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Author Topic: Bitcoin adoption slowing; Coinbase + Bitpay is enough to make Bitcoin a fiat  (Read 66949 times)
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AnonyMint
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April 04, 2014, 10:57:05 PM
Last edit: April 05, 2014, 12:32:57 PM by AnonyMint
 #1

P.S. this thread is self-moderated, but I will only delete personal (meaning directed at a specific poster here) attacks, quoting the entire OP or other longish quote (noisy), or spam. I will not delete posts I disagree with, except for blablahblah who is so obnoxious that he is permanently banned from my life.

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=400235.msg6075905#msg6075905

I come across as overly self-important. It is because I tried to warn about the dangers of Bitcoin (while being fair to also praise its virtues) and in the process I had to shout over a lot of hurt feelings. And this hardened my resolve. Sorry this is not overconfidence, it is uber confidence because it is based in fact checking not in wishful careless arbitrary dreaming. Because when I spend a year digging into the details of something, I make many key insights and discoveries. And you all do not know what I discovered technologically because I haven't revealed it. Why should I give you my secret recipes when in fact you would piss on them any way. The only way forward is to prove you wrong. Sorry this is not a desire to be a jerk. It is a desire to do what is best for mankind, a desire to get wealthy doing it, and a desire to build a bigger ecosystem with more people like you profiting and smiling.

Now on to the analysis...

Well if this is the bottom it is U shaped, not V, which is what I predicted upthread.

The price action seems to be very quiet, so not much to talk about from a TA perspective.

First a math point about relating adoption rate to price. Peter R confirmed upthread with a chart that proxies for adoption, N, are tracking price = N x N. And if adoption is growing by rate R per year, then it grows R x R rate in two years. Thus we can say that the annual rate of price increases is proportional to the biannual rate of adoption. You see when our Y axis is logarithmic (e.g. log 10 on chart Risto shows) then exponentiation becomes additive and thus linearly proportional.

So I've been FA thinking about why Bitcoin adoption is likely declining, i.e. as I showed a log-logistic curve fit.

As I explained in that linked post, the slope of the price increase was 0.33 before July 2011, and has been 0.09 since January 2012 until now. So it had already declined. The question is was the early period an aberration or part of the trend?

SlipperySlope had been fitting a logistic curve to Bitcoin's price, because technology which spreads out to the masses typically has that S shape of exponential adoption. The key factor is that logistic adoption rate (slope) increases until the midway point, i.e. at 50% of the adoption before decreasing. Whereas, log-logistic adoption rate (slope) is maximum at the start and is always declining. This is a very important distinction because logistic means we can expect Bitcoin's price rate of increase to accelerate, whereas log-logistic we can expect the rate of price appreciation to slow further (as it already did slowing from 0.33 to 0.09 after July 2011).

I gave the explanation that money is power-law distributed and thus we should expect the greatest serious network effects on adoption at the beginning because the power investors come in the earliest. The log-logistic (cumulative distribution function) curve corresponds to the power-law distribution.

I had an epiphany in my dream last night that there is a simpler explanation which also corresponds to the power-law distribution of money as follows.

"Most people who learn about Bitcoin, don't adopt it".

Why? Because it doesn't fulfill a general need. The need it fulfills is very specific to a white male, hate central banking demographic. It doesn't have fast transactions, doesn't have consumer protection, the money is difficult to secure, it is technically challenging to use, etc..

A consumer adopted item such as a washing machine has logistic adoption curve because every person who hears about wants it. Thus maximum word-of-mouth is reached at 50% of adoption. Whereas, for Bitcoin maximum rate of effectiveness of word-of-mouth was when only the correct demographic was listening back before July 2011. Now as Bitcoin tries to speak to the masses, they mostly don't care.

Thus if you want to build a Bitcoin killer altcoin, you simply make sure it is something every person will want to do.

I have experience doing such things, as I created an application that had 1 million users and 1% of the internet back in late 1990s. Before that I was involved with what became Corel Painter and I helped bring it to 1 million global units and also the first $million milestone in Japan. The key thing is I sought out that company, not them finding me. I have always been attracted to paradigm shift technology and thinking about how to make it easier for people and thus increase adoption rates.

