In the world of cryptocurrency, it is not uncommon for individuals to gain fame and influence through their social media presences. Dubbed “crypto influencers,” these figures often have large followings on platforms such as Twitter and YouTube, and can sway public opinion and market trends with their opinions and analysis.
One such influencer, known as “Crypto Cobain” or “Cobie,” has recently found himself in legal hot water. The popular Twitter personality, who has nearly 600,000 followers on the platform, has been embroiled in a lawsuit with cryptocurrency exchange FTX. According to court documents, FTX alleges that Crypto Cobain breached a contractual agreement by failing to promote the exchange as agreed upon.
The dispute has been ongoing for several months, with both parties submitting various motions and requests to the court. However, things have taken a bizarre turn in recent weeks, as Crypto Cobain failed to appear at a scheduled court hearing and instead opted to publicly mock FTX and its legal team on social media.
On the morning of the hearing, Crypto Cobain posted a picture of a pig to his Twitter account, accompanied by a caption that read “Can’t make it to court today. Busy with important business.” The tweet was widely interpreted as a snub at FTX and its lawyers, who have been referred to as “pigs” by some members of the crypto community.
The move was met with a mixed response from Crypto Cobain’s followers, with some hailing him as a hero for standing up to what they see as oppressive corporate interests, and others criticizing him for failing to take the legal process seriously.
Regardless of the public reaction, the judge presiding over the case was less amused. In a subsequent ruling, the judge labeled Crypto Cobain’s behavior as “disrespectful and unprofessional,” and ordered him to pay a $10,000 fine for failing to appear in court. The judge also warned that further disobedience could result in more severe penalties.
While Crypto Cobain has yet to comment on the ruling publicly, some members of the crypto community have come to his defense, arguing that he is being unfairly targeted by FTX and that the legal system should not be used as a tool of oppression against crypto influencers.
Others, however, have been quick to point out that Crypto Cobain’s behavior is not only unprofessional but also potentially damaging to the entire crypto industry. By openly mocking a court hearing and refusing to honor his contractual obligations, Crypto Cobain risks undermining public confidence in cryptocurrencies as a viable investment opportunity.
Furthermore, by using a pig as a symbol of his defiance, Crypto Cobain is perpetuating a dangerous and divisive trend in the crypto community, where major exchanges and institutions are often portrayed as greedy or evil. This kind of rhetoric only serves to stoke division and perpetuate a “us vs. them” mentality that is ultimately harmful to everyone involved.
In the end, the saga of Crypto Cobain and FTX highlights the unique challenges facing the crypto industry as it continues to mature and evolve. While social media influencers can bring much-needed attention and enthusiasm to the world of cryptocurrencies, they must also be held accountable for their actions and words. By ignoring legal obligations and openly mocking the legal system, Crypto Cobain risks damaging not only his own reputation but also the reputation of the entire crypto industry. As such, it is incumbent upon everyone involved in the industry to act responsibly and respectfully, both in public and in private.
Crypto influencer Ben Armstrong, known as “BitBoy Crypto” online, has been accused of promoting unregulated securities through the crypto exchange FTX, which recently filed for bankruptcy. Armstrong, who has 1.45 million subscribers on YouTube, skipped a court hearing related to the lawsuit and instead posted photos on Twitter from the Bahamas, trolling attorneys and the court. The hearing was supposed to focus on Armstrong’s behavior in the case, including allegations of harassment and threats made against plaintiffs’ attorney Adam Moskowitz. Moskowitz claims several popular YouTubers, including Armstrong, were paid to promote FTX, and former customers are seeking more than a billion dollars from those accused. Armstrong denied promoting FTX and any involvement with the exchange’s employees or its marketing agency.
During the hearing, Armstrong’s lawyer argued that his client’s social media posts were protected by the First Amendment. However, U.S. Magistrate Judge Melissa Damian dismissed the argument, stating that free speech rights cannot defend threatening or dangerous conduct like that engaged in by Armstrong. She ordered Armstrong to appear in person before the court on April 24, otherwise, he will face sanctions, including contempt proceedings. Armstrong was aware of the hearing but failed to appear, and his lawyer could not explain why.
Armstrong took a cruise with 100 people who paid to attend with him and claimed that it was unreasonable to expect him to appear in Florida on such short notice. Armstrong also denied calling Moskowitz or threatening his safety, adding that he is being falsely accused in a lawsuit taking up his time. FTX collapsed in November 2021, wiping out $8 billion in customer funds. The company recovered some $5 billion of those funds, but it remains unclear whether customers will get their money back.
Moskowitz and his law firm are pursuing several proposed class actions against alleged FTX promoters, including a $5 billion suit against celebrities Shaquille O’Neal, Tom Brady, Steph Curry, and Larry David for endorsing the exchange. Moskowitz made headlines earlier this week for serving O’Neal in front of his house after the basketball star allegedly evaded service for months. FTX allegedly paid celebrities and influencers to promote the exchange, believing that such a massive Ponzi scheme could only be successful with the help and promotion of the most famous and beloved personalities.
In conclusion, Armstrong’s behavior in the lawsuit accusing him of promoting unregulated securities through the now-failed FTX exchange has led to trouble for the crypto influencer. Skipping a court hearing, trolling attorneys and the court, and denying allegations of promoting FTX and any involvement with the exchange’s employees or its marketing agency could have serious legal consequences for Armstrong. Nevertheless, Armstrong’s case highlights the risks and legal issues involved in promoting cryptocurrencies and exchanges.