NFTs move to influence Congress, even if lawmakers have no clue what they are

While Congress has so far avoided political discussions regarding NFTs, the Dapper Labs brief highlights how companies in the field are preparing for the regulatory battles to come. Other crypto groups have also registered to lobby the government, but without specifically listing NFTs as a topic they would lobby.

Crossroads Strategies, the lobbying firm recruited by Dapper Labs, has indicated that it will lobby on “Policy related to NFTs, blockchain and financial services.”

Among its products, Dapper Labs operates a marketplace, NBA Top Shot, where users can buy and sell NFT NBA and WNBA which are video clips of their games. Another platform operated by the company, known as CryptoKitties, allows cat lovers to “Collect and Raise Furry Friends!” “

Like other groups in the FinTech industry, Dapper Labs has called on political forces to help them navigate Washington. In addition to hiring Crossroads Strategies, the group also hired Alison Kutler, a veteran of the Federal Communications Commission, who began leading government affairs in November. Kutler was head of the FCC’s consumer and government affairs office and special advisor to the president between 2015 and 2017, according to her LinkedIn profile.

Kutler has also signed up to lobby Dapper Labs on NFT and blockchain issues, according to a disclosure released Tuesday.

Dapper Labs has offered little explanation for its foray into Washington. In a statement, Rachel Rogers, a spokesperson for the company, said the group intends to promote “the education and widespread adoption of Web3” – using a term that refers to a new version web based on blockchains – and to advocate “the benefits of this technology to society.

“In this increasingly digital world, we believe in openness, transparency and equal opportunity,” said Rogers. However, the group did not provide any further details regarding their plea and did not respond when asked to speak by phone.

Congress has yet to begin serious discussions on the regulation of DTV. But with unresolved questions about their taxation and regulation, lobbyists expect that to change.

“Do the existing laws and regulations, you know, the policy… does it fit well with existing regulations for taxation or consumer protection, investment protection, etc., or should- does it develop a new set of different regulations? Said a lobbyist committed to cryptocurrency issues. “I think this is something that policy makers are going to have to grapple with for sure.”

For politicians, NFTs not only create a political conundrum, but also a fundraising opportunity. Former First Lady Melania Trump this week launched a platform to post her own NFTs, including a watercolor depiction of her eyes. Longtime Trump associate Roger Stone is selling a cover of ’90s NFT magazine which he says is signed by the former president. The goal, according to Stone, is to fund legal and medical bills, but so far the highest bid on the NFT is $ 1,400.

Blake Masters, a Republican candidate for the Arizona Senate who challenges incumbent Democrat Mark Kelly, offered 99 limited edition NFTs based on the cover of his book with his boss and billionaire investor Peter Thiel. Shrina Kurani, Democratic Congressional candidate in California, sells her own NFTs to fund her campaign. It also allows donors to donate in the form of cryptocurrency.

Alex Grieve, a crypto lobbyist and vice president of Tiger Hill Partners, said that, on the one hand, the office of retired representative Anthony Gonzalez (R-Ohio) has expressed interest in the politics affecting NFTs. But Grieve thought there was more: “It’s hard to ignore when a photo of a monkey wearing a funny hat sells” for hundreds of thousands of dollars, he said.

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