Filter Real Bitcoin P2P Traders From the Jokers With This New Technique

Now that we've taken Part 1 and Part 2 on creating a successful trade on Paxful so we can make some profits, we look at how to avoid jokers and scammers. They are on every platform and can never be completely avoided except with 100% diligence 100% of the time.

You can’t make money trading if you lose it getting scammed by bad faith traders.

Reducing scamming activity as well as time wasted on trades that will never happen with problem traders is key to making money and being efficient with your time.

So with my trading experience on other platforms and Paxful, here is my secret statistic. I call it my Nonsense Factor. By the way, I’m BTC4COP and have almost 200 trades with 100% feedback score on Paxful

My Profile written in Spanish for my South American traders

Explanation of How this Filter Works

So what is the Nonsense Factor?

Paxful has more West African traders than any other platform. Many are from Nigeria and Cameroon, while fewer are from countries like Benin, Gabon or Ghana. Thanks to the ‘Nigerian Prince scams’ for one, their reputations are not great. I know lots of traders that exclude them just to not deal with it. And while that’s one option, I know there are honest, business-like traders there too. I want to give them a chance.

So, how do you tell the outright scammers, bottom feeders, troublemakers from not just this group but from all traders on Paxful? This doesn’t catch them all but it does catch some of them. Here’s what I do.

My Nonsense Factor is a simple ratio. I have a Google Sheet open every hour I trade so I can do the calculation and it’s easy. It’s a fraction.

The Nonsense Factor is # of People Blocking Trader/# of Trade Partners. NF=# of blocked divided by # of trade partners

Everyone on Paxful has people that block them. I sell much more often than buy and at the time of this writing 13 people have blocked me. Maybe they thought I was a pain in the ass to deal with. That’s fine, who cares? But deciding to block someone and not seeing their offers anymore takes some effort. More effort than just ‘Yeah, whatever’ so it’s a number I look at. Context is important though. Someone who has been blocked 5 times but only done 10 trades is different than someone blocked 5 times that’s completed 100 trades, right?

So, enter the number of trade partners. This is the number of different people someone trades with. Check it out in my profile. Down the left side it says I have 116 trade partners for my almost 200 trades. It means lots of people trade with me successfully.

Here’s how I find these numbers on the website:

This is a trade chat.

I always click on the sidebar (the little blue man in the upper right of the chat box & just below the bell to look at this profile in a glance).


Trade Chat with the Sidebar Open

Notice that this guy, who I blocked, has 60 trade partners and has been blocked by 34 people. This ratio of 34/60 or 56% is VERY HIGH. I knew as soon as I started talking to him that I’d get lots of nonsense. And I did. He wouldn’t follow my simple rules and eventually canceled, which is his right. But I wasted time with him I could have spent with other traders completing a deal. This is where the ratio is helpful.

I didn’t want to be bothered with his nonsense again so I blocked him too, which is my right.

Any number over 25% is high and over 50% is high/extreme. My own Nonsense Factor ratio is 11%.

Use it to set your own expectations. You can use this many ways. What I do is:

  • Sometimes while online, if I see a very high Nonsense Factor (NF) I just don’t even interact with them. If they don’t have my information, they can’t trade with me and that’s fine with me
  • Sometimes I take the hardline if I see a high NF and just tell them, you can do it the way I ask in my trade instructions or you can just cancel. They always cancel then I’m done with it
  • Sometimes I tell them you have too many negatives in your profile so I’m not going to trade with you. You can and should exercise your right to refuse a trade if you don’t feel good about doing it for some reason.

And you can use it positively as well. Like I said, it’s not like all West Africans are scammers. If someone has a low NF but maybe has some questions, it’s easier to be friendly and patient with them as there is a better chance they are being genuine and trying to complete a trade. Some of my trades have complicated instructions. And that’s on purpose to weed out some of these bad seeds.

So there it is. My Nonsense Factor. Hope it helps you do more profitable and fun trading.

About the author

Stu Stu Lustman, the author of this post, is a Credit Analyst by trade trying to bring Commercial Credit Analysis techniques to the world of Peer to Peer Lending. Check me out on Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+

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