Announcing a Return to our Roots: The All-New Bitcoin Magazine

Federal Election Commission Gives Green Light for Political Mining Pool Donations


        Federal Election Commission Gives Green Light for Political Mining Pool Donations
Federal Election Commission Gives Green Light for Political Mining Pool Donations

The U.S. Federal Election Commission (FEC) has given tacit permission for mining pools to donate to political campaigns.

The FEC released a memo on their website on November 13, 2018, to provide background information to a formal meeting that would take place on November 15. In it, they addressed a recent request filed by OsiaNetwork LLC for the FEC’s advisory opinion.

OsiaNetwork filed this request on September 10, 2018, asking for confirmation on the “permissibility of OsiaNetwork’s business plan.” With little other information publicly available about this startup, it seems as if this decision may have been the dealbreaker for the whole company’s existence.

This business model is stated quite simply in OsiaNetwork’s request to “enable individuals to support federal political committees by volunteering the processing power of their internet enabled devices to mine cryptocurrencies.” And now, the FEC has responded.

In a move that may spell trouble for OsiaNetwork, but ultimately might add more dynamism to the space as a whole, the FEC decided that “although the proposed cryptocurrency mining pool as described in the request is itself permissible under the Act and Commission regulations, the activities of the individuals do not fall within the volunteer internet activities exception, and would therefore result in contributions from them and from OsiaNetwork to the participating political committees.”

In other words, it seems permissible for mining pools themselves to undertake the effort to donate to political campaigns, and it is still possible for OsiaNetwork to set up these mining pools, but they are not able to enter any kind of extended relationship wherein they act as a sort of middleman.

OsiaNetwork is not able to contribute to the campaigns itself, and this may preclude a more long-term relationship with the pool it sets up. The request specifically mentioned stipulations to their ideal donations, such as “as long as each of those political committees is a client of OsiaNetwork.”

The FEC’s decision to ban this kind of relationship and uphold private donations themselves may ultimately provide more flexibility for those interested in donating cryptocurrency via mining pools. OsiaNetwork’s plan to make a profit from this scheme was apparently centered around establishing themselves as an institutionalized actor for mining pools of this nature, but it’s possible that the transactions would work just as fine in a decentralized fashion.


Elections Canada Consults With Political Parties on Crypto Donations

The Canada Elections Act does not prohibit political entities from accepting cryptocurrency contributions. But it lacks clarity in terms of how those donations are accepted, tracked and reported.

Jessie Willms

Huobi Resumes Operations in Japan as a Fully Regulated Exchange

Huobi is back in Japan, this time as a fully regulated exchange under Japan's Financial Services Agency (FSA).

Jimmy Aki

European Banking Regulators Call for Unity in Crypto Regulations

In the report, the EBA decried the lack of uniformity in crypto laws. It stated that this lack of equilibrium means that companies can move operations to “crypto havens” and face less-stringent regulations.

Jimmy Aki

There May Be (Some) Tax Relief Options if You Sold Your Bitcoin at a Loss

There are certain measures investors can take in order to minimize their taxable income by utilizing their capital losses incurred from selling bitcoin this year.

Michael Taiberg