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Author Topic: (Un)Quick post from Japan. No politics please.....  (Read 4234 times)
CurbsideProphet
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July 24, 2011, 12:43:47 PM
 #41

I dislike the first to market argument.  The economy of Bitcoin is but a blip on the economic radar.  It's akin to having a mom-and-pop store be first on the block.  That's fine and dandy until a Walmart or Walgreens is constructed next door.  Facebook wasn't the first social media website on the market.  iTunes wasn't the first seller of online music.  Sites like MySpace (or its earlier incarnations) and Napster were innovative and game changing, but in the end they were rendered obsolete.  It's not only arrogant but also foolish to believe that the genesis of an idea will equate to long-term success.  Ideas are modified (stolen) all the time.  I'm sure we can all think of many examples of this, if not see above. 

Call it what you want, a wide moat, high barriers to entry, whatever, these are what you need to give yourself a competitive chance.  I think the OP in a roundabout way is trying to point out that Bitcoin may not possess enough of these barriers.

Scarcity is also a rather weak argument.  If you want something that is scarce, intrinsically valued and useful to just about everyone in the world, buy oil. 

Do I own Bitcoin?  Yes. Have I sold goods for Bitcoin?  Yes.  It's a rather fantastic and ingenious concept.  That doesn't mean I can't be objective about Bitcoin and see that it does have potential flaws.  Other than speculation, Bitcoin's biggest market, unfortunately, is illegal trade.  The legalization of marijuana alone could hit Bitcoin very hard.  It probably wouldn't destroy it but I would guess that it would take a significant chunk of the economy away.  I guess my point is that I see a lot of "this time it's different" arguments.  That's always a very dangerous assertion to make.  I'm hopeful that Bitcoin will be a success but I'm also cognizant that it's chances are rather low (being that we're still in the infancy stage).  Never become emotionally invested in your investments.

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July 25, 2011, 01:56:36 AM
 #42

I dislike the first to market argument.  The economy of Bitcoin is but a blip on the economic radar.  It's akin to having a mom-and-pop store be first on the block.  That's fine and dandy until a Walmart or Walgreens is constructed next door.  Facebook wasn't the first social media website on the market.  iTunes wasn't the first seller of online music.  Sites like MySpace (or its earlier incarnations) and Napster were innovative and game changing, but in the end they were rendered obsolete.  It's not only arrogant but also foolish to believe that the genesis of an idea will equate to long-term success.  Ideas are modified (stolen) all the time.  I'm sure we can all think of many examples of this, if not see above. 
I didn't say it can't be obsoleted by something better. It's just that the OP argument sounded like "because stuff is open and therefor there will be lots of Bitcoins". Facebook was better than MySpace in certain way. Maybe it just looked better or something, but people don't simply switch to something new and if there is a new Bitcoin it doesn't mean that Bitcoins will have suddenly zero value.

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Call it what you want, a wide moat, high barriers to entry, whatever, these are what you need to give yourself a competitive chance.  I think the OP in a roundabout way is trying to point out that Bitcoin may not possess enough of these barriers.
A. This barriers come to existence. I agree, they might be not high enough for an alternative but
B. Why are alternatives such a huge problem? I mean as long as there aren't tons of them it really isn't that much of a problem. See Namecoin.

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Do I own Bitcoin?  Yes. Have I sold goods for Bitcoin?  Yes.  It's a rather fantastic and ingenious concept.  That doesn't mean I can't be objective about Bitcoin
I think that possessing and utilizing Bitcoins means that one has to be objective about them. Else there could be a big loss.

And there are also a lot of "Bitcoin is doomed" guys. Most of them just want cheap Bitcoins, else they wouldn't waste their time writing nonsense. One really shouldn't overestimate problems or their potential influence on Bitcoin. While I agree there are lots of hurdles and Bitcoin could be better in many places it's currently(!) does well. Of course there could always be more Bitcoin related projects, services, businesses, but these are things we can work on and it really isn't that bad right now. The stable price is a good things for businesses and I'm sure I am not the only potential customer. Even if Bitcoins will be transferred into Dollars or Euros eventually creating a Bitcoin accepting businesses most likely result in a more customer and the risk isn't that high.

BitCoin address: 1E25UJEbifEejpYh117APmjYSXdLiJUCAZ
CurbsideProphet
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July 25, 2011, 02:20:06 AM
 #43

I didn't say it can't be obsoleted by something better.

Just to be clear, I wasn't speaking to you or anyone else directly, which is why I didn't quote anyone.  It has been an argument I've seen many times and one I'm not particularly fond of.  That's the reason for my post.

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July 25, 2011, 02:47:00 AM
 #44

A Bytecoin that could be used exactly the same as a Bitcoin, except that if you wanted to gamble in Macao or trade in orange juice futures or pay taxes in Kenya or whatever you had to use Bytecoins and Bytecoins alone, would instantly cause people to start favoring them as there would be an backer of last resort.


You are forgetting an extremely important aspect of Bitcoin. The fact that it is NOT backed by anyone is one of its greatest advantages. Bitcoin is not the responsibility nor liability of any group or nation. Thus, the failure or targetting of no group or nation could bring Bitcoin down.

THAT in itself is absolutely revolutionary.

If Apple or Zimbabwe or Hooters creates their own similar currencies, they lose this main advantage, and upon losing it... how would they expect to overtake the adoption of Bitcoin?

We already know that Facebook has now created its own currency. They have 1000000x more name recognition than Bitcoin, they have billions of dollars, and many smart people.  And you know how many Facebook credits I intend to purchase?  Zero.
CurbsideProphet
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July 25, 2011, 04:52:21 AM
 #45

A Bytecoin that could be used exactly the same as a Bitcoin, except that if you wanted to gamble in Macao or trade in orange juice futures or pay taxes in Kenya or whatever you had to use Bytecoins and Bytecoins alone, would instantly cause people to start favoring them as there would be an backer of last resort.


You are forgetting an extremely important aspect of Bitcoin. The fact that it is NOT backed by anyone is one of its greatest advantages. Bitcoin is not the responsibility nor liability of any group or nation. Thus, the failure or targetting of no group or nation could bring Bitcoin down.

THAT in itself is absolutely revolutionary.

An important aspect indeed.  However, being unaccountable also presents challenges.  Without a captain to steer this ship, it's quite possible Bitcoin could drift aimlessly.  Naturally because the model does not put accountability on anyone specifically, the users of Bitcoin are rather fragmented at the moment.

That's not to say an individual or a group of individuals cannot step up and take initiative (MtGox for example) but it is all the more imperative that people stay proactive and not simply sit content.  Bitcoin by design puts the onus on the user to shape its future.  That is rather revolutionary.  It will be interesting to see if it will be successful.   

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July 25, 2011, 06:16:22 AM
 #46

When a company decides to create its own scrip based on the bitcoin protocol, there needs to be a serious shareholder's discussion on why the company has decided to suddenly issue liabilities at a pre-decided rate to the rest of world.

When a government decides to do this, then the question that will be raised in the assembly would be as to what makes computational power so unique as a source for backing, especially if the government doesn't have that much computational power at hand.

The OP's point is why will anyone with resources give up the possibility of earning the early adopter money.

My counter question is why would they want to favour people with a specific kind of computational setup instead of backing it with a promise as all currencies are today?  - A possible answer could be sending a strong signal that they are committed to a tight monetary policy. But they can do that by backing it up with gold or pegging to USD, Euro or CHF today. These pegs are much more understood in the world today than a distributed wacko currency scheme (majority public perception when this will come to light)

And the value of the peg is the same as the value of any promise today. Or even the value of the promise that the currency would be accepted for taxes.

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