The arrest heard ’round the crypto world – TechCrunch
Hello everyone and welcome back Chain reaction.
Last week, we discussed $4.5 billion in new crypto funds from a16z. This week, we’re talking about the arrest that made everyone in the NFT space break a sweat.
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the crime of the future
The crypto space has moved so quickly over the past few years that builders often believe that the current rules don’t apply to them. Well, after years of slow legal action, it seems US prosecutors are starting to feel it’s time to challenge that perception.
This week, the United States Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York arrested and filed charges against a former OpenSea executive who used his position to run NFT projects that were about to be listed. on the homepage of the market. Members of the community discovered his actions by tracking his activity on public blockchains.
I’d love to talk about this in the podcast, but the news broke while we were recording, so I’ll leave you with some thoughts here.
The arrest was a huge shock to those in the NFT space, who generally believed that Nate Chastain acted unethically but that it couldn’t be “insider trading” because NFTs are not securities. This is a prejudice that has been held by many, including Chastain’s boss at OpenSea, who fired him.
“I really think there is a deception in calling it insider trading. We do not consider NFTs a financial asset, so that does not apply. It’s a very specific term for a very specific thing,” says OpenSea Devin Finzer Decryption in September.
A lot of people are reading SDNY’s press release very carefully, which states that they have charged Chastain “with electronic fraud and money laundering in connection with a scheme to execute insider trading using Code.” Notice not Fungible.” They specifically describe NFT as a “digital asset” later in the release. Also, it’s worth reiterating that this is the DOJ – not the SEC – charging him, although the Office’s Securities and Commodity Fraud Task Force is handling the case.
Now, why don’t people want NFTs classified as securities? Well, there’s a lot of regulatory guidance out there out there, and most feel it will fundamentally affect the industry if NFTs unilaterally follow securities laws; it would certainly raise the barrier to entry for the creation of NFTs and limit a lot of the experimentation going on in the space right now.
Another big reason why NFTs are considered securities is a bad thing, which means that a lot of people have been doing illegal things for a long time.
The NFT space has made it through this latest crypto bull run without any meaningful regulation applying. As NFT volume begins to show signs of slowing down, there is concern that more regulation could be imminent.
That’s okay, Anita is here to give you a preview of the latest episode of our Chain Reaction podcast, where we unpack the latest web3 news, block by block for the crypto curious .
This week, we talked about Coinbase’s new approach to what can be one of the most anxiety-provoking aspects of corporate life – performance reviews. Our colleague, Amanda, wrote about how the crypto exchange is trying to emulate Ray Dalio’s hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, by allowing employees to give each other real-time feedback and ratings. Is this part of the technology’s evolution into Black Mirror-style reality? Tune in to hear our thoughts.
We also recap two recent crypto comeback stories, one from OnlyFans founder and CEO, who left the company after attempting to ban pornography from the platform. platform and another story from the architect of the highly volatile stablecoin, Terra.
Our guest this week is Outdoor Voices founder Ty Haney, who has detailed her pivot from sports to crypto with her new project, Try Your Best. Haney announced on our podcast that the startup has just reached its second round of institutional funding.
Subscribe to Chain Reaction on Apple, Spotify or alternative podcast platform of your choice to keep us updated on a weekly basis.
according to money
Where startup money is moving in the crypto world:
- New York-based enterprise blockchain startup Digital Assets received an undisclosed strategic investment from Japanese banking giant SBI Holdings.
- InfStonesa blockchain infrastructure provider, raised $66 million in a round led by SoftBank and GGV.
- Launch Indian Music NFT FanTiger raised $5.5 million for a seed round led by Multicoin Capital.
- LivingCitiesa metaverse-focused social startup co-founded by Foursquare founder Dennis Crowley, has raised US$4 million in initial funding led by DCVC.
- From Zimbabwe FlexID received an undisclosed amount of funding from Algorand for its blockchain-based identity system for low-key banks.
- Augmented reality game company Web3 Jadu raised $36 million in Series A funding led by Bain Capital Crypto.
- VillageStudio raised $2.3 million in a round led by Animoca Brands for its NFT-based Playken avatars.
- Web3 Payment API Unify received $9.5 million in seed funding led by Octopus Ventures.
- GoSatsan India-based bitcoin rewards platform, has raised $4 million in a pre-Series A funding round from investors including Y Combinator, Accel, and Gossamer Capital.
- DAO management platform Utopia Laboratories closed a $23 million Series A led by Paradigm.
of the week on web3
It’s been an unusually quiet week in web3, and our team members in the US took some time to enjoy the rare long weekend. However, some big personalities have made waves in space, for better and for worse.
- OnlyFans founder, Tim Stokely, is turning to cryptocurrency after leaving the company last December following controversy over its attempt to ban pornography from the platform. Anita write about The new “family-friendly” NFT startup he’s launching alongside another former OnlyFans exec will let anyone buy, sell and trade virtual tokens featuring influencers and celebrities .
- NFT platform OpenSea fired Nate Chastain, its head of product, in September after he was accused of pre-running transactions on the platform. Now, he has been arrested and charged with insider trading; Lucas there are details.
Here are some of this week’s crypto analysis that you can read on our TC+ subscription service (written by TC’s Jacquelyn Melinek):
VC funding for crypto projects fell in May, but many investors remain optimistic
VC funding in crypto fell on a monthly basis from April to May, but many investors are not concerned. “For investors like us, it’s time to buy,” Stan Miroshnik, partner and co-founder of 10T Holdings, told TechCrunch. The speed of capital deployment can become more measurable as investors and founders become more calculated, but VCs will continue to have a strong amount of activity, Miroshnik said. Despite the bleak sentiment in the digital asset market, crypto funds will indeed continue to invest aggressively, Saurabh Sharma, head of investment at Jump Crypto, told Cointelegraph. TechCrunch.
As cryptocurrency becomes more popular, can it continue to be decentralized?
Whether it’s first-time crypto buyers or those looking to learn more about the NFT, Bitcoin, and the crypto ecosystem in general, crypto awareness has grown globally. But as it gains momentum, regulators worldwide will continue to monitor the space more closely, but the title speaks for itself: what does this mean for the future of crypto? Several industry founders and executives have weighed in on their thoughts.
Longtime Bitcoiner Trainer Dan Held Says This ‘Crypto Winter’ Won’t Be As Harsh As Others
As the crypto market remains bearish, some longtime market participants, like Dan Held, chief growth marketing officer at crypto exchange Kraken, are not worried. Despite a lot of talk about a crypto winter going viral in the community, Held said the sentiment towards this current market cycle is different. While he – and many others – have survived the major market cycles for many years, the narrative has changed a lot, thanks to more prominent institutions and huge amounts of capital entering the market. this school.
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