China Cracks Down On Blockchain — Forces Censorship And Transparency

The forums affected, known as the “digital currency bar” and “virtual currency bar,” are now unavailable for any Chinese citizens using the Baidu …

Up until recently, China ruled the crypto and blockchain sector with an iron fist. In Bitcoin’s earliest years, or during its earliest blocks if you will, Chinese nationals quickly flocked to purchase BTC and build up and ecosystem around the asset. However, Bejing has begun to crack down on decentralized technology in an evident strategy shift.

China Imposes Blockchain Rules

Per an exclusive report from a Shanghai-based arm of Reuters, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) has made moves to impose blockchain rules on startups in this nascent ecosystem.

Per a Beijing-backed new set of rules, blockchain platforms of Chinese origins will be mandated to censor content (like China’s pseudo-internet), while offering authorities access stored data. Chinese blockchains will also be required to allow authorities to access the identity of users, which will be made possible by mandatory Know Your Customer efforts (national ID, telephone number, etc. submission).

These rules are slated to give live next month, with the CAC claiming that this will allow this budding sector to advance in a “healthy and orderly” manner.

If startups involving this innovation don’t abide by the aforementioned rules, the cyberspace-centric entity will reportedly fine/prosecute violators.

As this news spread, the global crypto community erupted into a self-contained clamor. Censorship is directly against crypto’s underlying raison d’etre, which is to be open and immutable for all.

China has seemingly disregarded this fact, as the nation seeks to maintain an unquestioned hegemony over the nation’s digital space. Interestingly, this isn’t the only time that Beijing has used censorship to hold the cryptosphere hostage, so to speak.

Not The First Anti-Crypto Measure

In August, the South China Morning Post revealed that Baidu, China’s de-facto version of Google, began to restrict access to Bitcoin-friendly forums, discussion boards, and chat rooms on the country’s effective intranet. The forums affected, known as the “digital currency bar” and “virtual currency bar,” are now unavailable for any Chinese citizens using the Baidu system.

If any user attempts to access these now-restricted forums, they will be prompted with the following message:

“(These sites are closed) in accordance with relevant laws, regulations, and policies.”

This move came just weeks after China double-downed on its crusade to curb cryptocurrency. Some other regulatory measures from China’s political incumbents include banning access to 124 foreign crypto exchanges, restricting access to eight crypto news outlets on WeChat, and also banning Alipay accounts that have been suspected of facilitating Bitcoin transactions.

Yet, per previous reports from Live Coin Watch, one of the nation’s leading TV outlets, China Central Television, shilled Andreas Antonopoulos’ “Mastering Bitcoin” book to a “nationwide audience.”

Although the segment’s hosts spoke highly of the Bitcoin primer, CCTV, staying congruent with China’s regulatory stance on crypto assets had altered the title, likely without Andreas’ permission. The title, which was obviously presented in hanzi (Chinese characters), roughly translates to “Blockchain: The Path Towards Digitized Assets.”

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Crypto Today: Bitcoin Price Finds a New Range, Quantum Computing No Threat to Bitcoin …

Bitcoin price finds a new range to settle in. IBM releases the world’s first commercially available quantum computer known as the Q System One.

“This analysis is an adaptation from the work of Mati Greenspan, Senior Market Analyst at eToro

Key Crypto News Highlights

  • Bitcoin price finds a new range to settle in.
  • IBM releases the world’s first commercially available quantum computer known as the Q System One.
  • Quantum computing is no threat to Bitcoin explains Antonopoulos

Bitcoin Price hovers in the new range

Over last some days, Bitcoin and the other cryptos have taken a sharp plunge and now Bitcoin sits below USD 4000. While there appear to be no specific reasons for this drop and it looks like this is due to the lack of liquidity inherent in the crypto markets, possibly mixed with some large orders being placed on exchanges.

Considering the fall we saw in mid- November that bought bitcoin from around USD 6000 levels to USD 3000 levels, this small dip which has a total movement of 12% from peak to trough was actually insignificant.

As the charts are currently placed, it seems like the current range is from $3,000 to $5,000 (dotted blue lines). Considering the movement since mid -November, it looks like that bitcoin has opened a new mini-range within that from $5,550 to approximately $4,200 (yellow lines).

IBM’s quantum computer launches sparks debate of its risks to Bitcoin

Recently, IBM launched the worlds very first commercially available quantum computer known as the Q System One. For those unfamiliar, quantum computers think a bit differently than the PCs and smartphones and are much better at solving complex mathematical problems. The release of this new computer instantly piqued the interest of some members in crypto who asked:

“does this new quantum computer threaten bitcoin?”

