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Author Topic: If I was a newbie....  (Read 7493 times)
Gareth Nelson
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September 11, 2012, 12:36:12 PM
 #1

I would run the other way looking at the media attention right now and the contents of this forum:



Anyone else find this really sad? We've got an awesome piece of technology that's secure and reliable, and a huge pile of scammers and unreliable fools - what can be done to address this?

More and more, bitcoin is being viewed by the general public as insecure, that is bitcoin itself - the masses can't tell the difference, and there's various psychological reasons as to why this is.

If people hear a negative fact from some random source and forget the source, they assign a greater likelihood of that source being correct (this is known as source amnesia confabulation), and on top of that there's also a known bias in the media for bad news (good news doesn't sell well compared to bad news - bad news spreads further).

There's only 2 sane approaches here:
1 - Encourage the spread of bad news about other payment approaches and get bitcoin mentioned as an alternative
2 - Reduce the bad news in the first place - this one is going to be essentially impossible to do perfectly with something decentralised like bitcoin - anyone can setup a scam and they'll always have willing victims

What we could do on point 2 however is to try and work on ways to get education out to potential scam victims and to reduce the ease of scams.

One example that comes to mind for how to reduce the ease of scams is multisig transactions combined with a notification feature - if we could integrate a messaging protocol into bitcoin and have a "signature request" message sent to clients for multisig transactions then the following becomes possible:
1 - User has a pile of BTC on exchange
2 - User requests withdrawal of BTC
3 - Exchange sends a signature request to user's client - perhaps we could just handle this by broadcasting a transaction with a "half-signed" input, when the user's client picks it up, it prompts the user
4 - Regardless of the technical implementation, the user gets a prompt on their client asking to authorise sending X amount of BTC, they click yes and enter a password, the client signs it, coins move
5 - The prompt dialog should contain warnings telling newbies how to respond if they did NOT request the movement

It would also be sensible if the main bitcoin clients contained warning messages on how to spot a scam, the first time the user attempts to send funds somewhere a simple message in the send funds dialogue with bullet points asking the user to confirm their understanding (and a "do not bother me again" option) would work well.

Something must be done regardless, because otherwise the bad press is going to kill the market for our little currency, even if we can continue trading it amongst ourselves within the community.
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JackH
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September 11, 2012, 12:43:27 PM
 #2

How about creating a forum for accusations, investigations and Bitcoin problems in general and let people blow off steam in there?

Keep the main forum problem free and let people take their problems in a forum that is only for registered Bitcointalk.org users? It seems our little tiny community is suffering more and more from "family" problems than as much outsider problems. Nobody as you said can really relate to Bitcoin if they havent gotten the slightest clue about it to begin with, thus removing these VERY LONG and tiresome debates to another forum is a great way to let the public approach to Bitcoin with a positive view, in its first instance.

EDIT: I myself have given up looking at the negative threads. The problems seem to be convoluted and reminds me of a board for teens accusing each other of being bad. Keep the main forum clean, professional and positive.

<helo> funny that this proposal grows the maximum block size to 8GB, and is seen as a compromise
<helo> oh, you don't like a 20x increase? well how about 8192x increase?
<JackH> lmao
Gareth Nelson
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September 11, 2012, 12:45:46 PM
 #3

How about creating a forum for accusations, investigations and Bitcoin problems in general and let people blow off steam in there?

Keep the main forum problem free and let people take their problems in a forum that is only for registered Bitcointalk.org users? It seems our little tiny community is suffering more and more from "family" problems than as much outsider problems. Nobody as you said can really relate to Bitcoin if they havent gotten the slightest clue about it to begin with, thus removing these VERY LONG and tiresome debates to another forum is a great way to let the public approach to Bitcoin with a positive view, in its first instance.

EDIT: I myself have given up looking at the negative threads. The problems seem to be convoluted and reminds me of a board for teens accusing each other of being bad. Keep the main forum clean, professional and positive.

