Be[in]Crypto has rounded up the most important stories from the last week, including new crypto regulations in the U.S, Optimism’s loss of over $5 million to a bug exploit, ApeCoin’s decision to stick with Ethereum’s blockchain, a vote of no confidence for top Coinbase executives and Shiba Inu’s drive to ditch the memecoin tag.
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Interesting week for crypto regulations
The last seven days in crypto saw significant development by regulators in flexing their muscles over the industry. Details of a groundbreaking U.S. bill by Senators Cynthia Lummis and Kirsten Gillibrand surfaced with major players paying close attention to its contents.
The new bill sought to remove some crypto assets from the jurisdiction of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) into the purview of the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). The bill proposes that decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) be registered to obtain tax benefits, but it still faces a slew of regulatory hurdles before being passed into law.
On a positive note for crypto, Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate has proposed that citizens should be allowed to pay their property taxes in bitcoin. Tate’s move is aimed at bringing in a younger demographic into the property market and is a clear signal of an innovative government.
The Bank of Jamaica has legalized its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), called the Jam-Dex, to provide “an alternative to its cash-based economy”. Originally scheduled to be launched in Q1, the bank has confirmed that it will be rolled out later in the month.
Crypto enthusiasts in New York were crushed under the weight of an incoming law that aims to ban crypto mining in the city for two years. According to the experts, the ban will not “help reduce carbon emissions by a single ounce” as it only makes miners set up their operations in different jurisdictions.
Fraud continues to bedevil investors
A new report showed that the largest cryptocurrency exchange played a central role in facilitating over $2 trillion worth of illicit transactions in the last five years. The report from Reuters highlighted the use of Hydra, a Russian darknet drug market, and the hack of a Slovakian exchange with the hackers turning to Binance to obscure the transactions.
Nerves were rattled in the ecosystem when an anonymous individual threatened to expose crypto influencers over extensive discussions relating to fraud, racism, and even offenses of a sexual nature.
The mystery detective claimed that he accessed the trove of information through a breach of Telegram, a popular messaging platform. The individual took to Twitter to invite members of the press for a glimpse into the cache of messages.
Osmosis (OSMO) halted operations following the exploit of a bug that led to losses of nearly $5 million. A few hours after identifying the bug, the team announced that a patch has been written but more testing was required “before validators are recommended to coordinate a restart.”
NFTs on the advance
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) had an intriguing week with creators taking advantage of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s widely publicized trial to create their own NFT collections. Never Fear Truth, a collection that has the backing of Depp, is one of many projects revolving around the case, while Amber Turds, a scatological NFT project, has already begun racking up sales.
Payments giant Mastercard has a new offering that allows users to purchase collectibles without owning cryptocurrencies. The move sees Mastercard partner with Immutable X, Candy Digital, The Sandbox, Nifty, Gateway, MoonPay, and Mintable to bring the offering to millions of users in the space.
Yuga Labs, the team behind Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC), and creators of ApeCoin have opted not to migrate the token to its chain. 3.8 million token holders voted against the migration in favor of keeping the token on the Ethereum blockchain despite concerns of sky-high gas fees.
The fragile state of the job market
Coinbase has been in the eye of the storm of the last week following its decision to pause hiring and rescind employment offers. Things reached a heightened state after an online petition surfaced calling for a vote of no confidence for three leading executives of the exchange. The company CEO Brian Armstrong retorted that the claims were unethical and “really dumb”, going on to threaten to fire the anonymous employee behind the petition.
Meanwhile, Citigroup is going on a hiring spree with a plan to add 4,000 to the firm. Over a third of the new hires will join the markets technology team as the conglomerate banks on digitization.
Jobs in the crypto industry have been in a state of flux with leading firms like Gemini and Coinbase announcing plans to reduce their workforce due to prevailing macroeconomic factors.
In May, data from Layoffs.fyi revealed that over 15,000 employees in tech lost their jobs in what has been a difficult time for the industry.
Rise of improved crypto utility
PayPal sent ripples of excitement across crypto enthusiasts with the announcement that users can now transfer cryptocurrencies to exchanges and external wallets. The supported cryptos for PayPal’s new offering are bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), and Litecoin (LTC).
For dog-themed cryptocurrency Shiba Inu (SHIB) the focus for developers is to improve the use case scenarios of the network. The team intends to achieve this through the launch of Shibarium, a Layer-2 blockchain, after months of development that is touted to act as a bridge between Shiba Inu and other blockchains, and offer cheaper transaction fees.
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