Topical Review of the 'Shiba Inu' DeFi Project

Project Reviews May 12, 2021

The project, 'Shiba Inu' has gotten the attention of many in the blockchain space recently due to its explosive price action as well as its namesake, which appears to be an ode to the cryptocurrency, Dogecoin.

How This Project Invokes Dogecoin

The logo for dogecoin is a 'meme' depicting a Japenese dog, referred to as a 'Shiba Inu'. Those interested in learning more about this animal can chase down those leads to wherever they take them (we're more interested in dissecting the nature of this 'Shiba Inu' project that's cropped out recently).

Evaluating Shiba Inu's Price Action

The only reason why we're discussing this project is because of its outrageous price action since its inception in the blockchain sphere.

For those not in the loop, refer to the screenshot below:

As we can see above, CoinGecko reports that the coin has appreciated by nearly 26,500% in the last 30-days alone.

Trading Metrics Are Insane as Well

Beyond the idiomatic explosive price gain for this cryptoasset, its trading metrics are through the roof as well.

At the time of writing, CoinGecko is reporting that this asset has posted over $5.9B worth of traded volume over the past 24H alone.

Calling Out CoinGecko For Their Inconsistency in Moral Line-Drawing

For obvious reasons, it appears that the 'Shiba Inu' coin currently has no valid rank among all top projects in the crypto sphere. However, if we visit other platforms that have carefully chosen not to make such puritan delineations for the projects listed on their market aggregators, we can see that the 'Shiba Inu' project currently sits in the top 20 among all cryptocurrencies in the blockchain space.

the above screenshot from CoinMarketCap shows Shiba Inu at the 20th spot, overall
the above screenshot from CoinCheckup shows Shiba Inu at the 19th spot, overall (the distance between 19 and 20 is negligible enough to where its not alarming for these two sites to have the same currency slotted at two different positions).

The theory behind CoinGecko & certain other market aggregator sites not ranking Shiba Inu where its market capitalization mandates placement is presumably due to its dubious origins, blatant insistence on parodying a project that has already been dubbed by its creator as a 'joke', as well as its 'Decentralized Finance' premise - which follows the path of other popular ponzi-schemes  propagated by the blockchain space over the past year and a half or so.

CoinGecko Has No Issue Providing Comprehensive Market Information On Everything Else

To be clear, Librehash is not justifying or defending the existence or merits of the 'Shiba Inu' project, but rather pointing out the hypocrisy and inconsistency in CoinGecko's decision to essentially 'censor' the project from being discovered by others among the other top blockchain projects in the crypto space.

Whatever logic that CoinGecko used to arrive at the conclusion that this is the proper course of action likely could (and should have) been applied to countless other projects they provide a wealth of market data and analytics for (at the time of writing).

Therefore, unless CoinGecko and others formerly announce that they will be putting other projects listed on their market aggregators to the same rigid line of analysis as 'Shiba Inu', the removal of this project appears to be no more than grandstanding on their behalf.

Digging into the 'Technical Underpinning' of the 'Shiba Inu' Project

Rather than evaluating the 'team' behind the project and/or their motivations, intents and any other possible conspiracy theories hanging around, let's see what concrete information  can be gleaned about the project first.

Their main website can be found here:

index
Decentralized Meme Tokens that grew into a vibrant ecosystem

The site proclaims that 'Shiba Inu' is a, "Decentralized Meme Tokens that grew into a vibrant ecosystem".

It is unknown what other projects they could be referring to with the label 'meme tokens' (plural), in lieu of any other credible project in existence apart from Dogecoin fitting that description.

Thus, the premise is already off. However, that does not deter this project from pressing forward.

As can be seen in the screenshot above, they imply that, 'ShibaSwap' (?), 'Fun tokens', and 'Artist incubator.' 'and more' within their 'Growing 300k+ Community' are available.

If this message seems a bit garbled to you, it isn't just you. One of the trademark characteristics of the Dogecoin 'meme' are the short, abbreviated phrasings that often accompany the picture of an actual shibu inu (the dog) in various media postings online as a caption.

Taking a Peek at the Project's General Ethos

Scrolling a bit further down (we're going to skip the 'woofpaper' for the time being), the project's basic value proposition is encapsulated within a two paragraph summary of its features under a section titled, 'Ecosystem'.

This section starts off by pronouncing:

"SHIB is an experiment in decentralized spontaneous community building. SHIB token is our first token and allows users to hold Billions or even Trillions of theml. Nicknamed the DOGECOIN KiLLER, this ERC-20 ONLY token can remain well under a penny and still outpace Dogecoin in a small amount of time (relatively speaking). Popular worldwide, and already up thousands of percent, Shiba token ($Shib) is the first cryptocurrency token to be listed and incentivized on ShibaSwap, our decentralized exchange."

