WeChat, China’s most popular social media platform which has more than 1.1 billion daily users, has revised its policy to prohibit accounts from providing access to crypto or nonfungible token (NFT)-related services.
As per the reports, accounts involved in the issue, trading, and financing of crypto and NFTs will be restricted or prohibited under the new standards and will fall under the “illegal business” category.
Section 3.24 of the amended “Code of Conduct” states that any account participating in the issuance, trading, or financing of virtual currency shall face repercussions.
Certain functions will be restricted for identified accounts, with the possibility of a permanent ban.
Profiles that provide secondary trades of NFTs will also be dealt with in compliance with the amended rules, according to the modified rules.
A Hong Kong-based crypto news writer Wu Blockchain (Colin Wu) noted the move and tweeted while sharing the screenshot of the updated rules.
As per the picture attached to the tweet reads: “3.24 Transaction Behavior of Virtual Currency and Digital Collections.”
It further states: “The account number involves the issuance, transaction and financing to virtual currency, such as providing transaction entry, guidance, issuance channel guidance etc., including no limited to the following types…”
“3.24.1 The transaction and exchange business between virtual currency and real currency, virtual currency and virtual currency; 3.24.2 provide information intermediary and pricing services for virtual transactions; 3.24.3 token issuance financing and virtual currency derivatives trading,” it added.
In terms of punishments, the new policy states that once such violations are discovered, the WeChat public platform will order the violating official accounts to rectify within a time limit and restrict some functions of the account until the permanent account is banned, depending on the severity of the violations.
The platform requires banned accounts to submit a certificate of partnership with a blockchain enterprise. The Chinese Cyberspace Administration must register and approve the blockchain organisation.
It is noteworthy that the popular Chinese platform had previously blocked a substantial number of NFT-related accounts. This decision was made in response to the Chinese government’s increasing monitoring.
An NFT is a digital asset that represents real-world elements such as art, music, video, and in-game stuff. They’re bought and sold online, and they’re usually encoded with the same underlying software as many other cryptos.
The Chinese government has been a vocal opponent of the country’s virtual digital assets. It has already outlawed the use of cryptocurrencies and mining of them. Even NFTs based on other assets are subject to resale limits and gifting restrictions.
In April, Chinese financial and security institutions initiated a campaign aimed at reducing the dangers associated with digital assets. It was stated that the NFT market may heat up in the future and that there are certain hidden risks associated with it, such as money laundering.
However, since March this year, popular platforms such as WeChat and the Ant group-owned WhaleTalk have been distanced from the technology, purportedly eliminating or banning NFT services from their networks due to a lack of regulatory clarity and fear of a Beijing crackdown.
But the popularity of nonfungible tokens or NFTs is reportedly growing, as data has showed that the number of digital collecting platforms in China has risen to over 500, a 5X increase from February 2022, when there were just over 100.
It was reported by local outlets that the fast increase in the number of NFT platforms coincides with the country’s growing interest in digital collectables.