Which Coins Existed 5 Years Ago, But Don’t Exist Now – And Why


The cryptocurrency market has undergone tremendous growth and change over the past decade, with new coins and technologies constantly emerging. While some coins have achieved great success and established themselves as major players in the market, others have failed to gain traction and have disappeared entirely. This article aims to explore which coins existed five years ago but have since disappeared and why.

Background on the Cryptocurrency Market 5 Years Ago

Five years ago, the cryptocurrency market was significantly different than it is today. In 2016, Bitcoin was still the dominant coin, with a market cap of approximately $6 billion. Other major players included Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin. The total market cap of all cryptocurrencies was only around $10 billion, a far cry from the current market cap of over $2 trillion. The market was still relatively new, and emerging trends such as initial coin offerings (ICOs) and decentralized finance (DeFi) were just beginning to gain attention.

Analysis of Coins that Existed 5 Years Ago and No Longer Exist

Several coins that existed five years ago have since disappeared from the market. One such coin is DAO, which was created in 2016 and raised over $150 million in an ICO. The DAO was essentially a decentralized venture capital fund, where investors could vote on which projects to fund. However, the DAO was hacked just a few months after its launch, resulting in the loss of over $50 million worth of Ethereum. While the Ethereum community eventually voted to hard fork the blockchain to recover the stolen funds, the incident raised serious concerns about the security of smart contracts and the viability of decentralized autonomous organizations.

Another notable example is BitConnect, which was created in 2016 and quickly rose to a market cap of over $2.5 billion. BitConnect claimed to be a lending and trading platform that offered high returns on investment. However, many in the cryptocurrency community were skeptical of the project, and accusations of a Ponzi scheme began to circulate. In early 2018, BitConnect shut down its lending and exchange platform, citing bad press and regulatory scrutiny. The price of BitConnect’s coin quickly plummeted, resulting in significant losses for investors.

Notable Examples of Coins that Disappeared

One of the most high-profile examples of a coin that disappeared is OneCoin, which was created in 2014 and marketed as a legitimate cryptocurrency. OneCoin claimed to have a market cap of over $4 billion and touted itself as the next Bitcoin. However, investigations revealed that OneCoin was a Ponzi scheme, and the coin had no real blockchain or decentralized network. In 2017, OneCoin’s founder and several other executives were arrested, and the project was exposed as a fraudulent scheme.

Another notable example is PayCoin, which was created in 2014 and raised over $12 million in an ICO. PayCoin claimed to be a secure and fast payment system that was backed by physical gold. However, the project quickly ran into trouble, with accusations of fraud and price manipulation. The founder of PayCoin, Josh Garza, was eventually charged with securities fraud and sentenced to 21 months in prison.

Lessons Learned and Implications for the Future of the Cryptocurrency Market

The disappearance of these coins offers some valuable lessons for the cryptocurrency market as a whole. First and foremost, the need for a solid use case and adoption cannot be overstated. Many of the coins that disappeared failed to gain any real traction because they lacked a clear purpose or were not useful to anyone. Without adoption and utility, a coin is essentially worthless.

Another lesson to be learned is the importance of technology in the success or failure of a coin. Many of the coins that disappeared failed due to technological limitations or problems with development. This highlights the need for rigorous testing and development before launching a new coin or technology.

Finally, the cryptocurrency market as a whole must embrace transparent and ethical practices to ensure its long-term success. The prevalence of scams and fraud in the early days of cryptocurrency left many investors wary and distrustful. As the market continues to evolve, it is important to prioritize transparency and ethics to gain the trust of investors and encourage wider adoption.


In conclusion, exploring the coins that existed five years ago but have since disappeared sheds light on the dynamic and ever-changing nature of the cryptocurrency market. It’s clear that many coins failed to achieve success due to a lack of adoption, failed technology or development, and scams or fraud. However, this is not to say that all coins that disappear from the market were doomed to fail, as some may have been ahead of their time or simply lost out in a competitive market.

The disappearance of coins also highlights the importance of a solid use case and adoption for any cryptocurrency seeking to succeed. Without a clear purpose or reason for use, it’s difficult for a coin to gain traction and attract users. In addition, the role of technology cannot be overlooked, as many of the coins that disappeared had technical issues or failed to keep up with emerging trends.

Moving forward, the lessons learned from the coins that disappeared can inform the development and marketing of future cryptocurrencies. As the cryptocurrency market continues to evolve and mature, it’s crucial that transparent and ethical practices are prioritized. By doing so, we can ensure that the market is built on a solid foundation, and that innovative and useful cryptocurrencies have the best chance to succeed. Ultimately, the disappearance of coins that existed five years ago serves as a reminder of the importance of learning from past failures and striving for continuous improvement in the cryptocurrency market.

James M. Marrero


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