My reputation doesn't matter. I won't be using it any way. What matters here is determining what is really going on. Because an investor without the correct interpretation of reality is destined to lose money.

If there was a black budget team who designed Bitcoin, it appears they may have failed in their analysis. It appears they have no way to get the masses interested. But let's see if that changes as offchain services and fiat masks such as Bitpay and Coinbase proliferate.

Put Coinbase and Bitpay together and you have both the consumer and the merchant, you don't need the block chain any more. Also the mining is already centralized. How much more obvious could it be?

And during this time our core development team and Foundation have been doing what to ameliorate this outcome? Meeting with the CIA and CFR.

And then I wake up to see this at the top of the Google search for "Bitcoin price":

http://gigaom.com/2014/04/04/this-week-in-bitcoin-the-push-to-get-the-currency-in-the-hands-of-the-consumer/

And so again I will challenge Risto according to our original focuses when we first met each other back in 2007. What are you doing about this? I know what I am doing. And you know I warned you about this outcome from Day 1 when you shouted to me that Bitcoin was becoming very important.


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April 04, 2014, 11:05:05 PM
 #2

I don't get it.

How do I store value in a brainwallet with just Bitpay & Coinbase if there is no blockchain?

How do you prevent a inflation & a dilution of value without the blockchain?

How do you prevent a government shutdown of a centralized location without the blockchain?

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April 04, 2014, 11:05:24 PM
 #3

"Most people who learn about Bitcoin, don't adopt it".

Why? Because it doesn't fulfill a general need.

New technology almost never fills a general need. It creates a need in a place where no need previously existed, until society begins to reshape itself because the new technology has forced a space for itself.

Using a tired analogy, what need did the internet fill in society? We could shop in stores. We could send letters via fax and mail. We could call people over a telephone. There was no gaping "need" for access to generally useless information 24/7. We can only answer the question in retrospect.

What about social networking? Were Facebook and Twitter created to fulfill a societal need? Can you imagine trying to pitch twitter to the world? "Hey guys, you know how you really NEED and WANT to post 140 character messages online? Well now you can!"

Notwithstanding whether I am correct or not, the key distinction in my mind is that nearly everyone who learns about a washing machine or smart phone, wants one. There are those who said, "I don't need that, I will stick with the hand washing or the feature phone", but this is just denial. Eventually they realize they were wrong as their neighbors are more productive. Whereas, the resistance to Bitcoin is justified, i.e. "why would I want that, I already have Paypal and I don't want the negatives of Bitcoin".

I am thinking about what advantage does Coinbase + Bitpay have over Paypal?  The key is that the consumer pays the fees instead of the merchant. Thus more merchants will prefer it. Why will customers prefer that?

Then I got to thinking. The problem with Paypal is there are too many competitors. The elite want to control this new digital money system. What if you combined Paypal + Bitpay! Then you can see the founder of Paypal is the main angel investor in Bitpay.

This is all about getting more merchants and customers into the digital fiat system.

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April 04, 2014, 11:13:12 PM
 #4

I don't get it.

How do I store value in a brainwallet with just Bitpay & Coinbase if there is no blockchain?

How do you prevent a inflation & a dilution of value without the blockchain?

How do you prevent a government shutdown of a centralized location without the blockchain?

That is the entire point. I don't like what is developing.

Bitpay (a BTC facade on fiat payment) is growing faster than Bitcoin adoption:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=400235.msg6015809#msg6015809

Also:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=400235.msg6017743#msg6017743
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=400235.msg6032623#msg6032623

Btw, that is Peter Thiel who also seeded Facebook and Paypal.

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April 04, 2014, 11:26:11 PM
 #5

Before you disagree that Bitcoin adoption rate is slowing, make sure you understand the difference between nominal size and exponential growth rate.

