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Author Topic: Should we banish the words "money" or "currency" from the site ?  (Read 1991 times)
grondilu
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October 29, 2010, 11:41:52 AM
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In order to avoid future troubles with governments, I wonder if we should consider banishing a few words from the bitcoin website.

Those words would be "money", "currency", and maybe "commodity".

Bitcoin could be presented as a software which provides a "electronic unit for barter exchange", or something like that.  Maybe even the world "barter" should be avoided.  Then bitcoin would be a software that provides insurance into the limited amount of a virtual quantity, and into the security of its transfer via internet.

Edit.  Or maybe something like :

Bitcoin is a P2P network that uses cryptographic concepts in order to allow transfers of floating point values between nodes, while assuring that the overall aggregated amount is limited to 21 millions.
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October 29, 2010, 11:57:35 AM
 #2

In order to avoid future troubles with governments, I wonder if we should consider banishing a few words from the bitcoin website.

Those words would be "money", "currency", and maybe "commodity".

Bitcoin could be presented as a software which provides a "electronic unit for barter exchange", or something like that.  Maybe even the world "barter" should be avoided.  Then bitcoin would be a software that provides insurance into the limited amount of a virtual quantity, and into the security of its transfer via internet.



"electronic unit of exchange"  I like that term. The thing you are exchanging for could be anything.
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October 29, 2010, 12:01:41 PM
 #3

If were are going to banish these words we have to replace the "coin" part in the name of this currency too.

"Bitproof" - "electronic unit of proof of work"

That would be enough to confuse most politicians and judges.

The problem is, it would also confuse most potential users,  who would then skip Bitcoin for other e-currencies that are easier to understand.

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Drifter
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October 29, 2010, 12:08:14 PM
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You can call it what you want, but when Satoshi says in the first lines on the homepage, "Bitcoin P2P Cryptocurrency
Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer network based digital currency.", you're going to have a hell of a time confusing new users. I don't think we should banish any words here, that would be silly. If you want to make an effort to never call Bitcoin "currency" or "money", feel free. Outlawing the words doesn't seem the answer.

Gavin Andresen
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October 29, 2010, 12:17:46 PM
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grondilu, I think your premise is flawed-- banishing the words "money" or "currency" will not help avoid future troubles with governments.


How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
grondilu
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October 29, 2010, 12:35:12 PM
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grondilu, I think your premise is flawed-- banishing the words "money" or "currency" will not help avoid future troubles with governments.

Well, it would make things a little bit more difficult for them.
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October 29, 2010, 12:41:15 PM
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grondilu, I think your premise is flawed-- banishing the words "money" or "currency" will not help avoid future troubles with governments.

Well, it would make things a little bit more difficult for them.


People speaking truth will make things difficult for them. Banning words only helps block communication.

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grondilu
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October 29, 2010, 12:52:27 PM
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grondilu, I think your premise is flawed-- banishing the words "money" or "currency" will not help avoid future troubles with governments.

Well, it would make things a little bit more difficult for them.


People speaking truth will make things difficult for them. Banning words only helps block communication.

Well, we could do something similar to what is done with filesharing software :  a legal notice that reminds that sharing copyright protected files is a criminal offence in several countries, and that the purpose of those software is not to do that.

So, we could say something like :  bitcoin is not claimed to be any form of money, nor currency.  Using it as such is only a matter of individual choice and responsability.

Well, it would make things a little bit more difficult for them.
Do you think the government cares which words someone uses on some forum?

Perhaps we can refer to this forum as a "message stick" instead of an internet forum. Then various internet-related laws will no longer apply to it?

I'm just trying to find a solution to the recent EU directive http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1602.msg19013#msg19013
Anonymous
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October 29, 2010, 01:17:44 PM
 #9

Criminal gangs dont care what words you use. They dont even follow their own rules or words if it doesnt suit their agenda. In fact they have their own language called "legalese".

I recommend watching the anti terrorist http://theantiterrorist.co.uk/
for a better explanation of this concept.
 
Anonymous
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October 29, 2010, 02:07:42 PM
 #10

Bitcoin is not  "legal tender" it is a private currency not issued by national governments. It is not illegal to issue a private currency but through a combination of standover tactics and scare campaigns governments have fooled people to think it is. I would like to see what would happen if governments tried to confiscate bitcoins . The idea of them taking bitcoins as easily as they took gold and silver from people is actually absurd when you think about it. So what if they try? Who are they going to invade? How can they prove what you intended to do if you generated a coin? It is incidental that someone sent you money sometime later as a gift .

How can they prove that you received that gift because you sent some bits into the internet? Did you sign anything? Was there a contract? Is your dna on a banknote? These beauracrats cant even tie their own shoelaces let alone figure out what a bitcoin is. I suggest we point and laugh as they rage uncontrollably  Cheesy

ribuck
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October 29, 2010, 02:50:52 PM
 #11

...The idea of them taking bitcoins as easily as they took gold and silver from people is actually absurd when you think about it...

