The largest crypto donations to Ukraine are $37M. eBay is looking at crypto payments. South Korea has allocated $187M to the metaverse. Hodler’s Digest, February 27-Mar. 5

Hodler’s Digest is available every Saturday to help you keep track of every important news story. A week of Cointelegraph news, including the best and worst quotes, highlights on adoption and regulation, top coins, predictions, and more — all in one place.

Top Stories this Week

Ukraine received $37M in crypto donations tracked so far

Cointelegraph has compiled data for crypto donations to the Ukrainian military, government and charities during the ongoing conflict with Russia. On Monday, the total amount of crypto donations to Ukraine’s government and to charities connected to it had reached $37 millions.

The largest recipient was the “Reserve fund of Ukraine”, which is backed by Kuna, a local crypto exchange. It received approximately $13 million in BTC, USDT, and other assets. Next was Come Back Alive charity, which raked in $7.2million. According to the group, it is supporting the resistance efforts of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Among other things, UkraineDAO sold a tokenized Ukrainian flag at 2,174 ETH ($5.95million) to help local civil organizations.

South Korea will invest $187M into a national metaverse project

The metaverse was supported by the South Korean Ministry of Science and ICT, which allocated $186.7 million for the creation of a virtual ecosystem that will foster digital content and corporate growth in the country.

The “Expanded Virtual World” metaverse ecosystem will receive funding to help expand virtual industrial growth in cities, education, and media. It also stated that it will host community-oriented creative events to stimulate interest such as a hackathon and metaverse developer contest.

Park Yungyu (head of communication policy at the ministry) stated that it was important to establish a world-class, metaverse ecosystem to foster a new hyperconnected industry.

Shift4 buys The Giving Block, a payment services provider, for $54,000,000

U.S. payment solutions provider Shift4 announced Tuesday that it had acquired The Giving Block in a stock and cash deal valued at $54 million. This deal could yield a total gainout of as high as $246 million.

The Giving Block platform allows more than 1,300 charities and nonprofits to accept cryptocurrency donations. According to its annual report, the group processed $69.64 million worth of crypto donations in 2021. Nearly $12.3 million came from NFT projects.

Shift4 stated that Shift4 would continue to invest in The Giving Block’s success strategy, while also seeking a $45+B embedded cross-sell opportunity through bundling traditional card acceptance with crypto donation capabilities. This acquisition .”
only reflects a fraction of the $470+ Billion in non-profit addressable markets Shift4 will be uniquely able to pursue.

PayPal to Soon Add Crypto Payment Options, Says CEO

Jamie Iannone (CEO of eBay) stated in a recent interview, that the ecommerce giant may soon look to integrate cryptocurrency payments into its marketplace. Although the CEO acknowledged the popularity of NFT selling and buying on eBay, he did not reveal any plans to increase support for NFT technology.

Iannone stated that eBay had been contemplating the idea for some time, as it continues to explore new payment options. He suggested that there might be a crypto-related announcement at eBay’s investor day on March 10.

eBay would support crypto if it tried again. It first attempted to integrate BTC payments in 2014,

OpenSea update ban countries list, sparking debate about decentralization

OpenSea, a top NFT marketplace, has reportedly begun to ban Iranian users from its platform since this week. The firm justified their decision by referring to a policy that bans individuals from U.S.-sanctioned areas from using its platform.

On Thursday, Iranian OpenSea users began posting on Twitter that their accounts were being deleted or deactivated without prior notice. On Twitter, “NOT A GMM AT ALL” was the statement of “Bornosor,” an Iranian NFT artist. I woke up to find my @opensea trading accounts being deleted without any notice or explanation.

OpenSea spoke to Cointelegraph, and noted that:

“We have a zero tolerance policy regarding the use of our services for sanctioned persons or entities, and people located within sanctioned countries.” We take immediate action to ban associated accounts if we discover individuals violating our sanctions policy.”

This week, Cointelegraph launches Innovation Circle – A private membership for industry leaders

Winners and Losers

Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), and XRP (XRP) are at the end of the week at $46,617, $2,667, and $0.73, respectively. According to CoinMarketCap, the total market cap stands at $1.79 trillion.

The top three altcoins that gained the most this week out of 100 are UMA (104.80%), Waves (WAVES), 98.29%, and ThorChain (RUNE), at 64.14%.

The top three altcoin losers for the week were Convex Finance at -14.72% and Secret at -9.37% respectively, while Amp (AMP), at -8.46%.

Cointelegraph’s market analysis provides more information on crypto prices.

