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Justin Sun Mad That TRON Donors Won't Get Ukraine Crypto Airdrop

The TRON creator went on the offensive following what he called "unfair" treatment from the Ukraine government.

3 min read
Tron CEO Justin Sun. Image: Tron Foundation

In brief

  • The Ukraine government said it will airdrop tokens to encourage further crypto donations.
  • Justin Sun complained that the government has excluded TRON community members.

Sometimes, before speaking (or tweeting), it's best to read the room.

That's the gist of the advice being flung Justin Sun's way after the TRON founder tweeted his disappointment that Ukraine isn't sending free crypto to TRON users while defending itself from a Russian invasion.

On Tuesday, the Ukrainian government's official Twitter account responded to its own post about Ethereum co-founder and Polkadot co-creator Gavin Wood donating $5 million worth of DOT to Ukraine. "Airdrop confirmed," it wrote, promising details on March 3. "Reward to follow!" The implication is that it will be sending crypto tokens or NFTs to Wood and others who donated.

Sun responded that TRON users had donated $1.2 million in USDT "but now the airdrop just ignores them completely." He continued: "It is just UNFAIR. We need to fix it!"

Many things are unfair in this world, including being subject to an invasion of your country and watching missiles hit playgrounds and people. But sure, not getting a reward for your crypto donation might also count.

Sun, though, says it isn't about him. "It is not for me! It is for over 5,000 people has [sic] donated to Ukraine🇺🇦 in the first place and expected nothing for return!"

"Do you actually realise the people you're talking to are personally dodging actual bullets right at this moment and ducking actual bombs right now??" wrote a Twitter user by the name of ichi. "And you're demanding they stop what they're doing and give you a fucking airdrop."

Jostling for attention

Ukraine has garnered over $20 million in crypto donations since it started accepting Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the Tether stablecoin last week. In the days since, it has begun accepting Polkadot and Dogecoin. The addition of the former came after Wood said he'd donate $5 million if the government posted a DOT address.

The donations are meant to aid the country as it fends off a well-funded Russian military and must do without troop support from its allies. But the donation campaign, led by Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov, has also encouraged a sort of online activism among crypto users—for better or worse.

After Wood's request for a DOT address, Solana Labs co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko commented: "Just fucking swap on ftx or use a bridge." In other words: You can donate in crypto without it being the crypto you created.

The thread then devolved into a sparring match between Solana's head of communications, a Polkadot representative, and others about the proper way to donate, the implications of capital gains on crypto donations, and who does and doesn't live in Switzerland.

Still others want to donate to addresses in the cryptocurrency of their choice. On February 27, for instance, VeChain CEO Sunny Lu replied to Ukraine's announcement that it would accept crypto: "Setup a VET wallet and leave VET address, I’ll donate $8m. Nothing else matters comparing people’s life [sic]."

Perhaps the answer to Edwin Starr's longstanding question "War—huuuuu—what is it good for?" isn't "absolutely nothing." Maybe it's: marketing your cryptocurrency.

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