Saturday, January 25, 2014

Why Kanye Hates Coinye Currency and Promply Killed It

As you might now, the virtual currency Bitcoin is becoming more and more popular. Needless to say, its success triggered quite a few copycat cryptocurrencies trying to get a piece of the action. Virtual money talks!

A group of seven coders took a different direction – they decided to have some fun with the new hype. They created a virtual coin with the name “CoinYe West”, which they later shortened to “Coinye”. They even came up with a catchphrase: we ain’t minin’, we pickin’. The seven coders decided that the maximum number of Coinyes that could ever be mined in the currency would be 66,666,666,666. They also had fun with the design - it featured a cartoon fish wearing West's signature shutter shades.

Kanye West was not amused. The musician is not known for his sense of humor which might explain why his facial expression often resembles that of Grumpy Cat. He promptly instructed his lawyers to take action.

Since the entity of the powers behind Coinye was unknown, West’s legal team decided to also go after (a currency exchange) and as the provider of web hosting services to virtual currency exchanges. The legal eagles were hoping to flush out the John Does they wanted to sue.

Kanye’s law office Pryor Cashman LLP sent out a cease and desist letter of January 6, 2014 on behalf of Grumpy Kanye. In it, they state: “Mr. West is an internationally renowned musical artist, songwriter, producer, film director and fashion designer, to name just a few of Mr. West’s endeavors.” The Coinye currency would take advantage of/harm his brand. They go on to point out that the logo resembles their client and that the name of the currency was “substantially similar” to Kanye’s name. They demanded that all websites and social media accounts (Facebook and Twitter) associated with Coinyes would be shut down.

The developers quickly moved their website to India and issued the following statement:

We are just a few guys who are excited about the future of cryptocurrency and would like to see it become a more mainstream phenomenon. We would like to make it clear that we are entirely independent of the Kanye, and there should be no confusion as to the intent or origin of this project. The name "Coinye" is intended solely as parody, not an indication or implication of endorsement or involvement.”

After considering their options, the creators of Coinye decided to back down and pulled the Coinye currency. They posted on their website "Coinye is dead. You win Kanye".

RIP Coinye

(Image courtesy of Coinye)

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