Watch: can influencers be successfully sued for shilling scam cryptocurrency

Originally published at: Watch: can influencers be successfully sued for shilling scam cryptocurrency | Boing Boing

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That most of these “influencers” probably have no idea how a cryptocurrency even works (or, for that matter, what a security is) and that they’re as financially illiterate as their followers doesn’t matter.

If they’re shilling one on the expectation that their own compensatory grant of the math beanie babies will go up or because they’re being paid in good old fashioned fiat currency, they’re materially participating in a pump-and-dump scheme and should be penalised appropriately when things inevitably go pear-shaped.

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So what’s the difference between a “scam” cryptocurrency and a regular one? (I know, begging the question there.) I would assume a “scam” cryptocoin would have to be one where there’s no actual cryptocoin, but he seems to be talking about situations where there is a coin of some sort, so…

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Or money, or math, or just about anything. Taking advise from them is tantamount to punching ones self in the face.

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Yeah… :fist_left:… I prefer… :fist_right:… to leave out… :facepunch:… the middleman… :dizzy_face:

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Bold strategy.

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In case no one has listened to it, the BBC’s ‘The Missing Crypto Queen’ is worth your time. It’s about Dr Ruja Ignatova and her fake crypto currency called OneCoin which is estimated to have suckered 3 million people and taken tens of billions of dollars, often from the poorest people in the world. The she vanished…

It’s equal measures eye-opening and terrifying:

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Well, I hope all the people who bought that roll your own crypto training course sold for 97.5% off of at the Boing Boing Store will take note and be careful when they are advertising their new cryptocurrency, which they had better not name BoingCoin.

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If you name it ScamCoin, can you still be sued?

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It could be srs biz.

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“For entertainment purposes only.”

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The scam cryptocurrencies being discussed here are the equivalent of pump-and-dump penny-stock schemes. There’s no intention that these sh*tcoins will even achieve the dodgy status of Bitcoin and the like.

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How is that any different than these people hawking woo like Goop or expensive vitamins, what ever. I will have to listen to it in a min.

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Those are consumer products, not securities.

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I guess I was thinking that if it’s a “real” cryptocoin, it doesn’t have any inherent value and the intentions don’t really matter as nothing is stopping it from taking on a life of its own - e.g. with “Dogecoin.” But I suppose if the creators are doing a pump-and-dump, it’s not very likely to have much life after that… Also the whole NFT thing is connected to pump-and-dump cryptocurrency schemes, but there’s another layer on top of it, where the shills are only indirectly shilling the cryptocurrency and are also themselves the dupes…

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Before you proceed with such a thing, best to have a firm like Fraud Guarantee go over it first.

Nov 2017:

https://www.sec.gov/news/public-statement/statement-potentially-unlawful-promotion-icos

Celebrities and others are using social media networks to encourage the public to purchase stocks and other investments. 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 SEC’s Enforcement Division and Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations encourage investors to be wary of investment opportunities that sound too good to be true. We encourage investors to research potential investments rather than rely on paid endorsements from artists, sports figures, or other icons.

Celebrities and others have recently promoted investments in Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). In the SEC’s Report of Investigation concerning The DAO, the Commission warned that virtual tokens or coins sold in ICOs may be securities, and those who offer and sell securities in the United States must comply with the federal securities laws. Any celebrity or other individual who promotes a virtual token or coin that is a security must disclose the nature, scope, and amount of compensation received in exchange for the promotion. A failure to disclose this information is a violation of the anti-touting provisions of the federal securities laws. Persons making these endorsements may also be liable for potential violations of the anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws, for participating in an unregistered offer and sale of securities, and for acting as unregistered brokers. The SEC will continue to focus on these types of promotions to protect investors and to ensure compliance with the securities laws.

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It does seem like investment advice is very hotly policed, with no allowance whatever for dumbasses. And I think I’m OK with that. Cretins should be more afraid to broadcast their confidently wrong views.

But the contrast’s amazing. You have absolute freedom to incite genocide, armed insurrection, or medical panic; but blaspheme just once against the market – even by accident – and the law will smite you where you stand.

The system couldn’t possibly make its true values any clearer.

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I laugh at the idea of an AnCap “free market”. There’s never been any such thing; there are always rules, and they favor the people in control.

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