On Tuesday, May 12th, our CEO Marshall Hayner was invited to the GAINS Associates Telegram chat for a routine quiz and AMA. An hour was planned to answer your burning questions about the Metal platform and the Proton blockchain.
Marshall surprised everyone as he continued to answer every question asked, officially wrapping 10 hours later! GAINS Associates is a friendly and growing community that discusses upcoming ICOs/IEOs/STOs as well as trading opportunities, news and everything crypto related. Check out their website here.
We improved the spelling of the raw chat, to make it easier to read. Read the epic marathon AMA below:
Alexandre: Can you tell us what you did before crypto, how you got into crypto, and if you’ve had any other venture in crypto previous to being involved with Metal/Proton?
Marshall: My story in crypto starts 11 years ago when I lived in Boston, MA when I first discovered cryptocurrency. I was one of the lucky few who stumbled on it as it was actively unfolding on p2pfoundation.net. I was obsessed with Bittorrent at the time and decentralized communities and was actively moderating many private torrent trackers.
Trent Reznor showed up on what.cd in 2009 and asked “How can I get paid for releasing my album on this platform?” At first I thought it was a fake account so I went to ban it and lock the thread but then Trent tweeted under his blue checkmark verified twitter account “verifying what.cd”.
So I fanboyed out and watched the thread unfold with all kinds of zany ideas how he could be paid for releasing his new album on What. Every idea was basically horrible and then towards the end of the thread someone said “what about bitcoin”, I googled it, downloaded the original Bitcoin-QT client and my journey started.
I spent the first few weeks trying to figure out how it works, I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact it didn’t directly integrate into any existing banking software. This is like the obscure internet, I like it.
When I finally got it, I thought “wow this is the bittorrent of money”. And as you know Bittorrent gave birth to all of the most popular streaming platforms we use today such as Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, etc.
This is what crypto is doing to money, it started with Bitcoin, evolved with Ethereum, metamorphosed with Proton, became accessible with MTL and we’re only getting started .
Alexandre: Interesting way to put it 🙂
Marshall: my first company QuickCoin started in 2013 and officially launched in 2014, it was a Facebook integrated Bitcoin wallet, the first really simple one click signup and setup we had ever seen.
That quickly grew to a million users in a few weeks in the first quarter of 2014, from there I ended up leaving and joining the Stellar launch team and ran all marketing/PR/Community and strategy around the Stellar wallet. Stellar wallet grew to a million users in under a week.
Alexandre: Wow, a million users so fast, that’s huge! How did you do it?
Marshall: Within a few months I got the itch and left Stellar to join Block.io where I met my current co-founder Glenn Marien.
I advised a bunch of projects and got heavily involved with Dogecoin at the time and helped organize Dogecon, Doge on Nascar, etc.
And I started having a lot of fun, I really found my passion, it was around 2016 that I decided to pick back up the QuickCoin concept and finish what I started creating a PayPal for digital currency, but now with a bigger vision – a global digital bank that could move at the speed of light and interact with any financial system.
And Metal was born! That’s my crypto founder story in a nutshell lol.
Alexandre: Pretty cool, you’ve been through a lot in crypto
Marshall: I’ve seen some things 😂
Alexandre: Many people will want to buy you a drink now to listen to these stories. Deep field expertise and experience, I like it. Can you tell us what your role is at Metal/Proton and what the project is about in a few simple sentences?
Marshall: I’m the CEO and Co-founder at Metal and Co-founder, Director at Proton blockchain. Metal is a digital banking and finance platform of the future, with two products Metal Pay and Metal X.
Metal Pay is the global digital banking and payments platform, sort of like a bank of the future. It’s the only banking platform in the world I’m aware of that directly integrates cryptocurrency.
Metal X is our global cryptocurrency exchange platform that runs on Proton rails, so all fiat interactions are done over the Proton network.
I think recently Cash App may have joined us in this category as they JUST added bank accounts, but only offer Bitcoin, whereas Metal Pay has 30 cryptocurrencies including stablecoins.
Alexandre: What does that mean concretely, do people have bank accounts in BTC for example?
Marshall: So you get your own checking account that is linked to your name with FDIC insurance. You can direct deposit your paycheck into it, pay bills, receive payments and earn rewards.
In addition you have access to 30 cryptocurrencies to buy/sell and send/receive as well as main-net interactions. Sort of like Coinbase but better.
And now you never have to worry about your bank causing problems because you purchased some BTC or crypto, we are the banking platform and we welcome crypto!
Alexandre: And what is Proton Blockchain?
Marshall: There are a lot of sad stories of Wells Fargo and other banks closing accounts because of interactions with Coinbase etc, we don’t have these issues as we provide the bank account directly.
It’s a standalone blockchain, the consensus layer is dPoS and the most interesting thing about it is that it interacts directly with the card and bank payments settlement layer.
What this means is now the blockchain can directly interact with Visa/Mastercard and your bank.
For example I could request some USD from your visa debit card from my TrustWallet or Trezor.
Alexandre: Can you seamlessly draw from your crypto assets with your credit/debit card and pay with that in the real world?
Marshall: Correct. Now all wallets can interact with fiat regardless of whether they have a connection to the processor. It’s really incredible, and makes a huge change in the way blockchain works today. Moving it from a walled garden to a completely interoperable ecosystem.
Alexandre: What do the fees look like btw?
Marshall: The really cool part about fees is that any processor can join the Proton network as it’s completely open and permissionless. So this creates a highly competitive landscape for fiat/crypto conversion, thereby effectively creating lower fees through network effect. Versus a small handful of exchangers that live in their own domain.
Alexandre: Some companies are also trying to do cash back on crypto cards but I’m not sure if they can sustain that or if it’s just a temporary marketing gimmick to attract new users at first.
Marshall: I think in many cases the cashback around cryptocurrency is usually leveraging existing rewards programs and then converting those merchant credit dollars to BTC etc.
The difference with MTL is the concept that merchants can now issue their rewards directly as digital assets over MTL smart contract on Proton chain and know that their rewards are directly reaching their users.
Versus converting USD to BTC which seems like a gimmick to me as you pointed out. We give the merchant the opportunity to directly interact with the consumer in the form of digital assets and not the other way around.
Alexandre: Well, thank you for this intro Marshall! I’m now going to ask the winning Twitter questions.
Marshall: Let’s do it!
Alexandre: First winning Twitter question:
With the release of Metal Pay 3.0 can you tell us more in detail the four components that will be capable of interacting with the Proton blockchain using the authentication and push signing technology?
Marshall: Awesome question! You can think of Metal Pay (3.0) kind of like Mastercard or Visa in the sense we’re one of the first processors on the Proton network, but certainly not the last.
Signing requests can be initiated by any individual or entity but will only appear if they are on the whitelist with your payment provider (whether this is Metal Pay, PayPal, Cash App, etc).
Proton Foundation maintains a master whitelist similar to Mastercard MCC Merchant Category Codes, these are what we call “blue checkmark verified merchants” and recommended to all financial service providers on the Proton network to show as valid requests. There are several ways a signing request can happen:
Scanning a code, whether this is on an advertisement, on your television or computer screen, think of it sort of like a buy it now or open source Apple Pay.
Deep linking technology whereby you tap a payment request in your browser or another app and your Proton client (in this case Metal Pay 3.0) will simply pop up and prompt you to sign the transaction.
Push request, this happens on chain and will pop up in your Proton client (Metal Pay 3.0 or otherwise) and allow you to authorize it.
All of this is relatively seamless and replicates the Apple Pay experience except you’re using Proton rails and payments are being settled in crypto.
