Bittrex won't say why it removed support for Dash, Zcash, Monero.
Numerous exchanges, such as Bittrex, have delisted coins that have features to protect user privacy.
Explanations as to why they did this were vague or non-existent.
This has led to clashes between the exchanges and Zcash, Monero, and Dash over whether there is actually regulatory pressure to do so.
There is a question that no one seems to want to answer. Why are exchanges delisting the shash (ZEC, -6.94%), monero (XMR, -7.28%) and dash (DASH (-8.98%))?
On New Year's Day, cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex announced that it would delist these three so-called "private coins" as of January 15, adding its name to a growing list of exchanges that have done the same.
In a blog post describing the development, Bittrex gave no reason for the move.
Bittrex: No explanation was given.
"Where privacy is an option rather than a requirement, such as in dash or zcash, which allows the vast majority of transactions to remain traceable, the difference between those assets and bitcoin (BTC, -8.24%) [or] ether (ETH, -5.14%) is often the focus of attention and marketing," Reuben Yap told CoinDesk.
Bittrax did not cite any specific regulatory issues or reasons for delisting in its announcement, and declined to comment on the piece. Notably, at the time of writing, other privacy-related coins such as firo, verge and horizen were still being posted in the cryptocurrency exchange, giving little to no sense.
In response to Bittrex's decision, Electric Coin Company (ECC), makers of "zcash," published a blog post criticizing the decision and asking the question that has yet to be answered - why?
"Despite all the speculation on Twitter, there is no public regulatory justification for delisting zcash," the company said in a post. "The law firm Perkins Coie recently published a document outlining how regulated entities can comply with regulatory requirements and maintain cryptocurrencies that include privacy as a function."
According to the document, "Not only do privacy coins provide public benefits that substantially outweigh their risks, existing AML regulations properly and sufficiently cover those risks, providing a proven basis for combating money laundering and related crimes."
The exemptions are presumably related to "know your customer" and anti-money laundering (KYC/AML) issues. But, by and large, exchangers have been delisted without much explanation, leaving users and privacy advocates to fend for themselves with little or no recourse.