Baidu, Weibo Censoring Crypto Exchanges

Baidu and Weibo are showing zero results for Huobi, Binance, OKEx, and Binance. 

Weibo and Baidu Block Exchanges

Searching for Huobi, OKEx, Binance, and Bitfinex in both English and Chinese languages currently returns no results on Weibo and Baidu. Baidu is the most used search engine in China. The move against four of crypto’s biggest exchanges is the first known example of censorship related to the cryptocurrency space. 

Weibo is a social media website that bears some similarities to Twitter. It’s currently showing an error when searching for each of the exchanges. Screenshots posted on Twitter show a message that reads “according to the related laws and regulations, the results of this search are not available.” 

So far, the censorship is restricted to individual keyword searches on the platforms. For instance, “buy crypto on Binance” still returns a normal search response with multiple links to the exchanges. Baidu is currently yielding results for foreign exchanges like Coinbase, but most of these exchanges do not serve Chinese users. The central government banned exchanges from the Chinese mainland in 2017. Crypto investors in China have primarily relied on these exchanges and local over-the-counter desks for trading. 

The new censorship is likely to be a part of China’s newfound motivation in curbing crypto-related activities in the country after the government posted a statement vowing to protect national interest over irresponsible trading and mining. The mining sector is starting to feel the impact of the increase in regulatory oversight, with shutdowns imposed in Inner Mongolia and Xinjiang. 

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