Wechat has announced it will no longer be able to login people to the popular messaging app, WeChat.com, following a lawsuit by the Chinese government.
A group of Chinese internet users, known as the WeChat “citizen” group, sued WeChat last month in the European Court of Human Rights.
The group claims that WeChat cannot be considered a “service provider” under EU rules because it is owned by the government of the People’s Republic of China.
According to the suit, Wechat can only be considered “a service provider” in its capacity as a “mobile messaging app” under the Communications Act 1998 and a “messaging service” under Chinese law.
This means it is subject to Chinese regulations and can be regulated by the People, the court argued.
According the lawsuit, WeBeetalk, a popular social media website, cannot be classified as a service provider under Chinese rules because its only purpose is to provide an alternative to messaging services.
Wechat cannot be deemed to be a “public service” in China, the lawsuit claimed.
The court has yet to make a decision on the suit.
WeChat’s lawyers say they are not aware of the court’s decision.
WeBeast’s lawyer, Michael Wong, said WeBeam’s service is not regulated by any Chinese government and is not a “services provider” for purposes of the Communication Act 1998.
WeChat, founded in 2009 by two students from the University of Oxford, allows users to chat, send messages and upload photos and videos.
Its platform also allows users in China to use its messaging service.