‘Martian’ Ryan Xu-backed Media Chain ICO Scammed Investors for 100Million Yuan, and the Team Disappears
Shortly after its ICO, the team behind Media Chain(“影视链”in Chinese) liquidated all ETHs they’ve collected and vanished from the face of internet, scamming nearly 100 million yuan from investors. Disappearing acts always indicate to a scam.
What is Media Chain?
Media Chain bills itself as a company that is developing a decentralized application(dApp) focused on the film and television industry. Leveraging on blockchain technology, the project is commited to simplifying the process of film investment, producing and distribution. The token it launched is called MDC.
It is said that the platform allows eligible filmmakers to launch their own tokens for film making . And film investors can exchange MDC tokens for the film tokens to contribute to the funding of their favourite films’ production.
The total supply of MDC tokens is 2 billion out of which 600 million(30%) was distributed in the ICO, while 35% tokens is reserved for development and operation of the platform and remaining 35% for marketing and strategic partnerships with film companies.
The ICO took place earlier this months through two ICO platforms called LEEKICO and We Token, which was supported by 390 investors.The ICO price is around $0.07 per token. Without a real project, MDC got listed in the digital currency exchange, Dragonex, on January 16 at the price of 0.1539 USDT. Its price plunged following various scandals to around 0.01USDT today , and the 24-hour transaction volume of it was 0.43million USDT, according to data from Dragonex.
A person on Weibo claimed that one of Media Chain’s software engineers named Eugene Kyselov was actually a Canadian actor. Eugene Kyselov ‘s profile has been deleted. That is, the team just find a westerner’s image to help attract newbies. And team members are found to be tampered with for a few times, Asian faces being replaced by the Westerners.
More absurdly, Ryan XU, or Zijing Xu, serves as an adviser for this project. Many blockchain projects backed by Mr.Xu are labeled as scams, like HPS, HRS. MediaChain follows suit .
In addition to team members’ fake profiles and images, the project lacks social communication channels, has no code and no application scenarios. The patched-up white paper is said to include fake information, just roughly replicating another project’s design and description.
Even worse, MediaChain has not released any development updates after ICO and did not respond to investors’ concerns.
Investors took a loss
As MDC buyers estimate, the project scammed investors 100 million yuan. And the Ethereum wallet address owned by the team shows that all ETHs collected during the ICO had has been sold off, as well as the lock-in amount of MDCs. And the team cannot be reached for comment.
Dragonex，the only bitcoin exchange that supports MDC trading, suspended its transactions on January 24.
However, LEEKICO, the firm that hosted the ICO，put out a statement today, saying the platform will refund those who participated the MDC ICO via LEEKICO their ETHs at its own expenses.
Jingtum Technology, another allegedly backer for MediaChain, also clarified that they had no link with this project.
While many questions around how existing laws apply to ICO remain unanswered, and the days of apparent ICO scams might be numbered, investors need to always make one thing clear: you understand what you’re buying.