HomeInterview'Crypto Isn’t Truly Crypto on Centralized Platforms': A Sit-Down with Maria Carola,...

‘Crypto Isn’t Truly Crypto on Centralized Platforms’: A Sit-Down with Maria Carola, CEO of StealthEX


In today’s fast-paced, ever-evolving digital landscape, cryptocurrency exchanges have swiftly emerged as pivotal players. Amongst these, StealthEX stands tall—not merely as a platform, but as a champion of data privacy and decentralization. At the heart of its success is Maria Carola, a visionary whose dynamism has propelled the exchange to new heights. Her interview wasn’t just exciting because she runs an established crypto exchange. More importantly, she embodies the innovative spirit that is driving the entire cryptocurrency industry forward. Her journey reflects a blend of unwavering commitment, fervent passion, and a profound grasp of the crypto world. In a riveting one-on-one, we delved deep into her perspectives on the media’s role in crypto pricing, the anticipated 2024 Bitcoin Halving, and her forward-thinking vision for the industry’s future.

Media and Public Figures’ Influence on Crypto Prices

Discussing the recent incident of misinformation surrounding the SEC’s nod for a Bitcoin ETF, which led to a dramatic increase in Bitcoin’s valuation, Maria underscored the paramount influence that the media exerts on cryptocurrency pricing.

“The power of news in swaying market prices is monumental. It affects market sentiment, and the cryptocurrency market is exceedingly sensitive to media narratives,” she elaborated.

“The crypto sphere is intrinsically a hype-driven market, with its dynamics heavily influenced by media and thought leaders. The more a digital asset is discussed and hyped, the more it gains in popularity, which in turn impacts its demand and pricing,” Maria said.

She went on to highlight how influential figures like Elon Musk have the potential to cause tumultuous market movements.

“I mean, look at Musk’s statements on DOGE. There’s even a research piece out there, titled ‘The Musk Effect’. It dives deep into the ripple effects of Musk’s posts, suggesting they have the power to either rocket Bitcoin’s value by nearly 17% or send it crashing by a striking 12%!”

She also noted that the potential approval of the Bitcoin ETF was not factored into the market’s calculations until this incident occurred.

Concerning the broader media landscape, Maria advocated for a responsible approach to journalism and urged media professionals to rigorously authenticate their sources. Taking inspiration from her family’s roots in journalism, she emphasized the importance of ensuring accurate and responsible reporting.

Maria states, “Global fake news is rampant. In my opinion, this Bitcoin ETF misunderstanding wasn’t intentional, more a byproduct of lackluster journalism. When you have colossal media houses wielding influence over vast audiences, a single piece of misinformation can wreak havoc.”

Inquiring about preventative measures, we ask what advice media professionals can give to keep such situations at bay. Maria’s face turns serious, “Always verify your sources. If you’re relaying information, there should be a credible source backing you. Chasing traffic isn’t an excuse for disseminating half-baked news. I come from a family of journalists; trust me, they would rip your head off for such laxity!”

Bitcoin Halving 2024: Anticipations and Market Preparations

Delving into the topic of the 2024 Bitcoin Halving, Maria offered her insights on its expected repercussions on the price of Bitcoin and how the crypto community is bracing itself for this event. She acknowledged the daunting challenges that this event poses to miners due to reduced rewards, but also highlighted its pivotal role in influencing cryptocurrency prices.

“Bitcoin halving is a rhythm of the network, a dance we’ve danced before. It doesn’t serve as breaking news that stirs up drastic emotions of sorrow or joy. The community stands prepared, even if miners lament the fewer rewards. Tradewise, it’s bound to influence the price. After all, the halving, at its core, is about the price impact.”

Bitcoin ETFs vs. Crypto’s True Spirit

Talking about spot Bitcoin ETFs, Maria illuminated StealthEX’s dedication to on-chain transactions, while expressing her caution about the industry potentially deviating from its foundational principles.

“Sometimes, I feel we’ve strayed from crypto’s essence. Traditional investments have their merits. They’re the path to adoption. However, crypto as an industry is different from crypto as a market. Spot Bitcoin ETFs were birthed for fat cats to dabble in Bitcoin the way they’re accustomed to. Their aspirations are market-driven, not necessarily fostering blockchain tech. It’s amazing and a bit daunting how the perceived value of any crypto in fiat form matters to us, despite our efforts to detach from it,” she passionately argued. Maria cited an article she wrote recently in which she analyzed on-chain whale activity showing institutional investors were accumulating Bitcoin before the current price increase.

She also reflected on the shifting dynamics within the cryptocurrency community, noting a trend where the original technology-driven enthusiasm seems to be waning, giving way to the convenience provided by centralized exchanges.

“The ‘I’m here for the technology’ folks are dwindling. Even during crypto’s nascent days, they were a minority. Ever since centralized exchanges, like Mt.Gox, came into the picture, two factions emerged. One gravitates towards trading, wanting familiar assets. The other champions decentralization and is genuinely tech-driven who say crypto on platforms like Binance isn’t truly ‘crypto’ but akin to forex. However, most users prefer centralization because of its convenience. They’re indifferent to whether they’re purchasing Bitcoin, wrapped Bitcoin, or a spot Bitcoin ETF, as long as the price correlates with the base asset,” Maria observed.

She added that FTX-related incidents remind us of the core principles of decentralization and the ethos of self-sovereignty, which are fundamental to cryptocurrency.

“Decentralization comes with its unique set of challenges and responsibilities. When you opt for a non-custodial platform, you’re essentially taking the reins of your financial sovereignty. You become the sole custodian of your wallet and seed phrase, the keys to your digital kingdom, if you will. This level of personal responsibility can be daunting for many, but it’s crucial to recognize this path,” Maria explained.


As we wrapped up our enlightening conversation, Maria elegantly captured crypto’s duality with her words: “Crypto’s soul lies in its industry, while its heartbeat echoes in the market”. In fact, cryptocurrency’s dual nature as a technology as well as a tradeable asset gives it strength and potential, but also unique challenges. Maria’s journey with StealthEX in creating a world where financial freedom and privacy can be accessed by everyone serves as an inspiration. It reminds us that we are just entering the era of crypto, and with leaders like Maria at the helm, the future certainly looks bright.


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