Best TruStories of the Week - #8


Claim: Gab’s account continues to be blocked, this time by Square’s Cash App

Category: Governance


My stake: Back the claim (100 Cred)

Evidence/Argument: Linking this from @HelloRena previous post…
In Gab’s tweet, the company talks about how they have been banned from the following payment processors: Paypal, Stripe, Coinbase, and Bitpay. The owner of the twitter handle (assuming it’s Gab’s founder Andrew Torba) goes on to educate us about bitcoins purpose, and how it’s “free speech money”. He stresses the importance of “censorship-resistant free speech money and payment processing” , and then seeks to attract new members to their online community by introducing GabPro. This new community has added benefits to those who are passionately driven by the first amendment. In this tweet, Gab linked payment to Cash App.

Those that aren’t familiar with Cash App should know that it’s short for Square Cash App, which is owned by Jack Dorsey who coincidentally owns Twitter. After Gab sent this tweet out, Cash App immediately blocked Gab’s owner Andrew Torba from their services.


This is fascinating. Nice find @RathiSaahil. I wonder if the reason is that miners need continually upgrade their mining equipment, so unless they can afford to keep investing in mining equipment, you become obsolete?

I’m going to Back the claim (50 Cred) :slight_smile:


@preethi - Hope you are backing it then ! :smiley:


Claim : Every 24 days, the US national debt grows more than the entire market cap of bitcoin.

Category : Markets

Source :

My Stake : [Back claim] (20 Cred)

My Argument/Evidence :

At first glance, this appears to be a glib claim, thrown out to get a reaction. So I wanted to see how if there was any merit to this claim.

I consulted for the following figures:
US GDP (2010, 2017)
US Debt-to-GDP % (2010, 2017) which could yield US Debt (2010, 2017).

Two figures to note from this graph:
US GDP (2010) = 14,964.37 Billion USD
US GDP (2017) = 19,390.60 Billion USD

Two additional figures to note from this graph:
US gross federal Debt-to-GDP % (2010) = 91.4%
US gross federal Debt-to-GDP % (2017) = 105.4%

Further, to get US gross federal Debt (2010), we take 91.4% of 14,964.37 Billion USD ~ 13,677 Billion USD.

To get US gross federal Debt (2017), we take 105.4% of 19,390.60 Billion USD ~ 20,437 Billion USD.

Therefore, US gross federal Debt grew between 2010 - 2017, from 13,677 to 20,437 Billion USD or by 6,760 Billion USD in 7 years. That comes out to approx. 49% growth in 7 years ((20,437 - 13,677) / 6,760) ~ 49.4%.

This somewhat linear growth (charts seems to suggest linear growth); indicates the US gross federal Debt grew by 965.71 Billion USD per year from 2010-2017 (6,760 / 7 = 965.71).

24 days out of 365 is 6.5% of the year.

If 6.5% of 965.71 Billion USD ~ 63 Billion US, as in the US gross federal Debt could be expected to grow by 63 Billion USD every 24 days. As of this writing (Jan-9, 2019) Bitcoin market cap is roughly 70 Billion USD. Therefore, the claim that every 24 days, the US national debt grows more than the entire market cap of bitcoin is close, but potentially off by 7 Billion.


However, an alternative calculation would take the growth rate from 2010 - 2017 (49%) and assume that means roughly 7% growth rate per year. That comes out to 7% of 20,437 Billion USD or 1,430.59 Billion USD growth in US gross federal Debt per year.

Taking 6.5% of 1,430.59 Billion ~ 93 Billion USD growth in US gross federal Debt every 24 days.

Conclusion: This imperfect calculation has US gross federal Debt growing between 63 Billion - 93 Billion per year. It is possible that the claim is accurate. Given this large range, I’d back claim with 20 Cred.


looks like @bhaumik created this claim already. Next time, you can back or challenge the existing claim instead of creating a duplicate one :slight_smile:


To answer your questions…

  1. yes, the higher the hashrate, the most costly it is to attack (because the more hash power you need to outcompete the honest miners). Although, I will caveat with this:

  1. The claim is that PoS is less susceptible to these attacks because you can’t simply rent hashpower (see here and here). We’ll have to wait and see.

