Fantom Community Spotlight – Miles Deutscher
Behind a jpeg of a monkey in sunglasses exists Miles Deutscher, a young Australian dedicated to bringing crypto to the masses while adhering to one simple principle: if you have a platform with a wide reach, it is your ethical responsibility to educate rather than excite.
It just so happens that his objective approach toward providing well-researched, substantive crypto education also brews excitement. In our era of distrust and misinformation, the time has finally come where people are choosing to listen to those who will tell them even what they do not want to hear.
If you’ve come across one of his 25-part Twitter threads or his educational Youtube content, none of this is news to you.
What sparked your interest in crypto, and how’d you end up on Fantom?
Around late 2018 I got curious about BTC, so I set up an account on a centralized exchange and transferred over the money I was going to use to buy it. That same day, the market tanked. I left the money in there and didn’t touch it again.
Not until 2019, at least. At the time, BTC was around $4k, so I decided to pull the trigger and “buy the dip.”
Over the following years, I became much more interested in the fundamental “why” behind crypto. In 2019 and early 2020, capital efficiency within crypto still had a long way to go; all you could really do was “hodl” your BTC and ETH.
2020 started off with a small wave of DeFi, and that quickly became a tsunami. I didn’t have to think too hard to imagine the utility and applications that this would engender: gaming, financial applications, data storage, and more.
I’d been using a couple other L1 solutions, but I kept getting crushed by gas fees and slow transaction speeds. Fantom did not have the widespread recognition it has today, so it’s safe to say it wasn’t paid advertising that got my attention. The tech and seamless user experience was mind blowing, but what instantly made me fall in love was the community.
I felt I had finally found a place I belonged, a place where others were working towards the same goals and shared in my vision.
Once I went down the Fantom rabbithole, I sold all my BTC into FTM. The rest is history.
How did you transition from passive learner to crypto educator?
I’d always used Twitter to some extent, but never with any sort of clear goal or purpose. One day, I was looking at some on-chain data, and it was obvious: FTM was severely undervalued.
I searched around, but I didn’t find anyone articulating the FTM thesis I had begun to form in my head. I thought getting it out in writing would be an interesting exercise, even if that was only to articulate my thesis to myself. Using data and statistics to support my thesis, I wrote a 25 tweet thread on why Fantom wasn’t the network to sleep on.
And the thread took off— overnight, I amassed over 150k impressions.
We all have a singular moment in time that we can identify as a turning point in our lives.
For me, that moment was making the decision to sit down that day and share my thoughts with the world.
How’d you get interested in analyzing on-chain data?
In 2019, I was studying Real Estate in university. A few of my classes piqued my interest in the wider financial markets and the opportunities available within them. There was an element that was missing, however, and that’s that these were industries without a community or personality.
The financial aspect of real estate was an interesting game to learn, but it didn’t feel like you were building toward anything meaningful; it was nothing like the genuine excitement you find in Fantom’s online communities.
That’s when I decided to apply to the blockchain the same analytical thinking I’d learned through traditional education.
Instead of pouring over books and lectures, this consisted of sifting through thousands of Discord channels and learning to separate fact from fiction, opinion from objectivity.
This is a space where all you need is the desire to learn. The more you get involved through Discord, Twitter, and Youtube, the quicker it all becomes second nature. Like anything else, mastery comes through repetition.
Where can non-technical types provide value to the ecosystem?
Creating educational content is one path, but another one is getting involved with DeFi projects directly.
I’ve heard countless stories about people who’ve gotten involved in Discord chats, and later they’ve moved into chat moderator positions before finally becoming core team members.
Success here is very much based on merit, so you have to put in the work to develop the foundational knowledge.
What role do you see Fantom playing in a multi-chain world?
Fantom will cement itself as the DeFi L1 chain.
In 5 years, I’d be willing to bet that most of the chains in the top 5 will be different from the ones we see today, but I’m confident that what we’re building on Fantom will future-proof the chain to defend its place at the top.
Ethereum can’t do it all, and as interoperability becomes more important than ever, Fantom’s EVM compatibility will give it a massive leg up.
Fantom’s DeFi dominance, both at present and in terms of arriving at a future projection, can be quantified through the astounding onchain data we’re seeing today. But there’s another crucial variable that is harder to quantify, and that’s the organic and vibrant grassroots community that other chains simply can’t buy.
