Sending Ethereum Tips on Twitter Becomes a Reality

After enabling Bitcoin tipping on its platform in September 2021, Twitter has stretched its hands by adding Ethereum to the mix. 

Through a tweet, Twitter said:

“Have you set up Tips on your profile yet so it’s easy for people to show their support? Yes: Cool, we’ve added Paga, Barter by Flutterwave, Paytm, and the option to add your Ethereum address.”

The tipping mechanism enables users to ask for support from different influencers and content creators on Twitter. Therefore, the latest development will allow Twitter users to send tips through the Ethereum (ETH) network.

The Bitcoin tipping feature used the Lightning Network payment gateway Strike to generate BTC Lightning invoices needed to make the payments. 

Therefore, the social media giant is opening up more opportunities by enabling ERC-20 tokens and ETH tips to be made through payment channels like Paytm, Barter by Flutterwave, and Paga.

Johnny Winston, the lead product manager of creator monetization at Twitter, welcomed this development and stated:

“We’re continuing to expand ways to get paid on Twitter which includes more choices for creators and fans who want to use crypto. We’re excited to add the ability for anyone to add their ETH address to Tips.”

Nevertheless, the new feature is not open to domain names utilized by the Ethereum Name Service (ENS). 

Twitter continues to delve deeper into the Ethereum ecosystem, given that it presented an official verification mechanism for non-fungible token (NFT) avatars, allowing some users to set the NFTs they owned as their profile picture last month.

The Twitter avatar of the verified NFT would be different from the standard avatar because it would entail a nice hexagonal border instead of a circle, denoting ownership on the blockchain.

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Argentinians Seek Shelter in Crypto, while Local Inflation Surges over 50%

Annual inflation rates have been going through the roof in Argentina by surging more than 50%. Argentinians, therefore, have resorted to transacting in cryptocurrencies to tame runaway prices.

Lemon Cash, a crypto exchange, is aiding in these efforts by offering Bitcoin reward cards that were first rolled out in November, according to Bloomberg.

Franco Bianchi, the chief marketing officer at Lemon Cash, stated:

“Latin America is a good place for these services. Several of the countries have unstable economies and devalued currencies, and the people seek access to cryptocurrencies as a refuge.”

The demand for the Visa cards, which convert the stipulated cryptocurrency to pesos when making payments, is so high that Lemon Cash intends to increase issuance to three million this year. 

Initially, the crypto exchange had rolled out 100,000 cards, with each purchase guaranteeing the cardholder a 2% cashback in Bitcoin. 

The report noted:

“While the cards have been seen as a marketing tool elsewhere, they’re being used in the nation to help temper the impact of surging prices. Argentines fear and seek cover against an accelerating inflation rate that is already the fourth highest in the world, after Venezuela, Lebanon and Zimbabwe.”

The inflation rate on Argentinian soil does not seem to be slowing down because economists speculate it will hit 55% this year from the present 50.7%. 

The issuance of crypto cards is in high gear in the region, with Ripio, a digital wallet provider, having at least three million users, mainly in Brazil and Argentina. 

Therefore, crypto usage is speculated to continue rising in Argentina because cryptocurrency is deemed a hedge against a cyclical economic crisis that includes hyperinflation, recession, and repeated currency devaluations. 

Meanwhile, Bitcoin miners in Argentina are thriving because of ultra-low utility rates and a surge in capital controls. 

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Digital Asset Firm Castle Island Ventures Raises $250M to Target Web3 Crypto Startups

Digital asset company Castle Island Ventures completed the largest financing in history, up to $250 million to invest in startups focused on building currency networks, financial services and Internet architecture, such as web3.

Castle Island Ventures is a venture capital firm founded by Fidelity alumni Nic Carter and Matt Walsh, focused on public blockchains. They invest in infrastructure and application companies that will enable these transformative protocols to power services for the next billion users.

Castle Island Ventures has raised a total of $30M across 2 funds.

Walsh expressed his hope that in addition to leading the pre-seed stage investment of excellent blockchain startups, he also hopes to lead more excellent web3 companies in Series A investment.

Walsh said in a phone interview with Bloomberg:

“The market opportunity and the wave of entrepreneurs that are actually starting things is just a lot bigger. The way we’ve reacted to the explosion in the space is to beef up our team and give ourselves the ability to go out and be a lot more aggressive in deploying capital in some of these companies.”