I’ll Back your claim (100 Cred) :slight_smile:


this is fascinating. goes to show how small Bitcoin still is compared to GDP and federal debt.

I Back this claim with 50 Cred :slight_smile:

PS: small nit: for the 49% growth rate, you wrote ((20,437 - 13,677) / 6,760) ~ 49.4%, but I think you meant ((20,437 / 13,677) - 1) ~ 49.4%


Thank you for the clarification! :slight_smile:


Claim: More than half of crypto news sites publish paid content without ‘sponsored’ tag

Category: Scams


My Stake: I guess this is fundamentally where the inevitability of TruStory exists. So I back it
Back Claim [100 Cred]

My Argument/Evidence:
This is based on an investigative journalism done in 2018 by breaker, an online crypto publication based in US. It seems most of the crypto news sites are willing to publish paid contents promoting new ICO or anything which should ideally be tagged as a ‘sponsored’ content without the tag and for a price. This is a graph created by the investigative journalist Corin Faife on his site which gives a comparison of the amount asked by the news media.

Crypto media is better than you may have thought — Corin Faife of Breaker posed as a PR person and asked crypto news outlets if they’d take money to cover a project, and nearly half refused! So that’s nice. The majority wanted payment of between $240 and $4500 — in filthy fiat, not even in cryptos. The pay-for-play sites are

AMB Crypto
Cointelligence (update: they now add a sponsored tag)
CoinTelegraph (they wouldn’t run an article for payment themselves, but they did refer them to other sites in the “Cointelegraph Media Group.”)

This should surprise absolutely nobody — for instance, CoinIdol asked me directly for money to do a book review. Outlets that flatly refused were

CCN (Note: This is why I am a fan of CCN :))
Oracle Times


Claim: Ethereum developers to implement ASIC-Blocking code on Ethereum core.

Category: Mining


My Stake: Backing Cred - 50 CRED

My Argument/Evidence:

Ethereum Core developers came to a consensus during their call on Friday, Jan 4, 2019, around the decision to implement ProgPoW. ProgPoW, or programmatic proof of work, is an alternative algorithm to the existing Ethash; it is designed to close the performance gap between ASIC and GPU mining rigs.

ProgPow: The design goal of ProgPoW is to have the blockchain protocol algorithm’s requirements match what is available on commodity GPUs, so if the algorithm were to be implemented on a custom ASIC hardware there should be little opportunity for efficiency gains compared to a commodity GPU.

If accepted by the network of users that run the Ethereum software, the code change, dubbed “ProgPoW,” would block ASICs, such as those made by major mining firms like Bitmain. In its place, the new software would allow general purpose, or GPU hardware – which is typically phased out by ASICs – to compete for rewards on the platform.

The Ethereum Foundation’s Piper Merriam posted EIP 958 for ASIC-resistance back in March of 2018, and Kristy-Leigh Minehan first posted EIP 1057 for ProgPoW back in May – but ASIC-resistance has been a topic of concern since the Ethereum white paper. In fact, the Ethash algorithm was designed with ASIC-resistance in mind.

Summary: Even though the core Ethereum dev has reached a consensus to implement ProgPoW there is no concrete time or date finalized yet. At the same time, there is dissent from various groups.

Also, Chinese Ethereum miner Linzhi has issued a statement asking Ethereum developers to publish rules and requirements for what constitutes a good ProgPoW ASIC maker.”


nice explanation of ProgPoW. Thank you. There were a few Ethereum developers who were very much against it. For example:


Claim: Algorand is the first blockchain to provide full and immediate transaction finality with no forking.


My Stake: Challenge claim (50 Cred)

My argument/Evidence: Algorand is not the first blockchain to provide quick finality with no forking. For starters, the claim is misleading because there is no such thing as “no forking” in a blockchain… you can only minimize the probability of forking. Secondly, there are various proof-of-stake algorithms which also provide fast finality.

