Last week, the Federal Reserve sent Bitcoin Magazine a cease and desist letter in an attempt to silence criticism of its recently launched FedNow interbank clearing and settlement service. The United States central bank says Bitcoin Magazine products that parody its services do not constitute protected speech, but rather unauthorized infringement of its image and trademarks.
The Federal Reserve alleges that Bitcoin Magazine used the trademark without authorization to mislead readers into believing there was a connection between the publication and the central bank. While Bitcoin Magazine’s previous coverage on the Federal Reserve, particularly regarding its FedNow service, says otherwise.
“But what is a FedNow? This is actually a scam,” said Bitcoin Magazine’s Isabella Santos, covering the service’s launch in an episode of Bitcoin Backstage. “This means the government wants to continue to control you, your business and everyone else’s business. They would have direct access to every transaction made between banks through their system, tracking your every payment.
Bitcoin Magazine covered the events leading up to and following the launch of FedNow last July. This new Fed service aims to enable banks and credit unions of all sizes to facilitate instant money transfers for their customers. The Federal Reserve says FedNow transactions can be executed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
“The Federal Reserve created the FedNow service to make everyday payments in the coming years faster and easier,” Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said at the time of the launch. “Over time, as more banks choose to use this new tool, the benefits for individuals and businesses will include the ability for an individual to immediately receive a paycheck, or for a business to ‘Instant access to funds when a bill is paid.’
Although FedNow is not a new currency or CBDC, it gives the Federal Reserve even more centralized control over the financial and banking system. It could be argued that the US dollar is already almost saturated with CBDC, as most payments and banking today are done online. Give the Fed and other banks the ability to monitor your payments, track your history, close your accounts if they don’t agree with you, block you from withdrawing money, and more Again.
Bitcoin offers a decentralized alternative to this alarming form of banking. The Bitcoin network operates 24/7, 365 days a year, without the need for a trusted third party. It’s permissionless, meaning the Fed, or anyone else on the planet, doesn’t have the ability to stop you from using it to send and receive money. And with the Lightning Network, Bitcoin users can send BTC to each other at little to no cost, achieving instant settlement.
This new form of financing is an upgrade to the traditional financial system, not only because of the benefits of a truly decentralized and permissionless network, but also because of the currency. Bitcoin’s supply is capped, meaning there will never be more than 21 million BTC, compared to the US dollar, where the supply is unlimited. The FedNow service appears to be another step toward locking people into a financial system where their money is controlled and depreciates. Bitcoin allows users to take full control of their money, transacting as they wish, while saving in a currency that appreciates over time.