While there were varied opinions, one of Andreas Antonopoulos’s old videos that were released in Feb 2017 perfectly answers it. One being asked about risk Bitcoin has from quantum computers, Antonopoulos explains,

“In cryptography, there is a 20-30 year lifecycle for an algorithm before it gets exceeded by new technologies and developments in mathematics. Both the signing and hashing algorithms can be upgraded in Bitcoin if there is a need to do that. Quantum cryptography represents a threat only if unevenly distributed in commercial sectors. If it is available to only one actor, and not all actors, they are unlikely to use it against Bitcoin; instead they’re going to keep it secret and use it when they’re threatened by ex. cryptographically secure nuclear weapons.

Intelligence agencies who have that kind of significant computing advantage don’t use it until there is a dire emergency, because once you use it everyone will know you have it. After that all the algorithms get changed, so you better make it good. If it is widely available, all the miners update to quantum computers and we’re going to be looking at several orders of magnitude in improvement because running one is neither free nor easy. We don’t know what the economics will be yet, but we will solve problems when it’s necessary.”

What you think, is quantum computing a threat to bitcoin?

Summary
Expert Opinion: Bitcoin Finds a New Range while Andreas Antonopoulos Explains Why Quantum Computing Is No Threat to Bitcoin
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Expert Opinion: Bitcoin Finds a New Range while Andreas Antonopoulos Explains Why Quantum Computing Is No Threat to Bitcoin
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Crypto today coverage, main highlights are; Bitcoin price finds a new range to settle in, IBM releases the world’s first commercially available quantum computer known as the Q System One and Quantum computing is no threat to Bitcoin explains Antonopoulos.
Author
Mati Greenspan
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Coingape
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The presented content may include the personal opinion of the author and is subject to market condition. Do your market research before investing in cryptocurrencies. The author or the publication does not hold any responsibility for your personal financial loss.Advertisement

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Bitcoin Price Watch: Currency Maintains Position, but Is Enthusiasm Lacking?

First reaching this pinnacle a few days ago, bitcoin is keeping up its … Among these die-hard fans are the Winklevoss Twins of the Gemini Exchange in …

At press time, the father of crypto is maintaining its present position and is staying above $4,000. First reaching this pinnacle a few days ago, bitcoin is keeping up its momentum following a nasty fall in late 2018 that took it down to $3,600 after an extended period of trading in the $6,000 range.

One of the big problems still surrounding bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is not volatility, but rather negative sentiment. Many financial leaders still see cryptocurrencies as fantasies – things to dismiss that will ultimately have no bearing on the future of money.

BTCUSD: BTCUSD: (Bullish) Triangle broken upwards/ Channel Up emerging.

Chart by InvestingScope

One such figure is ECB Ardo Hansson, who in a recent interview with Bloomberg, described digital currencies as “complete nonsense.” He states:

“The bubble has already started to collapse and maybe we should just see how far this collapse goes, and what is left when we’ve reached a new kind of equilibrium. I think we will come back a few years from now and say how could we ever have gotten into this situation where we believed this kind of a fairy-tale story.”

While some are dismissive of bitcoin and its digital counterparts, others appear to be split right down the middle. Long-time bitcoin advocate and author Andreas Antonopoulos recently claimed that while he remains confident in bitcoin’s power, he doesn’t think it will dominate the future the way it has before, and that the coming years will see power shared amongst all major cryptos. He comments:

“I think it will be one of the many reserve currencies that can be used to underpin value on other things. There doesn’t have to be only one anymore.”

However, others are sticking to their guns and telling the world that bitcoin will be the end-all be-all of cryptocurrencies. Among these die-hard fans are the Winklevoss Twins of the Gemini Exchange in New York. Speaking in a recent Reddit AMA, the brothers stated that bitcoin will remain the number one cryptocurrency and is the most likely winner in the long term as it’s “hard to defeat its network effects.”

Tyler Winklevoss stated:

“We believe bitcoin is better at being gold than gold. If we’re right, then over time the market cap of bitcoin will surpass the $7 trillion market cap of gold. We believe in the long game.”

The twins also say they are as “committed as ever” to getting a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) approved, and claim that if for whatever reason, the VanEck SolidX venture that’s been receiving so much attention as of late doesn’t pan out, they’ll be right there in the mix trying to get something off the ground.

Bitcoin Charts by TradingView

Image(s): Shutterstock.com


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Bitcoin Bulls Are Making Bold Bets On Its Long-Term Potential

Bitcoin has made a strong start to the new year after a troubling 2018 and now some of the cryptocurrency’s biggest supporters are making bold bets …

Bitcoin has made a strong start to the new year after a troubling 2018 and now some of the cryptocurrency’s biggest supporters are making bold bets about its long-term potential, hoping to drum up a fresh wave of enthusiasm and support for the bitcoin price.