The request itself specifies the types of currencies that are accepted, in the event none are accepted that you currently have a payment authorization is issued on chain, which is sort of like a pending payment on chain verified by the processor, in this case Metal Pay.
Alexandre: Ok, interesting. Let’s get to know more about your blockchain with this second question.
Second winning Twitter question:
How do MTL & XPR contribute towards the current financial system? How is the proton chain different from other blockchains? What number of transaction speed can be achieved on proton chain?
Marshall: Currently Proton can handle about 4,000-5,000 TPS, which is beyond most major blockchains available today.
Alexandre: For sure.
Marshall: There are no gas or transaction fees which is very nice. And all addresses are human readable such as @alexander or @marshall.
MTL specifically addresses the distribution mechanism that can be achieved through regular human based tasks and do not require computation from a machine ie PoW mining.
And the rewards are minted around a mechanism we call PoPP or Proof-of-processed-payment which started as a centralized/decentralized hybrid and is now expanding with Proton blockchain for any issuer to distribute assets in a meaningful way around MTL smart contract on Proton.
XPR Proton blockchain is contributing massively to the future of ecommerce and the blockchain space in that we are breaking down the walled gardens of fiat, no longer are the days you will see wallets pointing you to Metal Pay or Coinbase to buy crypto and come back to the wallet, now all fiat payment requests happen on chain.
Proton fundamentally rethinks the way we handle existing payment flows, and some of the biggest innovations are the ability to check out online without typing your credit card, shipping address and other private payment and personal credentials, now you just type your @name and hit checkout, confirm in your Proton client such as Metal Pay 3.0.
Oh yeah – now all payment apps can communicate with each other over the Proton chain as well. So for example when PayPal integrates Proton blockchain I could send you a payment from inside Metal Pay by typing @alex I will see your blue checkmark and that you are a PayPal user, we’re no longer trapped by our banks or payment providers, payments become universal and interoperable.
Crypto wallets now work with fiat wallets and vice versa… very cool.
Alexandre: Interesting, so it’s like a super payment network connecting everyone and every provider. Isn’t this an issue? How do you deal with people trying to spam the network? Don’t get me wrong, no fees is great 😁
Marshall: Block producers are rewarded for processing blocks, in the event of spam payments they are simply rejected similar to dust payments on Bitcoin blockchain. In addition verified @user names are priotitized over non verified @names. Thus further preventing spam and issues with clogging the network.
We addressed some of these issues that we discovered with EOS which was the lack of a governing body, so we formed the Proton Foundation which is comprised of Metal, Lynx, EOSUSA, Greymass, EOSCafe, and CryptoLions organizations.
Who make core decisions around the network that are then voted on by the public with Proton. We’ve found this is a more democratic process and the verified blue checkmark concept is required by all inner steering committee members, thus invalidating any attempts at creating multiple Block Producers that are effectively the same party masquerading as many.
Alexandre: Gotcha. So you talked about having a whitelist earlier, this blue checkmark concept as well. This question further addresses safety concerns.
Third winning Twitter question:
In terms of regulation, are you fully compliant and will you ensure peace of mind among investors and depositors? Do you think MetalPay is ready to face the challenge of government regulation?
Marshall: Love it! As a company Metal is fully compliant, and is a regulated registered Money Service Business (MSB) in the United States, a direct Visa and Mastercard partner as well as partnered with Evolve Bank and Trust.
We have a fully operationalized BSA manual and compliance program with a Compliance Director, five full time in house compliance analysts, two full time in-house counsel. We are also fully registered in the EU as a financial institution.
Alexandre: Wow, sounds like a lot, seems like you’re well covered and prepared
Marshall: We’ve created strong anti-money laundering, anti-terrorism and OFAC screening.
In addition I recently authored a Congressional Bill around cryptocurrency with the help of Representative Gosar (AZ) called The Cryptocurrency Act 2020, which is probably the most founder friendly, concise and progressive policy in Washington currently
Alexandre: Very impressive and very cool 🙂 I like founder friendly policies ^^
Marshall: Funny story behind this, some groups Blockchain Association and Coincenter attempted to say my bill was “dead on arrival” when in fact it achieved more interest in Washington than anything they had done in four years with millions of dollars in donations and multiple staff members.
Metal team pulled it off, just myself and Erik going to Washington together
Alexandre: I always like a good David VS Goliath story
Marshall: We caught the attention of congressmen/women and regulators and helped spur the excitement behind digital dollar in congress (of course no lobbyists like it when two people make a whole team look bad when they have teams of lawyers and millions haha).
Alexandre: That’s awesome 🙂 We’re going to get started with the quiz now to see how well people know Metal/Proton 💪
Chat question: What advantages does Metal offer merchants so that they decide to choose to accept the cryptocurrency as a means of payment?
Why should merchants accept cryptocurrencies?
Marshall: Merchants should really accept cryptocurrencies because it’s more powerful and portable than regular cash, it’s digital cash and you can pay your employees instantly with an irreversible bearer bond (cash) digital now to any part of the world instantly.
Metal offers merchants the capability to have a corporate merchant bank account and employees to be on the same system to payments are instant and no longer taking days to deposit, users get rewards for making payments and now everything is global versus stuck in one country. This becomes especially relevant for merchants that are global, now payment acceptance is global and we’re breaking it out of the cryptocurrency walled garden box with Proton.
Chat question: How can the Metal Pay technology make developers vastly more productive and provide every individual user access to unlimited computational resources in terms of sending money instantly?
Marshall: Metal Pay is great for devs and digital products because payment acceptance is now global and instant, whether you have cryptocurrency or not fiat payment operations are happening on chain, replicating traditional card and bank payment commands, but now lightning fast, permissionless and global – all the best benefits of traditional banking and blockchain combined under one roof and we’ve built the most usable software with, arguably the best UI/UX in crypto, we love that competitors copy our style, we find it flattering!
Chat question: I want to start by asking why the team decided to airdrop the Metal (MTL) holders for the Proton project? Why should we consider the use of XPR instead of others known as xrp or xlm? What would be the benefit that Proton will offer?
Marshall: We airdropped XPR to MTL and LYNX holders because both of these blockchains represent our early community and found this was the best way to reach our community as quickly as possible and reward them for backing both projects.
You should consider XPR over XRP or XLM because we will give you docs over the next few months that will allow you to interact with the card/banking payments layer, we have our own digital banking platform, cryptocurrency exchange – none of the two aforementioned blockchains have this, but most importantly let the software speak for itself.
You have to ask yourself, can you interact with Visa with these other mentioned blockchains or will Proton enable you to do it first? We put our money where our mouth is, SHOW ME THE DOCS! as they say…
Whereas Metal has achieved what many larger companies such as Facebook or Bakkt claimed to do, we did it first with a much smaller, much smarter and driven team.
Chat question: As we see….😄A lot of coins that use the PAYMENT system which provides Faster, Safer Features etc, So, what makes Metal pay better than other PAY system?
Marshall: Our system is global, and open source with Proton, other platforms are usually only allowing you to interact with their semi closed API that requires approval whereas Proton is completely permissionless and opt-in and touches traditional fiat rails.
Chat question: * Q1 – As the platform name is METAL… Is there any reason behind it?? Is it related to any metals?
- Q2. – What are the main real world use-cases of MTL in METAL Platform?
Also, as an investor, why should I invest in the MTL project as a long term investor?
Marshall: Haha yes, this is an interesting story… I was never good at names and Carter Laren the founder of the incubator Metal went through in 2016 called Gateway helped us come up with the name.
