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What happens to Influencers that promoted ICOs and Crypto projects?

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Floyd Mayweather paid $600,000 in a settlement against SEC charges, who’s next?

SEC issued a public statement in November of 2017 warning individuals promoting investment vehicles such as stocks, ICOs, cryptocurrencies and other investments without disclosing their compensation arrangements.

Specifically, SEC stated that “these endorsements may be unlawful if they do not disclose the nature, source, and amount of any compensation paid, directly or indirectly, by the company in exchange for the endorsement.”

The operating word here is ‘disclose’.

Interestingly, providing a ‘disclaimer’ stating that ‘I am not a financial advisor and do not rely on my opinion’ is not enough. You have to disclose if you are being compensated for promoting / shilling.

Cryptotapas has not endorsed any project because someone offered financial incentives.  We have always picked projects that personally interested us and we share what we come across during our research it leads us to either invest or ignore a particular project.

That is not the case for many social media influencers.

Many backroom deals are entered into before an influencer talks about a project, all without disclosing that they are being compensated.

ICOs and Crypto projectsAccording to Doug Polk’s YouTube Video, Suppoman was caught on live video when a message from Indahash team offering 2 BTC popped up on his screen, in the video, we can see that Suppoman immediately reacts “Oops, you didn’t see that”. Suppoman later denied having anything to do with shilling the project for money.  It would be interesting to see influencers in such a predicament would be bought under investigation, and if so, how? Suppoman does not live in the United States, he lives in the United Kingdom.

In another case, a letter made circles in the crypto community talking about corruption (or insider trading of sorts) involving Ian Balina. It would be interesting to see if this alleged shill will come to light and what action this will result in. According to his LinkedIn page, Ian Balina lives in Washington DC.

ICOs and Crypto projectsOn November 29, 2018, SEC settled charges with Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Khaled Khaled (DJ Khaled), “for failing to disclose payments they received for promoting investments in Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs).” Mayweather paid $614775 and Khaled settled $157,725, without admitting or denying the findings to settle the charges by SEC.  This latest action re-triggered the discussion about SEC going after social media influencers who hid their private dealings about getting compensated for promoting / shilling a particular project is what is going to be the hot topic going into 2019.

Will SEC take the same route of imposing penalties against the social media influencers who concealed the information about being compensation for promoting / shilling about an ICO or crypto project or will SEC press for more serious charges?

We will have to wait and see.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

About the author

RK Reddy holds two Masters degrees, one in Accounting and another in Business Administration with over 15 years of experience in the financial services industry.

RK Reddy is an ardent fan of Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies.  You can see the excitement about this new technology in every article on Cryptotapas.com.  Sometimes this excitement leads to an overly optimistic view.  Guilty as charged.   RK Reddy says “what may seem like an ‘overly optimistic expectation’ today may become an everyday norm in 5-10 years; look at the history of cars or airplanes, Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies belong to the similar frame of reference.”  Of course, that is just his opinion.

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Press Release

Ethereum Creator Vitalik Buterin to Deliver Special Keynote at LABITCONF’s Digital Experience December 7-12

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Labitconf

Cryptocurrency Pioneers Anthony Di Iorio, Charlie Shrem, Adam Back, Peter McCormack, Erik Voorhees, Brock Pierce and Jukka Blomberg also join speaker lineup

LABITCONF will feature a scavenger hunt for a $1,000 crypto prize and a closing celebration on the “Moon”

ARGENTINA, December 3, 2020 – Latin American Bitcoin & Blockchain Conference (LABITCONF), the world’s longest running bitcoin and blockchain event in the LatAm region, today announced a special keynote address will be given by Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin at the LABITCONF virtual event December 7-12, 2020.

Other LABITCONF key speakers include Blockstream Co-Founder Adam Back, host of “What Bitcoin Did” podcast and “Defiance” podcast Peter McCormack, ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees, and LocalBitcoins CMO Jukka Blomberg, as well as an “Oldies but Goodies” panel with cryptocurrency’s earliest pioneers including Ethereum Co-Founder Anthony Di Iorio, Bitcoin Foundation Founder Charlie Shrem, and former independent candidate for President of the United States Brock Pierce.

“We are excited to have these top industry leaders and early crypto pioneers headlining our event. Aligning with our space-theme, you could say our roster is like ‘a sky full of stars,” said Rodolfo Andragnes, LABITCONF Chief General Coordinator. “Our attendees can gain valuable insight into blockchain’s journey to look into its future.”

