I remember not too long ago when Laudney was still heading development, when NeuCoin appeared on the crypto-scene and had just published their sophisticated white paper, rich with a solid framework of how to make their product the forerunner in the social tipping space.
I watched a lot of feud in the Reddcoin community regarding expectations from our own coin, and how we compared to this more impressive player. I watched a lot of people flee to the more-promising one.
And what wasn’t to like about NeuCoin? They had a lot to offer: An office in San-Francisco, the startup epicenter of the globe, partnerships with Jango, a social music service, gamification concepts, angel investments from reputable names in the media industry, and even an intelligent French girl who spearheaded the community forums, and eased everyone’s concerns alongside her pretty-faced avatar.
But alas, where are they now? Well, they’re essentially dead. The founders abandoned the project due to lack of market acceptance and fraud issues within the Jango ecosystem.
Now, there are technical reasons for why the coin failed, that as an outsider, I’m not privy to. But just observing what I can has made me more conscientious of common threads in the crypto-space, and what to be aware of with other coins. These are all opportunities to learn. My humble perspective on NeuCoin:
A pre-mined coin, a closed-source project, preventing exposure to interested developers who could otherwise contribute and strengthen it. With development behind closed-doors, speculators who bought coins were left to simply have faith/hope that the organization would actually develop the project as intended.
Now… this is a common thread in the crypto-space, users/speculators waiting around for developers to make something… but the important difference here is that NeuCoin had no software or service in the beginning, but lured in substantial funding for a pre-mined coin via a convincing white paper.
Said more plainly, a large group of people had enough trust in the promises of a small group, that they bought pre-mined coins directly through NeuCoin’s private website. In return, they were given coins which had no use at the time but the promise of future value.
Given that the coin was pre-mined, and not initially sold through exchanges… one wonders, after the organization rakes in all the funds from purchases of the coin… why not just get paid and call it quits? After all, anyone can fork a QT wallet and pre-mine coins.
Well, perhaps that’s just what they did. Who can truly say? With a closed-source project, no one but the organization really knows how events unfolded, as the community was left to take the word of forum administrators that significant fraud prevented the project from gaining momentum.
For me, what I learned here is that it is much wiser to see something useful, something of value, than to buy into the promise of something great to come in the future. It also taught me the value of community. That here, were all can contribute and build something great, rather than waiting around and hoping some faceless insiders to produce something for us. I am grateful that I stood on the outside and watched NeuCoin, rather than bought into big promises.
What about you? Have you observed, or participated in other currencies whose plans have failed? Care to share your experience or maybe something you’ve learned along the way?
“An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made, in a narrow field.” - Niels Bohr