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Author Topic: PayPal set to suspend domestic transactions in Argentina  (Read 4556 times)
Blind
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September 14, 2012, 02:13:21 AM
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Another great opportunity for Bitcoin, let's get decommissioned B-52 and carpet bomb them with flyers Wink

http://thenextweb.com/la/2012/09/13/paypal-set-suspend-domestic-transactions-argentina/


Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem. -- Ronald Reagan
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majamalu
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September 14, 2012, 02:24:11 AM
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I think the first big test will be Argentina: Brutal (and growing) inflation + brutal (and growing) control to capital flows + literate population = Bitcoin explosion!

http://elbitcoin.org - Bitcoin en español
http://mercadobitcoin.com - MercadoBitcoin
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September 14, 2012, 03:52:41 AM
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No, but seriously, shouldn't we set up some kind of promo team to raise awareness about Bitcoin? Argentina looks like an excellent opportunity to test it.
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September 14, 2012, 04:03:06 AM
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according to google, argentina has a GDP of $445 billion.. 4000x more than all bitcoins Smiley

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September 14, 2012, 04:29:32 AM
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It's great opportunity, but I don't have much hope for breakthrough. We already celebrated Italy's move to restrict cash transactions to 300 euro or so, but according to my (limited) knowledge nothing came out of it, and I pretty much expect the same in Argentina's case. Actually, if Bitcoin gained any momentum there, it is likely that their government would try to block it, if anything Argentina could be the first country to ban Bitcoin in such case.

Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem. -- Ronald Reagan
Stephen Gornick
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September 14, 2012, 06:05:38 AM
 #6

Another great opportunity for Bitcoin, let's get decommissioned B-52 and carpet bomb them with flyers Wink

http://thenextweb.com/la/2012/09/13/paypal-set-suspend-domestic-transactions-argentina/

The article says "As of October 9th, " so this restriction isn't in place just yet.

What I am curious about is:

Quote
“For example, we do not provide users the ability to transact in local currency or withdraw to local bank accounts.

I wonder how many other countries are like that too.

So if they were willing to accept PayPal for payment, their thinking must have been that since it has spending power it can be accepted instead of cash -- simply as a store of value.  So the move from PayPal to Bitcoin shouldn't be that much of a leap to them then.

Just last week was the crackdown in Argentina on the use of credit cards to take advantage of the difference between the black market exchange rate for the local currency (ARS) versus the official, regulated rate.  Jon Matonis' article on it:

 - http://www.forbes.com/sites/jonmatonis/2012/09/04/argentina-begins-tracking-all-credit-cards/

What can be bought in Argentina is UKash -- which can be used at Bitcoin Nordic and Mercabit.ue (Actually, Bitcoin Nordic accept CashU, but funds from UKash can be loaded to a CashU account, and then transferrred to Bitcoin Nordic.)

 - http://www.BitcoinNordic.com
 - http://www.Mercabit.eu

Other than that, there are no good cash-out methods in Argentina nor currency exchanges, though ARS is an asset on GLBSE for electronic pesos.  The way it works is that your 1 share of ARS is backed by 1 peso kept in a bank.  You can redeem yoru shares of ARS and request physical delivery.

But also, there is account-to-account (A2A) transfer on GLBSE, so you can essentially trade pesos (ARS) by transferring shares using GLBSE (small transaction fees can apply for larger transfers).

 - https://glbse.com/asset/view/ARS
 - http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=91814.0

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September 14, 2012, 06:51:10 AM
 #7

Actually, if Bitcoin gained any momentum there, it is likely that their government would try to block it

How?

http://elbitcoin.org - Bitcoin en español
http://mercadobitcoin.com - MercadoBitcoin
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September 14, 2012, 07:02:34 AM
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ARS is an asset on GLBSE for electronic pesos.  The way it works is that your 1 share of ARS is backed by 1 peso kept in a bank.  You can redeem yoru shares of ARS and request physical delivery.