Greatest failing of human race is inability to distinguish nominal change from
exponential growth:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=400235.msg6037179#msg6037179

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April 04, 2014, 11:50:07 PM
 #6

 Well, I may not be as eloquent but as for making a single starting point, of why or what need, can or does, Bitcoin propose to implement. In my view one may be as an international conductor of value. As you have stated the customer pays the transaction fee. So far this fee has historically been low when compared to the fee assessed by international monetary exchanges. As well as the equivalent exchange handling fee assessed by credit card companies with regards to international purchases made as point of transaction in a country other than the originating account billing address.
 Coinbase is the interface to which I have some degree of experience with. I would point out that their fees for purchasing Bitcoin are similar to what a merchant pays for credit and debit card use. Where as, if I wanted to purchase an item in Austria and I am American, I would need to exchange my USD currency at a fee per transaction that has historically been well above 5% of the value of the exchange. With the adoption of Bitcoin that conversion fee is no longer collected by an exchange desk. I believe that was part of the same argument made for the adoption of the Euro, except the Euro is not accepted at the check out counter of retailers world wide anymore than Bitcoin is at this point in time. Bitcoin is a potential monetary equalizer in the electronic retail environment with the ability to also be adopted world wide by walk in merchants as well.
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April 04, 2014, 11:51:13 PM
 #7

Regarding change:

Ultimately the question is more along the lines of "Is technology liberating or a means to oppress?".

Any type of organization necessarily requires a limitation of degrees of freedom so why does organization ever occur in the first place? Is technology the result of organization or is it cause of greater organization?

From questions like this we can establish some baseline principles upon which to guide ourselves.

It may be that technology is not a means of human liberation.
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April 05, 2014, 12:09:15 AM
 #8

Regarding change:

Ultimately the question is more along the lines of "Is technology liberating or a means to oppress?".

Cross posting an excerpt from an ongoing discussion in another thread...

1. I generally disagree with this one. Never in the history of mankind has the average Joe won in mass, IMHO. Somehow I don't believe it will magically happen now that Bitcoin is around.

Bitcoin is a technology. Most every time the benefits of a new technology, properly applied, have benefited the average Joe sooner or later.

Risto it appears you excel on "counting" games, but when it comes to logic it appears you over generalize (or choose the simplest understanding for efficiency) and this causes you to make mistakes. I suck at board games but I appear to excel at seeing all the conceptual issues in full range of depth and extracting the generative essence. Our brains appear to be wired differently. That appears to make you better at finding arbitrage opportunities than me (but gives you no advantage in timing market moves), but my skill appears to make me a superior visionary than you. I don't excel mentally with anything that requires me to interact with my external sensors. I excel with short I/O tape and then let my mind run on it, although normally my reading comprehension is very high but don't expect me to interact in parallelized real-time with my I/O i.e. that game you mentioned upthread (I tried while getting sleepy and only managed 16000 after several tries perhaps I would do better if I put some thought into how I should be calculating the move probabilities on that grid, but it appears to come naturally to you?).

I had the following insight before, but no one prompted me to share it. It is difficult for me to keep track of all my ideas.

Contemplate that the technologies which benefit the masses are those which have individual scope; whereas, those which subject the masses to greater extortion via the collective have collective scope. For example, washing machines have only individual scope and were rapidly (logistically) adopted across the breadth of the developed world. Whereas, nuclear power and nuclear weapons can't be individualized and have further enslaved us in the collective.

The internet (networking in general) is a mix of individual empowerment and collective enslavement.

What does anonymity do in theory? In theory it makes it possible to have all the individual empower without any (most) of the collective enslavement.

This is why I am so obsessed with making sure we have anonymity, not just in our money but in every aspect of the internet. The technology I am working on is not only applicable to crypto-currency. I want to change the entire internet to make it asymmetrically more of an individual empowerment.

Throughout history we had anonymity in our money because it was physical. Now Bitcoin comes along with a fully traceable public ledger and we give up asymmetric power to the collective. This alarmed the shit out of me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I said to myself a year ago, "hell no! not if I can do anything about it".

In geek speak, "you just don't get it".

