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Pensivity

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Recently the UK dragons den featured Bitcoin revolution. The dragons invested but tellingly, (apart from Deborah Meaden`s small investment) they were not investing in bitcoin itself. They were investing a business that makes a small profit if a person who buys bitcoin using their platform makes money. I am not sold.
 

jmcc

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Think you are about twelve years too late to be asking those questions but that's par for the course here. Bitcoin has its flaws but some of them (computability and a technologically optimised approach to generating the currency) appeared when it went mainstream. It isn't a pyramid scheme in that it is being used as a digital currency and is convertable to ordinary currency.
 

Pensivity

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I was interrupted in my initial post so I will ellaborate. There seem to be various businesses trying to push bitcoin. Not sure but I think someone said it was promoted on the Late late show, I haven`t watched that (or RTE) in over 10 years but anyway it just seems reminiscent of the kind of thing that goes on around pyramid schemes. When I first heard of bitcoin back around 2008/2009 I liked the idea of it but having listened to various opinions, I think it is not good on several levels.

For one thing, it is not backed by anything tangible. Cryptos that are backed by something have some credibility. Of course for a currency to be truly legitamate, it would need to be redeemable for a stated amount of whatever it is that backs the currency. Eg, one dollar for one barrel of oil or one kilo of sugar or one ounce of tin. Gold was the original money because it tends to be more durable than other commodities.

Another thing I do not like about bitcoin is the fact that enormous amounts of electricity are required to power computers to "mine" bitcoin which is really just a long string of didgits on a computer screen. Iceland has a lot of electricity, much of it generated by meltwater driving turbines. Here we are in an unfolding environmental catastrophe, the glaciers are melting, the pristine fresh water is flowing into the oceans, slowly rising sea levels and the electricity is used to mine bitcoin. Governments can also use power to impose the use of a crypto currency but only free markets can assign real value.

To me, it just seems wrong. I do think some sort of government backed crypto will eventually replace fiat currencies but I don`t think bitcoin is it because governments always want to be in control. Government backed crypto currencies might or might not be valued by free trading nations depending on the credibility of the government and depending on whether or not they have anything backing it.
 

ON THE ONE ROAD

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Suppose its value is that enough people think it is secure. If the electricity goes off or something else then its not secure. Another ethical issue is a way to hind large sums of money, avoid paying tax, that burden is left to other people. but no one cares about stuff like that.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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Curious though that just as Governments were thinking of getting rid of cash altogether ostensibly to fight organised crime and money laundering but in reality it would be so that only they have the monopoly on such lucrative trade along comes a system which government's can't control at all.

The fiat money system totally messed its pants when it first noticed and thought about the implications of cryptocurrency. Massive hit to a commission based system they've lived off ever since Christopher Columbus went looking for an ATM along the beach in North America and frowned because he couldn't find any...
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Bitcoin is not (probably) a scam. but neither is it an asset or a currency.
(Bitcoin can sometimes be conflated with block-chain technology, which is a very promising tool in many areas)
The origins of the concept remain oddly shrouded in mystery, and in my experience the supporters of Bitcoin have more in common with members of a cult than with conventional investors.
It matters little if a wealthy-ish person wants to punt on Bitcoin - it's no more than a gamble, like having a punt on Mayo for Sam (though perhaps that's a cult too :D ).
What worries me is when I see people whom I know are not particularly financially literate taking large positions on Bitcoin and thinking they know something that I do not.
 

gijoe

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Not a 'scam' per se but will ultimately prove to be worthless as there is absolutely nothing backing it. Some people might say the same for currencies but they at least have central banks and governments backing them.
 

Ardillaun

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There used to be animated debates on Bitcoin here. I wonder how those investors have done since? From a position of complete ignorance, I’m thinking block-chain might be a genuine advance but cryptocurrencies sound like another way of impoverishing and destabilizing the state.
 

toughbutfair

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Not a 'scam' per se but will ultimately prove to be worthless as there is absolutely nothing backing it. Some people might say the same for currencies but they at least have central banks and governments backing them.
I agree. Euro is just paper but the governments of Europe back it. Who backs bitcoin? The only reason to buy is that you think you will find someone else to buy for more. Sounds like a bubble.
 

jmcc

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The origins of the concept remain oddly shrouded in mystery,
Not really. It was being discussed for decades amongst cryptographers (though to ordinary people, that would be quite mysterious given that most people here are not cryptographers and were not part of the mailing groups and discussion groups where such matters were discussed). The whole Satoshi Nakamoto thing is wonderful.

and in my experience the supporters of Bitcoin have more in common with members of a cult than with conventional investors.
There's a bit of a difference between the technical side of things and the financial side of things. There was a lot of bandwagon jumping with Bitcoin, crypto-currencies and blockchains. Many of the people are the type who latch on to any new thing in order to make a few quid and then there are the middle management types looking to make a name for themselves on the technology and hard work (pun intended) of others.

As a concept, crypto-currencies represent a loss of control for traditional banksters and governments. The most radical thing about Bitcoin was that it became convertible into cash.
 

Pensivity

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I agree. Euro is just paper but the governments of Europe back it. Who backs bitcoin? The only reason to buy is that you think you will find someone else to buy for more. Sounds like a bubble.
The euro/US dollar/Sterling/Yen etc will crash eventually (if not imminently). I think when it does the central bankers will come up with something to replace it. Revelations mentions the mark of the beast which people will receive on their forehead or hand and without it they will not be able to trade. So perhaps that is what they will come up with. Of course, revelations does not recommend using it.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Not really. It was being discussed for decades amongst cryptographers (though to ordinary people, that would be quite mysterious given that most people here are not cryptographers and were not part of the mailing groups and discussion groups where such matters were discussed). The whole Satoshi Nakamoto thing is wonderful.

There's a bit of a difference between the technical side of things and the financial side of things. There was a lot of bandwagon jumping with Bitcoin, crypto-currencies and blockchains. Many of the people are the type who latch on to any new thing in order to make a few quid and then there are the middle management types looking to make a name for themselves on the technology and hard work (pun intended) of others.

As a concept, crypto-currencies represent a loss of control for traditional banksters and governments. The most radical thing about Bitcoin was that it became convertible into cash.
Tulips were convertible into cash, right up until they weren't.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Tulips could be traded for cash. There's a difference.
Bitcoin is convertible into cash in the exact same way as any other thing that is not a currency, such as cows, gold or tulips.
 

JCR

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Curious though that just as Governments were thinking of getting rid of cash altogether ostensibly to fight organised crime and money laundering but in reality it would be so that only they have the monopoly on such lucrative trade along comes a system which government's can't control at all.

The fiat money system totally messed its pants when it first noticed and thought about the implications of cryptocurrency. Massive hit to a commission based system they've lived off ever since Christopher Columbus went looking for an ATM along the beach in North America and frowned because he couldn't find any...
That was a bit daft. The Indians would hardly have put the ATMs on the beach.
 

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