The full LABITCONF event will explore the impact of cryptocurrency on the Latin American and global scene, and its potential for social and financial transformation, all in a one-of-a-kind, free, digital experience. The agenda will be organized into five days, each with a theme: Bitcoin, Policy and Regulation, Bitcoin Development, Decentralized Finance, and Social Impact Projects.

Day six will feature a VR ‘Moon Party’ closing celebration, complete with a live DJ, avatars in spacesuits, a dinosaur park, global art and more. LABITCONF is historically known not only for its content, but for giving attendees a cultural experience through unforgettable, fun, and creative networking events.

All attendees are welcome to participate in the sponsored Seed Pirates‘ scavenger hunt to figure out the 12 word seed (BIP39 dictionary) that opens a prize wallet of $1,000 in crypto. Clues will be floating in the Moon Party in the form of riddles, songs, movies, puzzles and more. Seed Pirates has been running since March and has given out over $5,000 over 30 maps (including one with the 4th of July’s declaration). To participate, register at seedpirates.com and join their Telegram channel to learn more about solving techniques.

All public and private institutions, investors, entrepreneurs, and the general public interested in the technical, political, and legal foundations of blockchain technology are encouraged to attend. Complimentary pre-registration is available at www.labitconf.com.

For more information, follow @LABITCONF on social media and follow the hashtag #LABITCONF2020 on Twitter.

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Press Release

Latin American Bitcoin Conference Crosses Frontiers Through Digital Experience, Joined By Industry Heavyweights Andreas M. Antonopoulos, Alena Vranova, Alex Gladstein, and Bruce Fenton

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LAbitconf

ARGENTINA, November 23, 2020 – Latin American Bitcoin & Blockchain Conference (LABITCONF), the longest running bitcoin and blockchain event in the region, today announced a new round of speakers and agenda topics for their event on Dec 7-12. Despite the global pandemic landscape, LABITCONF will continue to provide quality content on Bitcoin technology, as well as international monetary policies, legal challenges and the most innovative Blockchain implementations.

In LABITCONF’s  digital event this year, different technologies and proposals will be combined to make the saying “Not just a conference” a reality. Unlike most virtual events, LABITCONF will include, in addition to regular sessions,  five 10-minute videos with exclusive, informative content in a three-dimensional format for attendees to learn and discuss the most important topics in bitcoin and blockchain.

LABITCONF is known for proposing different points of view on issues on the public agenda. The event achieves this by creating a highly curated agenda with industry leaders like Andreas M. Antonopoulos, Alena Vranova, Stephan Livera, Alex Gladstein, Bruce Fenton, Matthew Mežinskis, Griff Green, Jordi Baylina, Aron Coeli, Alejandro Planzas, Rocelo Lopes, Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar, Sergio Lerner, and Adrian Garelik.

Historically the conference has supported the formation and growth of communities in the Latin American region. This year, faithful to its history, dedicated agenda content will be focused on the main communities in the region: Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia and Venezuela, Alianza Blockchain Iberoamérica, Bitcoin Argentina, Fundación Bitcoin Iberoamérica, EspacioBitcoin, and La Bitcoineta. In an effort to make knowledge more accessible, this year’s event will also incorporate introductory content in Spanish for enthusiasts and beginners.

LABITCONF will be defined by 5 themes that structure each day of the conference, followed by a ‘Party on the Moon’ on the sixth day of the event. LABITCONF’s goal is to understand and reflect on how technology continues to evolve and redefine not only finance, but the world as we know it. In addition to the valuable content that characterizes LABITCONF, there will be optional streaming panels and other expert chats.

“The financial chaos that has prevailed in Latin America has made it a revolutionary region in the adoption of new technologies and innovations in cryptocurrencies,” said Rodolfo Andragnes, LABITCONF Chief General Coordinator. “Representatives from Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia and Venezuela will take to the stage to debate multi-sectorally and tell the global audience about the reality of Bitcoin and Blockchain in the region.”

LABITCONF 2020 Agenda Topics include:

  • Pillars of Bitcoin: The fundamentals of Bitcoin as a crypto asset. Privacy and data. Internet of value and Bitcoin as a time reserve.

  • Policy and Regulation: Current context, monetary issue and the role of Central Banks. New challenges looming regarding the future of money.

  • Bitcoin development: What is the roadmap for Bitcoin, how this technology evolves and in what ways the industry is going to change.

  • Decentralized Finance: A tour of the latest in Decentralized Finance (DEFI) and its comparison to Centralized Finance (CEFI). Issues such as decentralized identity will also be addressed.

