Odeshi retroactive airdrop.

Pendle Fi dropped the alpha first in their discord and will be launching GLP as their very first Arbitrum pool. vePENDLE voting is already live in order to secure the earlier round of swap fees.

Spool Fi, a custom vault creator quoted as “Yield for the World. Fuel for DeFi” has officially launched V1 on Arbitrum. Users can create their own vaults using yield strategies by Balance, Aave, Mim, Timeless Fi, Curve and Yearn.

Spice Finance’s Prologue vault handled the weekend’s NFT dump with ease with 0 loans going underwater. The quest Journey to the Spice Bazaar has begun. Your journey ticket can be purchased here.

The Honey Jar an NFT project by beras for beras will be running the ooga booga ceremony on March 4th. More info found in the Beraland discord.

Tapioca DAO’s beta goes live. That is all. Do with that what you will.

Governance Updates

Lido Finance has begun the voting process for a software upgrade to gear up for Ethereum Withdrawals coming later this month. The proposal focuses on the Staking Router and withdrawals and gives users the ability to redeem stETH for its underlying Eth token.

Olympus DAO (didn’t think id be writing about these again) has a proposal on snapshot to have 2023’s big focus on Lending AMO in order for OHM/gOHM to be a lendable asset. Creating an additional revenue stream for the protocol

Timeless Fi’s veLIT gauge on Balancer has passed with a 100% vote in favour. This proposal is the first step in Timeless aligning itself with Balancer. Can Timeless become the CRV of Uni V3?

🛡 Chart of the day.

Is $BADGER gearing up for BTC-Fi?

Right, this feels more degen than normal BUT the imbalances in the chart could lead to some quite explosive price action - just look at those wicks!

Now IF BTC-Fi becomes a thing and IF Badger (and eBTC) catches a bid then there is a lot of upside potential to be had. Alternatively, if it doesn’t, then there’s a long long LONG period of crabbing ahead.

Bull case. BTC-Fi becomes an actual narrative play with $7.20 being a huge upside target.

Bear case. The Bitcoin maxis don’t like BTC-Fi sending the price back down to the $2.50 accumulation zone for another painful crab season.

Coming up next week.

A snapshot as to what’s to come next week. All eyes are on J Powell next Tuesday when he will deliver the semi-annual monetary policy report.

🧵 Thread of the day.

Since the release of inscriptions through Ordinals, Bitcoin as an actual blockchain has been getting more and more attention to the point where BTC-Fi could become a real thing.

The Chief Librarian, Zoomer breaks down the BTC-Fi narrative and why you should be paying attention to it.

We mentioned Stacks briefly last month and here’s a list of projects building on the L2.

And on that note, thanks for reading, catcha apes in the next edition!

blocmates team 🫡

🤝 A final word.

A quick word from our super awesome sponsors who help us make this all possible...

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