It’s the time of volatility for Bitcoin (BTC). For one side, China finally implemented a full ban on Bitcoin, cryptos, and related activities. For the other, Twitter, one of the largest social media worldwide, just adopted Bitcoin as a payment method for its tip functionality. And it’s also planning to integrate Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) soon.
The new legal measures against Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies were shared by the People’s Bank of China (their central bank) this Friday. The Asiatic giant was never fond of the crypto-industry, but now it’s declared totally against it. According to the announcement, virtual currencies and related activities (such as trading, mining, or services) are officially illegal inside the country.
“Virtual currency does not have the same legal status as legal currency. Virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, Ether, and TEDA (…) are not legal and should not and cannot be used as currency in the market (…) Virtual currency-related business activities are illegal financial activities.”
These activities include exchanges, financing (Initial Coin Offerings), sales, crypto-mining, any form of trading (futures or derivatives), and even information and pricing services. Besides, “the provision of services by overseas virtual currency exchanges to Chinese residents through the Internet is also an illegal financial activity”. This means that individual users are also banned from using cryptocurrencies, and they could be investigated for it.
A multidisciplinary compliance team will be in charge to enforce this ban, while Internet censorship for virtual currency websites will be applied. However, it must be noted that ICOs and crypto-exchanges are effectively banned from operating in China since 2017. That’s why the Chinese traders developed, at least from 2018, a special slang for P2P trading in social media and instant messaging apps.
Twitter jumps into Bitcoin
Contrary to China, Twitter decided to fully adopt Bitcoin for its tip feature. This way, anyone with a personal account inside this social media could enable “Tips” on their profile. By doing so, they can receive tips for their content or cause through services like Bandcamp, Cash App, Chipper, Patreon, Venmo, GoFundMe, and, of course, Bitcoin (BTC).
The payments with BTC are barely starting, though. And NFTs integration is in the planning phase. Therefore, in the meantime, the tips are only available for iOS (and coming soon for Android) and inside the United States (except for New York and Hawaii) and El Salvador. This is due to the current availability of Strike, the Bitcoin payment processor selected by Twitter.
Nevertheless, according to some reports, Strike is already expanding to over 200 countries worldwide. So, in the next months, we could see this service enabled in the European Union and the United Kingdom, for starting. In general, this Bitcoin adoption by Twitter could mean that its +69 million users can have easy access to BTC payments. Undoubtedly, a huge exposure for the first cryptocurrency.
Reacting to the news, Bitcoin had a weekly low of $39,700 per coin [CoinMarketCap], and a weekly high of over $48,000. It’s currently around $42,600, on the way to recovery.