Well ... in the United Kingdom there is the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, which requires people to disclose their cryptographic keys to the government upon request. The penalty for failing to do so is 2 years imprisonment. But the process is secret. You are not allowed to tell anyone that your keys have been demanded. And if you tell anyone, the penalty for that is 5 years imprisonment.

I guess "cryptographic keys" includes Bitcoin wallets.

There is already a guy in prison for not handing over his keys on demand. He is acknowledged by the authorities as not being a threat to anyone. His "crime" is not co-operating with the authorities.
grondilu
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October 29, 2010, 02:57:32 PM
 #12

Well ... in the United Kingdom there is the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, which requires people to disclose their cryptographic keys to the government upon request. The penalty for failing to do so is 2 years imprisonment. But the process is secret. You are not allowed to tell anyone that your keys have been demanded. And if you tell anyone, the penalty for that is 5 years imprisonment.

I must not understand something.  You can't tell anyone that you're in jail because you refused to discolse your keys, otherwise your penalty is even longer ?

You must be kidding me !
ribuck
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October 29, 2010, 04:57:21 PM
 #13

...You can't tell anyone that you're in jail because you refused to discolse your keys...
No, it's not like that. If you're found guilty, the reason for your imprisonment is a matter of public record.

But if the authorities demand your keys, you have four choices:

1. Give them your keys, and don't tell anyone, and remain free (unless convicted for something else).
2. Give them your keys, tell someone, and go to prison for up to 5 years.
3. Don't give them your keys, tell someone, and go to prison for up to 5 years.
4. Don't give them your keys, don't tell anyone, and go to prison for up to 2 years.

When the legislation was introduced, the reason given was that if the police were investigating, say, a drug ring and demanded the GPG key from one of the ring members, that ring member was to be prohibited from warning the other ring members.
Gavin Andresen
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October 29, 2010, 06:10:47 PM
 #14

If you've got good crypto there's a fifth choice:

5. Give them dummy keys that unlock something innocuous.

Like a TrueCrypt-encrypted Hidden Volume filesystem.


How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
MoonShadow
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October 29, 2010, 06:13:46 PM
 #15

So, we could say something like :  bitcoin is not claimed to be any form of money, nor currency.  Using it as such is only a matter of individual choice and responsability.

Except for the little fact that Bitcoin is a currency by design and definition, and the act of attempting to deny that fact in the face of reality is a fraud.  Don't fall into that trap, if they want to lock you up for using bitcions, lying about it will only make it easier for them.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
ShadowOfHarbringer
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October 29, 2010, 06:23:27 PM
 #16

If you've got good crypto there's a fifth choice:

5. Give them dummy keys that unlock something innocuous.

Like a TrueCrypt-encrypted Hidden Volume filesystem.

+ 1

Truecrypt is a mighty beast and it is very easy to use.
I am using it for 5 years on, and it never failed me.


So, we could say something like :  bitcoin is not claimed to be any form of money, nor currency.  Using it as such is only a matter of individual choice and responsability.

Except for the little fact that Bitcoin is a currency by design and definition, and the act of attempting to deny that fact in the face of reality is a fraud.  Don't fall into that trap, if they want to lock you up for using bitcions, lying about it will only make it easier for them.

+ 1 to that too.

However, we could do something similiar to what the topic starter is proposing.
ADVERTISE bitcoin (without stating that it is not a currency) as a means of easy, charge-less internet money transfer.

I'm proposing just a change in focus. Let's _focus_ on viewing bitcoin as a money transfer system, not currency.
There is no lie in that.

davout
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October 30, 2010, 01:01:16 PM
 #17

I'm just trying to find a solution to the recent EU directive http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1602.msg19013#msg19013

European directives are not legally binding you until they have been translated to local law.
Haven't heard anything like that in France for now.

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October 31, 2010, 06:53:58 AM
 #18

In order to avoid future troubles with governments, I wonder if we should consider banishing a few words from the bitcoin website.

Those words would be "money", "currency", and maybe "commodity".

Bitcoin could be presented as a software which provides a "electronic unit for barter exchange", or something like that.  Maybe even the world "barter" should be avoided.  Then bitcoin would be a software that provides insurance into the limited amount of a virtual quantity, and into the security of its transfer via internet.

Edit.  Or maybe something like :

Bitcoin is a P2P network that uses cryptographic concepts in order to allow transfers of floating point values between nodes, while assuring that the overall aggregated amount is limited to 21 millions.


This is not a good idea.

1. You can't ban the most accurate words for describing the thing you want to talk about.

2. Even if you did, it wouldn't fool anyone, you still be obligated to pay the taxes on your bitcoins profits. Just because you think you are covering your trail with digital tricks or whatever is no excuse if they do track you down and demand taxes. Barter nets have found this out to their dismay.

3. Its silly to invent new euphamisms and rationalizations for what it is. Its a currency for exchanging value. The fact that there are fairly direct paths for trading bitcoin for us$ and euros proves the point.
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October 31, 2010, 08:38:00 AM
 #19

May....I....invoke Bitcoin's Law?  Cheesy

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