The other asymmetric problem specific to Bitcoin is it uses ASICs thus mining is in the hands of the few, and also there is nothing in the design which economically discourages large pools thus one pooltwo or three pools now controls more than 50% of the hash rate. Bitcoin has already fallen and can NEVER be a benefit to the individual. Sorry! Just wishing it to be not so is foolish. I don't have a vendetta against crypto-currency, rather I am logically analyzing the situation. And attempting to fix it. I was frankly initially shocked that you were so dismissive and uninterested (and others even attacked me for wanting to improve the situation), but then I realized it is because you guys don't think on a deep level as I do or you are blinded by your speculative fever and vested interests as owners of Bitcoins. And thus you walk right into the honey pot so designed to trap you. (And there are both technical and political reasons improvements to these issues can NEVER be back ported into Bitcoin. Sorry!)

P.S. the other fundamental driver of asymmetric power of the collective on the internet is the client-server model instead of P2P.

It is a fact that a physical multifurcating network is more efficient than a fully connected mesh topology, i.e. running a smaller pipe from the water district to each house increases the cost and back pressure than running a main line and then multifurcating branches off it (cross-sectional area reduces by the square of the proportional diameter decreases). However, the transfer of data on the internet does not obey that physical law because we don't charge for data according to the path it takes. However the challenge is the efficient, redundant DHT storage and serve of data for a purely P2P internet. That is a more difficult technical hurdle.

P.S.S. I predicted a couple of weeks ago the IRS ruling would be what it is and that it would cause the price to dive. The post is some where in my public archives on bitcointalk.

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April 05, 2014, 12:14:42 AM
 #9

Coinbase is the interface to which I have some degree of experience with. I would point out that their fees for purchasing Bitcoin are similar to what a merchant pays for credit and debit card use. Where as, if I wanted to purchase an item in Austria and I am American, I would need to exchange my USD currency at a fee per transaction that has historically been well above 5% of the value of the exchange. With the adoption of Bitcoin that conversion fee is no longer collected by an exchange desk.

Bitpay is taking over (3X adoption increase month-on-month compounded!). And you pay the exchange rate (plus some fudge factor to hide Bitpay's fees in the exchange rate).

Thus now you are paying through the nose twice. And Peter Thiel's wallet is getting fatter.

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April 05, 2014, 12:18:01 AM
Last edit: April 05, 2014, 12:29:07 AM by AnonyMint
 #10

Btw, I don't expect the "yes" vote to be higher than the "BTC" vote.

One goal I have is to put it on record how dumb (myopic/mass mania/groupthink/vested interest/incapable) the "BTC" majority is. So later when my warnings come true, I can say "I told ya so".

My other goal is to tell the "yes" voters, they will soon have better alternative(s). Keep the faith.

You will also find that many "BTC" votes will be just irrational hate towards me personally. It is good to feed their hate and let them vent it. You will note they can't make one rational argument in this thread. Even I have promised not to delete any arguments I disagree with. You see they are really feeble and helpless (and shameless).

My message to Peter Thiel is, "you think you can win with the feeble on your side?".

P.S. I feel justified calling out Thiel and (my friend) Risto, because they both put themselves in the position of being leaders of the "BTC". W.r.t. to Risto, I am merely trying to encourage him to use his resources wisely.

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April 05, 2014, 12:36:37 AM
 #11

Interesting article.

On one hand you have merchants using Bitpay.  These merchants don't want to hold BTC.  They convert it to fiat before it touches their account.  They are BTC sellers

On the other side you have hoarders who don't wanna to spend BTC because they are buying it for speculation.

As more merchants accept BTC thru Bitpay; this creates an asymmetry of sellers over buyers.   This puts a lot of selling pressure on BTC driving the price down.

So at some point the future the price will be driven low enough where there is an equilibrium of sellers vs buyers in order for BTC stabilize.  But if a better tech comes along like Ripple, BTC might just go extinct.
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April 05, 2014, 12:53:55 AM
 #12

Humor timeout...

Notice the deer are allowed passage (see sign in distance) Wink

With anonymity, let's be the freerange, agile deer. TPTB can spend forever regulating (pointing at) shadows.

