A pro-democracy group from Hong Kong reported that Paypal HK had stopped accepting payments for League of Social Democrats (LSD) according to a statement. The pro-democracy group said that they were “stunned” to hear the news, and they now have “one less way [to collect donations].”
Paypal Reportedly Stops Servicing Hong Kong’s League of Social Democrats
Daily Wire recently discovered that a Paypal terms-of-service (ToS), agreement draft was being drafted but not yet put into effect. The ToS said that Paypal could fine users $2,500 if they spread “misinformation” online and the fine could be deducted from a Paypal account. Paypal stated that it sent the ToS in error. The company also stressed its commitment to not fine any users. National Review spoke on October 8 with a spokesperson from Paypal, who stated that the ToS notification was incorrectly sent.
“An AUP notice recently went out in error that included incorrect information,” the Paypal spokesperson told the National Review. “Paypal is not fining people for misinformation and this language was never intended to be inserted in our policy. Our policy pages are being corrected by our teams. We’re sorry for the confusion this has caused.”
Facebook reported the matter between Paypal HK (Liga of Social Democrats) on October 12, 2013, at 3:39 AM ET via Facebook. It was also reported in the New York Times. Hong Kong Free Press (HKFP) contributor, Peter Lee, who wrote that LSD was “one of the remaining active pro-democracy groups in Hong Kong.” At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, China made it much harder for pro-democracy groups in Hong Kong to thrive.
China introduced the national security law (NSL) in 2020 and made it a lot easier to prosecute protesters looking to bolster Hong Kong’s autonomy. The HKFP report further explains that pro-democracy groups like LSD can’t collect donations using street booths anymore, either. The external vice-chairperson of the LSD, Chow Ka-fat, told HKFP that Paypal simply said that payment services were terminated over “excessive risks.”
The payments giant, however, did not disclose what the “excessive risks” happened to be, Chow told the publication. Chow detailed that while the group can’t accept donations from the Paypal HK account, the group can still withdraw funds from the application. “It seems like even when doing business, companies have to think about who they are dealing with in advance,” Chow told the news outlet. According to the LSD vice chairperson:
This kind of freedom for business in the past seems to have disappeared.
In the past, pro-democracy organizations in Hong Kong had problems with payment providers. This was mainly with Chinese banks. The protests saw bitcoin (BTC), trading at a premium, in Hong Kong in June 2019. A study published by an Amun researcher the following year showed stablecoins had been utilized in Hong Kong as “vehicles for capital control flight.”
Following the account from Chow and LSD, HKFP’s Lee said the publication reached out to Paypal HK for clarification, but there’s no response from the payments provider in Lee’s report. The day before Lee’s report on October 11, the Hong Kong Democracy Council reportedTsang Kinshing, a LSD member was fined HK$1,500 after he was found outside a government building calling on public gatherings to resume.
How do you feel about the news that Paypal HK is no longer providing service to the League of Social Democrats of Hong Kong? We’d love to hear your opinions on the subject below.
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