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Eye See You - $100M for ChatGPT Founder's Dystopian Worldcoin?

OpenAI’s Sam Altman nears $100 million in funding for Worldcoin, while ConsenSys clarifies rumors that MetaMask is collecting taxes on crypto transactions, and Bitcoin 2023 hits Miami.

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Ah Monday... Everyone’s favourite day of the week. Whilst you were all living it large this weekend, Blockhead was busy keeping up with the ever-tireless world of crypto. Here’s what you missed, and what to look forward to in the week ahead. As ever, if you’re here from a friend, subscribe now.

Would $100 million make your Monday better? Well, ChatGPT founder Sam Altman might soon be the one to tell us, as the OpenAI boss is reportedly in advanced talks of raising the nine-figure sum for his global cryptocurrency Worldcoin.

With plans to utilise iris-scanning technology, Worldcoin's plans are as ambitious as they are terrifying.

In an effort to distinguish between humans and bots, the company plans to use an "orb" (or Death Star...) which uses "iris biometrics to establish an individual’s unique personhood, then creates a digital World ID that can be used pseudonymously in a wide variety of everyday applications without revealing the user’s identity," according to the firm.

Users will receive free Worldcoin tokens once establish their identity - would you trade your freedom for free coins?

Its $100 million token sale early last year already valued its total token supply at a cool $3 billion. Already operating in beta and set to start recording transactions in the next six weeks, the dystopian tech could turn science fiction into reality much sooner than we'd like.

Elsewhere, Bitcoin veered briefly back into the $27,000 price zone over the weekend but showed weaker resilience than Arsenal.

Now for your daily news roundup:

Fidenza #725 by Tyler Hobbs (detail)
  • Sotheby's has raised US$2.4 million from its sale of items from Three Arrows Capital's "Grails" collection, aiming to recoup some of the lost funds from the bankrupt crypto hedge fund. The highest-priced NFTs from Part 1 of the Grails collection were Fidenza #725 by Tyler Hobbs (US$1.016 million) and Autoglyph #187 by Larva Labs (US$571,500), both estimated at US$120,000-180,000. More of the collection will be auctioned off in the coming months.
  • HashKey Group, a crypto investment firm and one of Hong Kong's two licensed digital coin exchanges, is in talks to raise $100 million and $200 million at a valuation of over $1 billion. The company aims to capitalize on Hong Kong's efforts to develop the digital asset sector and attract potential investors.
  • ConsenSys, the creator of MetaMask, has addressed inaccurate information circulating on Twitter regarding its terms of service. The company clarified that MetaMask does not collect taxes on crypto transactions, and no changes have been made to the terms to enable tax withholding. The tax section in the terms of service applies only to ConsenSys' products and paid plans, not to MetaMask or other products that do not involve sales tax. The rumour spread on social media platforms, comparing it to the recent controversy surrounding Ledger's Ledger Recover feature.
  • Has the crypto world entered a new chapter – one marked by tempered optimism and a focus on building robust foundations? Attendance at last week's Bitcoin 2023 conference in Miami was somewhat subdued compared to previous years, with a significant drop from over 25,000 participants in 2022 to around 12,000 this year, Bloomberg reported, noting that the "to-the-moon" optimism that once permeated the air has given way to a more grounded and realistic outlook. However, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez is still determined to make the city a crypto hub and helped unveil a larger-than-life “Miami Bull” statue that came equipped with Bitcoin laser eyes.

Mon, 22 May: BTC Pizza Day 2023 - SG Pizza Party 🍕, by Ethereum Singapore
Wed, 24 May: From HODLing to WINing: Exploring Home Nodes, Staking Services, and Liquid Staking, by eth65
Thu, 25 May: Singapore Monero Meetup May2023, by Singapore Monero Meetup
Thu, 25 May: Singapore Web3 Blockchain Community, by Metacamp
Thu, 25 May: Pitch! Regtech, by Regulation Asia
Sat, 27 May: Build Web3 with Chainlink, by Chainlink Singapore

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