On Friday (November 15), the Bitcoin price fell below $8,500 for the first time in three weeks as concerns over the future of Bitcoin in China mounted after the Weibo accounts of both Binance and TRON got blocked today in China.

Weibo (微博 wēi bó ‘microblog’) is China’s most popular microblogging platform, and was launched by Sina Corporation on 14 August 14, 2009. It has a similar look and feel to Twitter, but it is mainly used by Chinese speakers. It has over 500 million registered users, and over 100 million messages are posted by its users each day. 

Sometime between 14:00 UTC and 14:30 UTC, the Weibo accounts of both Binance and TRON got blocked such that if you tried to visit either the Binance page (https://www.weibo.com/binance) or the TRON page (https://www.weibo.com/u/6344553397), you would get redirected to a “user does not exist” page displaying the following error message:

Weibo Error Msg (Chinese) - 15 Nov 2019.png

And here is the rough English translation (provided by Google):

Weibo Error Msg (English) - 15 Nov 2019.png

As Dovey Wan, a Founding Partner of blockchain-focused venture investment firm Primitive Ventures, pointed out on Twitter around 16:05 UTC, the only good news is that the personal Weibo accounts of Binance COE Changpeng Zhao and TRON CEO Justin Sun, as well as the Weibo accounts of Huobi, OKEx, NEO, and Ontology remain intact: 

Shortly after this action by Weibo, some people started worrying that this action against Binance and TRON could be a warning to crypto companies.

This may have played a part in the price of Bitcoin falling more than 2% from $8,641 where it was at 14:00 UTC to $8,455 where it is now (at 16:52 UTC):

BTC-USD 24 Hour Chart - 15 Nov 2019.png

According to data from CryptoCompare, the Bitcoin price fell below $8,500 sometime between 14:25 UTC and 14:30 UTC; by 14:30 UTC, BTC was trading at $8,480. As you can see from the one-month price chart below, this is the first time that the Bitcoin price has fallen below $8,500 since October 25, the day after Chinese President Xi Jinping gave his enthusiastic speech about the important of blockchain technology to China’s future, which resulted in a huge surge in the price of Bitcoin:

BTC-USD One Month Chart on 15 Nov 2019.png

In a recent interview, prominent Bitcoin analyst/trader Tone Vays said that in order for him to be a bull, he would need to see the price of Bitcoin go above $10,000 or drop to $5,000.

As for crypto trader Josh Rager, he offered this technical analysis of the Bitcoin price around 14:44 UTC:

According to a report by Coindesk published around 17:17 UTC, the Shanghai Internet Finance Rectification Agency and the Shanghai Bureau of the People’s Bank of China have posted a notice on Weibo that says “regulators in each district of Shanghai must search and inspect local crypto exchange-related services before Nov. 22 and report to the central bank for further actions.” Apparently, the authenticity of this notice has been confirmed by Chinese news outlet Caixin.

Coindesk also says that Binance has told them that “the suspension was due to a ‘malicious report’ filed by some users to the social media platform and it’s appealing to Weibo to reopen the account.”

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pexels.com