Augur

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Augur
Augur.png
Founded 2015
Headquarters San Francisco, California
Key People Jack Peterson, Joey Krug
Products Prediction marketplace
Twitter @AugurProject
Facebook augurproject
Website Augur Homepage
Blog Augur Blog

Augur is a decentralized prediction market (betting) platform based on Ethereum.

It is a platform where third parties can organize markets to bet on outcomes of events. Users can download a software client from Augur to specify a prediction market, including start time and end time, as well as event definition ("Will the Dow Jones close above 30,000?" is an example of such an event). The general public participates in the events using cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and Ethereum.[1]

Overview

Augur was one of the first organizations to raise funds by issuing tokens through its 2015 ICO. Augur issued 8.8 million tokens of a total 11 million supply, raising about $5.2 million. The tokens are called REPs.[2]

Augur officially launched on July 9th, 2018.[3][4] Within its first month, 800 users had made more than $1.5 million worth of bets on Augur's prediction market, including such controversial bets as, "Will Donald Trump (President of the USA) be killed at any point in 2018?"[5]

Regulation

The Augur management believed that they would elude regulatory concerns from the CFTC about prediction markets because Augur only provides software and a platform and does not run any prediction events itself.[6] Augur has not yet sought approval from the CFTC, despite going live in July of 2018.[7] This has caused some controversy, because, for one, the betting method used on Augur technically falls under the category of binary options, a type of derivative regulated by the CFTC.

Augur v2

In a blog post dated June 29, 2020 Augur announced that it would upgrade its platform to "Augur v2" on July 28. Augur v2 is designed to operate on the Ethereum mainnet like the previous version of Augur. The company said that it is introducing a new token REP2 to replace current REP tokens, now renamed REP1's. Conversion of REP1's into REP2's requires manual actions by the holders. The company warned that, although no action was required immediately, at some point in the future all REP1 tokens would have to be converted.[8]

In July 2020, Augur v2 launched. The new version of the platform uses DAI tokens, allowing its users' bets to be settled "effectively in dollars." The DAI stablecoin is tied to the U.S. dollar, making it less volatile than the tokens previously used by the platform. Peter Vecchiarelli, Augur's operations lead, told cryptocurrency news website The Block that future integration between Augur v2 and the 0x platform was planned to reduce trading fees. Augur v2 is capable of running on a web browser, as opposed to the previous version of Augur, which required its users to download a desktop application. Augur v2 also includes a new feature designed to combat scams involving "invalid" bets which, in the original version of Augur, led to a significant number of users being scammed. In the new version, bettors may select "invalid" as a potential outcome for a bet, allowing them to predict situations where invalid bets may happen, as in the case where expiration dates or the conditions of debt settlements are ambiguously described in order to confuse a user. In theory, this allows bettors to flag suspicious bets for other users, warning others that the bet may be a scam.[9]

John Lothian News

Augur was highlighted in a recap of Consensus 2018 by JLN contributing editor Chuck Mackie. You can read the article here.

References