An outspoken British financial advisor’s petition to ban bitcoin (BTC) and crypto transactions in the UK has garnered just 124 signatures despite widespread media coverage.
The petition, named “Legislate to prohibit transactions in cryptocurrencies in the UK,” went live at the start of the year and will remain live on a government-run website for petitions until July 7 this year.
The petition is the brainchild of Neil Liversidge of the Yorkshire-based financial firm West Riding Personal Financial Solutions, and a frequent contributor to money-themed radio shows on stations such as BBC Leeds. His move has garnered coverage from media outlets both in the UK and overseas.
But after a slow start, the petition has a very long way to go. Liversidge needs 10,000 signatures in order to receive an official written government response to the petition, and a staggering 99,876 more signatures before parliamentarians will even consider debating the measure in parliament.
A look at the petition data shows that in addition to signatures from the UK, a tiny handful of overseas-based Brits have also expressed their displeasure with all things crypto-related, with signatures coming in from France, Spain and the USA.
Interestingly, perhaps, not a single London resident has thus far expressed their support for Liversidge’s petition, and support is also almost non-existent thus far in the affluent South East region of England. Instead, the majority of signatures appear to be based in the North East, with a few North Ireland-based supporters also signing the petition.
Perhaps the real war is being fought online, with Liversidge’s Twitter account providing lively reading for both bitcoiners and crypto-skeptics alike.
Late last year, he fanned the flames of anti-crypto sentiment, writing,
“Bitcoin ‘wealth’ is […] illusory. If you buy it you are merely a bigger fool than the seller, and he breathes a sigh of relief. The supply of fools is running out, people are wising up.”
His tweets have (unsurprisingly) become magnets to many of the usual suspects – dyed-in-the-wool BTC evangelists and crypto doom-mongers alike have pounced with messages of support from Cassandra-like naysayers and forecasts of untold crypto wealth coming from the BTC devout.
But it appears Liversidge may even be starting to enjoy the circus, tweeting,