TL;DR: Welcome to In Case You Missed It (ICYMI), a daily crypto news update. Tencent to create in house digital currency research team. Vitalik Buterin slams Binance DEX. Wilshire Phoenix Bitcoin ETF proposal decision postponed. VeChain to call vote on blocking hack-tainted addresses. Bakkt announced Mike Blandina as new CEO, and Uzbekistan illegalizes cryptocurrency purchases.
Tencent to Research Digital Currencies
Tencent, the internet tech behemoth of China, is creating a digital currency research team according to reports from local media. This new direction of the company would be influenced by the apparent change of heart China is having about cryptocurrencies and blockchain tech. Tencent owns WeChat, an instant messaging and payments company that, along with AliPay, accounts for more than half of mobile payments. This development would have to do with the introduction of DCEP, the digital currency promoted by the Chinese government.
Vitalik Buterin Slams Binance DEX
The binance DEX claims to be a DEX right in the name, but it's hardly decentralized. Seems like a way better target than ethereum, which merely has a few governance values that some BTC people don't like.
— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) December 21, 2019
Vitalik Buterin, co-creator of Ethereum, stated Ethereum critics should focus on other entities, like Binance DEX, to criticize levels of centralization. Answering a series of statements made on social networks, Buterin stated he thought Binance DEX was a better fitting target for centralization criticism. “The Binance DEX claims to be a DEX right in the name, but it’s hardly decentralized,” he declared. He continued arguing Ethereum had several governance values BTC people just don’t like.
Wilshire Phoenix ETF Proposal Decision Postponed by SEC
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), postponed a decision about the Wilshire Phoenix Bitcoin ETF. The SEC has been rejecting or postponing every application a Bitcoin ETF, arguing price manipulation and custody for the underlying assets are still issues to be solved in the industry. Bitwise, a cryptocurrency index fund that also applied, sent a letter to the SEC recently touching upon these same subjects and possible solutions.
VeChain Calls on Vote to Block Tainted Addresses
VeChain, a blockchain supply and management-oriented cryptocurrency VET, is calling for an All Stakeholder Vote to decide whether to make 469 tainted addresses into burn-addresses, and burn 727 million VET stolen in a hacking incident last week. The addresses have been blocked using a masternode patch approved by the community, and the funds cannot be moved until resolution of the issue. The hacking incident is still being investigated, but no relevant information has been discovered to solve it.
Bakkt Promotes Mike Blandina to CEO
Mike Blandina, former Bakkt chief product officer, has been promoted to be the new CEO of the bitcoin futures company, taking the role Kelly Loeffler left vacant. Loeffler was chosen by the Governor of Georgia to be the substitute of Republican Johnny Isakson in the US Senate, who abandoned his seat due to health concerns. Blandina steps in after having important management roles in PayPal and Google. Now, under Blandina’s leadership, Bakkt is expected to launch a new consumer-oriented app next year.
Uzbekistan Illegalizes Cryptocurrency Purchases
Uzbekistan, an Asian former Soviet-associated republic, illegalized cryptocurrency purchases in the country, as new regulation for exchange operations has recently been approved. The regulation states cryptocurrencies cannot be used as payment, and that these newly licensed exchanges will be limited to sell cryptocurrencies to foreigners. Uzbekistan does not have national cryptocurrency exchanges yet, but this is a stringent law believed to slow or even stall the development of the industry in the country.
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