What is Karmacoin? (KARMA)


What is Karmacoin?

Initiated on May 7, 2014, Karmacoin died as a project in 2015. Karmacoin (KARMA) represented the digital currency of Karmashares LLC, registered in the state of Wyoming. Karmashares proposed to create long-term value for investors by developing a variety of products and services.

In short, Karmashares intended to serve as something of a cooperative entity. Members purchased shares, and they theoretically received profits on a quarterly basis. Only non-U.S. citizens and non-resident aliens of the U.S. qualified for membership. And the organization informed users that coins exchanged for membership did not constitute an “investment.” Karmashares offered membership only on a private basis, not publicly.

To promote the concept of “doing good”, Karmashares enabled members to invest their earnings into the Karma Fund and the causes represented therein.

How Does Karmacoin Work?

The Karmashares cooperative planned to fund a variety of profit-making projects, and then they would reward members of the coop through the profits.

Chasing Shadows

A web search engine named Lill constituted one such project. Members earned rewards by using the search engine, and advertising would generate revenue.

Other projects included Hireplex (a video job interview website), Wespond (a video question and answer website), and FABRIK (an online clothing and accessories store). Job seekers use Hireplex for free, but employers pay a fee. Wespond planned to allow users to post questions and responses on a social media site. The system allowed responders to charge for answers. FABRIK intended to sell Karma branded items, such as tee shirts and caps.

No evidence exists to show any of these projects grew to become anything more than talk.

Apparently, Karmashares ran afoul of the U.S. Security and Exchange Commision (SEC), And the website of the Secretary of State for Wyoming lists the status of Karmashares as “Inactive – Administratively Dissolved (Tax)” as of July 9, 2015, and the site describes the company’s tax status as “Delinquent.”

Karma Chameleon

Canadian-American Antoine Sorel Néron created Karmashares and claims it to be the very first Initial Coin Offering (ICO). And at the time the phrase Initial Public Offering for Coins (IPOCO) substituted for what we now call an ICO. Mr. Sorel also goes by the name Tony Sorel and by the moniker of “Kosmost”.

karmacoin image

His online biography makes for colorful reading, to say the least. He cites “extensive experience leading massive IT projects for a large city (1999)”, but he never identifies the city. “An entrepreneur from age eight, he has also worked for some of the biggest companies in the world…”

Then at the age of 20, Mr. Néron settled down to work for a financial public relations firm called Financial Relations Board “where he quickly rose through the ranks to become the youngest executive in the history of the company.”  LinkedIn shows Financial Relations Board to be a company of less than 20 people.

He claims the honor of “an inclusion in Standard and Poor’s Register of Corporations, Directors and Executives as its youngest member”. Searching the register reveals no entry on Antoine Sorel Néron.

Finally, he relocated to Hong Kong and claims to have started “several multi-million dollar internet businesses using his own funding.”

Goodomy, Spawn of Karmashares

Early 2018 saw Mr. Néron establish Goodomy using many of the same notions as Karmashares. Goodomy stands for “the GOOD economy”, and the GOOD token currently sells for around $0.001924 USD with a total supply of 888,000,000 GOOD tokens.

karmacoin image

Goodonomy’s social blockchain claims to run on what they call the  OTOL platform, which they claim to be “the world’s first ‘action engine’”. On this platform, they claim to provide the Shopomy app, a mobile app to transact business without fees.

As history repeats itself, no evidence exists to show OTOL and Shopomy exist as anything other than talk. And Goodomy boasts 5 followers on LinkedIn.

Karmacoin Code

Karmashares created created one GitHub repository for its software source code. The only programmer associated with this project goes by the name of Leo Ribeiro from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The project found there consists essentially of one C++ file of 135 lines, including whitespace. To put this in context, this represents about the size of a programming student’s homework assignment. For comparison’s sake, the Bitcoin project includes hundreds of files, and it involves perhaps around a hundred thousand of lines of code.

The Karmacoin team also provides another GitHub repository for its project. This project also includes only one programmer, but it does not provide the programmer’s name. This provides a much more extensive collection of code. The last update to this code happened in February of 2014. This code appears to have been cloned from both the Bitcoin project and the Litecoin project.

Like Litecoin, the Karmacoin project intended to be a lightweight version of Bitcoin.

Hall of Mirrors

Instant Karma’s going to get you, and distinguishing Karmacoin from any number of similarly named cryptocurrencies proves to be a challenge. An ERC-20 token called Karmatoken (KTN) uses much of the same rhetoric as Karmashares. A product called Karma Koin provides a virtual currency on a debit card to pay for online games. And another product called Karma (KRM) provides a decentralized, cross-border, peer-to-peer loan ecosystem.

Karmacoin Supply and Sustainability

The Karmacoin project planned to reward early miners more favorably than later miners, no doubt to encourage early adoption. They planned on mining a maximum of 92 billion coins. The mining process incorporated the X11 protocol. First introduced by Dash, the X11 protocol claims to enhance security.

Trading History

CoinMarketCap currently lists Karmacoin at around $0.001074 USD, so for every 10 Karmacoins you own you have one penny. CoinMarketCap places question marks on the Market Cap and Circulating Supply of the coin. Consequently, they remain a mystery. But trading activity does exist. Someone appears to be unloading their coins as best they can.

karmacoin image

Where Can You Buy Karmacoin?

Where can you go to purchase a dead dream of days gone by?

Surprisingly, you can find exchanges that continue to list Karmacoin.

One goes by the name of YObit.net.

Similarly, an exchange called BigONE appears to continue to trade in Karmacoin in exchange for EOS.

Finally, OTCBTC also trades Karmacoin for EOS.

Where Can You Store Karmacoin?

The Karmacode Team Source code repository includes software for a wallet to be built as part of the project.

Clicking on the hyperlink provided by CoinMarketCap leads to the website for the Atomic Wallet. However, Karmacoin does not appear on the Atomic Wallet Assets List as one of the supported cryptocurrencies. It’s possible that Atomic Wallet serves as a default destination for CoinMarketCap wallet links, or it’s also possible that Atomic Wallet supported Karmacoin in the past.

The Karmashares white paper list hyperlinks for “Windows wallet”, “Mac wallet”, and “Linux wallet”. But if you click on those links you will be redirected to an animated pornographic games site. Well, the organization needs to generate revenue somehow.


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Wilton Thornburg is a software engineer, currently based in the greater Boston area.