The debate on Bitcoin being money or not rages on. The world’s original, and current biggest, cryptocurrency was initially founded in 2009 by its pseudonymous creator Satoshi Nakamoto to replace fiat money, but price gyrations have since made it an asset class akin to “digital” gold.
But despite that, popular crypto influencers, builders, and developers are propelling the notion of Bitcoin still being money, one whose deflationary nature, fixed supply, and lack of centralized state actors give it its superiority.
Today, Cryptonites, the edutainment channel run by crypto investing app Swissborg, dove into why some personalities consider Bitcoin money. Featuring host Alex Fazel, the show features snippets of past interviewees like Ray Youssef, Girl Gone Crypto, Dan Held, Max Keiser, and several more.
Here’s what they all said.
Dan Held, growth lead at Kraken
I think Bitcoin’s mission is massive, like if you look at so there’s a terminology in tech called TAM, [for] total addressable market. So when you build a product or service, how big could you get, for example, like Amazon could get as big as all things sold, right, which is a huge TAM.
“So with Bitcoin, the TAM is $250 trillion. Like that it’s that’s its total potential value. It could be because you’ve got real estate, gold stocks, and bonds, and Fiat, those all represent store value.”
He added, “And so when people go, oh, it’d be really boring if Bitcoin only did goals like if it was only digital gold, and like, that use case is 30 x larger than all the other ones combined. So you know, I think Bitcoin blockchain technology is built to build Bitcoin. Bitcoin solves a fundamental problem in society that I think is ultimately a human rights issue.”
MM Crypto, trader and Youtuber
Bitcoin is not only decentralized and not only peer to peer, but it’s also censorship-resistant, but you can also send whenever you want money from A to B and you can set stored data on it like you have nice secondary solutions and no one can prevent you from doing all of that and taking advantage from all of that and, YouTube is centralized banking is centralized.
And I mean “central” banking, it’s the word that already gives it away. So I think crypto and Bitcoin especially, is really here to stay and to disrupt all different kinds of industries
That Martini Guy, Bitcoin news Youtuber
People are struggling to buy watches at the moment because nobody is really wanting to sell and that’s keeping the prices quite high. Now eventually all these luxury goods, they’re going to decline. And Bitcoin may get lumped in with that. So that’s a big concern of mine. Is Bitcoin a store of value or is it a speculative asset that will only be decided at the point when the luxury market starts crashing?
“Only time will tell is Bitcoin speculative or is it digital gold. I don’t think it’s digital gold. I’d much prefer it to be cash.”
Not only that, but they offered up $3 trillion of worthless government bonds that the public could buy to essentially loan the government money because they can’t print any more money because, at that point, you’d have hyperinflation essentially devaluing the nation’s currency.
Lark Davies, The Crypto Lark
Bitcoin dominance has been falling. It’s been falling steadily for a couple of months. Now basically, since Bitcoin has flatlined, which has been happening since a little bit before the Bitcoin halving the price of bitcoin not moving has meant that altcoins are now able to finally breathe again and we’ve seen just massive moves in the altcoin market and the more that altcoins gain the more Bitcoin dominance falls.
“Now, a lot of people are under the false perception that a falling Bitcoin dominance is somehow bad for Bitcoin but that’s absolutely not true.”
We have to remember that Bitcoin hit its all-time high at the height of an altcoin season. So a falling Bitcoin dominance is actually good for Bitcoin because it means that the entire crypto-economy is seeing a lot of activity and if we know one of Bitcoin’s main use cases right now, well outside of just huddling your Bitcoin is actually trading Bitcoin and what people trade Bitcoin for.
Charles Hoskinson, founder of Cardano
The first thing everybody tells you is a warning is don’t roll your own crypto. But unfortunately, we don’t have that luxury because we’re inventing the crypto as we go along to make these protocols work.
This is like complex heart surgery on very delicate protocols that if you screw up, you introduce all kinds of attacks, like side-channel attacks and other things. So you need a special breed of a developer who’s very elite to be able to do this type of work.
And people say, Oh, well, no, you don’t Well, then, you know, look at all the hacks and flaws. And you know, how many things have occurred over the last 10 years in our space as a consequence of people not knowing what they’re doing?
And it’s just common sense. You know, when you get sick and you need surgery? Do you want your butcher to do that? Or do you want your surgeon to do that? Why do you trust the surgeon with your life? Because that person spent more than a decade of his life or her life studying to become worthy of that?
So similarly, why would you trust an amateur with your privacy, your identity with your money, these types of things, you should aspire to say that the system that you’re using was built on bedrock?
“It was built by really smart people who knew what the hell they were doing.”