As reported by blockchain.News on January 21, Wallet Street Venture Capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz (a16Z) is rallying investors for a $4.5 billion dual fund targeted at making strategic investments in the cryptocurrency ecosystem.

$3.5 billion is billed to be earmarked for its newest cryptocurrency enterprise fund, while $1 billion will be reserved for strategic investments in crypto startups seeking seed funding.

Investments pumped into blockchain startups topped $30 billion in 2021, a figure that surpasses funding received in 2018, 2019, and 2020 combined.

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RCMP Requests Exchanges to Stop Trading with 34 Crypto Wallets, amid the Freedom Fleet Protest

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police has asked several Canadian cryptocurrency exchanges to block transactions on 34 crypto wallets related to the truckers’ “Freedom Fleet” protest, according to the Financial Post report.

Truckers began protesting on January 22 against mandatory vaccinations imposed by the Canadian government’s international travel restrictions. The restrictions require people who enter the country to be vaccinated against COVID-19, resulting in protests against Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government’s mandatory vaccinations, triggered by truck drivers from the United States.

The parade spread across several Canadian cities, including Ottawa’s capital and the largest city Toronto.

These wallets involved various cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Monero, and Cardano addresses.

The protesters had previously raised more than $19 million through fundraising platforms GoFundMe and GiveSendGo, which turned to cryptocurrency after being blocked.

A statement from Toronto-based cryptocurrency exchange CoinSmart reads:

“It is unfortunate that the Emergency Economic Measures Order is indiscriminately targeting the whole cryptocurrency ecosystem,”

“The addresses associated with this alert have been widely disseminated to the entire crypto community here in Canada and have reportedly been reported to the blockchain monitoring software that serves the industry worldwide. We will cooperate with the OPP and the RCMP and fulfil our obligations, if any, under the Emergency Economic Measures Order.”

Donors are reported to have sent more than 20 BTC worth over $870,000 ($1.1 million CAD) to these addresses

In a letter disclosed and issued by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police reads:

“Any information about a transaction or proposed transaction in respect of these addresses is to be immediately disclosed to the Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.”

Earlier this week, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s administration invoked the Emergencies Act, targeting crypto transactions amid the anti-vaccination protests.

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Russian FM says No to Crypto Ban

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that cryptocurrencies should not be banned as advocated by the central bank, but instead, the government should fix the ongoing crypto regulation predicament. - 2022-02-17T160001.459.jpg

The ban proposed by the Bank of Russia stated that cryptocurrencies trading and mining could potentially cause financial instability, but the financial ministry contradicted the proposal of President Vladimir Putin, who called on authorities to find a consensus.

The argument between the finance ministry and the central bank regarding cryptocurrency regulation in Russia has been ongoing for a year and the government is now expected to work on a solution to clarify the status of crypto in the country.

“We will go to our superiors with these disagreements to try to solve the discords,” Siluanov told reporters.

In order to gain a better advantage in this debate, later this week, the finance ministry will file its proposals to the government on how to regulate cryptocurrencies.

The finance ministry of Russia believes that crypto mining should not be banned, but legalisation and taxation should be introduced, while banks and bourses should identify participants trading in the cryptocurrency market.

Reuters reported that Russians have used cryptocurrencies in annual transactions worth about $5 billion. 

Siluanov said:

“If we ban cryptocurrencies, then we need to ban the internet. We don’t use the methods that China uses,” 

While, the Bank of Russia has called for a further adjustment of its cryptocurrency regulation, pointing to the experience of India and China- who in September last year intensified its crackdown on cryptocurrencies with a blanket ban on all crypto transactions and “mining”.

Meanwhile, Valeriy Lyakh, head of the central bank’s department for countering market misconduct, also reiterated his institution’s stance that cryptocurrencies carry risks in financial services.

“We do not consider it feasible to take cryptocurrencies to the regulatory field,” he said.

According to a report by Moscow-based news outlet The Bell, data collected from Russian authorities showed that the country could earn 1 trillion rubles ($13 billion) each year by taxing cryptocurrency transactions.

The global crypto market capitalization was $1.87 trillion in 2021, with a 12% share coming from Russians. The report further added that Russians form 10% of the crypto users or 12 million people who use foreign cryptocurrency exchanges, the report added.

Previously, Bloomberg reported that Kremlin estimated the Russian cryptocurrency market values more than 16.5 trillion rubles ($214 billion), which is around 12% of the total value of global crypto market capitalization – a number significantly higher than the $5 billion put forward by the central bank. 

