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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Ohio made headlines for becoming the first state to let its residents pay their taxes with Bitcoin, but that's not all the important industry news this week.

Catch up quick: The U.S. Security and Exchange Commission settled charges against Floyd Mayweather Jr. and DJ Khaled for promoting ICOs; a judge told the Securities and Exchange Commission it hasn't shown that an initial coin offering is a security offering; and Steemit laid off 70% of its staff, citing a crypto bear market.

SEC settles charges against Floyd Mayweather Jr. and DJ Khaled for promoting ICOs (SEC website)

  • Why it matters: This is the first action against celebrities for promoting ICOs without disclosing they were paid to do so. The move comes at a time when regulators and lawmakers are figuring out whether tokens are securities while celebrities are also facing increased scrutiny over disclosing when they're paid for promotions.

Judge to SEC: You haven't shown this ICO is a security offering (Law.com)

  • Why it matters: The SEC's chairman has said that every one he's seen so far qualifies. However, a California federal judge has denied the SEC's request for a preliminary injunction against a company, arguing that it hasn't yet shown that the digital tokens it sold are securities. This is a reminder that regulators and the courts could see things differently, potentially creating more uncertainty for the industry.

Steemit lays off 70% of its staff, citing crypto bear market (CoinDesk)

  • Why it matters: Startups developing blockchain tech and digital tokens have to navigate the effects of the market on their finances and business model. But they also have to nail traditional startup basics like keeping costs low, something Steemit, which created a social media service that runs on blockchain technology, says it's going to focus on now.

Go deeper

The startup that wants to disrupt big internet providers

Maura Losch/Axios

A new startup backed by funding from AOL founder Steve Case and Laurene Powell Jobs wants to break up broadband monopolies across the country.

Why it matters: Internet access has been crucial during the pandemic, but it's not ubiquitous, and it can be both slow and unaffordable in swaths of the country.

1 hour ago - World

Top general: China's hypersonic missile test "very close" to a "Sputnik moment"

Gen. Mark Milley. Photo: Rod Lamkey-Pool/Getty Images

Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned Wednesday that China's test of a hypersonic missile is "very concerning" and "very close" to the kind of "Sputnik moment" that triggered the Space Race during the Cold War.

Why it matters: The comments by America's top uniformed general underscore the depths of U.S. concerns about China's rapid military expansion and development of advanced weaponry.

Climate reckoning for oil and gas CEOs

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Top executives from ExxonMobil, BP, Chevron and Shell will face a reckoning on Capitol Hill Thursday, as they're grilled on evidence that their companies knew for years that their products were driving climate change but chose to downplay or deny it.

Why it matters: The hearing before the House Oversight Committee will be the first time these executives have been brought together to provide sworn testimony regarding what they knew about the ties between their company's products and climate change, and when they knew it.