Let's say you're pretty sure Bitcoin will break $10,000 by the end of November. Or, maybe your gut is telling you the Eagles win the Super Bowl this year -- or that U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren is going to become the next president.
These are the types of bets that find a home on Augur, a decentralized predictions marketplace built on top of blockchain platform Ethereum. For a small fee, users of Augur can create markets across an infinite array of topics -- such as Bitcoin's value, political wins or future football champions -- and then buy or sell shares with ETH based on the predicted outcome. The winners then take payouts denominated in ETH.
While a gambling/trading hybrid of sorts, Augur's method of crowdsourcing outcomes has the potential to change the way humans can collectively verify truth. Its open source software is licensed under the General Public License (GPL) and partly under Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
In Politics, All Bets Are on (Augur)
Augur has benefited greatly from the tumultuous political climate in the United States as election season heats up. Election Betting has been at the top of the project's weekly updates over the past few weeks, as the popularity of these betting markets continues to rise. The close race between Sen. Warren and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders has garnered particular attention.
Not to be outdone by their neighbors to the south, Canadian election betting markets have started to pop-up, too, such as "Will Justin Trudeau Be Re-Elected Prime Minister Of Canada In The 2019 Election?" Even Boris Johnson's Brexit odds have garnered bets upwards of $10,000.
The Augur team has gone all-in on political market-making in anticipation of its upcoming release, stating, "Augur will be the no-brainer platform for political betting with no limits, unbeatable odds, the lowest fees, and the tightest spreads."
A Score for Augur
REP User Activity is up 7.29% over the last 14 days. FCAS (Fundamental Crypto Asset Score) has followed with a 36-point (4.62%) spike.
Our Hot Take
Prediction markets are a powerful prognostic tool that harnesses the free and open flow of information to reveal truth without borders. The crowdsourcing of information and the accountability incentives created through Augur's REP system is a novel display of market dynamics. It will be exciting to see the impacts of its upcoming release as its integrates both 0x and Dai into the platform.