For the second time in less than a year, popular cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has banned conservative-leaning social media network Gab and founder and CEO Andrew Torba from transacting on its platform, joining a long list of companies - including Medium, Joyent, GoDaddy, PayPal and Stripe - that have cut ties with the social network, according to CoinSpice.
Gab announced the ban in a series of tweets, and used the decision as a reason to advocate for decentralized exchanges.As predicted: the on ramps and off ramps (exchanges) are going to start censoring not only companies, but also individuals. @coinbase has now banned both Gab's merchant account and Andrew Torba's personal account.Decentralized exchanges are the future. pic.twitter.com/LXkjblrdgu — Gab.com (@getongab) January 4, 2019 The next phase of financial censorship as people move to bitcoin is censoring the on ramps and off ramps (exchanges.)This will force and incentivize people to not use those ramps and instead only use bitcoin for all things.Keep censoring. It will only push people to bitcoin. — Gab.com (@getongab) January 4, 2019
The ban is reportedly a delayed reaction to the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, which happened more than two months ago, and was also the pretext for the widespread banning of Gab, with organizations like PayPal accusing Gab of offering safe harbor to White Nationalists and Nazis. Gab has generated quite a bit of controversy despite having fewer than 1 million users.
Gab's account was arbitrarily banned by Coinbase back in June, though access was swiftly reinstated.
As CS points out, the banning of Gab by a prominent crypto exchange poses an interesting conundrum for the crypto community, which counts many devoted libertarians among its ranks.For crypto enthusiasts, quite a few of whom count themselves as libertarian-ish or fellow travelers, Gab poses an interesting problem. Must a site necessarily endorse views it helps to sp...