The curious case of Coinbase — employees driven out by ‘apolitical’ stance

The curious case of Coinbase — employees driven out by ‘apolitical’ stance

America’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Coinbase, made headlines over the past few weeks for an internal culture change that effectively told employees that there will be no space for social activism within its walls. Furthermore, a recently leaked audio apparently reveals that most employees approve of the new direction.

The “apolitical” stance that is being adopted by the company was announced by CEO Brian Armstrong in a published post on the exchange’s Medium platform on Sept. 27. Armstrong’s message cited the incredibly difficult year that has hamstrung many economies, companies and individuals around the world, which has also led to a spring of various societal issues.

In an American context, the tragic death of George Floyd caused by the brutal treatment of a Minneapolis police officer in May 2020 sparked the #BlackLivesMatter movement and subsequent protests and demonstrations across the country. Many Americans decided to band together and speak out against abuse and inequality along the lines of race.

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“Laser focused”

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