All money comes back to Metal, whether you are storing precious metals, or storing physical cash, it’s in a Metal safe. It’s funny but there is something about Metal that is deeply connected to the history and ethos of money. From Gold to the Metal Vault you keep it in.
MTL can be earned through PoPP on the Metal Pay platform and will soon dictate the issuance of other rewards as we open source this with MTL smart contract on Proton blockchain. If you believe in the vision that the team has created and see what we can do with 35 people, imagine what we will be able to do with 350 or 3500 or the next few years.
I like to think of Metal as the David to the Goliath. We were born from the cryptocurrency community and we live and breathe it, so we make the best product and as that product grows adoption of our ecosystem grows.
Alexandre: Btw, do you have numbers to share regarding users, volume processed through your system, number of merchants or companies on-boarded?
Marshall: Yes we are currently over a quarter million users registered on the platform and have processed mid double digit millions at this point while in beta. When we expand to the world this year we expect to break our first million.
Chat question: What are the best characteristics of Metal and Lynx that when merged produce an excellent project like Proton Chain?
Marshall: Open source rails for fiat payments, this has really never been done before until now, and it really required Proton and Metal Pay to make it happen. Open source rails for fiat payments, this has really never been done before until now, and it really required Proton and Metal Pay to make it happen.
Chat question: Many chains always try to focus on 3 aspects, speed, scalability and security, but recently a new topic is becoming strong, so what is the position of Proton in terms of PRIVACY and ANONYMITY?
Marshall: We are working internally on a privacy proposal but our internal solution is to allow the user to have more than one @name linked to their account that is not publicly exposed, simple work around for now.
Chat question: I read the description of the Red Falcon objective, but what is the meaning of that? Why a red Falcon?
Marshall: Red Falcon symbolizes the Phoenix – rising from the ashes of traditional finance.
Chat question: To use MTL in real life it’s availability is in some states.. So what are your plans for global expansion ?? And Do you have any plans to attract non-crypto investors to #MTL and how? What are the actions to increase awareness around #MTL in non-crypto space?
Marshall: We are expanding to all 50 states this year as we begin our nationwide money transmission licensing, a very onerous and long process that we are beginning now to fill in the 12 states we don’t currently have.
Global expansion is also happening this year with the introduction of Metal Pay 3.0 read more here: https://blog.metalpay.com/metal-pay-3-0-roadmap/
Many people in the US first experience with crypto is MTL because it’s so easy to use and earn, some of the ways we are attracting more attention is through social media AMAs like we have here in GAINS chat, but also more traditional media from TV to Youtube and working with influencers.
Chat question: Proton Chain promises many different things and super different things compared to other blockchains. I ask you, why should we be using your products Metal pay and Proton Chain?
Marshall: Because we have the best user experience in crypto, we’re providing a digital banking platform and obscuring all the round-about stringing together multiple wallets, banks, and exchanges – with Metal it’s all in one… Oh yeah and we have the best UI/UX without question.
Chat question: I would like to ask a few questions about Proton, a promising project related to metal:
-For the success of Metal and Proton is it necessary to have a partnership with different banks? Is joint collaboration necessary?
-A blockchain that interacts with FIAT is interesting, what could be the first currencies? dollar, euro, yen?
Marshall: Processors come to the network, so it’s not necessary that any one bank perse partners with Proton Foundation, rather its success is determined by adoption of fin tech companies versus a single fin tech company telling every payment provider to implement a centralized platform.
We are offering open source tools and documents that create a non-competitive landscape, joint collaboration is not directly necessary, only processors and verifiers on the network that opt-in without anyone’s permission.
First currencies will be wrapped USD, BTC, and MTL will migrate to Proton becoming “XMT” and we will be rapidly adding more!!
Chat question: What is the first thing you would recommend to a new proton user? How is the support? How fast do they serve users?
Marshall: Register an @name, you can do this currently by downloading Lynx wallet from App or Play store lynxwallet.io.
Support on Metal platform is great and highly personalized, our users frequently comment how they love the direct connection from our team to the customers.
Chat question: What are the major milestones you have achieved so far?
Marshall: So far we have launched four products, made two acquisitions, acquired Lynx team in LA, grown the team to over 35 people, expanded our operations into EU with the launch of Metal Financial Services OU and Metal X.
With Metal Pay platform soon to have banking support for EU, we also recently raised a funding round and launched Proton blockchain and also established some great partnerships we will announce this year.
Chat question: Massive adoption is a headache challenge for every blockchain project, especially at this sensitive period in this market when many blockchain projects were dead since no-one uses their blockchain. How is Metal Pay going to achieve this and What are your team’s strategies and visions on this problem to onboard more users for Metal Pay platform?
Marshall: We’re solving problems that we think are not only systemic to blockchain and cryptocurrency, for example why are we still giving out credit card numbers online or in-app and risking our financial safety and privacy?
Proton solves this issue by completely obscuring the need to enter this information ever, also the capability to send between payment apps… Now Metal Pay can communicate with PayPal, Venmo, etc Imagine never being constrained by the bank or payment provider you use, Proton solves this. Also the fiat to crypto ‘on-ramps’ and ‘off-ramps’ problem from the protocol level.
Chat question: In your background I see that Proton was designed by Metal Pay and Lynx wallet. Why did those platforms come together to form Proton? What was their initial idea, and why couldn’t it be developed separately?
Marshall: We believe we are stronger together with Metal and Lynx team merging than apart, we have a very strong idea and belief in building usable products and incredible UI/UX and that’s something that really bonded both teams.
And for many of those that know us, these two teams coming together is like two pieces of plutonium meeting.
Chat question: How have been your expectations about community response?
Marshall: Community response has been phenomenal, but more interestingly responses from major fintech partners is mind blowing… we showcased the capability to not only link bank accounts like Plaid but move funds without touching PII, major interest from the top banks and card payment companies and processors was a bit of a shock to us that the largest players were excited to participate as we thought it would be a harder fight, it’s really refreshing to know that major banks and fintech are making major pushes with financial innovation around blockchain – it just had to be applied the right way.
Previously crypto was going about it the wrong way, trying to jam a square peg in a round hole… why should BOFA or CHASE run Ripplenet in the back end of the bank?
Truth is they won’t, they’re not even comfortable running Visa/Plaid software, so we attacked from the front-end with the fintechs and not make it a requirement that we integrate this from the deepest level, rather from the digital wallets, crypto wallets, neobanks, processors and others that are integrating the most cutting edge software.
Chat question: What is the difference between a bank and the Metal platform?
Marshall: Metal Platform is a digital banking platform, it is a Bank (Evolve Bank and Trust) in addition to all of the digital asset integrations that stretch beyond just crypto speculation but actual integration of the core chain functions themselves.
You can certainly call it a Bank, because it is! Over the next few years we plan to obtain our banking charters internally as well. We will most likely be the first Bank in crypto that directly integrates digital assets for consumer and enterprise natively.
As we expand into new territories we partner with regional banks to provide local fiat access, as we grow it’s part of our mission to obtain our own banking charters as well so we can expand our offerings.
Chat question: What benefits has it brought to Metal pay, the association for the instant purchase of TXR in the United States? Have you thought of any kind of association with Latin America?
Marshall: We love the Tron team and offering TRX inside Metal Pay has been a great success for both Tron and Metal teams, one of our favorite partnerships. Re Latin America we are certainly coming this year with Metal Pay 3.0 as well as looking to expand our banking operations into central and south america as well.
Chat question: I would like to know a little bit about Proton $XPR, where did the idea of Metal and Lynx come from to originate it and what kind of uses could it give it in everyday life?
