Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has filed a defamation claim against Hong Kong-based Modern Media CL., a Bloomberg subsidiary.
The lawsuit was made in response to a Chinese language translation of an article published by Modern Media, titled “Changpeng Zhao’s Ponzi Scheme.” According to Zhao’s representatives, the Chinese-language title can incite “hatred, contempt, and ridicule” amongst readers.
Modern Media has been asked to withdraw its defamatory statement, take any published issues from newsstands directly, as well as issue a public formal apology, and provide financial compensation for damages and potential loss of earnings caused by the feature title.
The original article, published on June 23, in the English-language edition of Bloomberg Businessweek was titled “Can Crypto’s Richest Man Stand the Cold?” The English-language article used words such as “sketchiness” to describe Binance.
Zhao has additionally separately filed a motion against Bloomberg for discovery over allegations of defamation. The filing was made against Bloomberg L.P. and Bloomberg Inc. in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, with the motion reading that the published statements by Bloomberg were “obviously designed” to mislead readers to believe that Zhao was breaking the law.
The allegations in question were made in response to a Bloomberg article that has described Binance as “sketchy”, and included an anonymous comment referring to Binance as a “massive shitcoin casino.”
Bloomberg: hey, we will do a nice profile piece on you, invite you for photoshoots, etc. Then switches the story last minute. Ignore all positive comments they got from 3rd parties. Picked only old negatives. And still puts you on the cover. WTF!? Unprofessional.
— CZ 🔶 Binance (@cz_binance) June 24, 2022
Binance has previously sued venture capital firm Sequoia for defamation claims in 2019, and Forbes over an article accusing Binance of money laundering and regulatory evasion in 2020. In early 2021, Binance dropped the lawsuit against Forbes and in 2022 later announced that it was investing $200 million in the media company.