eBay has told a merchant that bitcoin is not an accepted form of payment.
Andy Shroder, a solar energy researcher and panel manufacturer, had listed that the cryptocurrency was a payment method he accepted, CoinTelegraph said on Friday (July 17).
But the auction site sent him an email stating that bitcoin does not in fact count as a currency due to what has been noted as “two key factors” – namely, security and ease of use. Shroder subsequently posted on Reddit that his merchant listing had been removed.
CoinTelegraph reported that the email read: “Please understand that you mentioned you accept ‘Bitcoin’ as a method of payment. Some online payment companies are fairly new and inexperienced and they do not provide sufficient fraud protection to members. When we review payment methods to determine whether they are allowed on eBay, two key factors that we consider are ‘Security and Safety’ and ‘Ease of use.’ Please do not offer this payment method.”
Merchants are restricted from settling transactions using bitcoin; the company’s policies had been a bit harsher as eBay had “actively delisted” products even when they remotely made mention of bitcoin, the site reported. As recently as 2013, eBay CEO John Donahoe said his company had indeed wanted to place bitcoin among PayPal options.
And in turn, the bitcoin subreddit groups responded to the corporate action with a flurry of commentary, ranging from “OpenBazaar will eclipse eBay eventually” to a longer-winded text that read: “Not surprising. For whatever reason, in the face of disruptive technologies, legacy companies often seem hostile or passive-aggressive. In the short term it makes sense, because they can’t currently make any money with the new stuff. In the long term, it makes no sense at all, because established businesses have the resources to build new infrastructure to integrate new tech, so they could make money from it.”