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Canadian Trucker Protest Bypasses Restrictions With Bitcoin

Freedom Convoy, a cohort of Canadian truck drivers protesting the end of COVID-related mandates in the country and the restoration of Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedom, had received C$10 million ($7.8 million) in donations to its fundraising platform , GoFundMe, froze their funds on Friday over alleged terms of service violations. “GoFundMe supports peaceful protests and we believe that was the intent of the Freedom Convoy 2022 fundraiser when it was first established,” GoFundMe said in a statement Friday. “We now have evidence from law enforcement that the previous peaceful demonstration turned into an occupation, with police reports of violence and other illegal activities.” “This fundraiser now violates our Terms of Service (Term 8, which promotes violence and harassment) and has been removed from the platform,” the platform said. In the statement, GoFundMe also said that donors seeking a refund would have until Feb. 19 had to file a request; otherwise, the money would be sent to other ‘credible and established charities.’ However, after a massive backlash, the platform released an updated statement on Saturday stating that all donations would be automatically refunded to donors. change was for those expecting refunds following the abrupt removal of GoFundMe, the provision of automatic refunds was probably the expectation of many, without the need for such an update. The changes made by GoFundMe show how traditional payment rails can be politicized and at will A similar series of events took place in Nigeria in 2020, for example, when the Feminist Coalition, a Nigerian advocacy group that previously founded that year and focused on promoting and protecting women’s rights in the country, received donations intended to help the country’s #EndSARS movement halted by centralized fundraising platforms. Without a source of funding, the movement would come to an end sooner or later; however, the Nigerian group found a sovereign lifeline in bitcoin — something Canadian truck drivers have now found as well. At the time of writing, the Freedom Convoy has raised more than 8.80 BTC through its bitcoin donation page. Although the page was set up a few days before GoFundMe shut down the fundraiser, the lifeline came in handy to quickly ramp up the convoy’s efforts to vouch for a wide variety of individual freedoms that the truck drivers claim Canadians claim. government has taken them. Interested in supporting the trucker’s protest, BTC can donate through Freedom Convoy’s new donation page, which accepts bitcoin donations on-chain and on the Lightning Network.
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