Recently announced a ban on digital artists from countries sanctioned by the united states, including cuba. the ban applies to cuban artists living both on and off the island nation, and opensea has confirmed that it has taken down accounts of cuban artists due to u.s. sanctions law. this has caused controversy among the nft industry, with cuban artists not being explicitly told why their accounts were taken down.
Ban was announced in october, when the u.s. treasury department fined crypto exchange bittrex for allowing traders to evade american sanctions in countries including cuba, syria, iran and sudan. this resulted in restrictions on certain economic activity and opensea’s terms of service “explicitly prohibit sanctioned individuals, individuals in sanctioned jurisdictions, or services” from using their platform. cuban ex-pats, such as the founder of nftcuba.art and co-host of a project featuring cuban artists at opensea during national hispanic heritage month, both of whom now live outside of cuba, have been affected by the ban.
Has caused controversy among the nft industry, with cuban artists not being explicitly told why their accounts were taken down. nftcuba.art tweeted that opensea had disabled its profile on the marketplace. in march, iranian artists also complained of being barred from the opensea marketplace. it is speculated that the ban is out of an overabundance of caution, as opensea has a zero tolerance policy for the use of its services by sanctioned individuals or entities and people located in sanctioned countries, as per the u.s. sanctions against cuba.