Bitcoin has spiked this week, up 7% for the year so far though still a long way from its all-time high set more than 12 months ago, as investors look forward to a number of developments on the horizon.

The bitcoin price is now around $4,000 per coin, down almost 80% from its near $20,000 peak, but that hasn’t stopped the likes of bitcoin veteran Andreas Antonopoulos and the Winklevoss twins of Facebook founding fame talking up its potential.

Bitcoin fell over the course of 2018, losing some 80% of its value after peaking in December 2017.Getty

Speaking in a Reddit Ask Me Anything Cameron Winklevoss, who with his brother Tyler founded the Gemini bitcoin exchange, said he thinks bitcoin is will remain the number one cryptocurrency and is “most likely the winner in the long term” as “it’s hard to defeat network effects.”

“We believe bitcoin is better at being gold than gold. If we’re right, then over time the market cap of bitcoin will surpass the $7 trillion market cap of gold,” Tyler added. “We believe in the long game.”

Bitcoin’s market capitalization is far from that currently, however, having fallen from $320 billion over the last year to just $70 billion today, according to CoinMarketCap data.

The twins also said they “are committed as ever” to making a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) “a reality.”

Expectations around an imminent bitcoin ETF fuelled investor demand for bitcoin over the last couple of years, helping to propel its epic bull run throughout 2017. Those expectations have been somewhat dampened lately, however, as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission frets over potential price manipulation.

Despite the bitcoin price’s recent upswing, it’s still far from its all-time highs.CoinDesk

Bitcoin and cryptocurrency investors who have weathered the so-called crypto winter are though eagerly looking forward to major global stock exchanges offering bitcoin futures contracts and the highly-anticipated Bakkt bitcoin platform.

Meanwhile, Andreas Antonopoulos, a long-time bitcoin advocate and author, said he also expects bitcoin’s market cap to one day eclipse that of gold.

“I think it will be one of the many reserve currencies that can be used to underpin value on other things. There doesn’t have to be only one anymore,” he said, speaking via his YouTube channel.

Bitcoin supporters have been emboldened by technical data recently, with the numbers showing bitcoin could be about to leap higher after months of declines.

As the bitcoin and wider cryptocurrency market has fallen in value over the last year, investors have fretted over slow adoption among retailers and consumers, delays to long-awaited institutional investment, and the ever-present threat of tougher regulation.

The GTI Vera Convergence Divergence indicator, which investors use to detect trend reversals, shows that bitcoin is in its longest “buying streak” in six months, it was first reported by Bloomberg.

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BSV Leader Craig Wright Calls Crypto Asset Educator Andres Antonopoulos a ‘Shitcoin Expert’

At the same time, Wright has also been supporting Bitcoin SV (BSV) a recently forked virtual currency from Bitcoin Cash (BCH). According to Wright …
BSV Leader Craig Wright Calls Crypto Asset Educator Andres Antonopoulos a 'Shitcoin Expert'

Craig Wright, one of the most controversial figures in the cryptocurrency space has attacked Andres Antonopoulos calling him a shitcoin expert. Andreas Antonopoulos is one of the most respected Bitcoin experts in the world and is also known for writing the so-called Mastering Bitcoin.

Craig Wright is also known for calling himself Satoshi Nakamoto, even when he did not provide full evidence about it. At the same time, Wright has also been supporting Bitcoin SV (BSV) a recently forked virtual currency from Bitcoin Cash (BCH).

According to Wright, people such as Antonopoulos are anti-banks, anti-government and based on scams and Ponzi schemes. Wright, the chief scientist of nChain, affirmed that Mastering Bitcoin was an error-ridden and ‘nsidious.’

The main difference between these two crypto figures might be related to the fact that Antonopoulos backs Bitcoin’s Lightning Network (LN) rather than an on-chain scaling solution. At the same time, Antonopoulos has also backed Segregated Witness (SegWit).

Craig has always been against the LN saying that it was ‘flawed’ and that it would not work as expected. He mentioned that it is probably flawed due to an incomprehension that exists surrounding Bitcoin.

According to Antonopoulos, not pursuing for LN and layer-2 solutions would affect the network and make it more centralized.

Back in 2017, Antonopoulos wrote in a blog post:

“Ironically, people who object to LN are vehemently against [Off-chain trusted third-party custodial] but by resisting segwit are actually encouraging and feeding centralization into more counterparty-risk through centralized intermediaries. Demand is already pushing us that way. The lack of a trustless alternative leaves only one alternative. No segwit/No LN does not mean on-chain transactions. It means on-coinbase transactions, which is worse.”

Craig Wright is currently working at nChain trying to expand Bitcoin SV reach and properly compete against Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin itself.