Cryptocurrency exchange giant Coinbase has caused a stir on Twitter after excluding social media site Gab and its founder from services.
This is not the first time Coinbase has chosen to single out social network site Gab, having targeted the site in June 2018, closing its account with the San Francisco based company.
Gab launched in August 2016 as a response to censorship controversies involving major social media companies. Founder and CEO Andrew Torba referred to such companies at the time as “the entirely left-leaning Big Social monopoly.”
Although Coinbase gave no explanation for the Gab shutout last June, social commentator Kevin Pham, suggested it might have been in response to a Gab tweet that “crony capitalism” was behind last year’s SEC announcement that Ethereum was not a security.
At the time, Gab’s response to the first ban was “Centralized crypto exchanges/wallets are cancer and contradictory to everything crypto stands for.”
The new ban comes hours after a Gab tweet attacking exchange censorship and extolling the virtues of decentralization. The social network has gained a reputation for allowing expression of views which are controversial with some referring to the social network as “haven for white supremacists”.
I will be withdrawing whatever funds I have left in Coinbase and never using them again.
— Bitcoin Maximus (@MaximusBitcoin) January 4, 2019
Coinbase has made no comment on its actions against the social media company or its CEO, leaving commentators speculating as to the reason it may have had to penalize a customer, and considering if a curb on freedom of expression is within the remit of a cryptocurrency exchange
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