New Taobao rule banning the buying and selling of crypto currencies

Taobao is one of the largest ecommerce platforms in China (it is part of the Alibaba group that also own Tmall).  I have written about it in the past (1 2 3 4) and recommend readers peruse a good piece from The Economist detailing the ecommerce empire that is Alibaba.  In addition, I do not think the analogy that “Taobao is the ebay of China” is entirely accurate — the WSJ has a detailed explanation for why this is a poor analogy (different business model involving ads).

Earlier this week Taobao published a new rule (Chinese) which goes into effect on January 14th.  The new rule bans the buying and selling of bitcoin, litecoin and any other crypto currencies (it actually includes a long list of altcoins).  It also bans the buying and selling of any crypto currency mining tutorial and guide as well as any hardware and software related to mining.

There are a couple threads on reddit that discuss the potential impact for the exchanges and what kind of wiggle room they may have (1 2).

Again, while the word “voucher” is not mentioned, this new policy probably will not help the recently created voucher workaround that BTCChina just implemented.  Thus the cat-and-mouse game continues.

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