UPDATE: Bitcoin.com’s account has now been unsuspended and can be accessed. According to YouTube, the channel was “terminated in error.”
YouTube has shut down the official channel of cryptocurrency news-focused website Bitcoin.com for “a violation of YouTube's Terms of Service.”
As Bitcoin.com executive chairman Roger Ver told Cointelegraph, YouTube notified them about the ban around 2:17AM EST June 13. The account had over 40 thousand subscribers at the time it was suspended.
Bitcoin.com then sent an appeal to YouTube within “a few hours”. Two days later, at 8:59 AM EST June 15, Youtube notified Bitcoin.com that their channel had been unterminated.
However, as Ver told Cointelegraph, “less than 30 minutes later someone falsely reported our channel for a copyright claim for a video that has been online more than three years”. According to a screenshot shared by Ver, the video in question was titled “The Slow Criminalization of Peer-to-Peer Transfers”, while the claim was failed by ONErpm.
Ver added that the incident has prompted Bitcoin.com to turn to alternative platforms:
“This is an ongoing headache to deal with, and makes us even more eager to support censorship resistant platforms like memo.cash, and lbry.tv.”
According to a statement Bitcoin.com executive chairman Roger Ver uploaded to Reddit earlier today, the account was terminated for “basically no reason”. He went on to suggest that it could have been reported by Bitcoin (BTC) maximalists (Verr has been a vocal proponent of Bitcoin Cash (BCH), criticizing Bitcoin for becoming “a store of value”):
“I suspect probably a bunch of these Bitcoin Core anti-competition maximalists falsely reported the video saying ‘It’s a Bit[coin] Cash scam!’ or some nonsense like that.”
Ver added that, regardless of whether the YouTube account will be reinstated, it “seems like the right time to start exploring other options”, namely lbry.tv, Dtube and BitChute. He noted that he still needs to learn more about them, asking the audience to weigh in and suggest viable alternatives.
The Bitcoin.com founder also stressed that there are “tons” of giveaway scams on YouTube featuring fake celebrity endorsement from Elon Musk and others, suggesting that the platform has been inefficient in tackling fraud.
YouTube’s shadow war on crypto
YouTube’s unofficial war on crypto has been intensifying as many crypto YouTubers, including Ivan on Tech, Chris Dunn and Tone Vays, have seen their channels suspended or flagged over the last six months.
Last month, Cointelegraph also experienced YouTube’s strange attitude towards cryptocurrency coverage, as the platform suddenly pulled the plug on our seven-hour Bitcoin Halving livestream.
Cointelegraph reached out to YouTube for additional comments, but received no reply as of press time. This article will be updated, should a response come in.