nav search
Data Center Software Security Transformation DevOps Business Personal Tech Science Emergent Tech Bootnotes BOFH

back to article
Russia to block access to cryptocurrency exchanges' websites – report

Bronze badge

Banning it so it must be popular

We've seen that bad publicity can act as a promoter. The Sandy Hook school shooting showed people why they need guns and sales boomed. Same with cryptocurrencies.

2
9
Silver badge

Re: Wayland

False equivalence. Gun sales tend to increase after shootings due to the fear of more regulation and bans on certain types. Bump stocks have increased in sales recently since their legality was bought up for the same reason.

5
0
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

For a historical perspective: In the Weimar years, both the Austrian and German governments made the purchase and/or holding of any foreign currencies illegal. History doesn't repeat, but it does rhyme.

3
1
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

Making other currencies illegal was a response to issues that were already occurring, not the cause of those issues.

7
0

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

Anything that threatens the power of authoritarian governments must be banned.

4
1
Gold badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

Oliver Jones,

Currency controls are a standard tool of governments/central banks if they wish to control their exchange rates. The UK had them up until at least the late 70s.

One reason China has banned Bitcoin is that they still run currency controls. In their case they're no longer manipulating the exchange rate downwards to help exports, as they did for the decade before the recession. They're now worried about capital flight, as lots of Party people try and get assets abroad (presumably because they didn't gain them terribly honestly).

Russia also has a problem with capital flight, because nobody trusts the regime not to suddenly turn on them and nick their assets or companies. So a bit of property abroad is very useful.

China has less of a problem, because foreign companies are willing to invest there, but investing in Russia is a total lottery (see TNK-BNP / Hermitage Capital), so their economy suffers hugely from a lack of investment as the oligarchs and foreign companies alike don't trust the legal system.

8
0
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

I'm sure I have seen how this goes before!

See https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hasbro-40509-Whac-A-Mole-Game/dp/B0001GDP00

1
0
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

"The Sandy Hook school shooting showed people why they need guns"

Erm, no. It showed why easy availability of guns results in the highest gun death rate of any industrialised country. And there have been several studies in the US that have found that owning a gun in your house significantly increases your chances of dying from a gun.

If you had say the UK model of everyone is potentially allowed a gun, but it takes several months to get a license, it requires at least 2 police visits to inspect your house and you gun safe, requires you and 2 character references to be interviewed and also a doctors report, and guns and ammo must be securely stored when not in use it would allow for legitimate use but massively cut down on availability.

Then you make not owning guns or ammo in accordance with a license a serious criminal offence (it's pretty much an automatic 5 years in prison in the UK), and your massive gun homicide problem will gradually go away...

3
2
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

Brits shouldn't complain about American gun laws. You redcoats are the main reason for our second amendment! The framers knew after we chased you out you'd return and try to take us back, and were proved right in 1812.

5
4
Gold badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

Oi! The US declared war on us in 1812. You started that one, and then tried (incredibly unsuccessfully) to invade Canada.

Obviously the bit where the Royal Navy were interdicting US merchant shipping to France, and even stopped a couple of US warships to search them for supposedly escaped RN crew, had nothing at all to do with it...

Don't blame us for the fact that you've written it into your constitution, that there's a right to arm bears.

5
0
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

We invaded Canada, found out there's nothing there and it snows nine months of the year and hails the other three, and went back home.

1
2
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

"why they need guns"

Why they want guns surely?

1
0
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

"Brits shouldn't complain about American gun laws"

You have some gun laws?!

5
0
Silver badge

Re: Banning it so it must be popular

You have some gun laws?!

Sure do, no private ownership of fully operational tanks and artillery! Though the NRA is probably lobbying congress to change that, because I'm sure they'd tell us a howitzer could be used for hunting...

3
0
Childcatcher

Is there a pattern here?

I see a couple of patterns here.

1. China wants to destroy cryptocurrencies, Russia does. The USA and UK banking systems announce that they are unsafe. So places where very rich people hold sway are the most against them.

2. Every new technology that come out is decried for - pornography, terrorists, criminals, child abusers, identity theft and so on.

If the rich and powerful don't want the peasants to have bitcoin, that sounds like a really good call to get it.

"They"have decried everything from trousers and printing to instant messaging and now cryptocash. If someone invented a working holodeck, they would trot out the same rubbish. Listen to experts not clones of Janathan Rees Mogg.

2
8
Gold badge

Re: Is there a pattern here?

Bitcoin isn't a very good idea. Or at least it's a very bad implementation. The banking industry and central banks all seem to be studying the idea of distributed transaction ledgers at the moment.

If you want to use Bitcoin for tiny transactions, or see it as some sort of massively risky investment scheme, then go right ahead. But as a vehicle for your life savings, it's a terrible idea.

The downside of regulations is you get taxed, you can't do criminal stuff, and the government gets to stick its nose into your business and lumber you with red tape and the like. The upside of regulations is that you get some legal protection if a bank screws up and goes bust, unlike the people who had cash in with Mt Gox (or the many other exchanges that have gone pop overnight).

11
3

Re: Is there a pattern here?

"If you want to use Bitcoin for tiny transactions, or see it as some sort of massively risky investment scheme, then go right ahead."

"Tiny" transactions are exactly the kind for which bitcoin should definitely not be used. I spent some of mine when it hit £1000* and the transactions just would not go through unless I paid fees of a few £ equivalent. Irrelevant when buying a house, annoying when buying a laptop, ludicrous when buying a pint.

* Yes, I realise what that does to the credibility of my advice.

5
1
Bronze badge

Re: Is there a pattern here?

Hello Spanners,

The Reg is basically a hate group against crypto-currencies. I thought your comment was on point but it got marked down.

I see someone is on a rant about how guns kill people so they don't want them when clearly people buy more of them when they might get banned.

I also note that BitCoin jumped up to $4850 today which you could say follows my original comment about a ban making it more popular.

It's all very well for people to support currency controls because they think they are a good thing but Russia said they were protecting investors by removing Cryptos. So is it about protecting their own currency or protecting investors.

Quite obviously investors can make up their own mind what is safe as long as they are given the correct info. They do so in every other investment. Clearly it's the banks wanting to protect their power and money. They are on a losing battle with that one.

If people actually want Cryptocurrencies then they could accept them as payment. No need for an exchange. If people actually accept crypto then people holding it and pay people.

If there was no desire for BitCoin then it would not be what it is today. There would be no need to ban it.

1
4
Bronze badge

Re: Is there a pattern here?

People who had their money in MtGox did not have their money in BitCoin. They had it in an account in MtGox that would have paid BitCoin into their proper wallet had they drawn it out. In that respect they had their money in a bank that went bust.

If your bank goes bust you will only get £80,000 back. Fine if you only have £80k but if you just sold a house then that's your house money gone. You could put that money in a BitCoin wallet and as long as you keep that a paper wallet in a safe then your money is safe.

1
3
Bronze badge

Re: Is there a pattern here?

Also you say China wants to destroy Cryptocurrencies but you really mean the Chinese banking system. The Chinese themselves are very keen on it. They have invested loads in mining and exchanges and new coins, they are bonkers about crypto. The Chinese Gov is not going to throw that away but they have to keep the banks from complaining. They just want to get a good grip on crypto. I think the Chinese Gov are working on some approved coins. If they can get their folks to support it then it will be a fantastic coin.

1
0
Silver badge

Re: Is there a pattern here?

""Tiny" transactions are exactly the kind for which bitcoin should definitely not be used. spent some of mine when it hit £1000* and the transactions just would not go through unless I paid fees of a few £ equivalent."

What fees to who? You just send the transaction to their bitcoin wallet. There are no costs. It's ideal for small transactions.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: Is there a pattern here?

Doesn't work that way. Transactions have to pass through several middle agents first to verify the transaction. Only after enough agents verify the transaction does it become official. These middle agents tend to take a cut.

0
0
Silver badge

Cryptocurrencies are interesting...

Cryptocurrencies are interesting because they are no less real than the fabricated, but strangely accepted, warped reality of money circulating ("creation") schemes such future markets trading and other promisory trading schemes where it turns out that nothing is actually traded and often nothing happens at all, however it is very important to pretend that something has. In fact cryptocurrencies are probably better because at least most cryptocurrencies have a limited resource and accountability built in.

4
3
Gold badge

Re: Cryptocurrencies are interesting...

You don't understand futures markets if you don't think anything is traded.

The reason you can buy air fares a year in advance, when the carriers don't know the cost of fuel, is that they buy futures contracts. This is the same reason that all the farmers don't go bust when there's a bumper harvest, as many sell on the futures market to give a steady profit, rather than take the risk.

It's also how food companies can sign year long fixed price contracts with the supermarkets - as they've also bought futures contracts. Although you'd never catch me signing a supply contract for one of the major supermarkets, as they some of the worst companies to do business with I can think of.

6
0
Silver badge

Is there anything at all about the banking industry that isn't dubious?

3
0
Gold badge

Their pens seem perfectly fine...

4
0
Silver badge

Why do they have to chain them down if they're so innocuous?

3
0

What's dubious about them?

I mean, they're only the currency of choice for drug dealers, ransomware purveyors, and personal information hack peddlers the world over. Now the ruble....

3
0
Silver badge

I'm just wondering how they're gonna handle things like proxies, a la The Pirate Bay.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"I'm just wondering how they're gonna handle things like proxies, a la The Pirate Bay."

TPB doesn't own any proxies. It still works just fine on an unfiltered internet connection (for instance EE in the UK) or via a VPN.

0
0
Silver badge

So what about a filtered connection that blocks VPNs?

0
0

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

The Register - Independent news and views for the tech community. Part of Situation Publishing