It’s not quite Crypto Espresso, more like Blockchain Beer O’clock, but nonetheless here’s some quick, frothy news to lead you into the weekend…

Kicking things off with the latest Merge news from Ethereum Decentral (not a real place)…


Merge on the verge of closer emerge… nce

Apologies for that (where’s a crypto rapper when you need one?). But it’s true – the no.2 blockchain by market cap’s much-hyped transition from energy-sapping proof-of-work consensus model to the tree-hugging proof-of stake is now happening a few days sooner than recently expected.

And this might be part of the reason we keep seeing “Is ETH about to MOON?”-style headlines dropping into our social-media feedbag.

Core Ethereum developers , such as Tim Beiko and Terence Tsao (rock stars in the world of decentralised blockchain development – unless you’re a Bitcoin maxi), have reportedly reached consensus on the Merge time. Set your clocks to, um, the moment “Total Terminal Difficulty”, aka TTD, ticks over to the block height of 58750000000000000000000.

Alternatively, just keep your ear to the ground on Crypto Twitter (and on Coinhead) leading into September 15/16. We’ll be covering it further and will do our best to keep you up to speed.

In fact, we’ve just been chatting in depth about it all with Apollo Capital’s expert crypto analyst David Angliss, who shed some extra light on just how much of an extreme FOMO-inducing event this transition is going to be – especially in its first few hours.

And that’s partly because there’s going to be some serious potential forking opportunity here (possibly even for clued-in average crypto punters) what with a PoW-based ETH fork planned by the ETH-mining community.

Stay tuned… we’ll explain more in our next Apollo’s Moonshots article, early next week.


MakerDAO founder wants DAI to depeg from USD?

Still on things Ethereum-based, one of the network’s original DeFi protocols, MakerDAO (MKR), has mooted something interesting today. Or rather, its founder, Rune Christensen has.

As Cointelegraph reports, he’s been urging members of that DAO (decentralised autonomous organisation) to “seriously consider” preparing for the depeg of the protocol’s DAI stablecoin from the US dollar.

A bit of scene setting on that front… now that Terra LUNA’s UST has gone the way of the Dodo, or to be a bit more current, R.Kelly’s freedom, the biggest decentralised stablecoin by market cap is DAI.

Like the biggest, centralised stablecoins in the market, USDT and USDC, it’s currently pegged 1:1 to USD. The difference being that in addition to being collateralised by a bit more than 50% USDC (issued by Circle), it’s also backed by various other assets including Ethereum (ETH).

Referencing this week’s US government ban on the Ethereum-based crypto mixer Tornado Cash, the founder reportedly noted on Maker’s Discord that the sanctions are “unfortunately more serious than I first thought.”

He posited that MakerDAO should prepare to depeg DAI from USD to “avoid any risks relating to Circle’s recent freezing of sanctioned USDC addresses” – again, per Cointelegraph – and increase its ETH collateral backing.

Here’s what Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin thought of the idea:

Christensen then re-clarified…

… adding: “I think slowly DCA’ing some collateral into ETH is an option that can be considered depending on the severity of the blacklisting risk, which I personally think is much higher after the TC blacklist… it would exchange blacklist risk for depeg and haircut risk.”

So, yeah, probably the key word in all that is the recurring one… “risk”.


Around the blocks… again

It’s official. Bitcoin is more popular than COVID. According to BlackRock CEO Larry Fink…

Kinda bullish, though, don’t you think? You can read a bit more about BlackRock’s newfound interest in Bitcoin here

Meanwhile, we haven’t checked in on what salient issues Dogecoin’s number one fan has been think-tanking just lately. Let’s take a l… er, never mind…