ICO, Industry

Waiting for the Wikipedia ICO? Don’t Hold Your Breath Says Founder

You’re never going to see Wikipedia on an ICO list according to its founder, Jimmy Wales. Talking to Business Insider, the man behind the world’s fifth most popular website said that investors won’t ever see a Wikipedia initial coin offering. Despite initial coin offerings being the trendy thing to do right now, Wales wants to stick to the old way of doing things.

No Wiki on the 2018 ICO List

While Wales is happy to survive on traditional donations, an increasing number of major companies are tapping into the ICO trend. In June 2018, ICOs raised more than $1.5 billion as the crypto market continued to diversify. Indeed, among the recent converts to crypto fundraising was Kodak. The photography company announced the launch of a new token called KodakCoin back in May. Designed to give photographers more control over the rights to their content, the token will use Stellar platform to facilitate peer-to-peer transactions. Beyond the movement of non-crypto companies into the industry, those already in it are also having success with ICOs.

In July, skills marketplace Buttrfly won the annual CoinAgenda ICO award while the latest ICO list for 2018 contains a host of potentially lucrative innovations. For outsiders reading Wales’ recent comments, the idea of not hosting a Wikipedia ICO may seem shortsighted. However, as recent events have shown, the strategy is far from perfect. Following a major incident on July 26, KickICO was forced to reimburse investors to the tune of $7.7 million. At the root of the problem was a hack that allowed criminals to gain access to the KickICO’s smart contract. Once inside, the hackers were able to create fake address and siphon off 70 million coins. Eventually, after users complained that their funds were missing, the tech team spotted the hack and rectified the situation.

Hacks and Cash Mean We Don’t Need a Wikipedia ICO

For KickICO, a swift response prevented any major damage, but the incident served as a reminder of the dangers of ICOs. This could be the main reason Wales isn’t prepared to host a Wikipedia ICO. Another could be the fact his company does well already. In 2014 alone, the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) reported for tax purposes that it had net assets of $77 million. That figure has since increased. What’s more, it’s not as though the company is completely removed from the crypto world. Also in 2014, the company partnered with Coinbase to facilitate Bitcoin donations. The initiative helped to raise $140,000 in its first week and BTC donations are still being accepted today.

Given the recent wave of initial coin offerings, Wikipedia would be forgiven for jumping on the bandwagon. However, the evidence suggests that it’s something the company neither desires or needs. Although people interested in the latest ICO news would undoubtedly stop and read about a WikiCoin, it doesn’t look as though we’re going to see that in the near future or, indeed, ever.

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