How Crypto Meets Politics in the U.S.

by Roman Kondratiev

Brian Armstrong, co-founder and CEO of Coinbase, revealed the company’s intentions to start incorporating crypto policy features into its app. He claimed that by doing this, the 103 million verified Coinbase users will now be able to see where members of Congress and local representatives stand on crypto policies.

How exactly does this feature work?

Coinbase is integrating this feature in cooperation with Crypto Action Network — a social welfare organization (501[c][4]) dedicated to promoting secure crypto policies in the U.S.

Crypto Action Network will provide data with rankings of politicians based on various metrics. These scorecards grade each member of Congress on their public statements about crypto from “A” to “F.”

This feature will inform verified Coinbase users about how crypto-friendly their politicians are. Also, it will allow users to register to vote, stay up to date with local political events, and get educated on crypto politics.

So far, this integration will work only in the U.S., with plans to expand the geographic coverage.

What’s the catch?

Recently, Coinbase has been politically active, lobbying for pro-crypto policies. This integration seems to be the next logical step in meeting and influencing U.S. politics.

By providing a ranking system to the platform’s users, Coinbase aims to put external pressure on politicians. With that large user base (103M), this initiative doesn’t seem to have reasons to fail. It’s possible that soon we’ll hear more often from U.S. lawmakers about pro-crypto policies.

The CEO explained in a tweet:

“Crypto advocacy is very important for our mission of increasing economic freedom in the world, and Coinbase will do its part to help. But the crypto community is much bigger than Coinbase – hopefully we can all rally to engage elected leaders and drive sensible policies.”

He added that this feature also helps pro-crypto politicians gather donations from the community.

From the user’s perspective, the new feature can potentially educate millions of people regarding crypto policies. The more educated, the more capable the people are of encouraging U.S. politicians to support pro-crypto initiatives.

Another big hypocrisy?

Almost two years ago, Coinbase essentially banned its employees from discussing political matters at work. As a result, several media sites and analysts have characterized Coinbase’s recent launch as a somewhat hypocritical move.

As we explained in a previous blog post, one of the main ways for organizations to control their reputation is to be consistent in their corporate storytelling. This is where, unfortunately, Coinbase could have done better.

However, we must consider this decision in light of the current political climate. The wide adoption of cryptocurrencies is obviously delayed due to the lack of clear regulations. It’s not a secret that institutional investors and hedge funds are reluctant to engage in the Web3 market because of this legal uncertainty.

Therefore, the crypto industry should applaud Coinbase since this new feature may ultimately shift the tide in favor of cryptocurrencies. And for Coinbase, it may be the way to recover its reputation and adjust its corporate storytelling strategy.

Read more about the corporate storytelling of Web3 companies here.


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