One example is Tendermint:
Second example is Casper the Friendly Finality Gadget (FFG):

There are other examples, but I’ll stop for now :slight_smile:


Claim: India to finally legalize cryptos under stringent regulations


My stake: Back claim (50 Cred)

My argument/Evidence: The article is making about a claim about a report that surfaced in an Indian newspaper 2 weeks earlier. There was a panel that met in New Dehli to discuss the legality of cryptocurrencies. One of the senior officials who attended it said India’s outlook on it was favorable although it will legalize it with “strong riders” (stringent regulation):

We have already had two meetings. There is a general consensus that cryptocurrency cannot be dismissed as completely illegal. It needs to be legalised with strong riders. Deliberations are on. We will have more clarity soon

The subtext below the headline in the orginal paper implied India will legalize it in February:

The committee has met twice on the issue and is likely to submit its report to the finance ministry by February next.


Claim: A coin’s dominance or share of the overall cryptocurrency market is like comparing M1 money stock to the aggregate value of global equity markets. It doesn’t make any sense.


My stake: Challenge claim (50 Cred)

My argument/Evidence: First need to define couple of things: 1) coin dominance and 2) M1 money stock.

Coin dominance is a metric on coinmarketcap. It’s calculated as the percentage of market capitalization as implied by this screenshot:

M1 money refers to the most liquid parts of the money supply. This site says it includes “cash (physical fiat currency notes and coins)” as well as equity.

Why Nic Carter’s analogy is flawed
If Coin dominance is the outstanding coins / marketcap of all coins, then the M1 money / global equity market is not a comparable ratio because M1 money includes things beyond equities like cash that isn’t banks.


Interesting! I dug into the same claim last week and Flagged it for being misleading. Besides that anonymous quote, there’s no tangible evidence of any increased traction. They’ve had several meetings and have delayed the timeline multiple times.

Honestly, I’d be be willing to challenge a claim (with Cred) around any aggressive timeline here. But that seems to fall into the “prediction” bucket, which should also get Flagged.


can you explain why you believe Nic Carter is making a false comparison? I’m not sure I completely understand your argument. The point I think he is trying to make is that comparing [some coin] / [all coins] is like comparing M1 / all equities, which I think he is saying is flawed because all the coins are different types of assets maybe? (some equities, some cash-like, some staking tokens, etc.)


Interesting story! I pinged the author on Twitter for evidence who shared this press release.

Basically, local businesses who volunteer to participate are obligated to accept 10% of payments with the digital currency. Given that information, I’d also Challenge the original claim (with 100 Cred) given that Calgary businesses are not required to accept Calgary dollars.

However, I’d Back this claim:

Calgary businesses who participate in the new digital currency launch are required to accept at least 10% of payments with Calgary dollars.


Thanks for sharing! I saw lot of dissent opinions on ProgPoW. Wondering whether this mining centralization claim on Ethereum has connection to custom ASIC hardware?


this is really interesting…but i’m a little confused. are these news outlets receiving money from journalists to have content added to their platform?? OR…are they paying any journalist that is not even a part of their company, to cover certain topics just to add information to their platform.

it’s definitely sketch, and i can see how a journalist can get extremely lazy in their writing, and just write whatever, without fully doing the research.

i’m new to this space, so it makes sense that i have to swim through all the garbage, in order to find the clean water :slight_smile:


Claim: Substratum misappropriated its ICO funds.


My Stake: Back claim (50 Cred)


Substratum accepted and raised the following during its ICO, as written in its whitepaper.

  • 154.6736 BTC
  • 17,778.25 ETH
  • 232,105.45 XRP
  • 602.1433 BCH
  • 865.9953 LTC

However, analysis of its ETH and BCH wallets -
ETH wallet
BCH wallet
Reveals that the numbers represented are false.
ETH actual - 18,920.52273 ETH (July 29 to Sept 21)
BCH actual - 1,304.261231 BCH

A tweet storm with analysis -

There is a discrepancy in the numbers in the wallet and the numbers reported by Substratum. It could mean 2 things:

  1. The accountants made an error and reported the wrong numbers
  2. Substratum misused the funds.

It would be great if someone could give a counter argument for this as I couldn’t find one.