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The Monetary Authority of Singapore has suspended the Bitget exchange from operating after a dispute relating to Korean pop group BTS. The exchange has promoted a cryptocurrency by saying it provides “lifetime financial support” for the band’s fans, though it has no official connection with the group.
Singapore’s financial regulator, the Monetary Authority of Singapore, has suspended the Bitget crypto exchange for an incident related to Korean pop group BTS. The dispute occurred because Bitget promoted a cryptocurrency called Army Coin, which is named after the boy band’s fan following.
The exchange used the band’s images and attracted attention after it said it would provide lifetime financial support for BTS fans. BTS’ managing agency Hybe said in late October that the asset had no official connection to the group and also threatened legal action if no changes took place.
Bitget spat in Singapore
Following the suspension from the regulator, Bitget has removed the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s logo from the website, and Singapore users are unable to access both the platform’s app and the website.
Hybe also said that any individual who has experienced financial losses as a result of purchasing the asset should file a report at the nearest police station. The agency said,
We are currently reviewing legal violations, including the infringing of an artist’s portrait right, without consulting with the company, and we will take all legal action against infringements and violations.
Bitget was founded in Singapore in 2018 and has sponsored Italian football team Juventus, and reportedly has licenses in Australia, Canada, and the United States. But with crackdowns specifically focused on exchanges on the rise, it may find itself under scrutiny
Cryptocurrency exchanges, along with stablecoins and taxation, are at the center of regulatory scrutiny. While Asian countries like Singapore, South Korea, and Japan permit investment in the cryptocurrency market, they are taking strong action to ensure compliance standards are met. Amid this regulatory crackdown, Singapore is aiming to become Asia’s crypto hub.
Numerous lawsuits, investigations, and suspensions have taken place in these countries over the past year. South Korea specifically has introduced a number of regulations for exchanges and now requires them to have a license to operate.
The use of celebrities and associations with intellectual property has also become a pain point in the market. Celebrity promotions have long been a concern for regulations, as they fear it might irrationally invest in assets that might lead to losses.
Intellectual property infringement has also become a talking point. Film studio Miramax recently filed a lawsuit against filmmaker Quentin Tarantino over a planned release of NFTs based on the movie Pulp Fiction.
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