No $4.6 million lunch, but at least Justin Sun has PewDiePie
Alt coins,  People,  Politics

Another smackdown for Tron’s Justin Sun

Chinese social media site Weibo shut the hyper-marketing cryptocurrency mogul’s account, as well as one run by the CMO of cryptocurrency exchange Binance

Tron CEO Justin Sun’s exuberant marketing skills may have come back to bite him again. And Tron (TRX) coin holders are along for the ride.

Sun’s Weibo account was shut down on Dec. 12, according to Dovey Wan, a founding partner at venture capital firm Primitive Ventures. Weibo is the Chinese social media equivalent of Twitter.

The sound of silence (via Twitter).

Wan announced Sun’s Weibo account closure at 9:25 a.m. on her widely followed Twitter account, @DoveyWan. Within a half hour, TRX had dropped more than 4%, according to CoinMarketCap.

She also tweeted out news that cryptocurrency exchange Binance appeared to have been caught up in the Weibo action as well. The Weibo account of its CMO, Yi He, was also shuttered, Wan said. Neither Binance’s official account nor that of its outspoken CEO, Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, were affected.

Wan’s tweet continued, “totally not surprised given how loud [Sun] has been on Weibo even after the Buffet Lunch/kidney stone drama…”

Sun cancelled a highly touted and high profile $4.6 million lunch with Berkshire Hathaway CEO and investing legend Warren Buffet with just a day’s notice on July 24. Sun claimed a kidney stone attack at the time. However, he also gave an abject apology on that same Weibo account for over-marketing the lunch.

In that statement, the Tron CEO wrote that he felt “deeply ashamed of my excessive self-promotion as well as my penchant for hyping up thing[s].”

Whether he learned anything from it is a different story.

Just one letter away from snafu…

Sun promptly replied to Wan’s Dec. 12 tweet by saying “#TRON is super #safu”—meaning safe. He acknowledged the shutdown but promised it would be “resolved asap” as his company has “a direct channel to Weibo.”

It’s not the first time this has happened, however. Both the Binance and the Tron Foundation’s Weibo accounts were closed in November, The Block reported at the time.

Beyond that, Wan’s tweet about Sun’s account included the phrase “Blockchain, not crypto.”

That referred to China’s policy of clamping down on cryptocurrency trading while aggressively supporting blockchain development. That came following a speech in which Chinese President Xi Jinping on Oct. 25. 

Chinese media reported that officials almost immediately re-emphasized the country’s formal ban on trading bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. 

On Nov. 21, a Shanghai Binance office closed after being visited by local officials, The Block reported. Zhao angrily denied even having a Shanghai office. The one that was shut may have held outsourced customer service staff.

Still, the story made looking at Binance’s Weibo accounts quite reasonable. 

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Leo Jakobson, Modern Consensus editor-in-chief, is a New York-based journalist who has traveled the world writing about incentive travel. He has also covered consumer and employee engagement, small business, the East Coast side of the Internet boom and bust, and New York City crime, nightlife, and politics. Disclosure: Jakobson has put some 401k money into Grayscale Bitcoin Trust.