That might help some, but we also need to handle the wider PR issues outside of the community and the underlying ease with which scams occur.
JackH
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September 11, 2012, 01:03:47 PM
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That wont be possible. Scam have and will always occur. But we at least should not be the poster board for all scams on the main Bitcoin forum. Start by removing the negative (like any other big institution is doing) and let wounds heal themselves with time.

If scam occurs it wont be plastered all over the main focal point where new users arrive to check up on Bitcoin news and development.

<helo> funny that this proposal grows the maximum block size to 8GB, and is seen as a compromise
<helo> oh, you don't like a 20x increase? well how about 8192x increase?
<JackH> lmao
mobodick
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September 11, 2012, 01:09:27 PM
 #5

I would run the other way looking at the media attention right now and the contents of this forum:

There's only 2 sane approaches here:
1 - Encourage the spread of bad news about other payment approaches and get bitcoin mentioned as an alternative
2 - Reduce the bad news in the first place - this one is going to be essentially impossible to do perfectly with something decentralised like bitcoin - anyone can setup a scam and they'll always have willing victims

WHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

So bitcoin has serious scamming problems because scamming is so easy and you deal with it as if its an image problem?
And your solution is propaganda?

LOL at fixing bitcoin like this.

FYI, the problem bitcoin is facing is that noone has a stick to hit with when their coins get scammed out of their pockets.
You'd need to go USSR on the media to propagandize that away...
Monster Tent
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September 11, 2012, 01:11:02 PM
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The main reason bitcoin scams are happening is the lack of local bitcoin merchants. You cant just go to the local shopping centre and use bitcoin to trade. thats going to take awhile to change if we cant get out of the problem of trading over vast distances.

Its easier to rip someone off in another country. Not so if they live down the street.


Severian
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September 11, 2012, 01:13:15 PM
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Perhaps if the staff of the board stopped promoting and engaging in scams it might help a little?

I'd like to see this board deleted, all posts removed and everyone start from zero again. Take the marketplace/scam-central out and make this board only for the discussion of bitcoin and its development as a currency. If there's no ability to make deals here, scammers will go elsewhere.

I'm new as a poster here but have been lurking for a long time and using bitcoin for about 18 months. I'd never tell anyone I know in RL to look at this board. I can go up the street and find all the scammers and beggars I want. I'm not sure why they're not encouraged but also cultivated here.

This place is a damn shame. If this is the future of bitcoin, we're all fucked.
mobodick
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September 11, 2012, 01:18:35 PM
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The main reason bitcoin scams are happening is the lack of local bitcoin merchants. You cant just go to the local shopping centre and use bitcoin to trade. thats going to take awhile to change if we cant get out of the problem of trading over vast distances.

Its easier to rip someone off in another country. Not so if they live down the street.


True and all, but local shops won't accept a currency that is not stable and is overrun with scams.
Unfortunately there is nothing making bitcoin stable and there is nothing preventing scams from flourishing.
As long as bitcoin is not somehow regulated by a big party with a stick no local shop will trust it as a currency.
Well, there are exceptions, but there are allways exceptions.
Gareth Nelson
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September 11, 2012, 01:19:00 PM
 #9

I would run the other way looking at the media attention right now and the contents of this forum:

There's only 2 sane approaches here:
1 - Encourage the spread of bad news about other payment approaches and get bitcoin mentioned as an alternative
2 - Reduce the bad news in the first place - this one is going to be essentially impossible to do perfectly with something decentralised like bitcoin - anyone can setup a scam and they'll always have willing victims

WHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

So bitcoin has serious scamming problems because scamming is so easy and you deal with it as if its an image problem?
And your solution is propaganda?

LOL at fixing bitcoin like this.

FYI, the problem bitcoin is facing is that noone has a stick to hit with when their coins get scammed out of their pockets.
You'd need to go USSR on the media to propagandize that away...