Most Memorable Quotes

“The demand is so high in Senegal for Bitcoin that it doesn’t matter how many you exchange.”

Nourou , founder of Bitcoin Senegal

“Eventually, the bot concludes that the best move is not to sell but to buy as soon and as often as possible!”

Tiago Vasco Vasconcelos , the founder of Aceita Bitcoin. He coded for the AI Bitcoin trading bot.

“Now, is a pivotal moment in #Bitcoin’s evolution — We’re on the brink of mass adoption and I think I can make that happen faster.”

Samson Mow , CEO of Pixelmatic, and former chief strategy officer at Blockstream

“Investors speculate that crypto will be more important as apolitical, trustless money during a time of increasing geopolitical uncertainty and conflict.”

Arcane Research

“Crypto is one of the most important stories in finance over these 15 years. Let me be very clear: I have been in the naysayer group for most of that time. The crypto market has a market capitalization today of around $2 trillion. This tells me that I’m wrong on this call .”

Ken Griffin , founder of Citadel

“Everyone should have a phone and a heartbeat to transact value around the globe.”

Didi Tahuttu , father of the Bitcoin Family

“The worldwide NFT search volume dropped off a cliff. It reminds me a lot of the crypto 2017 bull and bear markets. Is it possible to predict how long the disinterest will last before things pick up again? Or ?”

Andrew Steinwold , managing partner at Sfermion

“Ideally, there should be a threshold where people who earn below a certain level require zero compliance/verification, because really, if, for example, that threshold was at R5,000 / month [$330], what possible harm can a person do with that amount?”

Hermann VIvier Founder of Bitcoin Ekasi

Week Prediction

Bitcoin tests $40K, as macro factors build up to squash BTC bulls

This week, Bitcoin saw a lot of price movement. According to Cointelegraph’s BTC price index, the asset rose from $38,000 on Sunday to nearly $45,500 Wednesday and then fell back to $41,000 Friday.

Crypto Ed, a pseudonymous trader who uses Twitter to sum up the BTC scene: “Bullish over 42, bearish under 40k.” Crypto Ed explained his reasoning via Bitcoin charts and technical analysis.

The price of Bitcoin seems to reflect global macro uncertainty, as investors continue to evaluate monetary policy and the conflict with Ukraine.

FUD for the Week

SEC investigates NFT market for possible securities violations: Reports

According to reports, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating NFT creators and markets for possible securities violations.

Bloomberg was informed by anonymous sources that the SEC is investigating whether certain NFTs were being “utilized for raising money like traditional securities.” The agency is believed to have sent subpoenas seeking information about specific NFTs or other token offerings.

With billions flowing into NFTs in the last 18 months, it was only natural that the SEC would take a deeper look at the sector’s compliance standards.

Former ConsenSys employees file an audit alleging’serious irregularities

A group representing 35 former ConsenSys AG employees (CAG) requested an audit under the Swiss Code of Obligations to examine “serious irregularities” that they claim occurred at CAG in mid-2020.

They claimed that CAG (also known under Mesh) illegally transferred “fundamental intellectual properties and subsidiaries” to ConsenSys Software Incorporated. They claimed that Joseph Lubin, the founder of ConsenSys Software Incorporated, was benefiting from the deal and that it was done without knowledge of minority shareholders.

The company issued a statement indicating that the complaint was based on one employee.

Mesh will refute the allegations that underlie the legal action, as well as the facts contained in the inaccurate press release that was written by one of the former employees. […] Mesh is looking forward to refuting the accusations and allegations in Swiss courts .”

UK’s financial watchdog is looking into 50 unlicensed crypto firms

On Thursday, the Financial Conduct Authority of the United Kingdom announced that 50 unregistered crypto companies are being investigated. In addition, the FCA stated that it had pursued over 300 cases regarding unregistered crypto companies in the past six months.

This is part of an effort to clamp down on scammers and potentially dangerous firms. According to the FCA between April 2021 and September 2021, 16,400 inquiries were sent by U.K. citizens, including queries about crypto-related scams.

The regulator stated that it would implement tools to discourage bad actors from the crypto sector.

Top Cointelegraph Features

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The success of the Web3 infrastructure decentralization is crucial. It gives us back the freedom we currently pay for with Web2.

What does the FBI’s crypto task force launch mean for the digital assets space

The industry is being sent a clear message by consolidating law enforcement activities: It’s time to comply.

What is a DAO? How can DAOs scale?

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Opinion writer on 7trade7