The Chinese government has shut down blockchain and Bitcoin related accounts on the popular social media app WeChat.
Now one billion people that use the app developed by Tencent will no longer be able to read any content related to cryptocurrency or blockchain.
According to People’s Daily:
“So tonight a lot of blockchain related WeChat official accounts have been blocked, including Golden Finance, Huobi News, DeepChain Finance, Token Club, Token World News and similar accounts. TenCent says that those official accounts are suspected of publishing news about ICOs and virtual currency trading news, which violate the Interim Provisions on the Development of Public Information Services for Instant Messaging. So they will all be blocked and their accounts have been suspended internally.”
China’s National Internet Information Office released the interim provisions on August 7. They require that all users uphold “national interests”:
“When instant messaging service users register their accounts, they should sign an agreement with the instant messaging service provider to commit to comply with the laws and regulations, the socialist system, the national interests, the legitimate rights and interests of citizens, public order, social morality and information authenticity.”
WeChat is owned by Tencent, one of the world’s largest tech and investment companies specializing in gaming, artificial intelligence, social media and internet businesses.[the_ad id="42537"] [the_ad id="42536"]
In addition to the WeChat blockchain bans, China has prohibited hotels, event halls and any organization from hosting blockchain-related events, meetups, conferences and expos. The announcement confirms earlier reports that the government was breaking up blockchain meetings.
Beijing Chaoyang release a file to ban offices, hotels from hosting token-related promotions. pic.twitter.com/vxtyld9q3n
— Red Li (@redtheminer) August 22, 2018
Meanwhile, the Chinese government is reportedly developing its own cryptocurrency and has invested billions in research and development for blockchain applications.