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Will Augur be the first successful decentralised prediction market?

atroche          30 October 2015 12:24 AM

Augur is a work-in-progress decentralised prediction market. It recently raised over five million dollars in a crowdsale, and it lists Robin Hanson as an advisor. Its creators expect to launch it in Q1 2016.

Its main critic is Paul Sztorc, Yale statistician and inventor of Truthcoin, who also intends to create a decentralised prediction market. He lays out much of his argument against Augur here:

So, do you think Augur will be a functioning, active market in a couple of years time?

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is4junk 3 November 2015 04:46 PM

I keep thinking about how to exploit an Augur like system if it became mainstream. Could use it as a sort of push-poll combined with mega-jackpot?

The basic idea would be to try to raise awareness (break the media silence) on certain topics. For instance, (again assuming Augur was mainstream) the republican candidates could encourage betting that "Hillary will be indicted" where the goal isn't to win but to raise awareness of the case against Hillary. The candidates might encourage this over giving directly to the campaign. People would be buying and selling and be interested in the latest emails.

Democrats could also play the same game like "Guess the Gun Deaths this year - will there be more then X gun deaths this year?". Then encourage donors to buy contracts for unrealistically high deaths. Again the idea wouldn't be to win but to raise awareness.

A futures market would be needed to really get high payouts to make it newsworthy.


is4junk 1 November 2015 09:04 PM

Not sure if Auger will be the first successful one or not.

Could Auger be used to make sophisticated high payoff / low odds predictions? If it could be the back end for a fantasy football prediction system - then it might be able to branch out and take-off. Otherwise, I wonder if there is a large enough market for them during non-election years.


VoiceOfRa 30 October 2015 06:13 PM

Previous prediction markers failed due to being shut down by the US government under anti-gambling laws. What will Augur be any different?


ChristianKl 2 November 2015 04:20 AM

Betting on elections seems pretty simple but as soon as we bet on events such as: "Assad is going to use chemical weapons", the issue becomes more complicated.

Some Rep holder might vote "Yes", others "No" and even others "Indeterminate".

Cases like that will likely produce a lot of drama.
I however see no real reason why the system shouldn't work.