> Yep = TECHNOCRACY
> Good one, AnonyMint!  LOL
>
>
>> Date: Fri, 4 Apr 2014 01:01:33 -0400
>> Subject: humorous photo showing government banning everything/freedom
>> From: AnonyMint
>> To: xxxxxxx
>>
>> Do not proceed:
>>
>> Attachment: noway.jpg
>>

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April 05, 2014, 12:59:05 AM
 #13

People don't adopt when they learn about bitcoin because
people are not confident on securing digital assets.
people have experience with
  • crashed hdds
  • broken/burned/lost flash disks
  • scratched CD/DVDs
  • files erased by viruses
  • passwords/keys forgotten or lost

Why do you think people keep buying printers?
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April 05, 2014, 01:02:39 AM
 #14

AnonyMint, what is your opinion of the value of Bitcoin as a hedge against the dollar?

You say that one of the major problems with bitcoin is that, to the average consumer, it doesn't fill a real need.  With the way Bitpay and Coinbase operate, bitcoin has essentially become a "digital fiat system".  And I certainly see your point.  Bitcoin is 100% pegged to the dollar, and to most people, it doesn't really offer any practical advantage over the current system.  As is, it is unnecessary, and as such, it can not grow at a similar adoption rate as new technology that fills an immediate need, like the washing machine.

So if we buy into your log-logistic adoption rate and admit that growth is slowing, how would any impending economic instability play into the equation?  Because if I remember correctly, you have written in the past about economic cycles and how we are due for a serious downturn towards the second half of 2015 (forgive me if I am wrong, it was a while back than I recall reading it).  If this is true, how would this effect the bitcoin economy (and the crypto scene as a whole)?  Wouldn't such a downturn create a void, a need, that bitcoin would then fill, thereby increasing the rate of adoption vs before the economy went south and that need was there?  The entire ecosystem as it exists now, this "digital fiat system" as you put it, with merchants only "accepting" bitcoin through companies like bitpay and then immediately turning it into fiat, would change, would it not?

I'm interested to hear your thoughts on bitcoins role in such a scenario.
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April 05, 2014, 01:03:03 AM
 #15

I forgot to put in the OP that if the log-logistic adoption curve fit I did is correct, it predicts BTC price to rise 10X every 16 to 20 months, just not the 12X per year appreciation "to the moon". And predicts that rate to slow again after another 2 years. Thus I don't expect BTC > $10,000 before 2016. And I never see BTC ≥ $100,000 (low probability of occurrence) because growth rate will be roughly 1/16 of current after $10,000, certainly $1 million is fantastical delusion.

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April 05, 2014, 01:04:52 AM
 #16

I think it's pretty clear that the answer to the question asked by the OP is yes. BTC is a fiat system in all respects except overt endorsement by a state but as soon as the protocol meets specific criteria, and that is being worked on as we speak, it will be incorporated by the fiat system and receive that endorsement. It seems like that is the end game as viewed from the perspective of entities such as the Bitcoin Foundation, and other big players.

I also agree that  true anonymity and ubiquitous individualized mining are essential elements of any cryptocurrency that will escape government regulation, something which is synonymous with being coopted by the fiat system, and become a tool of individualized use. If any technical advance can be liberating, this is the path it will necessarily take. Anything less is submission.

I cannot be convinced that this wasn't the goal of the creators of btc all along. The tale of Satoshi Nakamoto is rubbish. There's real money behind the development of bitcoin, it never would have gotten this far without it. The reason for the covert nature of it's development is that despite it's shortcomings the protocol and the idea that spawned it is truly revolutionary, so it has to be managed carefully or it could blow up in the face of whoever presents it to the world. Once the technology is proven the truth about who created will emerge.

I'm still not sure that collectivized production ie civilization is the best outcome for humanity or that any technology can be individualized. Even something as seemingly innocuous as a washing machine does lock the individual into collective production.

Also I am pretty sure that human genius is the product of forces utterly beyond our control. Life is a biochemical system, the individualized components have no degree of freedom beyond what is allowed by the movement of the other components of the system.

