2019 has been quite controversy-ridden for Tron so far – the Chinese probe against CEO Justin Sun, the cancelled Buffet Lunch, allegations of fake trading volume, and now Justin Sun’s fake followers. Following all these controversies, the market valuation of Tron has fallen from $2.5 Bn in June 2019 to a little over $1 Bn in September 2019.
Controversies Don’t Seem to End For Tron
Bad times began for Tron when Justin Sun messed up the process of the Tesla giveaway and ended up giving just a fully paid round-trip ticket to the niTRON Summit in 2020 instead of a Tesla car to the winner. But that was just the beginning.
Is The Tron Volume Fake?
In April 2019, Blockchain Transparency Institute (BTI) released a report that suggested that nearly 85% of the volume traded in the Tron market was completely fake.
“According to the report, out of Tron’s reported volume of $218 million, only $33.2 million worth of TRX made up the real trading volume.”
The infamous Warren “Buffet”
Then came Justin Sun’s infamous lunch with Warren Buffett which he had bagged by paying a record $4.57 million in a charity auction on eBay. Four days before the lunch, Justin Tron cancelled the big lunch with the excuse of a medical emergency. Tron tweeted on its official page –
Justin Sun became the subject of several trolls on Twitter following that announcement.
There are two theories behind why Justin Sun actually cancelled the lunch that day. The more popular of the two is that Sun had been detained by Beijing’s top internet regulator in China that was investigating him on suspicions around illegal fundraising, money laundering, pornography distribution, and gambling. The other theory is that Justin Sun was in San Francisco that day partying with crypto influencers of which he posted photos on his Twitter account.
Is Justin Buying Twitter Followers?
Once again, Justin Sun is caught in a spate of fresh controversy, this time around his Twitter followers,
Josh Rager, a Twitter user has alleged that Justin Sun has been adding fake followers to his Twitter account.
The tweet has received mixed reactions from the community. While some have sided with Rager and accused Justin Sun of being a scamster, others are sympathizing with Sun and calling Tron a great product.
But, Is Justin a Victim?
Finance Magnates’ interview with Tron spokesperson Cliff Edwards reveals that there might be another side to the stories around Justin Sun and Tron. Edwards suggests that Tron and Justin Sun get a disproportionate amount of flak from the crypto community which is instigated by rivals.
“The other thing is this sort of tribalism in the cryptocurrency industry. You look at other tech rivalries – Apple vs Microsoft – and something similar exists. With crypto, I think that, because money is involved, it makes things much more heated. People want ‘their’ coin to win and so everything else becomes a ‘shit coin,” says Edwards.
On the developments in the Tron ecosystem, which have been taking longer than expected, Edwards says –
“If I had to rate us so far, I’d probably give us a B. I think that our major problems have come from a disconnect between our expectations surrounding product development and how easy it is to build the technology we want.”
He adds that Tron is in need of more manpower for its large-scale decentralized projects.
Nevertheless, Declining Tron Performance is Worrisome
Whether Tron is a great product or not may be a subject of debate, but Tron’s investors have a reason to be unhappy as Tron’s historical returns on investments have mostly been in the red in 2018 and 2019.
However, the Buffett Lunch might still be on the cards, as Edwards says that –
“It’s being rescheduled.”
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