In an attempt to appeal to newer readers and a wider audience, the Beijing Sci-Tech Report (BSTR) has decided to accept bitcoin as a form of payment for the 2019 subscription of its publication.

The publication, also known as “Technology Life”, is responsible for bringing the “Popular Science” brand from the United States to mainland China, in addition to being responsible for producing the official newspaper for the Ministry of Science and Technology.

The announcement is significant as BSTR is China’s oldest publication that covers science and technology, the BSTR has been active for 50 years. 

The BSTR announced that the cost of the 2019 subscription would be .01 BTC, which is the equivalent of about $65 or 450 yuan. The publication stated that the move was in support of blockchain technology, and the Beijing Sci-Tech Report has covered cryptocurrencies and blockchain extensively. According to its own press release, BSTR emphasized that it wanted to “promote blockchain technology in a real-world setting”. 

The decision is not surprising, given the fact that the publication has spoken about the utility of blockchain technology. However, considering that China has cracked down on cryptocurrency, whilst supporting blockchain; many can argue that this is a strange decision for the company.

However, there has been a string of incidents that seem to show that China isn’t completely against cryptocurrency. For example, a Shanghai court recently ruled that cryptocurrencies should be treated and protected as property. In addition, a luxury hotel that is the first hotel to accept Ethereum as a form of payment just opened, leading many in the cryptocurrency community to wonder whether China is shifting its stance on cryptocurrency in general.

The publication even stated that it would refund readers who purchased their subscription using bitcoin, if bitcoin grew significantly by 2020.