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Coins on Your Radar? Here is How to Know if Your Coin Makes the Shitcoins List
Today, there are over 13,000 cryptocurrencies in the ecosystem, and it’s fair to say that not all were born equal. In fact, some even make it onto the much discussed, but so often ignore, shitcoins list.
For every cryptocurrency of a genuine project trying to decentralize the world, there are fly-by-night scammers and snake oil salesmen looking to take your money and disappear with it. The shitcoins list is big and it’s continuing to grow.
Among the worst of these are the creators of the ‘shitcoin’ – coins whose only purpose is to make money for the creators and screw everybody else. Unfortunately, there is a genuine allure for shitcoins – if you want to make a million from a thousand, finding the right shitcoins to buy is your only real chance of doing so. Therefore knowing which shitcoins to invest in, and knowing when to pull out, can actually be financially rewarding, but the risk is huge.
So how can you tell a legit coin from a shitcoin? What qualifies a coin for the shitcoin list? There are a number of red flags you should look out for before you consider which shitcoins to buy, red flags that, should you spot them early, could literally save you a fortune.
What is a Shitcoin?
Before we begin, we of course need to answer a very important question – what are considered shitcoins?
The fact is there is no defined explanation as to what makes a shitcoin, and there are supporters of projects who will argue to the death that their beloved coin is nothing of the sort. But, there are a number of factors that go into such a definition:
◦ Huge token supply (in the billions or upwards)
◦ Tiny price
◦ Meme coin/devoid of any underpinning use case
◦ Marketing revolves around price action
◦ On small exchanges with little to no volume
We can summarize a shitcoin as being one that is clearly designed purely to enrich the founders, and which no one in the space is taking seriously.
These coins will often pump to the high heavens before dying away into nothingness, leaving the creators to walk off into the sunset with their pockets full.
With that understood, let’s look at how you can spot a shitcoin.
A-Team or No Team?
Starting with the wider picture, one thing that many potential buyers of cryptocurrencies don’t consider is the team behind the project.
At the bare minimum, the team behind the project whose coin you want to buy should be ‘doxxed’ – that is their real identities should be known and be freely available to view online.
If you can’t correlate the team members to real online people then this should be a red flag, as a pseudonymous team can exit a scam and you will have no way of tracking them down.
A team that has nothing to hide should be as open about themselves as they feasibly can be.
It’s All About the Whitepaper
A project should have, at the very least, a whitepaper outlining its premise and its goals. This is the sales pitch for the project, and there are a few red flags to look out for here:
◦ No whitepaper – If the project is trying to solicit for funds before releasing a whitepaper, then this is a clear sign of a scam.
◦ Plagiarism – If you are interested in a project, run its whitepaper through a plagiarism scanner to see if large parts have been copied from other whitepapers. If they have, this is a red flag as it shows laziness and a lack of a novel idea.
◦ Huge promises – If a whitepaper makes huge promises about revolutionizing certain industries or promises of this nature, then this is another red flag.
Of course, a project can be excited about its potential, but there is a difference between having confidence and saying that it will turn entire sectors on their head. This is often a hook to lure people in.
◦ Price promises – The biggest red flag of all when it comes to a whitepaper is mentioning specific future coin valuations, or stating that the value will increase.
This is illegal in countries that have securities laws, and is only done to lure people into buying under false pretenses.
◦ Complexity – A complex whitepaper does not make a project a scam. That being said, if it is full of buzzwords and tech-speak and cannot offer a simple, concise summary of its offering then this could be an example of the team trying to bamboozle buyers and blind them with jargon.
Roadmap to Ruin?
Alongside a whitepaper should come a roadmap. This is a guide as to what the project hopes to achieve in the coming years, what they hope will give the shitcoin value.
If there is no roadmap at all, or if it only has a few vague promises on there, this shows a lack of effort and planning and potentially darker motives.
On the other hand, if the roadmap is filled with unreasonably ambitious milestones then it’s clear they are just trying to get you to FOMO in.
Dig Into the Tokenomics
The tokenomics of a project refers to how the coin supply is handled.
Many coins these days have a certain amount of coins ‘pre-mined’, with the balance set to be released over time. In these cases, it’s important to be clear on several factors:
◦ Total supply – How many coins will be released in total? This information should be front and center when discussing tokenomics. If it’s not, red flag.
◦ Initial circulating supply – How many coins will be pre-mined by the time the token hits exchanges? Projects typically reserve coins for the team, for liquidity providers, for marketing, and other needs, not to mention all those who invested at seed level.
If the number of coins initially pre-mined is over 60% of the total supply, this shows an imbalance.
◦ Token unlocks – Related to this is when team members and seed investors will be able to sell their tokens.
The ‘vesting schedule’ refers to how long early buyers must hold for before selling. This is to avoid them dumping on exchanges the moment it is listed and crashing the market.
A vesting schedule should last for at least a year, with unlocking events slated at regular intervals throughout the period. This shows that investors are happy to hold for a long time.
- Token release schedule – How often are coins added to the supply and does this change over time? Bitcoin’s halving process reduces the amount of new bitcoin entering the supply by half every four years, with no hidden tricks.
Before buying a shitcoin you should check exactly how new coins enter the supply and how the supply changes over time. You don’t want new coins flooding the market and diluting the price.
It’s Good to Talk
Stepping outside the literature, it’s essential to spend some time in the community when it comes to considering which shitcoins to invest in.
Hanging around in a Discord channel for example can give you a great idea of the kind of people the project is attracting. If the chat is full of price predictions, rocket emojis and talk of ‘going to the moon’ then it is clear that the project isn’t attracting serious investors, and you should not add this to your personal shitcoins list.
If the admins are getting involved in that sort of talk too, or worse the founders, then leave and don’t come back. Serious projects tend to prohibit price talk and focus instead on the development and milestones.
Dabble With Shitcoins, Don’t Marry Them
As we can see, there are certain red flags that you should look out for when deciding which shitcoins to buy. If you decide to join the shitcoins club, make sure you are prepared to get in and out quickly and don’t become wedded to a shitcoin.
It might look like there is lots to take in, but in many ways, crypto scams and shitcoins operate like scams have for years. They hook people in with the promise of big rewards, convince them with impressive speeches, and then deliver nothing of the sort.
It must be said that not all shitcoins are scams, but the very nature of these small fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants operations lend themselves to being abandoned at short notice, even without any ulterior motives – people get bored and move on.
It can’t be ignored however that there is a shitcoin value proposition in the short term for those that are brave enough and don’t mind risking everything for a quick win.
Is the Shitcoins List Dragging you Down?
After reading this you may now be asking yourself, do I own a shitcoin? The answer may well be yes. If so, you would do well to reconsider your position, at least in terms of a long-term hold. Or, at the very least look more into it before deciding whether to keep it on your shitcoins list or not.
As the crypto space grows, so will the number of shitcoins. If you can keep the adage of ‘if something is too good to be true then it probably is’ at the front and center of your crypto dealings, then you won’t go far wrong.
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