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Bitlicense is dead

January 30, 2015

Hooray, bitlicense is dead.

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2015/01/28/coinbase-a-bitcoin-exchange-is-operating-without-licenses-so-far

This is something that is obvious if you can read bureaucratic body language.  It isn’t if you can’t.  When a regulatory agency wants to drop an idea they never formally withdraw a proposal, they just put it on ice.  If you ask then about it, everyone says that it is “under review”.  But since there are a dozen more important priorities all you have to do is to put it low on the priority list and it won’t happen.

In the case of bitlicense, there have been no new formal proposals.  Also, having an unnamed spokesman say “we are studying the issue” means that the issue is dead.  If the NYDFS was serious about bitlicense you’d have Lawsky declare war against coinbase and threaten enforcement action.  Of course, if the NYDFS did that, they would get a ton of crap dumped on them.  You lose.

It also doesn’t help that Lawsky is leaving, which means that no one cares about this any more.

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