The Chinese Bitcoin Economy: Are the Hundred Flowers Here to Stay?

9 July 2013 | Vitalik Buterlin |

Over the past few months, Bitcoin has taken the Chinese community by storm. In early April,Iwannabuy, an online discount store selling air purifiers, humidifiers and anti-pollution masks to people living in China started accepting Bitcoin for its products. On April 23, the One Foundation, Chinas largest private charitable foundation, followed suit, accepting Bitcoin donations for a disaster relief effort after a recent earthquake, receiving $30,000 worth of BTC in a single day. On the same day, for the first time another country registered more downloads of the Bitcoin-Qt client than the United States. The country in question: China. At the beginning of May, millions of Chinese were introduced to Bitcoin for the first time with a half-hour special on the state TV network. Altogether, the effect was massive. Two months later, TechInAsia reports that œthe bitcoin industry is also all over Taobao [Chinas equivalent of Ebay], where you can buy everything from computer chips to custom mining rigs to bitcoins themselves.