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UK FCA Shares Concerns on Binance-Paysafe Deal

The United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has shared its concerns about the recent partnership between Binance Exchange and Paysafe, a London-based multinational online payments company.


As reported by The Telegraph, Binance has informed its once-stranded retail customers in the UK that they can now make Pounds Sterling deposits through the Paysafe infrastructure.

Recalling that the FCA proscribed all of Binance’s activities in the UK last year, a move that kickstarted the trading platform’s regulatory woes amongst a slew of other watchdogs around the world. Following the ban on Binance’s trading activities, traditional banking institutions like Barclays PLC that once supported the platform halted their services, making it impossible for the exchange’s UK customers to transact. 

The partnership with Paysafe has changed the narrative, and the FCA said its “concerns about Binance remain”, according to a report by the Financial Times. 

“We received a notification of this business partnership but have limited powers to object to arrangements of this kind,” the FCA spokesperson said, adding that “Paysafe is aware of our concerns and is subject to close ongoing supervision consistent with our approach for firms of its size. We cannot comment further.”

Binance has often maintained that its goal is to work with regulators worldwide to become a regulated trading platform, even in the UK. While its applications for a license from the FCA are still ongoing, the trading platform has often reiterated its readiness to work with regulators, adding that it takes its compliance obligations very seriously.

Paysafe also came on the defence of Binance, and per The Telegraph’s report, the payments startup through a spokesman said:

“We take our regulatory obligations extremely seriously and comply with the highest industry standards. We have performed thorough due diligence on Binance to ensure that they also comply with these high standards, as we do with all merchant partners.”

While the FCA’s concerns are noted, it is unclear whether any regulatory crackdown will be introduced in the near term to crack down on the partnership between both companies. 

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Fireblocks Acquires Stablecoin Payments Startup- First Digital

Fireblocks, a digital asset custody, transfer, and settlement platform, has announced its acquisition of First Digital, which is a stablecoin, and digital asset payments technology platform, in a deal whose financial detail was not revealed. 


As the company unveiled, the acquisition will strengthen the Fireblocks’ payment offering by granting access to all of its Payment Service Providers (PSPs) in its network to accept and conduct their businesses through digital currencies. The acquisition will help all the PSPs within the Fireblock ecosystem in response to the surging demand amongst retail investors for crypto-related payments.

“We’re thrilled to welcome First Digital to the Fireblocks family as we accelerate our expansion plans to help every business become a crypto business. We’re pushing ‘fast forward’ to give PSPs the suite of tools they need to begin accepting crypto payments,” said Michael Shaulov, CEO and Co-Founder.

Fireblocks is currently valued at $8 billion following its $500 million funding round in January. Its deep liquidity arguably paved the way for this acquisition. The deep capital has also positioned the Fireblocks startup as the highest-valued digital asset infrastructure provider globally. This designation will bolster its plans to champion the emergence of a new digital payments enterprise.

Following the acquisition, the First Digital team will join the Fireblocks engineering team, adding their knowledge and expertise in the payments space to the latter firm’s growing tech stack. Ran Goldi, the Chief Executive Officer, will also assume a new role as the Vice President of Payments at Fireblocks.

Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) are becoming a very prominent trend in the digital currency ecosystem today. To maintain a balanced stance in being prepared for the onboarding of the following 1 billion users that will enter the digital currency ecosystem, firms with adequate backing from Venture Capital (VC) firms like FTX Derivatives Exchange have been making several strategic acquisitions last year.

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Bybit Secures Multi-Year Partnership Deal with Red Bull

Following a 3-year deal, Singapore-based crypto assets trading platform Bybit has become the Principal Team Partner for Oracle Red Bull Racing, one of the most successful Formula 1 teams.

As announced by Red Bull, the deal is worth $50 million annually and will be paid in cash and the trading platform’s native token, the BitDAO (BIT) tokens.

Bybit will form a major part of the Red Bull innovation team and help champion several initiatives in two primary ways, exclusively as the Cryptocurrency Exchange Partner and as the Team’s Tech Incubator Partner. Bybit will assist in coordinating “a range of crypto-inspired initiatives from crypto-literacy to promoting the growth of green technologies.”

Both Bybit and Red Bull will also be engaged in the “promotion of sustainability, diversity, STEM careers and recognition and support for women in blockchain as well as to introduce coding to new audiences.”

“It’s fitting too that, as we enter a new generation of competition of F1 in 2022, with an advanced and potentially game-changing new philosophy of cars taking to the track, that Bybit also exists at the cutting edge of technology. They share the Team’s passion to exist at the forefront of technological innovation, to set the competitive pace, and to disrupt the status quo,” said Oracle Red Bull Racing Team Principal and CEO Christian Horner.

Bybit will help the team in developing and distributing its fan tokens. As the tech incubator, Bybit will also be tasked with managing the team’s Non-Fungible Token (NFT) collections.

It is not uncommon to find a digital assets trading platform inking a sponsorship deal with a Formula 1 team. was the first digital assets exchange service provider to ink a related deal with an F1 team when it secured a sponsorship deal with Aston Martin last year. The embrace of racing sports teams is growing as the go-to strategy to push crypto’s publicity into the global limelight.

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Preemptive Measures Needed to Regulate Crypto Market, FSB Says

Regulators need to prepare measures in advance to bring the crypto market to obey rules and regulations, as risks from the sector could grow quickly, a risk monitoring watchdog for the G20 economies said. - 2022-02-17T111853.069.jpg

The Financial Stability Board (FSB) said that although crypto assets currently dominate a small proportion of the financial system, gaps in data make it difficult to assess their full use, and many investors do not entirely understand what they are buying.

The FSB reported that big banks and hedge funds have also stepped foot into the sector with derivatives referencing crypto assets in complex investment strategies.

As such, financial stability risks could rapidly escalate, underscoring the need for timely and preemptive evaluation of possible policy responses, the report said.

“If the current trajectory of growth in scale and interconnectedness of crypto-assets to these institutions were to continue, this could have implications for global financial stability.” 

Cryptoassets form a market that is highly volatile and still opaque. Hence, regulators said a significant concern about the sector is how a meltdown in crypto assets could feed into the broader financial industry.

In a major incident in the crypto sector last May, Bitcoin and Ether saw a massive plunge after China tightened curbs on crypto. Therefore, yields on benchmark U.S. and German government bonds fell as investors dumped digital tokens for perceived safe-haven assets.

Decentralised finance (DeFi), a crypto offshoot, is another concern for the FSB since it allows users to make cryptocurrency transactions while bypassing the traditional gatekeepers of finance. It has also become a tool for criminal activities.

According to Reuters, DeFi soared in popularity during the pandemic as rock-bottom interest rates pushed investors to search for yield.

“Without sufficient regulation and market oversight, DeFi and associated platforms might present risks to financial stability,” the FSB report said.

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Ethereum’s Growth Hit 1.53M New Addresses per Month in 2021

Ethereum (ETH) capped 2021 on a high with a 399% annual return. This significant run can be linked to the fact that more participants joined the ETH network at a rate of 1.53 million new addresses monthly.

Market insight provider IntoTheBlock explained:

“Ethereum users growth in a nutshell- There are 70.4m addresses holding $ETH- Just in 2021, it increased 18.36m. That means the network was growing at a pace of 1.53m addresses per month.”


Source: IntoTheBlock

IntoTheBlock added that the number of addresses with a balance is an ideal metric needed to show Ethereum adoption, going through the roof.

Ethereum is also attracting all types of players, given that the number of addresses with between 0.1 and 1 ETH recently reached historic highs, collectively holding 1.78 million ETH.

Furthermore, 1 to 10 ETH addresses hit a new milestone by breaching the 1 million mark. 

Ethereum adoption also recently got a boost as median fees nosedived to a 6-month low, raising the question of whether a rebound was imminent because the second largest cryptocurrency has been trading below the all-time high (ATH) price of $4,850 set in November 2021. 

Is Ethereum eyeing the $5,000 level? 

Ethereum’s eyes might be looking at the $5K level if the $3,200 area is broken based on the formation of a likely inverse head and shoulder pattern.


Source: TradingView

“Ethereum is forming a potential inverse head and shoulder pattern. Valid when we close above the orange line. Both Bitcoin and ETH look primed for big breakouts. Together these two assets form 58% of the entire market. If they go, then everything will go,” market analyst Lark Davis stated.

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Bitcoin (BTC) $ 27,668.41 1.46%
Ethereum (ETH) $ 1,670.34 3.11%
Litecoin (LTC) $ 66.87 1.13%
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $ 243.68 0.35%