If you look at point 2 - we have an image problem DUE TO the amount of scams, I was saying we should focus on trying to make scams more difficult.
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September 11, 2012, 01:21:54 PM
 #10

If you were a noobie, maybe all this negative stuff would help you not get scammed so easily... wait...

noobs still get scammed.


Overall I think that It will improve with time; we are in the wild west, it takes people time to adjust from the padded rooms that they are used to.

One off NP-Hard.
mobodick
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September 11, 2012, 01:23:26 PM
 #11

Perhaps if the staff of the board stopped promoting and engaging in scams it might help a little?

I'd like to see this board deleted, all posts removed and everyone start from zero again. Take the marketplace/scam-central out and make this board only for the discussion of bitcoin and its development as a currency. If there's no ability to make deals here, scammers will go elsewhere.

I'm new as a poster here but have been lurking for a long time and using bitcoin for about 18 months. I'd never tell anyone I know in RL to look at this board. I can go up the street and find all the scammers and beggars I want. I'm not sure why they're not encouraged but also cultivated here.

This place is a damn shame. If this is the future of bitcoin, we're all fucked.

I find it shocking (and frankly, quite stupid) that people are willing to engage with thousands of $ worth of bitcoin in enterprises that use a 500+ page thread as their main way of communication...
mobodick
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September 11, 2012, 01:27:27 PM
 #12

If you were a noobie, maybe all this negative stuff would help you not get scammed so easily... wait...

noobs still get scammed.


Overall I think that It will improve with time; we are in the wild west, it takes people time to adjust from the padded rooms that they are used to.
Suuuure, because the wild west just magically settled itself by it's own without any external influence.
For now, things are getting worse, not better.
You should not think that it will just get better, you should think about WHAT will make it better.
How would you make sure people pay debts besides trusting their forum reputation?
Gareth Nelson
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September 11, 2012, 01:30:14 PM
 #13

True and all, but local shops won't accept a currency that is not stable and is overrun with scams.
Unfortunately there is nothing making bitcoin stable and there is nothing preventing scams from flourishing.
As long as bitcoin is not somehow regulated by a big party with a stick no local shop will trust it as a currency.
Well, there are exceptions, but there are allways exceptions.

Bitcoin is extraordinarily stable for a three year old floating decentralized currency.

This post makes no sense. Shop owners do not need to worry about scams. They exchange their goods or services for immediate payment. Once the Bitcoin are in their wallet, they are secure.

Doesn't matter, bitcoin is still perceived as something dodgy because of the bad press and people don't think logically.

My answer is to try and reduce future incidences of scams through 2 concrete ideas that could be implemented in the client, that's the real point of this thread.
Severian
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September 11, 2012, 01:30:51 PM
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I find it shocking (and frankly, quite stupid) that people are willing to engage with thousands of $ worth of bitcoin in enterprises that use a 500+ page thread as their main way of communication..

I have a permanent palm mark on my forehead from observing how people conduct business here and then complain when they get ripped off. I thought it was all just kids being stupid at first but became a little dismayed when I realized it was adults also.

Greed makes smart people stupid.

justusranvier
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September 11, 2012, 01:31:41 PM
 #15

There is a type of person who desperately wants a path to easy wealth. This person doesn't want to start a business, invent something, or develop a marketable skill - they just want to "invest" in the right thing and have it explode in value so they can cash out. The kind of person I'm talking about is so desperate they have no problem suspending disbelief if somebody comes by telling them what they want to hear regardless of how warning signs are apparent.

Many of these kinds of people are attracted to alternative currencies and precious metals, and wherever they go they attract scammers like chum attracts sharks.
To solve the problem this thread is about it's necessary to appeal to a different group of people.

That's why I like to emphasize commerce over speculation.
BadBear
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September 11, 2012, 01:32:11 PM
 #16

That wont be possible. Scam have and will always occur. But we at least should not be the poster board for all scams on the main Bitcoin forum. Start by removing the negative (like any other big institution is doing) and let wounds heal themselves with time.

If scam occurs it wont be plastered all over the main focal point where new users arrive to check up on Bitcoin news and development.

