Bitcoin, Cryptocurrencies and ICOs
This page is for people interested in Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and free money. It contains:
- links to half a dozen articles from 2013 (!) that cover the basics of cryptocurrencies
- referral links to the best faucets for free money
First, some background. These articles are all several years old, so any figures are out of date… but the bulk of the info is still relevant.
- 3 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is So Important
- What is Bitcoin Mining and How Does it Work?
- Cryptocurrency: Has Money Finally Matured?
- How To Get Your First Bitcoin Without Investing
- Bitcoins and Cryptocurrencies – Fad or Future?
- The Trouble With Bitcoin
Short version: Bitcoin is a virtual currency. Faucets are websites that earn revenue from visitors and, in exchange, offer a few free satoshis (100,000,000 satoshis = 1 Bitcoin). Some faucets offer altcoin (“alternative coins” – any crypto that isn’t Bitcoin) earnings.
Important: Cryptocurrencies are in a “bubble” period at the moment, with everyone and their pet dog getting involved – including a LOT of scammers.
My advice? Avoid the bandwagon.
Do NOT invest unless you know what you’re doing. Collect freebies. 🙂
And do NOT trust ANY of the adverts you see, claiming to generate massive amounts of cash every day. Bitcoin is big. It’s in the news. All the scammers are jumping on the bandwagon and trying to steal your money.
Bitcoin is not a scam, and neither are the major players such as Litecoin, Ripple and Ethereum – the ones trading on major dollar exchanges – but ICOs (new coin launches) are like the dot-coms in the ’90s. Some will survive, many will die horribly and you’ll lose money.
To answer some of your other questions, read this conversation-cum-FAQ.
My entire starting stock of BTC came FREE from faucets. Over a couple of years, I gathered about $20 of BTC when everyone was saying faucets weren’t worth the effort.
Today, that’s worth about $1,000 and I can do fun stuff like margin funding lending for daily interest (ask me if you have several hundred dollars in BTC and want to know how that works).
However, if you want to simply buy your way in (or exchange your faucet earnings for different coins), you can trust Changelly – they’re one of the two major players in the “coin swap” market.
Exchanges are where you can trade coins/tokens. They’re like the London Stock Exchange, Wall Street and so on… and they’re about as trustworthy.
Standard advice is not to keep your crypto in an exchange because it’s a central attack point. In other words, it can be hacked. Only keep your trading funds in your exchange wallet(s) – keep your investments in your own wallets.
The most established, reliable exchanges include Binance, Bitfinex, Bittrex, Poloniex, Kraken, CoinBase, Paxful and others. Newer, potentially less reliable options – which often have coins before they hit the big exchanges – include KuCoin (pretty damned reliable), Graviex, HitBTC, Livecoin, WCEX, Finexbox (very dodgy), AltExchanger (very dodgy) and YoBit (who I distrust like a politician). The ones I use are in green, in case you wondered.
Before I do the faucets, I thought I’d mention crypto mining.
“Mining” is the (complex) process that creates cryptocurrency coins. It’s an alternative to faucets if you have a lot of computer power or time.
I won’t go into mining in detail here. I’ll just give you a few bits of advice:
- Don’t try to mine Bitcoin independently on your computer. You need specialised equipment.
- If you want to mine with your computer, join a pool like Minergate (that’s a ref link), where you combine your CPU power with thousands of others and get better returns than browser mining.
- If you want to invest in mining, find a reputable company. I used Hashflare (ref link) successfully because they’ve been around for years, but do your own research.
- If you don’t want to – or can’t – run a miner on your computer, you can use browser mining on Coinpot. Very low returns and it probably uses more electricity than it generates in coins, but it just sits there and adds money for doing nothing.
- If your computer sucks but is on for most of the day (or 24/7), consider getting some PoS (Proof of Stake) coins such as eXperience Points, StakeNet, Vsync, PIVX, Nav or similar. Leave the desktop wallet running and your coins will generate interest for being part of the network.
The Free Money Bit
“Bit”, get it? Free money “bit”, Bitcoin? OK, bad joke.
So, the faucets. Bear in mind that it’s SLOW: people don’t give away free money very easily, so you need to keep visiting and collecting. These are ref links, obviously. It costs you nothing to sign up “under” me and I’ll be happy if you use them but you are not obliged to do so.
The absolute best. Been running for years, claim every hour, totally honest and reliable. They even give you 4% interest on your earnings once you hit 30k satoshis (so you can deposit your earnings from the others here and watch them build).
Rewards grow as you build loyalty and play their hi-lo game, too – from about a dozen satoshis (0.1c) per visit, my rewards have built up to over 300 satoshis (2.5c) per visit, to which I can add a little for 24h hours using the site’s reward points. Update: my account is now set to share referral rewards, so sign up under me and earn extra every week.
Oh, and one extra note: this one is a “ROLL!” button: claiming satoshis is presented as a game, with up to $200 if you’re lucky. (No, I’ve never won it!)
Visit every 5+ minutes, though I think the system is designed to peak at about 1 hour, the same as (1), above. Payout goes to Coinpot (which is mildly annoying, but you can wait ’til you hit the free withdrawal at 50k satoshis and move them to freebitco for the interest). Also been running for ever, slower earnings.
Slower again, pays to Coinpot again (which works nicely combined with 2). Also every 5+ minutes, I do it roughly every hour or so.
Another slow one, pays to Coinpot again. You can claim every 15 minutes. Completely reliable: I think it’s owned by the same people who do the Moons or who did BitcoinZebra when it was alive. Someone responsible, anyway!
I track the faucets I use for all coins in this Google Sheet.
Bear in mind that you can’t always trust faucets to work and some of them require ridiculous effort for tiny rewards (3 minutes’ work for 0.2c?).
Don’t get caught up in the cycle of claiming and forget that faucets will only pay you cents per hour.
The ones on my spreadsheet are reliable and require less work than most.
Remember, you can earn a lot more doing almost anything else, so make up your own mind how long to spend on gathering coin-dust!
Earning More (Not Investing)
There are thousands of GPT (Get Paid To…) sites out there offering crypto in exchange for your time completing offers. PTC ads, surveys, offerwalls – you know the drill if you’ve ever tried to earn from similar places.
The only site I will recommend is Cointiply (ref link, duh). While they can’t control how their offerwall advertisers work, sometimes resulting in unpaid tasks, they are very reliable and honest.
Earn in points that are worth USD (not tied to current BTC rates), cashout in BTC or DOGE at $10 or $5 (respectively). Very nice indeed.
You can also run ads on your own site(s) to earn BTC through services such as a-ads (ref).