Jack Dorsey’s Damus Not Welcome In China: Is Bitcoin Lightning Network To Blame?
Jack Dorsey-backed Twitter alternative Damus, which features integration with the Bitcoin Lightning Network, has been banned from the China App Store.
According to Damus, they received a notification from Apple that the Cyberspace Administration of China deemed the app to contain “illegal content” because it is an “Information Services with Attribute of Public Opinions or Capable of Social Mobilization.”
Damus operates on top of Nostr, a decentralized social network that touts itself as “censorship-resistant.”
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Dorsey, the former CEO of Twitter, has provided funding for Nostr with a 14 Bitcoin BTC/USD donation (worth approximately $245,000 at the time of the donation).
Getting Damus listed in the global App Store was a challenge due to its decentralized nature, which means there is no content moderation.
The app was rejected by Apple multiple times because the company requires apps to have a mechanism for reporting and blocking inappropriate content and users.
In China, all online platforms that are listed in a marketplace or accessible to users within the country must have an Internet Content Provider (ICP) license.
The license carries restrictions on publishing content that goes against the principles established in the constitution of China, damages the nation’s honor and interests, or spreads false information that could disrupt the social order or stability.
The inclusion of support for the Bitcoin Lightning Network, which is banned in China, likely added to the authorities’ negative view of the project.
ICP-licensed entities are also required to keep records of the real names and IP addresses of those producing and posting content, and to provide this information to the authorities if requested.
Furthermore, foreign investment in any internet news and information service is prohibited in China.
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