Marshall: Fred and I both strongly believe in USABILITY TODAY, and simple easy and fun UI/UX that’s a shared vision between both teams and binds us both together.
Chat question: Metal Pay works with the centralized and decentralized system? How is it possible to link it to the traditional system of banks? Is it possible to make transactions towards these entities?
Marshall: That’s correct Metal Pay works with both centralized financial institutions like Bank of America and Visa (we’re a Visa/Mastercard partner) and we also integrate with decentralized networks like Proton, Metal, Bitcoin, Ethereum and other major blockchains.
Not only allowing you to speculate but also to interact with the blockchains directly such as use the DEX in BNB, register an ENS in Ethereum or interact with a smart contract, staking Cosmos ATOM etc.
Chat question: What have been the biggest achievements you have achieved and how do you feel about all the progress you have had all throughout the years of bear market?
Marshall: We have some incredible achievements from becoming a regulated digital banking platform, proving our thesis of PoPP and MTL from 2017 when many projects died, launching our global cryptocurrency exchange, launching Proton on main-net from day one, surviving the bear winter and emerging 100x bigger than before with a growing team, acquisitions under our belt and all underhanded attempts from competition to stop us (or clone us).
Metal has built what the largest competitors failed to do with an exponentially larger team and budget, create a real digital banking platform with cryptocurrency integrated – this is really exciting and sheds light on the potential of the Metal team, where we are about to go.
Chat question: I have recently read that they reached third place in a list of disclosures below Metal and BIKI … congratulations How do you get these results so fast and what benefits do you get with this achievement?
Marshall: We were really excited to work with Xangle, they’re a great team and have been very helpful in getting our disclosures done expeditiously and helping reach so many people to showcase what Metal is building – and it’s a lot.
The benefits are more exposure to the cryptocurrency community and other FIs having a good clear view of the company’s vision, health, progress and financials.
These types of audits with full disclosures set the really amazing companies apart from the moonshot poor execution (or worse) type scenarios. Metal’s motto is “Always act in good faith with full transparency and accountability”.
Chat question: Can you tell us about Metal Pay 3.0 Roadmap?
“Lynx team is merging with Metal to produce what is believed to be a defining “inflection” point in the history of crypto-currency: push transactions using Metal Pay 3.0.’
I’m excited about this, can you dig deeper into it and why it’s unique?
Marshall: Push transactions on Proton are a sea-change in ecommerce and payment networks such as card and bank (ACH/IBAN/SEPA/SWIFT) rails. The current system is completely broken, a banking system in which your username is your password, and this is why credit cards are getting hacked left and right, why you receive a new credit card in the mail every few months…
Proton crosses major barriers because it not only allows the cryptocurrency world to now interact with traditional payment rails (not just talking about it like some early ‘bank-chains’) but also allows traditional ecommerce and interbank payments to be made without exposing any private information. It eliminates a lot of the issues with PCI, and in terms of web3 checkout experience.
Proton is the perfect blend of the existing legacy fiat world and blockchain, without the pain of traditional banking and payment processing, it’s legendary.
I just saw an article about Proton release on CoinTelegraph that should answer some questions here as well!
Chat question: We usually see burning/buyback programs from projects to increase their token prices, but on the other side, why do you have annual inflation of 5%? How do you ensure holders that its funds are safe with XPR if its price is meant to get lower?
Marshall: What’s really interesting about Proton is the fact that Metal is a profitable business unlike the other “backing” research foundations for the top three not to be mentioned blockchains, this not only allows the company the ability to buy back the coin and other various crypto assets, it also allows for us to control listing pairs, banking operations and more, which is really up until now unheard of…
Previously the ownership of the entire stack was focused around the exchange, ie. Binance, in the case of Metal it stretches beyond that with the banking and payments layer.
Chat question: I read in your whitepaper about the 3 principal issues, that are the reason why existent blockchains are not made for dApps: SPEED, COST, USABILITY. How does proton solve these 3 major problems being a blockchain made for the development of dApps?
Marshall: Speed: we have one of the highest transaction throughput rates at 4-5k TPS and there are no fees to transact.
Cost: no fees to transact, in fact you could be rewarded on Metal Pay to transact, so negative fees. We exposed this as well as one of the first spot exchanges with Metal X to offer negative fees on maker trades over a certain volume.
Usability: we are providing a better developer interaction than traditional blockchains with the full suite of products from Metal Pay (digital banking layer), Metal X (exchanging and trading layer), MTL (rewards layer based around PoPP), and our most powerful resource Proton (XPR) network, built in-house in an Apple style, with similar phenomenal UI/UX of all the products.
We make building on blockchain as simple as Stripe, and the best part is that it interfaces with legacy finance, it fundamentally not only changes the way we work with crypto, but with banking and ecommerce.
Chat question: What sparked the idea behind creating Proton Chain while you have your own mobile payment app Metal Pay?
Marshall: I love this question.
It was the process of building the digital bank with the integrated blockchain layer that we discovered it. Glenn and I were staying up late one night and he says to me “we should really build a bankchain, replicate all of this old school payment messaging on a secure chain and eliminate this wonky system where your username is your password” and it was like a spark.
Why have we been sending payment data over insecure rails and always getting the same problems with constant credit card and identity breaches? I wouldn’t give you the password to my email address if you wanted to send me an email, so why are we handling payment data in this manner?
We immediately started working on the solution and initially called it “XID”. Throughout 2019 we drew up different diagrams and schematics and superimposed them over the existing fiat payment processing systems we had been working with, the main issue was what we call ‘payment hardness’ which is essentially the level to which a transaction is reversible or not.
The next problem was the settlement time, as well as PCI compliance, identity and transmitting the accompanying data while staying compliant in multiple jurisdictions. Later in 2019 I started talking with Fred K, the CEO of Lynx team and I fell in love with their product.
I immediately recognized that Lynx had the design and engineering chops to build not only a beautiful Metal/Apple like product but also completely understood the concept of usability and beautiful UI and design.
Fred and his team had built a fork of EOS that had a very elegant governance and built on the dPoS consensus method, but most interestingly had taken a strong approach to making a beautiful workable web3 experience that stretched far beyond anything I had ever seen.
I called Fred up one night and asked him plainly “What would you think about a merge with Metal and Lynx?” He didn’t even hesitate “Yes, let’s do it, right away.”
Our long term vision: Metal is the next Stripe.
… Only this time, payments are not insecure and they are built on Proton and blockchain rails, everything completely interoperable, not just blockchain interoperability, but full global banking and financial interoperability. Making a payment or checking out online is as simple as typing your @name and confirming on your phone…
Chat question: What is your project’s main target of $Mtl in this year 2020? And what is your VISION and MISSION in #Mtl marketing?
Marshall: My attorney and head of risk would kill me if I started talking targets 😂
My vision for Metal is global financial inclusion through Proton network, and Metal platform (Metal Pay, Metal X, and future products) I view Metal to be the bank of the future that is deeply integrated into blockchain, you’ll see the Metal sign up there some day on the side of the building in any major city, replacing the old bank, that’s my vision.
Our mission is to make financial accessable for all, no matter of age, race, sex, geographic location or country. We envision a world in which money works for you, and you don’t just work for money. In the same way the internet and email made information free and instant, Proton seeks to make finance global, free and instant.
Chat question: If you summarized the Metal Pay project in one word, what would it be? What are the core features that create the value of MTL? Can you share some highlights from them?
Metal Pay: Global open source digital banking platform.
MTL: Decentralized network that rewards users for their interaction between parties and merchants, the identity reputation and rewards layer.