The idea of human "liberation" may not be possible. Not sure where that leaves us yet.
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April 05, 2014, 01:13:54 AM
 #17

mgburks77 and I entirely agree, except for the last part about human liberation not being possible. It always comes back to making technology more individualized. See this please:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=495527.msg6065144#msg6065144

I am so excited!

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April 05, 2014, 01:35:34 AM
Last edit: April 05, 2014, 02:05:17 AM by AnonyMint
 #18

So if we buy into your log-logistic adoption rate and admit that growth is slowing, how would any impending economic instability play into the equation?

Without anonymity we are toast.

Is Bitcoin anonymous?

Will the Bitcoin block chain even have a liquid anonymous market any more by 2016 when it matters to us? Or will everything be registered in Coinbase, Bitpay, Paypal, etc...

Because the governments have no choice but to increase revenues as we collapse into a global debt default. And the more they tax + confiscate wealth, the more the GDP will collapse. Thus the more they will need to take from wealth. It is a downward spiral. Very scary.

According to Martin Armstrong's very high placed sources, the Fed has already told the banks not to expect a bailout next big crash (which should be 2016). They are going to let this sucker downward spiral but with capital controls so that government can pay the debt and obligations while private pensions and banks implode taking all the wealth down with them. The USA is temporarily bouncing up and stock market might even double before Sept 2015. But this is just capital fleeing the emerging markets and rushing back to the reserve currency for one last hooray before the whole mess collapses.

Gold hoarding causes a collapse in the velocity of money V in the equation M x V = GDP, thus GDP collapses. It is Mad Max directed outcome because the world is $223 trillion in debt + $1000 trillion in derivative swaps to hold up pension plans & finance + $1000 trillion in unfunded promises to society (welfare, pensions, etc).

P.S. $4 trillion of it has been unaccounted for in the USA Federal budget and is called the "black budget". Imagine what the "Fourth Branch" of government can do with $4 trillion.

Catherine Austin Fitts' point that government intentionally designs in
failure when it is in its best interest but can act very swiftly when that
is in its best interest (i.e. the best interests of the elite "Fourth
Branch of Government" who capture the government). She talks about the $4
trillion black budget. I highly recommend listening to the audio interview. She
is very articulate and gets directly to the point. She was former Assistant
Security of HUD in the USA government. She was also a major player on
Wallstreet. So she has insider connections. Janet Napolitano once told her
to prepare for mass voilence and upheavel in the USA after 2016.

http://www.dailypaul.com/314402/complete-breakdown-of-financial-controls-in-us-government-says-austin-fitts

Janet Napolitano was the former head of the Homelust (hands down your child's pants) ScrewUrity department.

The well known mainstream Bill Moyers did a documentary on the Fourth Branch of the USA government:

http://billmoyers.com/episode/the-deep-state-hiding-in-plain-sight/

If you listen to both Bill Moyer's video and Fitt's audio interview, you will drastically increase your understanding.

More here:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=455141.msg5704180#msg5704180

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April 05, 2014, 01:39:16 AM
 #19

Quote
It is not personal identity that is important, but rather reputation....

Interesting idea, must digest

thanks for links! It's difficult to locate this type of content

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April 05, 2014, 02:30:27 AM
Last edit: April 05, 2014, 02:49:36 AM by farnsworth7
 #20

AnonyMint, thanks for this very interesting thread. I'm not sure I agree with everything you write, but you do make very valid points.

Without anonymity we are toast.

Why do you think anonymity is so important for mankind ? Is it based on the assumption that anonymity gives more freedom to individuals ?
I tend to think giving individuals more freedom is not sufficient to make a better world. I believe an essential key for a better life on earth is related to the quality of the interactions between individuals, ie the quality of the collective mechanisms. Because human is a social animal, you know Smiley

Don't you think global transparency in financial systems (thanks to a traceable public ledger) might be a good thing ? (To help fight corruption, for instance)

(by the way sorry for any grammar mistake, english is not my native language)
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