Thanks Jerry for a nice interview style piece that covers Bitcoin itself and not all the side news stories that come from it. I am only going to pull a few questions and answers, see the link and read the whole piece, then pass the link along.
THE MARK: How would you explain Bitcoin to someone without much tech knowledge?
JERRY BRITO: It's the world's first completely digital distributed currency. What that means is that it's like a dollar, or a euro, or a yen, except that it's not issued by any government – or anyone else, for that matter. We've had virtual currencies before – like Flooz, or Beanz, or e-gold, for instance. In each of those cases, there was some company that issued the currency. So if we both have an account with, let's say, Beanz, and I send you some Beanz, the Beanz corporation keeps a ledger where it subtracts Beanz from my account and adds them to yours. That's the way PayPal works, and that's the way the Bank of America works, with real dollars. What Bitcoin does is eliminate the need to have that intermediary, so that the ledger – where money is subtracted from me and given to you – is distributed among all the users. There's no central bank, and no central authority of any kind.
THE MARK: What's the advantage of Bitcoin over hard currency?
BRITO: Here are the advantages, from my point of view. One, it's censorship-proof.
.. one kind of overlooked thing about Bitcoin is that transaction costs are very low, so it could very well allow micropayments in a way that traditional payment processors haven't. So, right now, if I wanted to buy an article from The Mark News – let's say I wanted to pay five cents to read an article – with PayPal or Visa, payment processing might cost 50 cents. It wouldn't work; people wouldn’t buy into that. Bitcoin’s low transaction costs make it much more feasible for this sort of thing.
THE MARK: What, in your view, is the biggest advantage of Bitcoin?
BRITO: I think this is really revolutionary because of the decentralization. That's the part of this that really gets me excited. Governments seek to regulate the internet through intermediaries. They don't regulate the end users. So take gambling, for example. Say you make internet gambling illegal, as we have in the United States. How do you enforce that? Do you go after the individual gamblers? No. Here in the U.S., what we do is go after the third-party payment processors – the Visas and Mastercards of the world – and we tell them they can't make those transactions. That way, we're sort of deputizing these folks that really have nothing to do with the transaction. The casino's overseas, so you can't regulate it. What would happen if you went after individual gamblers? What do you think?
I like that term to describe Bitcoin, censorship proof, haven't seen that used on the forums yet. Also, Bitcoin Weekly ahead of the curve offering a micropayment model for articles (at the time of me posting only a 0.70 donation http://forum.bitcoin.org/index.php?topic=28681.0
Full article is at http://www.themarknews.com/articles/6018-a-bitcoin-for-your-thoughts
, check it out.