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US crypto exchange Coinbase will now let its users rate politicians

US crypto exchange Coinbase will now let its users rate politicians
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
15 Sep, 2022
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US-based cryptocurrency exchange, Coinbase, has added a new feature that would let users understand and get in touch with US government office holders and politicians — based on their views on cryptocurrencies. Announced earlier today by Coinbase founder and chief executive, Brian Armstrong, the new feature shows a list of US politicians, followed by a bar that shows their stance towards cryptocurrencies — with the sentiments ranging from ‘negative’ to ‘positive’.

Explaining the move via Twitter posts, Armstrong said that the data and the sentiment bar on each politician is sourced from what is known as the ‘Crypto Action Network’ — an aggregator and advocacy medium that collates all crypto-related statements and opinions put forth by each politician. The service then assigns a rating to each politician to rank their crypto friendliness, of sorts.

The Network is supported by Coinbase, among other undisclosed parties.

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“We want to help pro-crypto candidates solicit donations from the crypto community (in crypto). We'll also expand to get more geographic coverage in global elections, and add data on various candidates running for office (not just current elected officials),” Armstrong said, adding that at present, 103 million Coinbase users in the US will get access to the service.

The move comes amid a largely mixed run for crypto organizations around the world. In India, Web3 ventures such as WazirX were called up by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) — a nodal law enforcement body overseeing money laundering and other misplaced incidents under the Ministry of Finance’s Department of Revenue.

While the ED called up WazirX to understand how instant loan apps operating without the ambit of authorisation in India could have used cryptocurrencies to siphon money from India to China, the investigations revealed a juncture that eventually revealed a lack of clarity in WazirX and Binance’s equation.

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India, to be sure, has taken a conservative approach towards cryptocurrencies. A regulatory bill is expected to be unveiled in the near future, laying down the rules for the common investor to trade cryptocurrencies. At the moment, most exchanges have seen declines in their daily trading volumes — since a 30% capital gains tax and an additional 1% tax deducted at source (TDS) rates were implemented on any profits booked on crypto trades.

Armstrong did not elaborate which markets might Coinbase look to expand to, but given that the feature is an a relatively early stage in the US itself, it is likely that it will be a while before the politician database is expanded to other markets.