The Moon Carl, Bitcoin trader and Youtuber
I think that in 2020 (recorded last year), halving will be the biggest story, for sure, it is such a huge thing to see the supply, the newly created supply gets cut in half the stock to flow.
“And I think that this will further create more and more attention towards Bitcoin as a form of money and make more people aware of this inflation schedule that will eventually reach zero.”
As I said, this is the first time in history, we’ve seen something have absolute scarcity, nothing else in the world has 0% inflation, it’s not possible, except in the digital world. So it is the first time we’ve seen something being digitally scarce, absolutely scarce.
Crypto Finally, cryptocurrency marketer
I understand the concept of the market cap, and the idea of someone really large getting involved, you know, all it’s gonna really take to see major price movement is like a billionaire to, you know, put all of their assets into Bitcoin, we’re gonna see big price movement, that’s really where we’re at, there’s a very small percentage of people who are invested.
And the more that we grow, I can see it growing larger, you know, it’s all speculative. So again, you know, it’s gonna go up, or it’s gonna go down. And I am not a technical analyst. I’m not someone who does price predictions. So I will just preface with all that. I’m not someone who necessarily does those things.
But I do understand the reasoning as to why people believe that it would grow in the future. I also think that the Goldman Sachs incident was a little strange and its own nature. I think that email was very emotional. I think that there was a lot of stuff that was written in it that you know, well, maybe being true isn’t untrue of other traditional assets.
Girl Gone Crypto, crypto educator and influencer
Bitcoin and crypto just fit into my whole world philosophy. So much in terms of self-sovereignty, personal freedom, personal responsibility. And so when I found crypto, it just was really the, it just makes a lot of sense.
“It’s a tool that I think we can use to help get closer to the type of world and the type of society that I would actually want to live in.”
Ray Youssef, CEO of Paxful
(Regarding Africa’s crypto adoption.) [They said] there’s no way they’re going to figure out Bitcoin. Now Africa is actually leading Bitcoin adoption. A number of Google searches and the sheer number of peer to peer transactions as well. Yes, this is happening right now.
“It was the people of Africa that taught us what the killer app of Bitcoin really was, and that is a universal translator for money.”
For Youssef, unlike a majority of the current crypto participation and interest, Bitcoin is not an asset that nets thousands of dollars solely for those in the know. Instead, it forms a strong, wholly-decentralized means of exchange for people who are drastically underserved by banks and financial institutions.
Max Keiser, Bitcoin educator
So I think we’re seeing that in the market is that gold is flatlining against Bitcoin, and the industry is moving to Bitcoin, sovereigns are moving to Bitcoin, and corporations are moving to Bitcoin.
“You know, the US dollar, as Paul Krugman says, is backed by violence. Bitcoin is backed by peace.”
What comes next for Bitcoin? Where is the Bitcoin market going ten years from now? How does the broader crypto space evolve? All that and MORE in the entire video, available for streaming right below.
Following Coinbase And Bakkt: Winklevoss’ Gemini Reportedly Considers Going Public
Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss are reportedly exploring the option of making their cryptocurrency exchange Gemini public. The brothers could follow the steps of other US-based digital asset-related companies with similar intentions, such as Coinbase and Bakkt.
Gemini To Go Public?
Bloomberg reported today that the founders of the US-based crypto exchange Gemini are open to the idea of going public.
“We are definitely considering it and making sure that we have that option. We are watching the market, and we are also having internal discussions on whether it makes sense for us at this point in time. We are certainly open to it.” – said Cameron.
Gemini, based in New York City, employs over 350 people. The exchange obtained a trust charter from the New York State Department of Financial Services shortly after its establishment and is licensed as a money transmitter in multiple US states.
Making a company public has been a hot topic within the cryptocurrency industry lately. Firstly, the largest US exchange Coinbase announced such plans with an estimated value of nearly $30 billion.
More recently, Bakkt, the Bitcoin futures trading platform owned by the Intercontinental Exchange, stated similar plans after a merger with a special acquisition company. Bakkt’s estimated enterprise value is at approximately $2.1 billion.
Gemini Releases A Credit Card With Crypto Rewards
The exchange also announced that it will launch a credit card that will provide users with cryptocurrency rewards. Dubbed Gemini Credit Card, it will enable up to 3% back in bitcoin and other digital assets. The rewards will be automatically deposited into the cardholder’s Gemini account.
The card comes after Gemini acquired Blockrize – a company specializing in building such products. The distribution will start later in the year, and the statement informed that there’s already a substantial waitlist with over 10,000 people requesting early access.
The card will work like traditional ones and will be available to US residents in every state while also accepted in merchants that accept regular cards.