XPR: Global decentralized payments network and protocol for fiat and digital asset interactions, the email of finance.
Chat question: When New Zealand?
Marshall: We are going to open to the world with Metal Pay 3.0 launch and non custodial features running on Proton rails, as far as Cash Card banking support for NZ/AUS we are working on it!! 🇳🇿🇦🇺🤘
Chat question: In which regions of the world is MetalPay active? Are you interested in being part of other regions?
Marshall: Right now Metal Pay is active in 38 states in the US (there is a map on Metalpay.com), however, we are about to launch Metal Pay 3.0 that introduces the tiered system and non custodial elements of Proton, featuring wrapped assets such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Metal (XMT) and others…
With our expansion this year into the EU, we will also be providing EU banking support for all member countries minus any OFAC sanctioned countries. We are moving hyper fast and exploring other banking relations in Korea, Canada, Mexico, Africa, Latam and more… The beauty is that with the Proton network we are expanding faster than ever with other massive payment and identity partners entering in.
Chat question: Does Proof of Processed Payment have any relation to the classic proof of stake and proof of work?
Marshall: PoPP or “Proof-of-Processed-Payment” does not have any specific relation to PoW or PoS in that it is a consensus layer, instead PoPP is focused around minting and equitable distribution using meaningful systems to reach many people at once, versus the inevitable race to centralization with pre-existing methodologies mentioned.
In the case of PoW you have ASIC production centralization in China, in the case of PoS you have the King/Monarchy scenario in which the rich always get richer, and eventually outpace anyone from staking more than them.
With PoPP, we envision a future in which Proton and other blockchains may expand to add further decentralization with minting over this mechanism (PoPP), also in which other assets such as Amazon or Apple rewards could also use a similar mechanism to reward consumers, or even merchant rewards…
Chat question: Proton chain is a chain with combined solutions for crypto and banking. Can you tell me how you plan to deal with regulators? Banking regulations are very tight and now crypto is seen in a bad manner, what plans do you have?
Marshall: My first thought on this is to be active, and I’ve already begun to actively write legislation in the US in regards to Cryptocurrency regulation, see my work with Rep Gosar and The Cryptocurrency Act 2020 that I recently introduced into Congress.
Also don’t believe the hype on people saying “the bill is dead” that’s just one Washington DC lobbyist using the power of PR – reality is they are holding us back from real legislation in DC
The Cryptocurrency Act 2020 has caught the attention of regulators FinCEN, and CFTC, it gained so much traction that it caused a stir around Rep Tlaib’s bill with the Digital Dollar and Banking committee on the Senate side.
tl;dr on regulations, we are becoming very active, working with regulators and actively getting involved in some of the most difficult places to do it in the world – The United States and then demonstrating it with Proton and Metal Pay!!!
Many of these models will mirror each other around the world for example NYDFS and FSA in Japan.
Chat question: Hey @MarshallHayner ! Offering Metal Pay services similar to Paypal, could be considered the new version of it? Do you think you can displace Paypal in the future?
Marshall: Yes! PayPal is sort of like the Blockbuster to Metal’s Netflix, if that makes sense.
Chat question: Why do you need the $MTL token? What are the use cases for Metal Pay?
Marshall: Use cases for Metal Pay are endless, it’s a global open source banking platform that interacts with multiple blockchains, primarily MTL and XPR Proton rails but also Bitcoin and others.
Chat question: Many governments are not regulating cryptocurrencies as in crypto users can make illegal transactions like money laundering, etc ! So, how does Metal Pay & Proton Chain prevent Illegal activities from it’s payment network / service?
Marshall: Most blockchain networks are permissionless so they can’t “stop” illegal transactions per se or they lose their permissionless nature.
However on Proton we have the concept of @names and embedded identity, also the ability to embed metadata such as other blockchain networks transaction IDs, as well as payment flags for fraud and risk that can be automated between institutions.
Stolen funds sent from one exchange to another? No problem – automate account freezing with a fraud payment flag on Proton. Proton may be one of the first blockchain’s to address these major issues and is one of the reasons we’re quickly outpacing Facebook Libra.
Metal Pay is live and growing quickly and has attracted the attention of large banks, payment platforms and major fintechs.
Chat question: Regarding XPR token how do you manage the moderate annual inflation?
Marshall: Inflation is split through several mechanisms.
Proton Foundations operational spending.
Network grants to partners (Visa, PayPal, etc for embedding @names these are network costs not Moneygram/Ripple scenarios, partners are paid to pilot Proton integrations to cover network fees for @names and RAM costs).
Staking. Staking is effectively 5% of the staked amount per year broken down BPs (50% of the annual staking rewards), 30% to network stakers, and 20% to Proton Steering committee staked coins.
Under no circumstance is the network to exceed 1b per supply increase per year – however, this doesn’t mean it must be 1b maximum, it’s a hard cap limit of the system.
Chat question: What is the token economy model of $MTL?
Marshall: MTL is based around PoPP and the Proof-of-Processed-Payment minting mechanism and Metal platform treats it similar to how Binance treats BNB, we give free trading and discounts on services for holding or using it to pay for fees, etc.
In regards to token economy around MTL we are about to publish an updated whitepaper which outlines how MTL is used to mint other rewards over PoPP via smart contract to the network through paying fees in MTL, similar to Facebook targeting – you have the capability to target specific behaviors and users, however MTL rewards layer is decentralized unlike Facebook.
Chat question: How can Metal Pay and Proton help solve various problems in the third world and emerging markets, especially those that do not have easy access to the traditional financial system?
If we used Proton, Metal and Lynx, do you think it would be a complete experience to get involved in the blockchain ecosystem? Could many other projects be put aside?
Marshall: Proton eliminates the need for merchant approvals, now setting up and receiving payment is as simple as downloading a piece of software – similar to crypto but now with Proton we can touch traditional payment rails such as Visa or Mastercard making it interoperable.
Proton is a global payments network that makes crypto integrated into the traditional payments layers from card to bank settlement.
Chat question: Now the whole world is affected by the covid-19 pandemic, including the crypto world, Is the development of the Metal / Proton team’s projects disrupted or hampered? How does the Metal / Proton team overcome this?
Marshall: It’s very sad what’s happening in the world, but with every great crisis comes a great opportunity. Metal started in 2016 with the dream of digital cash and blockchain based assets becoming the new standard for banking and financial tools, and in fact the Metal whitepaper was a thesis around digital cash and minting around the Proof-of-processed-payment (PoPP) minting mechanism, all which turned out to be true including the emergence of digital cash.
Metal is extremely lucky as a company to be so positively influenced by COVID-19 pandemic as digital dollar is forming regulation at the national level, but also major banks and payment institutions are making strides to integrate digital dollar technology, which leads them all to Metal, and that’s exactly what Proton and Metal Pay is, in addition to Metal X as a compliant cryptocurrency exchange, we’re kind of like the new Binance / Stripe unicorn mixture 🦄
Chat question: While currently there are many different payment companies, what Metal makes it unique and advantageous compared to Dashpay, Coti pay etc?
Marshall: We are a regulated MSB and have gone further than any of these other payment platforms, none of which have FDIC insured deposit checking accounts, Visa/Mastercard partnership (Metal has it), nor their own exchanges to provide liquidity.
I think a fairer comparison are some of the big boys:
Facebook – hasn’t launched a single thing yet.
Square – best competition but only has one coin, Bitcoin and only recently added real bank accounts.
Kakao – doesn’t support cryptocurrency in-app.
