Cryptocurrency trading in South Korea, the world’s third-largest market, is a huge deal in the country.
So huge in fact, that when the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges were recently raided by authorities on suspicion of tax-dodging, and when the government proposed a bill to ban cryptocurrency trading through its exchanges, the global cryptocurrency market took a nosedive.
Since then, more than 220,000 people have signed an online petition against the proposed plan that they say infringes on their “happy dream” of cryptocurrency trading, something that has eluded them “until now.”
“Buying my own home is difficult in South Korea, I don’t know how I could even buy one,” the petition said. “I don’t know how I could live doing the things that I want to do.”
Following the crypto “bloodbath,” users from the South Korean online community “dcinside” displayed their frustrations by posting profanity-laced stories and uploading images of broken items, which apparently resulted from their anger over the valuations.
Although the user comments and images may be amusing for some, it underscores the implications of the South Korean government’s approach to cryptocurrencies, especially for those who invested heavily in the market.
Cryptocurrency trading in South Korea is a lucrative venture, especially when over 11% of people aged 15 to 29 in the country are reportedly unemployed, and the lump-sum deposit for an apartment skyrocketed by 73% from 2007 to 2016, according to government officials.
Here’s how some traders reacted: