Morning Tea #11: $7,167,354 to $2 in one minute
Squid Game is a good series on Netflix. Squid Game is also a cryptocurrency token, a big fat scam, and the driver behind a dramatic whipsawing of my (very virtual) net worth.
I first became aware of Squid Game the token late last week whilst hanging around on the internet. Its price seemed to be rising relentlessly… too relentlessly. I did a bit of digging and soon found out the secret — you basically couldn’t sell it.
For every token of squid you sold, you had to burn two marbles tokens. However, the price of two marbles was generally higher than the price of one squid. What’s more, those behind the scam often upped the ratio — eventually, you needed 20 marbles to every squid. You could earn marbles by ‘staking’ (a bit like lending) other coins, but that was obviously an awful idea. People only realised all this after they bought in, so they were stuck (these rules were somewhere in the whitepaper, but it’s still a total scam).
However, I noticed that marbles traded fairly freely and their price tracked squid. I put $100 in and, after lunch, took $200 out. Nice.
I continued to observe the phenomenon. I joined a Telegram chat where people were collectively trying to figure out how to sell their squid and one guy, at the end of his tether, offered to give away his tokens. The squid he sent me was worth $7,000 at the time. Over the course of the next 24 hours, the value of my free squid hit $100,000. Maybe there was a way I could get this out?
I spent a few hours scouring the smart contract, trying to understand it, and searching for a public method that I could interact with. Unfortunately, the juicy parts of its functionality were delegated to another contract (for scam reasons) that could only partially be deciphered. I started writing a script to have a go at calling some of these methods but I got tired and went to bed.
In the morning, I checked my wallet and my squid were ‘worth’ over $7m. Minutes later, the rug was pulled. I was no longer a crypto millionaire. Fun though.
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