What is an Instamine?

The meaning of instamine is a term used to describe the accelerated mining of a cryptocurrency when it first launches. It is believed that such events are not only detrimental to the currency itself, but can also lead to market manipulation and price volatility. In some cases, large amounts of coins may be mined in a short period of time creating an unfair distribution of funds. This can have a negative impact on the value and trustworthiness of the cryptocurrency in question.

There have been multiple instances where instamine has occurred, with one notable example being Litecoin's launch in late 2011. At that time, miners were able to mine as many as one hundred thousand coins within 24 hours. This led to significant imbalances in coin distributions among miners and early adopters. In response, the Litecoin developers have since taken steps to reduce such occurrences in future launches.

However, instamine remains a problem with many new cryptocurrencies today. It is important for cryptocurrency investors and users to be aware of this issue so that they understand the potential risks associated with investing or trading any particular coin. Additionally, miners should take extra caution when engaging in mining activities to ensure that their methods are fair and do not lead to instamine events. By taking these measures into consideration, we can help protect against imbalances and market manipulation that occur due to instamine events.

Simplified Example

Instamining is when a group of people use special equipment and software to quickly mine many new coins at the very start of a new cryptocurrency.

Mining is like digging for treasure, and the new coins are like the treasure you find. Instamining is like if you and your friends were digging for treasure, and one of your friends had a big powerful shovel and a map that shows exactly where the treasure is. They would be able to dig up a lot of treasure very quickly, while the rest of you don't have the same tools and information. This would not be fair because they have an advantage over the others. Instamining is similar, but instead of treasure, it's about new coins of a cryptocurrency, and the people who are doing the instamining have an unfair advantage over the others.

History of the Term "Instamine"

The precise origin of the term "instamine" in the realm of cryptocurrency is uncertain, but it is thought to have surfaced in the early 2010s, aligning with the ascent of initial coin offerings (ICOs) and the surge in new cryptocurrencies. This terminology gained prominence as an increasing number of projects aimed to entice investors swiftly and secure a rapid market foothold, resulting in a rise in instances of instamine.


Pre-Mining: Instamine occurs when a large portion of a cryptocurrency's total supply is mined or minted in a short period of time, typically at the beginning of the coin's launch. This can occur when a cryptocurrency is pre-mined, meaning that a portion of the total supply is created and controlled by the creators or developers before the coin is released to the public. This can result in a concentration of wealth in the hands of the creators and early adopters, reducing the decentralization of the coin and potentially reducing its value over time.

Block Reward Manipulation: Instamine can also occur when the block reward structure of a cryptocurrency is manipulated to benefit early miners. For example, a cryptocurrency may have a large block reward in the early stages of mining, allowing early miners to quickly accumulate a large portion of the total supply. This can result in a concentration of wealth in the hands of early miners and reduce the decentralization of the coin over time.

Mining Pools: Instamine can also occur when a small number of mining pools control a large portion of the network's hash rate, allowing them to mine a disproportionate amount of blocks and create new coins. This can result in a concentration of wealth in the hands of a few mining pools, reducing the decentralization of the coin and potentially reducing its value over time. Additionally, mining pools with a large amount of hash rate may have the ability to manipulate the blockchain, potentially compromising the integrity and security of the network.

  • Mining: The process of verifying and adding transactions to a blockchain network.

  • Coin: A unique identifier or digital signature, which is stored on a decentralized ledger or blockchain.