What most of the ‘big boys’ have on us is pre-existing users and mega funding. Metal is quickly growing to rival them in every way, and now with the help of Proton we’re launching the world’s first universal payment network for fiat and digital assets, and we don’t have to “build it and they will come” we already built it with Metal Pay and Metal X.
Chat question: How is Metal Pay different from Paypal, Venmo, AliPay and WeChat pay. What are key differences between Metalpay & other payment processing projects ? & How Metal Pay is better than these projects ?
Marshall: Metal Pay is vastly different from PayPal, Venmo, Alipay and Tencent (Wechat) in that we are built on blockchain rails, these other systems are kind of like the old-guard semi-neo-bank that are really dinosaurs in their own right, the only one I would really draw comparison to is Square Cash App because they’ve integrated Bitcoin and have similar features to Metal Pay.
However, the difference with Metal Pay is that we’re leaner, we’ve built our product from the ground up using crypto and we are set to rapidly expand and offer banking services in all the places these competitors can not, thanks to Proton. With MTL PoPP we have the capability to fairly and equitably distribute new assets to users of any level.
Chat question: As Metal uses Proof of Processed Payment (PoPP) as a consensus mechanism for their blockchain. Can you please explain PoPP in brief & PoPP is important for your project?
Marshall: PoPP is not consensus, rather it is minting and distribution, please see explanations above!
Chat question: What are the advantages of Metal Pay? Does Metal Pay provide any additional features?
Marshall: So many, it’s really hard to count, Metal Pay marketing is about to begin massively ramping up as we prepare to come out of beta and go into our global launch with Metal Pay 3.0.
Proton plays a big part in this in terms of network effect and adoption. Imagine the global payments settlement network that not only connected crypto, but traditional finance – HUGE.
Chat question: There are many payment Platforms available that provide similar services of crypto payments just like CoinBase, etc … So, why is Metal Pay a better platform than others for new and old crypto users?
Marshall: Metal Pay is leagues beyond Coinbase, what I call the crypto v2 companies, Metal is more like crypto v4, born in 2016 and launched MTL and the first app in 2017.
When it comes to Coinbase Pro, we’ve got an answer, Metal X with superior UI/UX and more attractive fee schedules (negative maker rebates on spot trades) as well as innovative features
Chat question: Which extra benefits are provided by Metal Pay that attracts users to use Metal Pay as their primary payment app?
Marshall: Metal Pay seeks to attract as many global users through several methods:
Attractive reward systems based around PoPP.
Digital assets and bleeding edge technology.
Superior UI/UX above competitor payment apps.
The first processor to integrate Proton as well as the creator, and core Inner Steering Committee Proton Foundation member
Banking-as-a-Service offerings whereby other banks and providers can license and whitelabel Metal technology.
Chat question: What are the requirements on becoming a validator and a node issuer at Proton Chain?
Marshall: BP code of conduct:
I (we) will run our BP operation with the following rules and goals in mind:
Transactions between end users should always go through.
Free Account. End users should always be able to create at least one free account.
Low cost of usage for basic apps. Basic apps that request tokens and pay out tokens should be very inexpensive to run.
No congestion. No app, however useful, should cause overall congestion. Sufficient resources for basic apps and basic transactions should always be there. Block Producers will attempt to prevent congestion.
No censorship based on content. Block Producers will not censor types of apps (adult, gambling) on the chain level, however wallets may do so.
Protect Digital Property Right. Block Producers may take action against a dApp if it is operating maliciously, for example, transferring users’ digital assets without their informed consent.
Low cost of entry. Basic apps should be allowed on mainnet for free with limited resources. It should be possible for a college or high school student with some knowledge of coding to push an app to Proton mainnet.
Block Producers will be technically competent with low latency, few missed blocks, and active engagement and communication to improve the technical operation of Proton.
Here’s the full article.
Chat question: Lynx Wallet, Metal Pay and Proton, wonderful projects. What could be next if everything turned out to be a success? What do you need in the short term in terms of community? Where can I collaborate?
Marshall: We are looking to grow our community, and create lots of developer related events this year around Proton, hackathons, virtual meet-ups and digital asset payment conferences. Join us in our Proton telegram as well as subscribe to our announcements channels!!
Chat question: What happens if competitors provide and mimic the same services and work?
Marshall: At this point I think it will be very difficult to replicate everything we’ve built no matter how much money that competitor has, or engineers. It’s a simple time and man hours equation.
Doesn’t mean it’s impossible to duplicate, just that even Facebook will take considerable time to replicate. Whereby we have the first mover advantage.
Chat question: What are the advantages of using Metal over similar projects to get more users? What is your strategy in terms of marketing ?
About Proton, why did you choose to build Proton with EOS and not ETH? This choice give you any benefit in terms of performance?
Marshall: Our strategy in terms of marketing for Proton is to focus on major key payment and identity partners, and to grow the developer ecosystem very similar to Stripe.
Believe it or not XID actually started with ETH, but the economic model is unfortunately unsustainable with the way ETH is built, when we discovered the concepts introduced by EOS we were instantly hooked and Fred and the Lynx team had solved all of the pre-existing problems with EOS such as the Rex, flawed governance, etc.
Performance is infinitely faster, whereby on a clone of ETH we were very severely limited by transaction fees limiting mainstream functionality, as well as being able to scale between 4k-5k TPS.
Chat question: Can you explain what the MTL marketplace consists of, what it focuses on, how to trade and whether it is possible to offer our products?
Marshall: Metal Pay marketplace allows access to 30 cryptocurrencies and counting, the market place inside Metal Pay is meant to evolve beyond a simple trading and wallet platform, but creating the “verb” action of cryptocurrencies in which you will be able to interact with these blockchains with their intended functions.
Chat question: I have recently read that Proton uses EOSIO for its operation, what is EOSIO and how important is it for the operation of your platform?
Marshall: EOSIO is what Proton was built on, similar to how Stellar was built on Ripple technology or Binance was built on NEO, Proton started with EOSIO as the base layer technology and is expanding it with the concepts of XID, improved governance, taking more of a Stripe approach to our marketing and UX.
Chat question: For example, the place where BNB was first traded became its own stock market. From this point of view, is it a disadvantage or advantage to go on sale in other exchanges before Metal X?
Marshall: That’s the only true path to decentralization IMO, you can’t be only listed on your own exchange, so this is very important, it proves validation by other third parties and creates the decentralized element.
If you are the sole issuer and redeemer and market place it’s not really decentralized crypto IMO. You want to create arbitrage between other parties as well as access to potentially countries you wouldn’t be available to otherwise – that is true decentralization, global, borderless and permissionless and the spirit of crypto.
Chat question: Metal is currently available only for the USA. Are you planning to expand your market to the rest of the world? Is Latin America in your plans?
Marshall: We are planning on expanding Metal Pay to the world this year with the launch of Metal Pay 3.0 which features the non custodial crypto elements of Proton and can bridge payments from US and EU bank accounts globally, as we expand to add banking support for other countries.
We will most likely begin Visa/Mastercard global acceptance to fill in the gaps even faster as we grow. Think of it this way – someone in San Francisco can send to someone in Nigeria from their Bank of America visa debit card and it can arrive in seconds as a pending payment on the Proton blockchain that can be payable in any wallet globally.
Furthermore it could find its way back across the pond to a merchant in London and flow over traditional card or bank rails seamlessly… This was the original vision at Ripple, except this time it’s actually happening at Metal with Proton.
Chat question: Security is a key component for every app and blockchain so i’ll get straight to my question with: How secure is your Metal pay app and Proton chain?
