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Author Topic: Bitcoin Favors the Rich?  (Read 1054 times)
the joint
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June 21, 2011, 09:39:02 PM
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Ok, so, this is my first post on the forum.  I've done some preliminary searching for posts containing opinions on the strengths/weaknesses of the Bitcoin economic model, whom it favors, etc.  Simple question...were Bitcoin to become a stable worldwide currency, wouldn't it marginalize the poor even further?  I don't know a lot of poor folks who can rush off to the store to buy a killer GPU, or who have the necessary technical skill to even learn to configure and operate a GUIminer (not to mention the relationship between S.E.S. and education and the potential difficulty in understanding the Bitcoin model).

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Agozyen
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June 21, 2011, 09:44:22 PM
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 Mining isn't the only way to acquire bitcoins.  You can buy them, barter for them or even sell items in exchange for bitcoins.  The people that adopted bitcoin early weren't all rich, though some may be today.  Bitcoin favors those that participate. 


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fernandodlc
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June 21, 2011, 09:47:59 PM
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Yeah, I made 12.3% on day trading bitcoins in the past 2 days. Haven't done any mining at all.

At this rate I'll be a billionaire before the end of the year Smiley
the joint
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June 21, 2011, 09:52:19 PM
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True, though I assume that you DO have an adequate understanding of the bitcoin model.  See last part about relationship between S.E.S. and education.  Without good understanding, it's like gambling.

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June 21, 2011, 09:54:48 PM
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I have a radeon 5750 that I use for games, but I don't think I want to use it for mining. Like the other guys said, there are many ways to acquire bitcoins! so us poor guys need to be creative and smart about this  Smiley
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June 21, 2011, 09:59:28 PM
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GPU mining is a fun thing to do for some people, but definitely not the only way to use and acquire Bitcoins. In fact, Bitcoins only have the high value they do today because people are buying them on the exchanges. If Bitcoin became a world wide accepted currency with a fairly stable price (and of course a MUCH higher mining difficulty than it does now with a much lower payout), people would simply use an exchange to convert their local currency into Bitcoins, or would sell something on a site like ebay and get paid in Bitcoin instead of PayPal, or provide a service and get paid in Bitcoin, etc. Mining definitely isn't a requirement to use Bitcoins, so I don't think it's fair to say that people with little money are discriminated against because they can't afford to buy GPUs. In fact, unless the price increases dramatically to match the new harder mining difficulty level, it's already a loss to buy a GPU and mine.
the joint
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June 21, 2011, 10:11:30 PM
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Yes, but again, poor people today are marginalized (in part) because they are uneducated about the ways they can efficiently use the little money they have.  For example, how many low S.E.S. people know how to effectively trade stock or invest in a retirement fund for maximum profit?  How many WOULD choose to do so knowing that there is a risk for loss when they need every penny they already own in USD?  Of course, this risk would diminish the more stable it becomes, but still...efficient bitcoin trading requires sufficient foresight.  This foresight is most easily obtained through internet research, but the ability to search the web effectively is also limited by SES factors.

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June 21, 2011, 10:32:02 PM
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I can't think right now of any money system that doesn't favor the rich.

If you are going to speculate on the markets - whether it's gold, stocks or Bitcoins - then you'd better have money to spare and potentially to lose. To be rich is to be able to make your money work for you; the poor can only work for money.

In the past the rich have often amassed their fortunes through dishonest means, by oppressing others or looting other countries. In the 1500s the Spanish got a lot of their silver in South America and I bet the poor folks who mined for it didn't get much of the profits.

If every economic system has its elite then one that is weighted in the favor of some computer coders with good graphics cards who got into this game early on does not seem too bad to me, in the grand scheme of things. If I had to choose an elite I would probably prefer them to a lot of the folks who are running our banks.

The geek shall inherit the earth?  Cheesy
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June 21, 2011, 10:46:05 PM
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Yeah, I made 12.3% on day trading bitcoins in the past 2 days. Haven't done any mining at all.

At this rate I'll be a billionaire before the end of the year Smiley

I was interested in day trading under the bitcoin model but I haven't looked into it much, where do you trade?
qwat
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June 21, 2011, 10:51:51 PM
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If you don't have money for mining or trading, sell services.

Joe Gormley
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Currently mining 5.5 Ghash/s
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June 23, 2011, 06:14:25 AM
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As a landlord, its been my experience that the poor choose cash for transactions over more expensive alternatives, e.g. checks, money orders, and credit cards.  The poor are compelled to use the cheapest means of conducting transactions.  The alternatives have fees that the poor cannot afford.

Bitcoins are cheaper to circulate than paper money.  One needs only some form of internet connection and they will become ubiquitous with smartphones.

Bitcoin speculation favors the rich however, in that the rich have the speculative funds to begin hoarding bitcoins for potential appreciation.  One could expect the poor on the other hand to spend every bitcoin that they possess and not hoard at all.
Tronlet
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June 23, 2011, 06:31:33 AM
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What you're saying has already happened, it is practically pointless to mine bitcoin now unless you feel like spending money on a megarig. Doesn't change anything.

Jessica
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June 23, 2011, 08:03:05 AM
 #13

Yes, Bitcoin favors the rich. In real life, you cannot buy a graphics card or money printer or whatever and start creating money out of nowhere. However, you can do that with Bitcoin, in addition to selling / buying.

So, yeah, Bitcoin is kinda unfair, but with a small investment in a nice rig, you could make some profit. :3
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