Cryptocurrency news took a bit of a backseat this week whilst most of the world is celebrating the holiday season. However the main news of the week-YouTube’s cryptocurrency content ban, took front and center and was certainly NOT the gift everyone expected or wanted. Here we have some of the top cryptocurrency news items affecting Asia this week.
1. YouTube’s cryptocurrency related content ban- Giving the crypto circle something to talk (and sweat) over this Christmas
On 23rd December 2019, numerous cryptocurrency influencers (including Hong Kong based Boxmining and Singapore based Altcoin Buzz) reported that YouTube began removing their cryptocurrency videos. YouTube broadly stated that videos were removed on the basis that they were “harmful or dangerous content” or promoted “sale of unregulated goods”. According to tweets from various influencers, most of the videos targeted were those from 2018 and early 2019. And more importantly, YouTube failed to specify what exactly had resulted in the video violating YouTube’s terms.
Some influencers had attempted to contact YouTube or tried to appeal the deletion, but YouTube had stayed silent, or rejected the appeals without any reasons. So of course the cryptocurrency space started wildly speculating on the reasons for the ban, including some believing it was a targeted attack.
Whilst most influencers’ removals have been removed, YouTube has only come forward to allege it was an “algorithm issue” that deleted all the cryptocurrency videos in one swoop. Whilst many are relieved our favourite influencers are now back in action, it has certainly opened up a discussion on whether YouTube’s censorship is politically or commercially driven, and whether it is necessary to start moving to decentralised platforms.
2. China reminds everyone (again)- Blockchain, not cryptocurrency
On 27th December 2019, China’s Securities Regulatory Commission issued an announcement entitled ‘Risk Tips on Further Preventing “Virtual Currency” Trading Activities’. Specifically warning against engaging in token sales, issuances and trading activities. And notably ICOs and exchanges (whether foreign or domestically based) providing cryptocurrency exchange services to Chinese citizens.
The Announcement warns actions are being taken by the relevant governmental department. These include maintaining pressure on those institutions, conducting on-site interviews, investigations, website closures, and filing criminal complaints.
This is part of China’s ongoing efforts o seriously clamp down on any cryptocurrency related activities, and distinguish its national digital currency, DCEP (Digital Currency Electronic Payment) as the only legal cryptocurrency in China.
To learn more about DCEP, you can check out Boxmining’s guide here which talks about how it will be used and when we may expect to see it being rolled out in China.
3. Huobi Indonesia launches crypto to fiat gateway-Bringing convenient crypto trading for Southeast Asia’s largest economy.
Huobi Indonesia announced on 27th December 2019 its launch of a local fiat gateway which would allow direct fiat to crypto trading between the Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) to Tether (USDT). This gateway will allow Indonesian investors to use their local currency to trade over 250 cryptocurrencies available on Huobi Indonesia.
According to Huobi, Indonesia has the highest population and largest economy in Southeast Asia. Huobi Indonesia itself has 50,000 registered users and 5,000 active daily traders. This new gateway is certainly going to be welcomed by existing users and will make it much easier for those who are new to cryptocurrency trading in Indonesia.