the crypto-cocktail that ruined the French


Behind the soaring billions in the cryptocurrency crash is a multitude of small investors who have lost some of their savings. The JDN interviewed them to understand how they were able to minimize the risks to such an extent.

“I’m a 6-figure loss there, I don’t know what I’ll do …”. Since May 8, disappointed messages like this have multiplied on social networks and forums. Who do they come from? The French who have invested all or part of their savings in cryptographic protocols with a return that is as delusional as it is risky. The value of their wallet melted when the prices of Luna and UST, two cryptocurrencies on the Terra blockchain, plummeted. In all, nearly $ 40 billion went up in smoke. Anchor Protocol, a platform that promised investors a 20% return, has lost more than 99% of its value. On Twitter or on Jeuxvideos.com, Internet users convinced that they have discovered the goose that lays the golden eggs express their misunderstanding. Some testimonies are probably exaggerated, even false, but many are very real, as JDN was able to ascertain by contacting their authors.

Testimonial published on Jeuxvideos.com. © JDN / Jeuxvideos.com
Testimony posted on Twitter. © JDN / Twitter
Testimony posted on Twitter. © JDN / Twitter

The shock is all the more violent as the Terra blockchain had already aroused a lot of enthusiasm: the Moon had reached the top 10 cryptocurrencies in terms of capitalization. As a result, Grégoire, the executive of a famous French startup, thought the ecosystem was “too big to fail.” He acknowledges that Anchor Protocol’s 20% return wasn’t viable, but buzz on Twitter prompted him to buy and place his USTs on the platform. He estimates his losses at $ 3,000. He is not the only one who has been overwhelmed by this generalized enthusiasm. The proof on Jeuxvideos.com:

Testimonial published on Jeuxvideos.com. © JDN / Jeuxvideos.com

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Blinded by the euphoria on social networks and comforted by some crypto influencers, investors seeking ever-higher returns have forgotten the basic principle of the risk / reward pair, which states that the higher the former, the higher the latter. Lucas, a student in his twenties, says he fell into the trap: “The stablecoins were presented as safe investments.” He also signed up for the same cryptocurrency newsletter, which was his surprise of him for leaving the FSO against the dollar. Sofiane, a 30-year-old industry engineer, lost $ 4,000 after seeing French youtubers praise Anchor’s merits.

In fact, crypto influencer apprentices, who are paid via affiliate links and advertising, abound on Google’s video platform. Example with Tutok, followed by 4,500 subscribers, according to whom Anchor presents “almost no risk” because “it’s a bit of an A booklet with a small difference in performance”. Cryptosaure, with just over 2,000 members, said: “the booklet 0.5% A stop getting pissed off, put your 10,000 euros at 20% and you are in peace”. With 76,500 subscribers, Paul Crypto Formation on his part assured that “there was no reason to go back to the fiat central bank when we can have such an interest rate on our stablecoins”.

“The Livret A at 0.5% stop getting pissed off, put your € 10,000 at 20% and you are at peace”

To compare a savings product with guaranteed capital and regulated by the state to a decentralized finance protocol at a dizzying pace, one had to be daring. A widespread comment, however, as we have just seen, which reflects at least a lack of knowledge. In any case, that’s what Xavier, a French fintech executive who lost 0.5% of his portfolio to the moon thinks, according to which “many crypto influencers don’t understand the technology behind” and presented Anchor Protocol as a solution to “earn magic money”.

Contacted by JDN, Tuktok admits that he advised his audience “at some point” to place UST on Anchor, but points out that he “issued a warning” when liquidity reserves began to dwindle. Those who congratulate themselves for having “added value” to those who “have no time to find out” are still surprised that some … “follow youtubers like me stupidly”. Cryptosaure, who admits he was not long an investor in Anchor Protocol, admits he was “wrong” but notes that “many other influencers have deleted their videos” on the subject, unlike him.

Influencers’ reckless words don’t stop them from taking a few precautions – they all use a warning that often looks like this: “Please keep in mind that I am not an investment financial advisor. I cannot be held responsible for any losses or potential gains. . Always do your research and consult a professional before making your investments. ” A disclaimer that, according to Romain Darrière, lawyer in internet law and new technologies, allows crypto influencers to distinguish themselves from the status of financial consultant, which implies responsibility before the law.

Be careful though, all French youtubers don’t have to be put in the same basket. Some, in the larger communities, have been able to exercise more judgment. Crypto Farmeur, with 35,300 subscribers, stated in particular that it “identified four points that [lui] suggest that guaranteeing 20% ​​APY on stablecoin is not feasible in the long term. “Ditto alongside some of the crypto press. Followed by 112,000 people on Youtube, Le Journal du Coin specifies though” the involvement [dans Anchor] of larger funds is not a guarantee, it is not a definitive guarantee. “It is to be believed that no …

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