Digital asset exchange Bitstamp has apologized for sharing a crypto market report that it claims does not reflect the firm’s “views or values.”
In a tweet from Bitstamp posted today, the exchange issued an apology for posting research firm Messari’s “Crypto Theses for 2021” report from founder and CEO Ryan Selkis. The report refers to XRP as “toxic waste,” with Selkis calling Bitcoin (BTC) forks, Stellar Lumens (XLM) and Litecoin (LTC) “piles of s---.” The report said:
“These are toxic assets propped up by regulatory capture, and they go against everything that got me into crypto."
Bitstamp has removed the original tweet it posted following the report’s publication on Dec. 8, and referred to parts of the “language and content” in the report as inconsistent with the firm’s values. The firm added that it believed some aspects were disrespectful towards “part of the community.”
2/3 We did not complete a thorough enough review of the 130+ page report before it was published. This is on us, we should have done better.— Bitstamp (@Bitstamp) December 9, 2020
In response, the Messari CEO said on Twitter he was going for a humorous tone to keep readers engaged — the report is 134 pages long. However, he doubled down on his XRP views, referring to the token as “snake oil” and adding it was unlikely he would change his opinion in the future.
Members of the XRP army were generally supportive of Bitstamp’s statement, calling it a “quick and thoughtful reaction.” The exchange may have been responding to Selkis’ views on XRP, or the seemingly unprofessional language peppered throughout the report — the Messari CEO used “f---” five times, and “s---” nine times.
“Bitstamp may have expected a more cerebral ‘Pro’ piece from our analysts vs. the yearly [company] hot takes,” said Selkis. “I don't blame them for being caught off guard.”
In last year’s “Crypto Theses for 2020,” Selkis said he hated XRP but did not label the token as toxic. In fact, he said at the time that XRP had “tremendous and surprising staying power.”
At least one crypto figure stepped in to defend the Messari CEO. Samson Mow, the chief strategy officer at Blockstream, who is a well known Bitcoin maximalist and opponent of “shitcoins,” argued Selkis “did nothing wrong.”
But Bitstamp’s decision to cancel Selkis was supported by other Twitter users.
“Impressed to see you acknowledge customers' opinions on these matters Bitstamp,” said Shane Schofield. “Would hope, as a sponsor of Messari, you could remind them that everyone has biases.”
This is not the first time the Messari CEO has been on the receiving end of attacks by the XRP army. Last January, he allegedly received threatening phone calls after the firm published a critical analysis of XRP.