Moves Forward and Backward in the Crypto Space
Coinbase has just announced the expansion of its Visa debit card service to 6 more European countries. This will allow users to spend their digital assets with ease in Spain, Germany, France, Italy, Ireland, and the Netherlands.
Any store that accepts Visa will work with the card, and Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin will all be legal tender now. The card works by converting the customer’s cryptocurrency into fiat currency, Euros in this case, for a fee, and UK payment processor PaySafe is the issuer of the cards.
According to the CEO of Coinbase UK, the 1,000 free cards they issued were snapped up in moments when this service was first released. This is a niche service right now, but as we constantly say, it is one more step on the path to mass adoption.
Exchanges Moving Backward
In somewhat of a move backward, Bittrex has announced that US customers will now be blocked from trading 32 cryptocurrencies. As of June 21, coins like QTUM and STORJ will be inaccessible. Customers have received an email detailing the change in policies.
Users will not be able to buy or sell the specified coins and all open orders will be canceled. However, users will still be able to store these coins in their Bittrex wallet for as long as the coins are supported by the company as a whole.
It is not exactly clear why Bittrex is following this course of action, but it could have to do with recent crackdowns on their operations and regulatory issues in the US. This all comes at the same time as there is some confusion about whether Binance’s decentralized exchange will be blocking users from certain countries. As soon as something like this occurs, the debates about decentralized vs. centralized occur and people start to throw invectives around. Right now, it seems as if the DEX is unable to block countries, but Binance will still be blocking based on geolocation of traders.
Sneaky Way to Push Forward Adoption?
In a strange twist of irony, Justin Sun, the CEO and founder of Tron, has won the charity auction for a lunch with Warren Buffett. After paying a little more than $4.5 million in the eBay auction, he will get to bring 7 friends for a steak lunch with the world-famous investor.
All charity proceeds go to the Glide Foundation, which focuses on fighting inequality for oppressed communities. 100% of the contribution is planned to help people overcome homelessness, addiction, hunger, and social isolation.
Considering that Buffett has stated that he thinks Bitcoin is “probably rat poison squared” and generally doesn’t look all too favorably on highly speculative investments, it is interesting to ponder what will be discussed during the lunch.
Sun’s apparent goal is to convince Buffett of the recent progress of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. Sun has requested a change of venue to Silicon Valley, which represents the first time the lunch hasn’t been held in New York City since the beginning of this charity lunch tradition in 2004.
In his eyes, this is the perfect chance to try and bridge the traditional investing world with the tech and blockchain world. We’ll see how that goes, but at least he’s already succeeded in boosting Tron’s profile and getting blockchain taken more seriously.