Pointing Out the Numerous Glaring Issues in This First Paragraph

We're just going to list all of them concisely in numbered points below:

  1. This project is not a manifestation of 'decentralized spontaneous community building'. In fact, there's nothing 'decentralized' about the design of this project in any sense. Its clear that there is some finite entity behind its construction that wishes to hide their true identities (wonder why). This is red flag #1.
  2. The idea that the total circulating supply could be deflated or diluted exponentially being mentioned in such a flippant manner is concerning (red flag #2)
  3. This project has outlined that its main (and perhaps only) goal is to achieve a higher valuation / greater notoriety than dogecoin. Why? This also doesn't qualify as a valid use case. If anything, its a thinly veiled solicitation for others to participate in a massive pump-and-dump scheme under the justification that dogecoin has now become a socially accepted PnD (thanks in large part to Elon's insistence on promoting the project over all others with cryptic messages hidden in 300 character limited tweets).
  4. This project is not popular worldwide as they claim they are.
  5. Nobody has nicknamed this project the 'DOGECOIN KILLER'. Dogecoin has no applicable use in the real-world at all - which means that the asset is 100% illiquid in any functional capacity. Following from this logic, this claim appears highly facetious when considering the fact that Dogecoin has never been "alive" to begin with (no, frequent invocations of the project by the world's richest man do not change any of these facts).
  6. Why would there be a need for a dedicated DEX for this project?

Number six is a rhetorical question posed to juxtapose the whiplash-inducing 180 the documentation takes a mere sentence later, where its stated:

"We locked the 50% of the total supply to Uniswap and threw away the keys!"

Why?

If you've instantiated your own DEX platform, why not lock the funds there instead? Or if you were always planning on locking the funds on Uniswap, why waste the time devising your own DEX?

This Project Gets Downright Bizarre Once Vitalik's Name is Invoked

The project's presentation grows increasingly schizophrenic the further down we climb into this rabbit hole.

Specifically, it really starts going off the rails at the portion of the site where it states, "The remaining 50% [of tokens were] burned to Vitalik Buterin and we were the first project following this path, so everyone has to buy on the open market, ensuring a fair and complete distribution where devs don't own team tokens they can dump on the community."

Once again, there's a mountain of content to pick apart here - but we decided to take on this challenge, so let's do it.

Red Flag #4: Sending Money to Vitalik Buterin is Not a Valid Way to 'Burn Tokens'

If that is what this project has done (we'll take their word for it), then they've essentially donated billions of dollars to an individual whose net worth was already declared to be over $1 billion just one week prior.

Beyond this random, failed appeal to authority (?), sending money to Vitalik actually undermines the alleged intent behind this action. As the project states on their site, this was done to, "Ensure a fair and complete distribution...", but its hard to argue that this is anywhere near "fair" when one of the creators of Ethereum itself (which this project is premised upon), holds nearly half of the tokens.

As far as we know, Vitalik Buterin hasn't engaged in any formal contract or working agreement with these individuals. Assuming Vitalik is truly unaffiliated with this project, he would be committing no objective wrong against anyone if he liquidate all of these tokens for USD, Ethereum or some other asset on the open markets in any manner of his choosing.

Vitalik Buterin is also not an infallible human being beyond reproach or of such a special substance and character to where him possessing this asset can be considered to be synonymous with preventing general malfeasance by the developers of this scheme (whom refuse to be named for some reason).

Red Flag #5: The Distribution Mechanism Behind This Project Does Nothing to Ensure 'Fairness'

Those that are familiar with smart contract programming (using Solidity for Ethereum), unde43rstand that there are plenty of opportunities for developers in the same position as the alleged creators of this protocol to execute 'rug pulls', unfair dilutions, pool drains, bait-and-switch schemes and more (the list is almost endless).

With that being said, this is a reality that must be embraced by those still wishing to interact with the Ethereum protocol (beyond trading) at this point in blockchain's brief, nascent existence as an industry.

This is a existential reality that goes beyond anything that the 'Shiba Inu' protocol can control for - which is something that they should intuitively understand. Therefore, the fantastical claims made on their website that appear to be positioned with the intent to disarm some of the skepticism that prospective users / investors may have about this protocol serves as yet another red flag.

Conclusion: Do Not Touch This Protocol

This may mean sacrificing the ability to cash in on some potential "gains" that can be had here, but if that's the price that must be paid - so be it.

The price action for this project is too risky and volatile. The code underpinning the respective smart contracts issued by this anonymous team is entirely unreviewed and unaudited at the time of writing and the exorbitant price increases we covered above indicate that there is a significant amount of criminal activity going on behind the scenes that could extend far beyond a simple 'pump-and-dump' scheme (money laundering shouldn't be ruled out).

The presentation of the project's idea is virtually non-existent (as readers can see, we've covered a good deal of the website through this review, yet still are no closer to understanding the true nature of this project than we were at the beginning of this piece) - which is a huge red flag.

The fact that the developers of this protocol refuse to identify themselves next to this work (not even with a pseudonymous nickname of sorts like, 'Satoshi Nakamoto', is an extreme red flag). While this does not guarantee that fraud is or will take place, it does create conditions that allow for this project's creators to 'disappear into the night' if there is a "smart contract exploit", 'rug pull', or some other similar type of monkey business.

Is that a risk you can afford to take? Before you answer that, discard your thoughts and focus instead on this rephrased question.

Is it smart to take such a blind leap of faith on a project like this in a market where there are plenty of lucrative alternatives that appear to also have a high likelihood of netting one substantive gains with only a tiny fraction of the counterparty risk 'Shiba Inu' investors are taking on currently?

Tags

cryptomedication

Happy to serve and help wherever I'm needed in the blockchain space. #Education #EthicalContent #BringingLibretotheForefront

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