  • Social impact projects: Community initiatives and concrete cases of how the blockchain is being used to promote positive actions towards a more just society.

LABITCONF invites all public and private institutions, investors, entrepreneurs, and the general public interested in the technical, political, and legal foundations of blockchain technology to attend. The event will explore the  impact that cryptocurrencies have on the Latin American and global scene, and their potential for social and financial transformation.

Complimentary pre-registration is available here: www.labitconf.com.

For more information, follow @LABITCONF on social media and use the hashtag #LABITCONF2020 on Twitter.

About LABITCONF

Now in its 8th year, the “Latin American Bitcoin & Blockchain  Conference” (LABITCONF), is the oldest and most relevant blockchain event in the  region. Year after year 90+ international speakers share their  knowledge with attendees from different industries  with entrepreneurs and investors from Oceania, Asia and Europe.

This non-profit event is organized annually in different Latin  American countries, with the aim of making visible the diverse trajectories  and initiatives of local projects that explore decentralized technologies.

LABITCONF has positioned itself as the most prominent  Latin  American event for the crypto adopter ecosystem. This region has suffered  frequent currency crises and abusive capital controls, which is why these  countries have been more open to rethinking new alternatives and adopting  decentralized technologies through blockchain solutions. LABITCONF has fostered entrepreneurship, growing a  network of blockchain communities from several Latin  American countries that has led to the start of many large-scale projects.

More about LABITCONF www.labitconf.com

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Press Release

ICON Blockchain Network Launches ICONFi, A New Crypto Staking-and-Earn Service Built for Beginners

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IconFi launch

ICONFi makes it easier than ever to grow your digital asset investments starting with ICX, BTC, ETH, and USDT

Singapore — November 23, 2020 at 7 am EST —  The ICON blockchain network, one of the world’s largest decentralized networks, today announced ICONFi (https://icon-fi.com/), a new cryptocurrency staking-and-earn service built for beginners. ICONFi introduces easy-to-use features like one-click staking and automated re-staking to make it easier than ever for people to grow their digital asset investments. The service supports ICX, BTC, ETH, and USDT, with plans to add new cryptocurrencies in the future based on demand.

For many crypto users, decentralized wallets are challenging to operate properly, resulting in the loss of private keys or passwords and ultimately the loss of funds. This can deter people from the crypto ecosystem altogether. ICONFi was designed to solve this problem with a simple, secure, low-friction service for helping users stake and grow their digital asset investments. ICONFi is a hassle-free, all-in-one wallet that integrates services designed to grow digital assets of all kinds, allowing beginners to get involved with crypto yield products and services.

“Our goal with ICONFi is to create a more inclusive and diverse ICON community by bringing clear benefits to crypto beginners,” said Min Kim, ICON Project Founder. “We believe ICONFi can be the gateway to other DeFi products like decentralized wallets, as well as an entry point for the ICON ecosystem and blockchain technology as a whole.”

Key features of ICONFi include: 

  1. One-Click Staking for Rewards. This feature simplifies the staking process, and helps ICX holders vote more easily.

  2. Auto ICX Claiming and Re-Staking for More Rewards. Many users are frustrated with the process of manually claiming and re-staking their digital assets. This highly requested feature automates the process to accelerate staking, and helps to further secure the ICON network.

  3. Staking and Earn Support for Additional Digital Assets. ICONFi will support savings products for digital assets outside of the network, starting with BTC, ETH, and USDT. Support for additional cryptocurrencies will be based on community interest.

ICONFi is led by Min Kim, Founder of the ICON Project, and Sean Kim, a seasoned expert in financial products and underlying trading systems. The ICONFi team currently consists of fifteen (15) members with extensive background in quantitative trading, asset management, business operations and blockchain technology.

The service will open in December 2020. At launch, ICONFi will offer a 20% APY fixed-term product on select crypto asset deposits.

ABOUT ICONFi

ICONFi (https://icon-fi.com/), a cryptocurrency staking and earn service. ICONFi provides a simple solution for staking ICON’s cryptocurrency, ICX, and allows users to earn yields on other assets including BTC, ETH, and USDT. ICONFi helps crypto newcomers grow their investments with a simple, secure, low-friction service. ICONFi’s features include one-click staking for rewards and automated claiming and re-staking.

Company Contact: support@icon-fi.com

Media Contact: Transform Group, icon@transformgroup.com

IconFi IconFi

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