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Wikileaks And CheapAir, Air Their Grievances Against Coinbase

It seems like Coinbase has been having a rough few days in the crypto-verse with two organizations having grievances against the largest crypto-currency exchange based in the United States.

First to air their grievances against Coinbase was Wikileaks who announced that Coinbase had blocked its official Wikileaks shop without notice or explanation. The latter sells Wikileaks merchandise such as T-shirts, hoodies, stickers, posters, books, phone cases and other accessories with consumers having the option of paying using Bitcoin. Wikileakshop also sells cryptokitties.

Coinbase claims that the Wikileaks accounts has been engaging in activities that are in violation of the therms of service of the exchange.

Due to these actions by Coinbase, Wikileaks has since called for a global blockade of the exchange. Wikileaks has dubbed Coinbase as being an unfit member of the crypto community. This is a sentiment that has been dominating the Crypto-verse with many American traders complaining that the trading fees on the platform are ridiculously high.

Another organization that has been having issues with Coinbase, is Cheapair.com: a less stressful option to finding cheap airline tickets on the web. Cheapair has been crypto friendly by being the first travel agency world-wide to accept Bitcoin (BTC) as an alternate form of payment for flights. This was done back in 2013 by the organization and everything has been smooth sailing up until now.

However, Coinbase now informed the organization that it will no longer support ‘custodial’ solutions for merchants and are removing a number of the tools and features that Cheapair relies on to accept BTC from shoppers. Cheapair has now asked its costumers to recommend prefered alternatives away from Coinbase.

Perhaps what is happening in the back-end of things, is that Coinbase is trying to avoid repercussions down the line, when the SEC starts recommending on how cryptocurrency exchanges should be regulated. Every organization wants to stay afloat and within the laws of the jurisdiction which they are registered.

An option would be for Coinbase to switch base to a more crypto friendly country such as Lithuania, Estonia or Belarus.

[Photo source, coinbase.com]

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WikiLeaks Shop Reports Suspension Of Coinbase Account Due To Terms Of Service Violation

WikiLeaks Shop, the merchandise arm of international anonymous publishing non profit WikiLeaks, reported on Twitter Friday, April 20, that their account with crypto wallet and exchange Coinbase has been blocked.

WikiLeaks Shop’s tweet contains a screen grab from an alleged email from Coinbase that states the organization violated their Terms of Service and therefore “can no longer provide access to [their] service.” Coinbase has not responded to a requests for comments on the specifics of WikiLeaks Shop’s violation by press time.

All proceeds of the shop go to WikiLeaks operations, and customers can pay in Bitcoin, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dash, Dogecoin, Ethereum, Neo, Namecoin, Vertcoin, Monero and ZCash through Coinpayments.net.

The official WikiLeaks Twitter posted a call for a “global blockade” of Coinbase in response to the block:

Bitcoin (BTC) advocate Andreas M. Antonopoulos tweeted that Coinbase has “repeated history,” as Bitcoin has played an important role for WikiLeaks from the time when the non profit was legally unable to use traditional banking systems:

Last fall, WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange publicly thanked the US government on Twitter for forcing the organization to rely on Bitcoin due to the banking embargo, giving WikiLeaks a 50,000 percent return. Assange also urged WikiLeaks donors to use cryptocurrencies for their donations as a way to avoid this financial blockade. The WikiLeaks website accepts Bitcoin, Litecoin, Monero, and ZCash for donations.

Antonopoulos added in a comment to his tweet that this embargo by Coinbase is unlike the first in that it is “purely symbolic,” as there are other crypto wallets out there, but that the “symbolism is a pretty poignant reminder of what centralization and banking regulations mean.”

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Wikileaks to Accept Additional Cryptocurrencies for Donations

Wikileaks is reportedly set to begin accepting additional cryptocurrencies as a way to serve users who want to contribute to its media and whistleblowing efforts.

Announced by Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in a Tweet earlier this week, the comment follows news the Freedom of the Press Foundation (FPF), an organization that has helped process financial donations for Wikileaks via Visa, MasterCard and PayPal, abruptly halted its services.

