Vitalik Buterin. Source: A screenshot of a YouTube video by ETHWORLD.
Imagine an alternate universe in which Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin never started working on Ethereum because he was way too busy with his internship at gross settlement system Ripple.
At the very least, the rankings of coins by market capitalization would be vastly different, but how many other events would have been affected by this change? Luckily, the US Department of Labor had the cryptoverse’s back when they decided to refuse Buterin’s visa application – and the course of history was set on the right track.
Following a story about Chinese entrepreneur Eric Yuan who, after being denied his US visa application eight times, still made it to the US to become the major shareholder of video conference services firm Zoom Video Communications (and a billionaire), Buterin came forward with his own story.
Fun fact: I tried to be an intern at Ripple back in the day (mid 2013), but US visa complications having to do with the fact that the company had only existed for 9 months and the minimum was 1 year stopped me.
— Vitalik Non-giver of Ether (@VitalikButerin) April 19, 2019
Now Buterin sits in Canada, having had to satisfy his need to work on blockchain projects by publishing the Ethereum whitepaper in late 2013, presumably due to the sorrow that followed having such an excellent opportunity at an existing company ripped away under his nose.
Meanwhile, in February, Buterin was making a tongue-in-cheek fun of Ripple’s partnership announcements that they have been making on Twitter.
I think you want to use XRP. The chart for XRP/XRP would look the same so it's also sound money, but they have Institutional adoption™ and Partnerships™ so they're better.
— Vitalik Non-giver of Ether (@VitalikButerin) February 24, 2019
However, in 2013, Buterin wrote an article where he praised Ripple: "Altogether, what Ripple has accomplished is impressive. With Ripple, we have a way of sending, receiving, and holding any currency – not just one specific cryptocurrency – in a decentralized way.”