WikiLeaks calls for Coinbase boycott after the cryptocurrency exchange closes its store account
The cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has closed the account of the WikiLeaks Shop -- the official source of WikiLeaks merchandise -- citing violations of its terms of services.
WikiLeaks is not happy about this and is calling for a "global blockade" of Coinbase in protest, saying the exchange is an "unfit member of the crypto community". The WikiLeaks Shop has itself not been closed, and it is still able to accept Bitcoin payments -- just not via Coinbase.
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In a message sent to The WikiLeaks Shop, Coinbase said: "Coinbase is a regulated Money Services Business under FinCEN (FinCEN.gov), and as part of achieving this goal, we are legally obligated to implement regulatory compliance mechanisms. Upon careful review, we believe your account has engaged in prohibited use in violation of our Terms of Service and we regret to inform you that we can no longer provide you with access to our service."
The WikiLeaks Shop used Twitter to go public about the Coinbase account closure:
ANNOUNCE: Coinbase has blocked the official @WikiLeaks shop from its platform without notice or explanation. You can continue to donate #Bitcoin to WikiLeaks at https://t.co/lvhoyhlqUa. #Coinbase #DefendWL #Cryptocurrency #Ethereum #BitcoinCash #ReconnectJulian pic.twitter.com/4BSS023OOk
— WikiLeaks Shop (@WikiLeaksShop) April 21, 2018
Over on the main WikiLeaks Twitter feed, the whistleblowing organization called for a boycott of Coinbase in protest:
WikiLeaks will call for a global blockade of Coinbase next week as an unfit member of the crypto community. Coinbase, a large Californian Bitcoin processor, responding to a concealed influence, has blocked the entirely harmless @WikiLeaksShop in a decision approved by management. https://t.co/PAldF8b12P
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) April 21, 2018
Coinbase has not given any specific details about how the WikiLeaks Shop violated its terms.