Update: ShapeShift has also indicated that it will delist Bitcoin SV
Binance delisted Bitcoin SV over behavior by its figurehead, causing an immediate negative price reaction.
Do the right thing. https://t.co/z7HGsAZnmR
— CZ Binance (@cz_binance) April 15, 2019
This week, cryptocurrency exchange Binance announced that it would drop all trading pairs for Bitcoin SV next week:
“At Binance, we periodically review each digital asset we list to ensure that it continues to meet the high level of standard we expect. When a coin or token no longer meets this standard, or the industry changes, we conduct a more in-depth review and potentially delist it. We believe this best protects all of our users.
When we conduct these reviews, we consider a variety of factors. Here are some that drive whether we decide to delist a digital asset:
- Commitment of team to project
- Level and quality of development activity
- Network / smart contract stability
- Level of public communication
- Responsiveness to our periodic due diligence requests
- Evidence of unethical / fraudulent conduct
- Contribution to a healthy and sustainable crypto ecosystem
Based on our most recent reviews, we have decided to delist and cease trading on all trading pairs for the following coin on 2019/04/22 at 10:00 AM UTC:
- Bitcoin SV (BCHSV)”
Binance is a top-three cryptocurrency exchange by adjusted volume, with nearly $1 billion in trading volume over the last 24 hours. It is also currently the exchange with Bitcoin SV’s highest trading volume $14.13 million over the last 24 hours. This announced delisting has sharply affected the Bitcoin SV price, which has experienced a 12% drop over the past 24 hours at time of writing.
Craig Wright is not Satoshi.
Anymore of this sh!t, we delist! https://t.co/hrnt3fDACq
— CZ Binance (@cz_binance) April 12, 2019
Questionable actions and threats by Bitcoin SV figureheads prompted cryptocurrency-wide backlash
The delisting announcement of Bitcoin SV comes after main community figures and investors Craig Wright and Calvin Ayre were involved in harassment and lawsuits against online critics, catalyzed around threat of legal action against Bitcoin fan Peter McCormack, who posted a lengthy retort expressing defiance and welcomed a legal battle. In response, Binance’s CEO Changpeng Zhao directly threatened to delist Bitcoin SV if continued similar actions continued, and several days later followed through on his threat. Kraken put up a poll this week as well, asking its users and the community if it should follow suit and delist the coin as Binance has done. Zhao also suggested that Kraken would very likely follow the example set by his exchange.
Ayre and Wright, and associated companies, originally focused their efforts on Bitcoin Cash, however quickly came to disagreements with the coin’s main developers over certain improvements to the protocol, as well as maintaining a current block size limit they viewed as too small. This resulted in a rift in the community, as well as a brief hash war, creating a chain split between the Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin SV chains. Since then, the SV community has frequently found itself at odds with other areas of the cryptospace, with escalating friction between its two main figures and detractors in other communities creating the situation of legal threats that led to the recent, and potential future, delistings.
According to Electron Cash developer Jonald Fyookball, this turn of events was to be expected due to Wright and Ayre not grasping the spirit of cooperation necessary to succeed in a space centered around decentralization and network effects:
Should Kraken delist Bitcoin SV (BSV)? #delistbsv
— Kraken Exchange (@krakenfx) April 15, 2019
Potential chilling effects of exchanges acting as gatekeepers for cryptocurrency
The delisting of Bitcoin SV also raises questions about the effect on the cryptocurrency ecosystem of having large exchanges make economically-impactful decisions based on the actions of notable figures in the community that are not directly related to the project itself’s viability. Kurt Wuckert Jr. of Crypto Traders Pro, a notable Bitcoin SV advocate, sees the actions of Binance in potentially picking future winners and losers in the space as problematic:
“Plainly, it puts one man in a position to determine the validity of all projects to all newcomers, and that is detrimental to all of us! We have seen evidence of CZ selling access to list scammy ICO projects and pump & dump coins, as well as wash-trading their own books to make volume look bigger than it is which is why they have been kicked out of Hong Kong and Japan. Now, from the island nation of Malta, CZ pretends to be a nice guy in the internet shuffle, but he is a shrewd businessman with questionable ethics, acting as the centralized checkpoint for valuation of all cryptocurrency projects. Anyone concerned about centralization should stop kissing the ring of CZ and Binance altogether.”
Regarding the future of SV, Wuckert sees momentary trading opportunities with the recent market action, but does not see temporary price movements as indicative of the project’s long-term viability:
“Bitcoin is anti-fragile. It works the same if it’s worth a penny or a hundred grand, and that’s the value of the project long-term. In the short term, it’s probably a good opportunity to trade the bounce by betting against the herd.”