The ARS fund works beautifully, but in Argentina nobody wants to leave a trail, therefore people tend to buy bitcoins to trusted vendors.

http://elbitcoin.org - Bitcoin en español
http://mercadobitcoin.com - MercadoBitcoin
muyuu
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September 14, 2012, 07:44:05 AM
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It's great opportunity, but I don't have much hope for breakthrough. We already celebrated Italy's move to restrict cash transactions to 300 euro or so, but according to my (limited) knowledge nothing came out of it, and I pretty much expect the same in Argentina's case. Actually, if Bitcoin gained any momentum there, it is likely that their government would try to block it, if anything Argentina could be the first country to ban Bitcoin in such case.

There are very little resources in Spanish and Italian about Bitcoin. There are some, but almost no quality video/research is ever posted in anything other than English and Russian. Majamalu did put together some stuff though, in written form.

The incentive to create resources in other languages is rather small. Foreigners who are truly comfortable in English would rather discuss and contribute stuff in English, instead of going through the toil of translating stuff for little or no personal gain. There are some individual and collective efforts, but they will take time to be significant.

It was easier to get into Bitcoin when mining wasn't such a specialised operation. Now, for most people it means going through foreign banks and exchanges, giving your details, your credit card etc. The kind of people who are the most interested in something like Bitcoin tend not to enjoy that, or at least not as a first step. When I talk to people from Spain, France, Italy, Greece... (which I do here in the UK because my office is very international) you can tell they start losing interest when they realise they need to do stuff like bank transfers or getting very specific hardware to just be "in it". They also don't want to meet strangers to buy something they still don't quite understand, or to pay a premium for using UKash or other stuff they also don't know most of the time. So this is a very long and slow process. Bitcoin has also been very volatile this year, so when people are looking for a safe refuge they'd stay away from something that can go up or down 30% in no time, they go for gold and silver. These are all the rage in Europe now.

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Stephen Gornick
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September 14, 2012, 08:52:18 AM
 #10

they start losing interest when they realise they need to do stuff like bank transfers or getting very specific hardware to just be "in it". They also don't want to meet strangers to buy something they still don't quite understand, or to pay a premium for using UKash or other stuff they also don't know most of the time.

Well, not everyone in Europe is as hard to convince.

A dentist in Finland accepts it.  That dentist and maybe staff can spend them at Vegemesta sandwich shop which also accepts it.  
 - http://vegemesta.com/

Room 77 in Kreuzberg Germany accepts it.   In addition to locals who mine, tourists might specifically patronize the place.

Carena Bar in Greece:
 - http://bitcoin.travel/carena-bar-restaurant/

B&B Del Corso in Napoli
 - http://bitcoin.travel/bb-del-corso/

Even at 2,700 meters up bitcoin is accepted.



 - http://rojacherhuette.mascht.com/


So ... it seems tourism-related businesses are the first to accept bitcoins.  Presumably, they pay their staff and expenses in fiat so anyone local offering to buy the bitcoins off their hands for them probably now has a local supply.

But seriously ,...  you think doing a SEPA transfer to BitSTAMP is really too hard?
 - https://it.bitstamp.net  <-- Italian translation.

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September 14, 2012, 10:25:43 AM
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I'm not saying "everybody", I have introduced a few myself. I'm European as well. I'm just saying it won't be neither easy nor a massive and instant migration into bitcoin. That's simply not going to happen because of the barriers I mentioned before. It will take a long time.

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September 14, 2012, 10:35:19 AM
 #12

F#$% I hate paypal.

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September 14, 2012, 10:41:07 AM
 #13

And one more reason why Bitcoin will get traction in Argentina: Nothing in the world makes you question the true nature of money more than hyperinflation. There are enough Argentines around who still remember 1989-1991 (and the three decades before). Bitcoin will resonate with them.

