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Coinbase führt die Advocacy-Bewegung für Kryptoregulierung an, um das Vertrauen der Gesetzgeber in die Branche wiederherzustellen. (Interview mit Faryar Shirzad)

Coinbase and the Stand with Crypto Alliance: Advocating for Crypto Legislation in Washington

Coinbase, one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges, is taking steps to advance crypto legislation in Washington, D.C. The company’s chief policy officer, Faryar Shirzad, recently discussed Coinbase’s efforts and the changing opinions of lawmakers in an interview with Fortune.

Background and Interest in Crypto

Shirzad’s background is rooted in public policy and government issues. He spent years as a lawyer and worked on international trade matters for the Senate Finance Committee. He also held various roles in the Bush-Cheney administration and worked at Goldman Sachs before joining Coinbase. It was during conversations with Coinbase’s leadership that Shirzad’s interest in crypto grew. He saw an opportunity to contribute to shaping the public policy around this emerging technology.

The Stand with Crypto Alliance

The Stand with Crypto Alliance is an independent nonprofit organization launched with the support of Coinbase. The goal of the organization is to build a grassroots community of crypto enthusiasts who can advocate for crypto-friendly policies. The alliance aims to raise awareness among policymakers about the widespread adoption of crypto in the United States. With around 50 million Americans having purchased crypto, the organization believes it is crucial for policymakers to understand the importance of getting crypto regulation right.

Already, Stand with Crypto has attracted over 100,000 members and has started organizing events and grassroots meetups. The organization will generate its own revenue through various means, allowing it to fund its activities and political initiatives.

Coinbase’s Approach to Engaging with Lawmakers

Coinbase’s primary approach in Washington, D.C., is to educate policymakers about crypto. Since many lawmakers have limited knowledge about this technology, Coinbase aims to meet them where they are in their crypto journey. These educational efforts have proven successful, as policymakers often display a keen interest in learning more about crypto.

Additionally, Coinbase emphasizes the need for bipartisan support. While some lawmakers, such as Elizabeth Warren and Gary Gensler, express skepticism toward crypto, the industry has found that most Democrats and Republicans are open-minded. Coinbase acknowledges the industry’s responsibility to educate policymakers and build support across party lines.

Unique Opportunities and Challenges

Advocating for crypto in D.C. comes with unique opportunities and challenges. One major opportunity is the presence of a vibrant crypto community. Coinbase recognizes the importance of engaging with this community and maintaining a dialogue. This dialogue fosters accountability and helps shape the industry’s approach to policy advocacy.

One challenge, however, is addressing negative perceptions resulting from incidents like the collapse of FTX and the arrest of former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried. These events tarnished the industry’s reputation and caused some lawmakers to become wary. Coinbase and other industry players strive to demonstrate that the majority of crypto companies are compliant, transparent, and committed to operating within the law.

Moving Forward

The past year has seen a shift in policymakers‘ attitudes toward crypto. Initially, there was curiosity and a willingness to learn more. However, negative incidents led to concerns and a need for the industry to rebuild trust. Now, lawmakers are once again showing open-mindedness and a desire to work collaboratively and find the right path for crypto regulation.

Coinbase, through its advocacy efforts and collaboration with organizations like Stand with Crypto, continues to play a crucial role in advancing crypto legislation. As the crypto community grows, it is becoming increasingly important for policymakers to recognize the impact and potential of this technology on society and the economy.

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