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Bitcoin’s Monthly Recap of May 2015

Bitcoin’s Monthly Recap of May 2015

Welcome to HolyTransaction’s fifth monthly recap for the year 2015. This past month of May has reminded everyone in the Bitcoin world why we are here; during that time, the bitcoin price fell from a high of $231 to a low of $223.51, according to Bitcoin exchange Bitstamp.

Roger Ver and OKCoin Dispute Over Bitcoin.com
Since the news months ago that the highly-visible Bitcoin.com domain would be managed by Chinese Bitcoin exchange OKCoin, things have really changed. In a series of Reddit posts, Roger Ver, OKCoin, and former OKCoin employees aired out all of their dirty laundry. Amid accusations of forged contracts and blatant lies, the spat resulted in a huge blow to the reputation of OKCoin. Bitcoin.com currently redirects to Bitcoin.org, which is maintained by the Bitcoin Foundation.

Bitcoin Exchange BitFinex Hot Wallet Hacked
BitFinex, one of the leading Bitcoin exchanges, has been hacked for just over 1500 BTC earlier in May. According to the exchange, trading was not affected and 99.5% of users’ funds were never accessible to the hacker. The hack, while unfortunate, demonstrates the efficacy of cold and hot wallets, which may have been the downfall of Mt. Gox. Notably, another European Bitcoin exchange, BitStamp, also suffered a hot wallet hack earlier in 2015.

Ross Ulbricht Sentenced to Life In Prison
Ross Ulbricht, the founder of the Deep Web marketplace Silk Road, has been sentenced to life in prison. Many in the community feel that a life sentence is too harsh given the nature of Ulbricht’s crimes. An appeal is planned by Ulbricht’s defense lawyer, Joshua Dratel. Notably, the trial which convicted Ulbricht did not allow the introduction of key evidence that may tell a different story. The sentence was passed by Judge Katherine Forrest, who was appointed to her federal judgeship on the recommendation of Senator Schumner, the first politician to publicly call for the takedown of Silk Road.

North Carolina Passes Bitcoin Bill
The House of Representatives from North Carolina has passed a new bill to modify the Money Transmitters Act. The bill, HB 289, specifically includes and clarifies the state’s stance on virtual currencies such as Bitcoin. The bill was introduced by Republican Representative Stephen M. Ross, who is also a VP at Wells Fargo. The Bitcoin community has been receptive to North Carolina’s clarification, which contrasts with actions from states such as New York. Perianne Boring, the founder of the Chamber of Digital Commerce, commented: “I would be rather straight forward and say that the community favors regulatory clarity over ambiguity that can create ultimately greater exposure for companies, especially those that do not have the legal budgets necessary to evaluate the ambiguities. The legislation represents a lighter touch than the NY DFS proposal by protecting the interest of consumers but  not imposing any additional regulatory burdens or costs on business to business transactions.  It also has avoided some of the pitfalls of existing statutory schemes.  It may not be what a  segment of the community wants – no regulation. But NC is not a no regulation state and this is a useful step forward in making the law work for digital currency companies.”

Ripple Labs Receives $28 Million USD in Funding
Ripple Labs, the company behind the Ripple payment protocol and network, has recently closed a $28 million USD funding round. This round marks their Series A funding and saw many participants from around the world. Ripple has made waves in the digital currency space by sealing deals with several banks around the world. However, Ripple has also faced increasing scrutiny from users wary of centralized control as well as Stellar, an offshoot created by one of Ripple’s original founders which even used some of the same code. Chris Larsen, Ripple Labs’ CEO, commented: “With investors like CME Group and Seagate joining the fold, we’re well positioned to accelerate adoption amongst these key customers.”

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Satoshi
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