🌪 Tornado Cash, Gone With The Wind

On Monday, the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned ETH mixer Tornado Cash, adding it to the Specially Designated Nationals List, a directory of groups that US citizens and US businesses may not transact. 

The Treasury cited the Lazarus Group, a Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) state-sponsored hacking collective as a nefarious user of the service. 

Later in the week, Tornado Cash developer, Alexey Pertsev was arrested in the Netherlands and its Discord server was shuttered. 

This is a developing story that may broadly impact the crypto economy. Stay tuned.

Here’s additional color via Chainalysis and here’s a video overview by Bankless.  

👉 On the Verge to Merge 👈

On Wednesday, Ethereum successfully completed its Goerli Testnet Merge, the 3rd and final test before next month’s Merge from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake.

Ethereum estimates its energy consumption will decrease by 99% and may offer better scalability.

Ethereum devs speculated on the exact dates for the switch. It’s TBD, but many suggest September 15th. 

Here’s Bloomberg with more.

🌳 Crypto in LatAm

MercadoLibre will expand its crypto trading services across Latin America. 

Last December, The Amazon of Latin America successfully launched its crypto feature in Brazil, onboarding 1M users in two months.

This week, the company said,

We will be expanding in the region the possibility to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrencies in your account. It works with bitcoin, with ethereum and with a stable currency that reflects the value of the dollar.

Latin America is a region to watch. Here’s CoinDesk with additional details.

ICYMI — we recently wrote about Nubank, the Brazilian digital bank that amassed 1M crypto users in its first month. It’s Buffett’s Bitcoin Bet.

🏆 MTV in the Metaverse

MTV created The VMA Experience within Roblox to promote its upcoming Video Music Awards. 

The virtual world will run from Aug. 12 to Sept. 3 and include various games and token rewards for users. 

Amy Campbell, chief marketing officer of Paramount Media Networks and MTV Entertainment Studios shared, 

One of the most exciting things about it is that it brings the VMA experience to people wherever they are in the world.

MTV will also award its first Best Metaverse Performance. It’s probably nothing… Here’s the WSJ with more.

🤝 FTX + Reddit

This week, FTX partnered with Reddit to offer a white-labeled crypto payment solution to its Community Points program. 

The two will integrate FTX Pay’s payment and exchange infrastructure with Reddit Community Points to create a more seamless customer experience. 

Click here to join the Community Points waitlist and read the press release here.

📊 Crypto Graphics

Here are a few great crypto visuals for your viewing pleasure.  

This week, the Lightning Network’s capacity eclipsed 4,500 BTC, setting an all-time high. This figure represents how much value is held in total by the Lightning Network.  

On Wednesday, OpenSea’s Ethereum NFT volume ticked its highest mark since June 14th. 

And here’s the geographic distribution of the 14,000+ bitcoin nodes around the world. Neat.

Click here to view a live map.

⛳️ A Frank Lloyd Wright Design

Check out this Frank Lloyd Wright designed clubhouse at The King Kamehameha Golf Club in Maui, Hawaii.


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