Also today, Netflix has ordered a documentary on the Bitfinex saga... and Uber says it will "absolutely" accept crypto payments in the future.
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It was the Crypto Bowl last night — with exchanges spending millions of dollars to promote their platforms. But who did it best? Well, eToro's effort was pretty boring… and if anything Bitbuy's was just downright annoying. Crypto.com's effort with LeBron James was pretty classy, but featured the much-hated "fortune favors the brave" slogan. Coinbase had the most simple yet innovative ad, but a QR code caused the website to buckle under the pressure. FTX had Larry David. Need we say any more?
It was a really clever idea. Coinbase used its 60 seconds to display a QR code bouncing around the screen and nothing else — a retro throwback to the screensavers on DVD players. But the exchange ended up breaking records for traffic, and many Super Bowl viewers who tried to scan the QR code ended up seeing a blank page. It was a huge own goal — and given how the sporting event regularly gets more than 100 million viewers, this was entirely predictable.
Netflix has commissioned a documentary into the Bitfinex saga — just three days after a husband and wife were charged with attempting to launder billions of dollars worth of crypto. The streaming giant says the series will focus on "the biggest criminal financial crime case in history." The as-yet-untitled program is going to be directed by Chris Smith, who worked on other hit Netflix documentaries including FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened and Tiger King.
Uber has revealed it will accept cryptocurrencies as a payment method "at some point" in the future — but the ride-hailing giant's chief executive says now isn't a good time. Dara Khosrowshahi said high transaction fees and environmental concerns mean digital assets aren't viable for the company at present. But during an interview with Bloomberg, he added: "Is Uber going to accept crypto in the future? Absolutely, at some point. This isn't the right point — but we will."
U.K. tax officials have seized non-fungible tokens for the very first time — and fear digital collectibles have given criminals a new way to launder and hide money. Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs has taken control of three NFTs amid allegations there was an attempt to defraud the taxman out of £1.4m ($1.9m). Three arrests have been made, and it's claimed the suspects had used "sophisticated" methods to hide themselves — utilizing stolen identities, prepaid cell phones and false addresses.
A property backed by a non-fungible token has been sold for the first time in the U.S. More than 7,000 people were interested in bidding on the five-bedroom house in Florida, but only two bids were made above the asking price of $650,000. It eventually sold for 210 ETH at auction. Propy — the blockchain-focused company behind the transaction — described the purchase as "historic" for the real estate world. The NFT grants the investor access to a U.S.-based entity that owns the property.