Hiding the bad won't help anything, if anything it'll make it worse.

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mobodick
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September 11, 2012, 01:32:23 PM
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True and all, but local shops won't accept a currency that is not stable and is overrun with scams.
Unfortunately there is nothing making bitcoin stable and there is nothing preventing scams from flourishing.
As long as bitcoin is not somehow regulated by a big party with a stick no local shop will trust it as a currency.
Well, there are exceptions, but there are allways exceptions.

Bitcoin is extraordinarily stable for a three year old floating decentralized currency.

This post makes no sense. Shop owners do not need to worry about scams. They exchange their goods or services for immediate payment. Once the Bitcoin are in their wallet, they are secure.
That would be nice in an all-bitcoin economy.
As long as shop owners need goods from the dollar economy they can see the price of those goods vary over a range of 100%+ seen from bitcoins perspective.

And the question is not whether bitcoin is stable for a floating decentralized currency.
The question is whether it is stable enough to operate on.
For most businesses the answer is 'No'.
mobodick
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September 11, 2012, 01:34:24 PM
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True and all, but local shops won't accept a currency that is not stable and is overrun with scams.
Unfortunately there is nothing making bitcoin stable and there is nothing preventing scams from flourishing.
As long as bitcoin is not somehow regulated by a big party with a stick no local shop will trust it as a currency.
Well, there are exceptions, but there are allways exceptions.

Bitcoin is extraordinarily stable for a three year old floating decentralized currency.

This post makes no sense. Shop owners do not need to worry about scams. They exchange their goods or services for immediate payment. Once the Bitcoin are in their wallet, they are secure.

Doesn't matter, bitcoin is still perceived as something dodgy because of the bad press and people don't think logically.

My answer is to try and reduce future incidences of scams through 2 concrete ideas that could be implemented in the client, that's the real point of this thread.

No, your idea is to keep information about said scams from the publics eyes to make them think reality is different from reality.
It is propaganda and it is a scam to fix the ongoing scams.
Way to go...
Gareth Nelson
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September 11, 2012, 01:35:03 PM
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True and all, but local shops won't accept a currency that is not stable and is overrun with scams.
Unfortunately there is nothing making bitcoin stable and there is nothing preventing scams from flourishing.
As long as bitcoin is not somehow regulated by a big party with a stick no local shop will trust it as a currency.
Well, there are exceptions, but there are allways exceptions.

Bitcoin is extraordinarily stable for a three year old floating decentralized currency.

This post makes no sense. Shop owners do not need to worry about scams. They exchange their goods or services for immediate payment. Once the Bitcoin are in their wallet, they are secure.
That would be nice in an all-bitcoin economy.
As long as shop owners need goods from the dollar economy they can see the price of those goods vary over a range of 100%+ seen from bitcoins perspective.

And the question is not whether bitcoin is stable for a floating decentralized currency.
The question is whether it is stable enough to operate on.
For most businesses the answer is 'No'.


We all know the answer there - bitpay are the most well-known, you price in USD and dynamically calculate BTC prices using an external entity.
Monster Tent
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September 11, 2012, 01:35:23 PM
 #20

Perhaps if the staff of the board stopped promoting and engaging in scams it might help a little?

I'd like to see this board deleted, all posts removed and everyone start from zero again. Take the marketplace/scam-central out and make this board only for the discussion of bitcoin and its development as a currency. If there's no ability to make deals here, scammers will go elsewhere.

I'm new as a poster here but have been lurking for a long time and using bitcoin for about 18 months. I'd never tell anyone I know in RL to look at this board. I can go up the street and find all the scammers and beggars I want. I'm not sure why they're not encouraged but also cultivated here.

This place is a damn shame. If this is the future of bitcoin, we're all fucked.

They could start by implementing some form of bond paid in bitcoins before you can start trading.

Alternatively move all the technical discussions to bitcoin.org and the marketplace implement  id verification similar to glbse.

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