Coinbase launched a ranking scale system to rate members of Congress on how favorable they are to cryptocurrency, after previously banning political activism at work in 2020.
The new feature, which CEO Brian Armstrong announced on Twitter, allows users to “learn more about where members of Congress in the U.S. stand on crypto.”
The portal shows politicians’ statements on crypto as well as their website and Twitter profiles and uses publicly available data to give politicians at the federal level a scale ranking on how supportive they are of crypto.
“Over time, we want to help pro-crypto candidates solicit donations from the crypto community (in crypto),” Armstrong said in a thread. “We’ll also expand to get more geographic coverage in global elections, and add data on various candidates running for office (not just current elected officials).”
This marks a stark departure for the web-based crypto trading plat form after Coinbase went viral during the summer 2020 racial justice protests for banning political activism
Armstrong recently amended this, saying he wanted to stay out of politics that are “unrelated to [Coinbase’s] mission.”
Coinbase did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Users on Twitter were quick to point out the hypocrisy of a platform that had previously banned political discussion now launching a scale that ranked politicians.
“‘No politics at work’ seems to somehow always mean ‘no politics that I don’t like,’” one user wrote.
“You don’t understand. I meant politics that make me uncomfortable,” another wrote facetiously.
*First Published: Sep 15, 2022, 11:50 am CDT
Jacob Seitz is a freelance journalist originally from Columbus, Ohio, interested in the intersection of culture and politics.