Marshall: Metal Pay has a phenomenal track record with security, Glenn and I (over the course of the past 8 years working in crypto, we are some of the earliest OGs) have built everything from wallet APIs, wallets, blockchain browsers, and exchange software.
We’ve never been hacked because we place SECURITY above all else. Security can’t be bought in a box, it’s a mindset and it must be learned and implemented through rigid processes.
Chat question: What makes current vulnerabilities in mobile payment apps be eliminated at Metal pay and from your Proton Chain, how safe are you from 51% attacks?
Marshall: Proton chain is currently undergoing third party audits and is built on existing EOSIO tech that has been vetted and hardened by the FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) communities
In regards to Metal Pay and the mobile payments experience, we implement some of the latest in cutting edge anti-fraud detection as a partner with Nudata Mastercard, Emailage, and other great anti-fraud tools.
We also have built many custom internal tools. As I said earlier – it’s really a mindset and thinking like the hacker in order to thwart the best hackers.
Chat question: What are the plans of Metal Pay in place for global expansion, are you focusing on only one market at this time? Or focus on building and developing or getting customers and users, or focusing on partnerships?
Marshall: We are bringing in a lot of partners around the Metal side, but also processors and identity providers around the Proton network. The model is really built around Stripe in terms of developer and merchant payment APIs as well as Coinbase/Binance in cryptocurrency exchanging.
A big part of our expansion plan is offering the original Metal Pay client along with white labeled Bank-as-a-Service type features similar to Plaid/Visa, and other modern open banking platforms (there are really very few of them right now as it’s so new).
When we go to launch Metal Pay 3.0 we are planning on growing a completely organic global community from consumers, merchants and developers to spread the network as the new open financial web, the true birth of web 3.0 (the decentralized financial web).
Chat question: How are the plans shaping up for marketing and building a strong, core community which is essential for any project in the crypto industry?
Marshall: Really great, our community and partner outreach is growing every day, some really massive partners are walking through our doors that’s blowing my mind – simultaneously I’m not surprised as these big institutions have shown interest prior in working with blockchain tech at commercial scale.
Chat question: Can you give me a few reasons why Metal Pay is a better payment app than Bitpay and other similar apps?
Marshall: Metal Pay is a fully featured digital bank with 30 cryptocurrencies and growing, I can’t think of a single platform that has even come close to this yet, not even Facebook, and we’re a tiny fraction of these other guys in terms of funding and employees, imagine what we will become as we grow!!!
Chat question: What makes Protonchain a better blockchain than current blockchains like Ethereum, Binance, NEO etc?
Marshall: Proton beats many of the incumbents in so many ways, none of these other platforms have the core developer support of an exchange, digital bank and in general – profitable business…
I can only think of one which is Binance, however we are different in that we are a digital banking platform in addition to the exchange and Proton blockchain is really the next generation in payments with transaction speeds far beyond other chains, free payments, human readable addresses and soon to have Stripe level docs and consumer/merchant banking that is directly integrated.
Chat question: I have been using PayPal for a long time. What benefits will I get if I switch to Metal Pay FROM PayPal ? How is Metal Pay better than PAYPAL, Bitpay etc?
Marshall: You can buy crypto and take full custody in Metal Pay, issue pending payments on Proton chain from legacy fiat funding sources – TL;DR Metal Pay will be the first true interoperable digital bank that handles crypto assets and fiat under one roof and executes payments over Proton network that can translate to any geography instantly without requiring owning crypto.
TL;DR Imagine if PayPal was cool with better UX and did crypto things – that’s Metal Pay
Chat question: Most crypto coins seem to not bring any value to the real world and are mostly used as speculation vehicles. What is metal planning to do for this?
Marshall: Metal Pay makes every crypto a verb and not just a speculative asset, natively interact with those chains and use them in the ways they were intended to be, for example: interact with Ethereum smart contracts, access Binance DEX, earn PoPP over MTL and more.
Each chain has its own properties and functions and we plan to expose those web3 functionalities natively in Metal Pay, moving beyond just speculation.
Chat question: What is your progressive plan to ensure that the Project Network remains relevant and valuable about its adoption and use cases over the next 5 years?
Marshall: Our focus is on the long term and building out a global payments network that can be used anywhere, by anyone, through introducing larger partners and creating an industry wide initiative to connect all financial apps we are creating a massive web from existing decentralized crypto wallets, to fiat wallets, banking platforms and ecommerce.
It’s really about staying ahead of the curve and building the future now, this is exactly what we did with Proton, we anticipated digital cash in 2016 and started building for the future, we were right – in the same we know we are right with Proton and removing PII from payments + creating interoperability between all clients fiat and crypto alike.
Chat question: As we know, there are many problems in centralized finance & the banks system ! But, what are the major problems in crypto payments? And how can Proton Chain solve the problems of crypto payments?
Marshall: I think the big problem in crypto wallets is the walled garden scenario in which they don’t interact with any of the modern banks or financial tools. If you tell most average people you’re going to send them some crypto, they will most likely ask you for a fiat payment, because it’s not mainstream yet nor are there simple tools.
Metal took an Apple approach here and built superior UI/UX, and then blended the new world with the old, the distributed ledger of the Proton blockchain with legacy payment messaging. As Fred put it, we are making crypto USABLE, and we believe that is something as simple as creating a widget similar to Stripe, but not you can accept payments anywhere without merchant approval, and there are no issues with acceptance regardless of country or funding sources (Visa/Mastercard/Bank etc).
Chat question: What is your opinion about the recent hacked against dForce what is $metal precautionary measures to avoid these kinds of attacks on the Metal Platform?
Marshall: We think DeFi is really very cool, but also simultaneously dangerous and so it should be vetted heavily before risking significant funds, in the case of dForce it appears it simply wasn’t vetted… Also one of the things we learn in software development is the more moving parts you introduce, the more that can go wrong. I think dForce suffered from this sadly.
Chat question: What is your token economic model and how will its architecture ensure scarcity of the token and raise its value?
Marshall: We believe real value is not specifically only driven by scarcity but network adoption and usage, both MTL and XPR are limited in production but provide two very interesting parts which is the rewards layer and the payment request and identity layer, in the case of MTL scarcity is driven by consumers and in the case of XPR scarcity is driven by businesses, is the best way to sum it up.
Not to mention the core developer is a profitable business – Metal, and we as a company are driven to reduce the amount of supply on the market similar to Binance, but not only as an exchange but as a banking platform.
Chat question: On Chirp you can “pay to post”, “pay to like”. How is the Proton Blockchain helpful for Chirp and games like BombSweeper as compared to other Blockchains?
Marshall: With regards to Chirp, we are all very big fans of Kurt and the team at Chirp as well as Mythical Games and some of the other awesome developers who are looking to build on Proton. We think Proton can become the ultimate dApp platform as it’s directly tied to the card and banking payments layer, nothing like this has ever existed before, there has always been a layer between such as the App Store taking a cut of payments, etc.
Chat question: Do you have good news about Metal/Proton that you want to share with the community or investors? And what kind of achievements Metal/Proton wants to achieve in the future? especially in 2020?
Marshall: Today is an AMA day so I’m focused specifically on answering all of these questions and not delivering any news here, we will save that news for later, however I did see a Cointelegraph and a few other articles published about Proton today…
In 2020 we plan to have finished all fifty states’ money transmission licensing for the US, in addition beginning the process of acquiring our banking charter.
Chat question: I am very interested your new payment model by the use of names, can you tell me how this work? Do you have plans to do tutorials and give demonstrations of this new function? Considering that you have a direct interaction with bank accounts , you must have special permissions, so there exist countries restrictions to proton?