Communities are not for sale.
There is no crypto community that is more passionate than Fantom’s. (Well, there is a way to quantify the community’s passion if you’re data-driven, and that’s by using Lunarcrush data.)
This is the people’s chain, and that’s who these DeFi products are being built for. Institutions haven’t yet poured in to the extent they inevitably will, so the foundations are being built by and for the people that comprise the community we know today.
How do you see the space evolving with the eventual infusion of institutional capital?
This could very well be a 5-10 year process, and it’ll have its pros and cons.
On one hand, it’ll force regulation and further legitimize the space; it will also accelerate the development of institutional-grade security for DeFi protocols.
On the other hand, it’s clear the space won’t be able to sustain triple-digit yields once institutional liquidity starts flowing in. While the yields may be diluted, if you’re holding native FTM project tokens now, that also presents you with immense upside opportunity. Look out for the projects that are solidifying themselves as leaders on Fantom.
How do you identify early projects with strong potential?
I’m not one to “ape in” on the first day or week of a project launch. I’d rather get into a project a month later and give up some of the upside than take a risk at the start. I keep a close eye on community engagement, and before I invest in something I usually try to connect with members of the team.
Over time, you build a knack for spotting promising teams and projects. Your brain is like a human algorithm: the more you evaluate and analyze over time, the quicker you are to come to reliable conclusions.
What are some of your favorite projects on Fantom?
I think of Liquid Driver as the “governance token hunter” of Fantom, or as the Convex of Fantom. LD wants complete domination, and they’re not afraid to show it! It’s an interesting dynamic that we haven’t seen on our chain before.
It also creates this spiderweb of projects buying governance tokens from each other to incentivize their own liquidity pools.
Building this on Fantom makes it even more efficient than Convex’s deployment on Ethereum because of the tight-knit community between Fantom protocols, which makes for seamless collaboration. And, of course, as these protocols build with and on top of each other, they can test and deploy faster than any of their counterparts on other chains.
Without a doubt, Dr. Liquid is a visionary.
Beethoven X is a Balancer fork built on Fantom, and it’s another example of an Ethereum protocol that works much better on Fantom than on the chain from where it originated: the low gas fees and high transaction speeds make it so their multi-token “index fund” liquidity pools can be rebalanced much more often, providing excellent opportunities for active traders, and higher trading volume + fees for liquidity providers. Whether you’re a farmer or a speculator, give it a shot– it’s already one of the cheapest DEXs on Fantom.
They’re already a leading DEX and in Fantom’s top 10 projects. Keep your eyes peeled for their upcoming UI and performance upgrades. I’m bullish on Inspirit, their locked governance token, and I can’t wait to see where they take their model next.
What narratives or trends do you see taking place on Fantom?
We’re seeing a rapid transition toward the ve(3,3) model for incentivizing fees and liquidity, as well as incentivizing long-term staking lock ups. From the enthusiastic reception toward what Andre is building, we can see that there’s a need to increase supply side pressure by locking up tokens.
The adoption of this model also indicates that retail investors are starting to shift their focus from unsustainable, “get-rich-quick” schemes to sustainability and investing for the long haul. This is particularly true for times of market volatility. Investors are tired of trying to time the bottoms and tops, and they want to be along for the ride as the space matures.
Ultimately, social media personalities have sold the dream to retail investors that you can get rich quick overnight. While that’s possible, it’s better to do it slowly and methodically, and not risk it all in the process.
As an educator, that is an aspect I am very cognizant of. I want to get people excited about this space and its possibilities, but I also want to provide people with the tools to recognize euphoria, make sound decisions, hedge themselves against risk, and take profits off the table.
While we all wish it was a straight path to the moon, influencers who suggest that to be the case are ultimately doing a disservice to the community.
Unsubstantiated hype provides more clicks and impressions, but provides zero value. People learn to trust those who provide some degree of objectivity, and in the end educators with integrity are the ones who stick around for the long haul.
What message do you have for the Fantom community?
Do your best to separate the facts from the noise.
We’re witnessing the birth of something incredible within our community, and we’re watching history unfold in real time.
What is important here is keeping a long term perspective, so don’t lose sight of the vision, and that means investing in quality protocols that will be around in five to ten years while continuing to provide value in whatever way you can.