“The Gemini Credit Card will make it easier for any consumer to invest in bitcoin and other cryptos without changing their existing behavior. Rather than deciding how and when to buy crypto, customers can do so when making their everyday purchases. We are excited to welcome the Blockrize team to Gemini and work together to continue to mainstream crypto.” – commented Tyler Winklevoss.
FinCEN Extends Comment Window on Proposed Crypto Regulations
With the initial deadline for comments long expired, FinCEN has decided to extend the comment period for its proposed controversial crypto regulation for an additional 15 days.
FinCen Sets New Deadline
The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), an office of the U.S. Department of Treasury, announced the news of the extension via a press release on Thursday (Jan. 14, 2021). FinCEN’s earlier deadline was set on January 4, 2021.
Following the different requests for extension, it appears that FinCEN would not be hasty to implement the proposed regulation. The extension is beneficial for the industry, as affected entities can have time to analyze the proposal. Since the initial comment period, the bureau has received thousands of comments and is ready to receive more feedback.
An excerpt from the press release reads:
“FinCEN is providing an additional 15 days for comments on the proposed reporting requirements regarding information on CVC or LTDA transactions greater than $10,000[…] that involve unhosted wallets or wallets hosted in jurisdictions identified by FinCEN. FinCEN is providing an additional 45 days for comments on the proposed requirements that banks and MSBs report certain information regarding counterparties to transactions by their hosted wallet customers, and on the proposed recordkeeping requirements.”
The Proposed Regulations
FinCEN’s proposed crypto regulation required that cryptocurrency exchanges would keep records and verify “the identity of their customers if a counterparty uses an unhosted or otherwise covered wallet and the transaction is greater than $3,000.” Also, exchanges are expected to submit to FinCEN transactions that exceed $10,000.
However, the proposal saw pushback from the crypto community, with many saying that the rule was harmful to the industry. Companies like Jack Dorsey’s Square and Andreessen Horowitz opposed the rules, with Square noting that it could create unnecessary friction between crypto users and regulated entities.
Other comments noted that the original 15-days comment period was too short. As reported by CryptoPotato, days after FinCEN released its planned regulatory policy, U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase asked for an extension of the comment period.
According to Coinbase, the comment time frame was rushed and asked the bureau to instead consider a 60-day time frame. Also calling for an extension was a U.S. Senator and several members of Congress. The lawmakers also asked for an extension between 15-60 days to give concerned parties time to evaluate the proposed rule.
Bulgarian Crypto Exchange Owner Sentenced To 10 Years in Prison for Laundering $5 Million
A Bulgarian national was sentenced to serve ten years in prison after a major crypto-related fraud. Not long ago, the man was convicted in a transnational multimillion-dollar scheme to defraud over 900 American citizens.
An Auction Fraud That Victimized over 900 Americans
According to an official announcement by the United States Department of Justice, Rossen G. Yossifov, a 53-year-old man, had defrauded hundreds of American citizens during a well-masterminded illegal endeavor.
He managed and promoted the so-called RG Coins – a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in Sofia, Bulgaria. Now, the US court has sentenced him for conspiracy to commit a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) offense plus a conspiracy to commit money laundering.
During the crime, Iossifov and his Romanian co-conspirators, part of the Alexandria Online Auction Fraud (AOAF) Network, engaged a large-scale online fraud. They organized a false auction that victimized at least 900 Americans during its course.
As CryptoPotato reported, Iossifov was officially charged with participating and dictating the international fraud a few months ago.
Providing Favorable Crypto Exchange Rates To Victims
According to initial court documents, the scammers made everything seem legit, providing invoices with trademarks of reputable firms to their victims.
One of the primary ways to lure people into the scam was that the conspirators designed their scheme to cater to criminal enterprises by providing better exchange rates to the AOAF Network members.
The Romania-based fraudsters posted false advertisements to popularize online auctions for expensive goods and vehicles that did not exist. They had also established call centers to offer customer support to advise client questions and “alleviate concerns over the advertisements.”
When convinced, victims had to fulfill a payment. Domestic associates of the criminals would accept the money, convert them into cryptocurrency, and transfer them to foreign-based money launderers. As per the announcement, Iossifov was the final gear that facilitated the last stage of the scheme.
Some of the trial’s evidence revealed that, in less than three years, Iossifov had laundered nearly $5 million in cryptocurrency for just four of his partners.
“This represented over $7 million in funds defrauded from American victims. In return, Iossifov made over $184,000 in proceeds from these transactions”, read the official court publication.
Apart from Iossifov and the five co-operators, so far, 17 more members of the Romanian crime network will face court for their role in this scheme. Seven others have already faced sentences with verdicts between 30 to 96 months. Three of the members of the scam are fugitives.
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