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September 14, 2012, 11:28:29 AM
 #14

My theory is that in these countries like Argentina bitcoin will be huge success, because:

- Easier to transfer than dollars/euros/other foreign currencies
- Cash and other valuables can be confiscated at the border, bitcoin can't
- Many people in these countries dream of moving to somewhere else, and bitcoin is the ultimate tool for that -  it is fairly easy to convert bitcoins to other currencies in any developed country.

Obligatory localbitcoins link: https://localbitcoins.com/country/AR

Francesco
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September 14, 2012, 11:55:20 AM
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It's great opportunity, but I don't have much hope for breakthrough. We already celebrated Italy's move to restrict cash transactions to 300 euro or so, but according to my (limited) knowledge nothing came out of it, and I pretty much expect the same in Argentina's case.

Actually Italy limited cash to 50 Euros recently. But I too don't see much good coming for bitcoins -no one is really going to bother with learning something so different from what they use to know, unless there is a really user friendly way to approach it -and a very compelling reason to bother, such as imminent default or dramatic exchange rate drop.


Obligatory localbitcoins link: https://localbitcoins.com/country/AR

Nearest seller is 70 km away -mhh, I could become one myself Smiley Still not nearly user-friendly enough for the casual user, though.
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September 14, 2012, 12:06:53 PM
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Actually, if Bitcoin gained any momentum there, it is likely that their government would try to block it

How?
Blocking bitcoin traffic maybe?
If your answer is encrypted tunneling then they can block that.
If your answer is use Tor then they can block access to Tor.
In any case, they have enough points of attack to cripple general bitcoin use.
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September 14, 2012, 12:10:28 PM
 #17

Blocking bitcoin traffic maybe?
If your answer is encrypted tunneling then they can block that.
If your answer is use Tor then they can block access to Tor.
In any case, they have enough points of attack to cripple general bitcoin use.


Short: "They could block bitcoin by disabling internet". Good luck with that Cheesy

It is not trivial to block tor, for example. China has been pretty succesful with it, but they have enormous resources compared to country like Argentina...

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September 14, 2012, 12:27:49 PM
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Blocking bitcoin traffic maybe?
If your answer is encrypted tunneling then they can block that.
If your answer is use Tor then they can block access to Tor.
In any case, they have enough points of attack to cripple general bitcoin use.


Short: "They could block bitcoin by disabling internet". Good luck with that Cheesy

It is not trivial to block tor, for example. China has been pretty succesful with it, but they have enormous resources compared to country like Argentina...

AFAIK most of the consumer parts of the internet do not require tor or encrypted tunnels so they will not be disabling internet as used by most people.
Most ISPs in the world have filtering capabilities, it has become the defacto standard.
This can be used to recognise unencrypted bitcoin traffic.
They can also recognise encrypted traffic and filter that.
TOR servers are known and can be blocked on IP basis.

And i'm not saying they must block all of the traffic, they just need to block it enough to make bitcoin impractical.
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September 14, 2012, 12:34:29 PM
 #19

My theory is that in these countries like Argentina bitcoin will be huge success, because:

- Easier to transfer than dollars/euros/other foreign currencies
- Cash and other valuables can be confiscated at the border, bitcoin can't
- Many people in these countries dream of moving to somewhere else, and bitcoin is the ultimate tool for that -  it is fairly easy to convert bitcoins to other currencies in any developed country.

Obligatory localbitcoins link: https://localbitcoins.com/country/AR

They have a very long history of currency instability, but they'd much rather go for something that they know, that they can use easily and that's not as volatile at bitcoin: the dollar is king in Argentina. And after the dollar, other fiat currencies or precious metals. Bitcoins are nowhere in their psyche.

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September 14, 2012, 12:53:56 PM
 #20

They can also recognise encrypted traffic and filter that.

I would hope if this becomes the case that really smart people will come up with ingenious ways of using steganography and other protocol obfuscation to make this harder than catching a greased pig. But AFAIK nobody has made very strong attempts to do this yet as most protocol obfuscation is easily defeated.

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