Kik shuts down - is this the end of KIN?

Top stories on crypto social media today (Source: Sanbase)

Looks like Kik is no more.

In the midst of the company’s ongoing dispute with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Kik and Kin CEO Ted Livingston announced the termination of the messaging app which, according to some reports, attracted as many as 300 million users from the US:

“After 18 months of working with the SEC the only choice they gave us was to either label Kin a security or fight them in court,” Livingston said in the announcement. “So with the SEC working to characterize almost all cryptocurrencies as securities we made the decision to step forward and fight.”

In order to reduce their burn rate and continue to fight SEC, Kik will be shutting down and laying off around 100 employees, leaving behind ‘an elite 19 person team’ to work solely on KIN adoption and growth:

“We will focus on one thing: converting Kin users into Kin buyers”

Judging by Kin’s recent github activity, the company has been scaling down their development efforts for a few weeks already, as the Kin Ecosystem’s main repository started hibernating as early as September 8th, and is now nearing it’s all-time-low:

KIN's all-time development activity (Source: Sanbase)

The news quickly spread through the cryptoverse and beyond, with mainstream media including BBC, The Standard, Verge and others covering the messaging app’s downfall:

Though it wasn’t exactly booming prior to the news, KIN coin has dropped by more than 23% in the hours following the announcement, hitting the all-time-low and arguably the lowest possible price of 1 Satoshi, where it continues to live presently:

KIN's 1-month price action (Source: Sanbase)

Rumours surrounding Kik have been floating around all day - some even published as facts. In particular, CoinDesk joined in on the FUD by releasing what it claimed were drunken comments by Kik’s CEO to one of their journalists, where Livingston vowed, among other things, that he's not “going to jail for this”

As it turns out, the message in question was a hoax by what some claim is a well-known troublemaker in the Kin community, prompting Coindesk to issue a retraction and their CEO to apologize to Livingston:

As expected, FUD ruled all Kin conversation on this day. For the most part, the crowd seems confident that shutting down Kik makes KIN obsolete in one fell swoop:

Those that aren’t ready to give up on the project just yet still expressed great concern about the seriously diminished size and power of Kin’s development team:

Finally, there were those that lamented another perceived case of government overreach, as SEC effectively strong-armed Kik into shutting down:

Overall, the news has skyrocketed the mentions of ‘Kik’ and ‘Kin’ on crypto social media, whose present social volume is almost at the level it was when SEC first announced its plans on going against Kik:

'Kin' and 'Kik' mentions on crypto social media (Source: Sanbase)

Will this mark the end of Kin? Going off its current price action, development activity and general crowd sentiment, it sure doesn’t look pretty. For what it’s worth, Kik’s CEO did lay out his short, 3-step plan for breathing second life into the token:

  • Moving the Kin blockchain forward to support a billion consumers making a dozen transactions a day with sub 1 second confirmation times
  • Accelerating the adoption, growth, and success of all developers in the Kin Ecosystem
  • Building a mobile wallet that makes it easy to buy Kin, exciting to use Kin, and seamless to explore the Kin Ecosystem

Hey - at least it can only go up from here...right?

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