Marshall: The really cool part about Proton is that it’s a permissionless network and processors and verifiers are opt-in, so the network effect expands very rapidly globally as fintechs integrate.
The old way of thinking with bank chains was that XYZ bank was going to run Ripplenet on their servers, and that is just not the case. Proton is an attack from the fintech top layer, whereby the most innovative payment companies integrate to get global payment access.
The @names make everything much more simple when sending payments, and now with wrapped tokens sending $1 of BTC with no transaction fees confirming in a fraction of a second, is a gamechanger.
Not to mention the ability for Trezor and other crypto wallets to touch Visa debit etc without a prior existing relationship. Proton is truly global and borderless, while implementing the best in banking tech. Regulations are handled by the fintechs and banks per their domiciled countries.
Chat question: What is Objective Red Falcon and Snow owl?
The focus of Red Falcon is implementing the first elements of Proton and showcasing in the real world how Proton works in the Metal Pay client, giving a solid foundation for other payment apps to integrate. From the new non custodial “Crypto” card which houses Proton private keys, @names and signing requests.
The focus of snow owl is the SDK and Docs around implementing Proton signing requests into any payment app, in addition to the introduction of wrapped assets for stablecoins and top cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
Chat question: What are the advantages of METAL assets being FDIC insured? What risks does it protect users from? In which regions and settlements does FDIC insurance serve?
Marshall: Benefits for FDIC insurance are really great, in the collapse of our banking partner (unlikely but still good to have protection) this gives each account holder up to $250,000 of insurance.
FDIC aka Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (US based banks only) is the hallmark of a trustworthy bank and should be expected on any real deposit account, Metal Pay implements this seamlessly with cryptocurrency and banking all in one app.
Previously most of these accounts were what you call “omnibus custodial accounts” and only allow you to wire in funds similar to Crypto.com.
Unlike some of these competitors Metal Pay offers you real bank accounts, not only with insurance but the ability to do all normal banking interactions including paying bills.
Personally I love earning PoPP with MTL and then paying my Apple Credit Card bill and getting MTL and Apple Cash… However, pretty soon there will be a Metal card with greater rewards, so you can count on me switching to that, along with all of our community members and mass market consumers.
Chat question: Are there any security improvements planned for Metal: multisig capability, biometric data support (fingerprint and face recognition, voice recognition and voice phrases)?
How does Metal attract the users in the big markets like China, Russia, India, Africa? How can Metal attract investors in these big markets?
Marshall: We currently support multi-sig on our deposit wallets in Metal Pay and Metal X, however with the crypto card in Metal Pay 3.0 we will begin to offer multi sig functionality whereby you have full control over your Proton private keys with multiple authorized signers as an option.
In regards to security I’m glad you asked, something we are working on is biometric authentication for larger value transactions as well as an enhanced optional security precaution for power users and high net worth individuals or corporates using Metal Pay.
This is especially important as we expand the Metal Pay product to offer enterprise accounts.
Re India, China, Russia, Africa our hidden secret weapon is payments interoperability with Proton and the Banking-as-a-service solution to help propagate and grow the network faster than Metal ever could consumer by consumer, rather selling our white labeled tech to other banks and fintechs we plan to expand the network similarly to Zelle, but the blockchain based version.
Chat question: How does Protonchain solve scalability of transactions? Current blockchains face issues with scalability a lot, how does Proton Chain create a solution to it?
Marshall: Yes we have a solution, and we are currently breaking 4k TPS, some of the scalability solutions are more part of the governance model than the infrastructure itself, by preventing spam and eliminating the UTXO based model for a more scalable RAM based model we’ve managed to scale faster than traditional blockchains and even outpace EOS in terms of performance, requiring inner steering committee members to the Proton Foundation required to be KYC verified with their @name
Chat question: Why did Metal propose “proof of time-space” algorithm instead of using existing Proof-of-Space-Time (PoST) algorithm available for Filecoin and Lambda projects?
Marshall: I think you’re thinking of my friend Bram Cohen’s blockchain Chia, Metal does not integrate Proof-of-space-time.
Chat question: In the tagline of Proton Chain, you mentioned Blockchain that Interacts with Fiat.. But, tell us what is the role of fiat currency in a crypto related project?
Also, What’s the Relation between Proton Chain & Metal Pay Projects?
Marshall: Metal is the core developer of Proton blockchain along with other inner steering committee members, currently majority of the development is focused around Metal and Cryptolions, think of us like the Consensys behind Proton.
Proton interacts with fiat by replicating existing card and bank payment commands on-chain as a protocol, Metal Pay is like Mastercard or Visa, one of the first processors on the network.
Chat question: Can you talk about your assumptions about the future of blockchain and digital currency.. What are the main uses and advantages of MTL tokens in the metalpay payment platform?
Marshall: I want to share a video I shot that was on the original Metal website that has absolutely come true today (filmed in 2016) it talks about Facebook and other large companies creating their own blockchains, and the emergence of the digital dollar… Now we’re living it!
MTL inside the Metal ecosystem could be equated to BNB, it allows you premium pricing on SaaS, complete reduction of fees, additional features, and more specifically on chain it acts as an oracle of sorts for reward distribution (more to come here).
Chat question: What features make it easier for users to buy and sell crypto assets?
Marshall: Simple buy and sell buttons with beautiful UI/UX, with Proton it’s becoming even easier for any app to integrate whether they are fiat or crypto, no problem.
Chat question: You’ve built a platform using crypto as a reward and you’re about to open a marketplace for games and merchandise. How do you envision this adding to the virtual revolution?
Marshall: Completely open banking and payment systems that interact with each other, this is really at the heart of Proton, sort of like the way Apple completely reinvented the cell phone and computer.
Let’s start with a phenomenal foundation (Proton) and let’s build the sexy beautiful UX/UI around it (Metal Pay), the rewards layer and minting mechanism (MTL), and the exchanging platform (Metal X).
The future of web3 and digital finance is completely open, not only open source but interoperable in every way with full custody and control optional by the user. Identities are completely portable and done are the days of exposing private information to KYC or make a payment.
Chat question: Does your team have a plan B for possible cyber attacks on the Blockchain network? How does a hack attack affect the network? Will content sharing be harmed?
Marshall: Yes, we are always prepared for such attacks but welcome the new and exciting experiences that crypto continues to teach us. In the event of a blockchain attack some but not all of the potential limiters are restricting deposits and withdrawals and rolling back on Metal Pay off-chain functionality.
Re Content sharing I’m assuming you are referring to Chirp, our concerns around this are low as we continue to foster the growth of the project in an open-source manner and welcome the world’s best security researchers to help us harden the system over time through the FOSS community and our public Git.
LAST ONE, HERE WE GO!!!! 💪
Chat question: In which countries are you currently providing your payment services? Do you have any plans for expanding your services in Asian countries like India, Indonesia, Vietnam, etc? On which countries are you currently focusing for future expansion?
Marshall: Currently we are operating in the US and soon to add EU, however with the launch of Metal Pay 3.0 we expand globally to all non OFAC countries, this includes India, Indonesia, Vietnam and more. Our initial outreach is where the founders are from US and EU (Glenn and Myself, one Belgian, one American)
Ok that concludes the most massive AMA I’ve ever conducted in my entire life, I hope this answers most if not all of your MTL, Metal and Proton questions!!!!
Big thanks again GAINS community and @Firunner for helping us organize this, it’s been a BLAST!!! 🤘🔥🌚🚀
The 10 hour AMA lol, incredible!!
Cheers again, everyone 🍻🍺🥂