As previously reported, Wikileaks started collecting donations in zcash in August, a move that followed its acceptance of bitcoin and litecoin.

Overall, Assange sees the FPF shutdown as “richly ironic” since it the organization was founded to stop economic censorship against Wikileaks.

He stated:

“Like our response to the first banking blockade, (Wikileaks) will open up additional crypto-currencies. Those wanting to contribute to Wikileaks can already use bitcoin, litecon and the ultra-private monero and zcash.”

He added that users can also purchase Wikileaks merchandise on its online shop can already use a variety of payment methods including cryptocurrencies.

Wikileaks announced Thursday the arrival of its first WikiLeaks CryptoKitties. An internet-based game for buying, selling and breeding digital kittens, CryptoKitties are a form of cryptographic collectible built on the ethereum blockchain.

With the launch, Assange stated: “Cryptography is not only transforming the global financial system, it is generating creative innovation in a vast array of human interaction.”

Donors can bid for one of Wikileak’s “purebred cryptographic kittens,” while newcomers can use the items to learn about blockchain and get their first cryptocurrency, Assange said.

WikiLeaks Homepage image via Shutterstock

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Julian Assange Urges Donors to Use Cryptocurrencies, Thwart Government

Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks and international exile, has urged donors to contribute to the online publication by using cryptocurrencies in order to skirt the financial ‘blockade’ by national governments. His foundation will now accept payments in Bitcoin, Litecoin, Monero and ZCash.

The exiled Assange has become something of a public cheerleader for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies following a number of tweets expressing his general approval of the decentralized digital currency model in opposition to governmental controls.

A recent thread includes a number of announcements regarding the current US controls on Wikileaks donations:

The growth in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies has provided a substantial return for Assange, who recently thanked the US government for forcing him into the alternative payment method. The reality that cryptocurrencies may help to skirt governmental controls has led many to suggest that regulations on digital currencies are inevitable.

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Julian Assange Thanks US Government, Senators, For Forced Bitcoin Investment

Sometimes you have a comeback so good you have to wait until the perfect time to use it. Apparently, for Julian Assange, that time was when Bitcoin hit $5,746.51. The Wikileaks founder posted his comment on Twitter, after a stunning week of price jumps in the cryptocurrency’s value.  The tweet was accompanied by a chart of the value of Bitcoin.

Wikileaks was forced to invest in Bitcoin in 2010 after the release of sensitive government documents related to wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. The bipartisan attempt to cut Assange of from funding backfired, as he was forced to accept Bitcoin rather than dollars.Talk about a massive boon for Assange–he’s up 50,000%.

Bitcoin’s foundational principles?

Wikileaks has been on the forefront of revealing government corruption, and Assange has lived as a fugitive in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London since 2012. With all the antigovernment rhetoric, it’s no wonder Assange is not friendly with pro-government fiat currencies. Wikileaks and its founder represent the sort of non-governmental control that Bitcoin is founded upon.

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Julian Assange Supports Bitcoin As Ways to Free Catalonia From Spain’s Dictate

A recent report from BBC News indicates that the Spanish government will seize control of the finances of the autonomous region of Catalonia within 48 hours, if they don’t stop the ‘illegal’ referendum vote regarding independence.

Jullian Assange, the freedom-touting founder of Wikileaks, quickly tweeted his support of the referendum, as well as a comment on the importance of Bitcoin in this regard.

Support from Wikileaks

The vote was proposed after years of the wealthy region paying into the central government far more than it received in public services. The Spanish government has threatened to take control of all financial transactions in order to stop the spending of state funds on illegal acts. Spain’s finance minister Cristobal Montoro is categorical:

“These measures are to guarantee that not one euro will go toward financing illegal acts.”

Paying for independence

The reality that Bitcoin represents a non-government controlled currency that can function without centralized government systems, makes it immune to geopolitical upheaval. This value-stability principle is what has made many industry insiders call it ‘digital gold.’

Assange’s post would indicate that those who desire freedom of finance and removal of government strong-arming and restrictive practices, should be heavily in favor of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.  

As liquidity and use-cases for Bitcoin increase, its position as a supra-governmental currency will continue to stabilize.