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Author Topic: is the "internet industry" opposed to bitcoin?  (Read 2768 times)
paulie_w
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July 10, 2012, 04:33:17 PM
 #21

I think you're close to the mark.. but perhaps it's more that most venture capitalists (and people who are already wealthy in general) are skeptical of it and the "internet industry" is echoing that.
I suspect also that much negative bitcoin sentiment is driven by how journalists report on it, and most journalists are much more geared towards looking at the past than looking forward.  

i haven't seen much to indicate that the vc industry is opposed to it. quite the contrary, one of the most prominent VCs out there seems to be really into it:

http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2011/11/bitcoin.html

and didn't y combinator just invest in a bitcoin company?
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paulie_w
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July 10, 2012, 04:35:04 PM
 #22

Alot of people seem to be opposed to bitcoin...  Wink

A lot of people in IT opposed the Internet in 1993. Took 6 years. In 1999 they said it all along how great the Internet is.

Exactly.

"IT" as in developers? is there some place that i can read more on this?
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July 10, 2012, 04:39:55 PM
 #23

Alot of people seem to be opposed to bitcoin...  Wink

A lot of people in IT opposed the Internet in 1993. Took 6 years. In 1999 they said it all along how great the Internet is.

Exactly.

"IT" as in developers? is there some place that i can read more on this?

Sure, get a copy of "The Road Ahead" by Bill Gates. That is, if you can. I could completely understand Mr. Gates if he had used his considerable funds to buy every copy of this bunch of bad predictions off the market so nobody would quote him on this.

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July 10, 2012, 05:15:15 PM
 #24

A lot of people in IT opposed the Internet in 1993. Took 6 years. In 1999 they said it all along how great the Internet is.

Opposed?

Remember: people used to fear the email.

Fear? 

It seems to me more the case that most people didn't know about it, or pay much
attention to these things, or if they did, didn't think it would go anywhere. I think
to say it caused fear or opposition is overstating things, which doesn't help arguments
that intend to encourage Bitcoin adoption.   

And I see a lot of people saying things in some of these threads which seem to suggest
that the internet was created in the early 90s.  Lol   Do you mean rather the World Wide Web?   
The internet has been around since the 50s, even though the term "the internet" wasn't really
coined until the 80s.   

I was using the internet before the 90s... heck, I was playing with computer programming
as early as the mid 70s. 

My point is all one needs is some patience. And I mean years and not weeks or months.
We don't need to try and force people to see how wonderful Bitcoin is.  If it is useful, and
I feel it is, people will just start to use it without much coercion.    Wink


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Roger_Murdock
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July 10, 2012, 05:25:04 PM
 #25

Indeed it seems Bitcoin somehow very often intuitively disturbs many people. It often inspires modern day Luddism.


It's true. There's some kind of visceral response to the concept that I just don't really understand.

Money, like religion, is one of those subjects that makes many people uncomfortable because it can trigger some very deep-seated anxieties. I've seen the visceral reaction to Bitcoin you're referring to and my theory is that it's a fear response. They're afraid to invest because they're afraid of losing their money and even worse, feeling like suckers for taking a bath on "fake digital money." But they're also afraid not to invest and missing out on an absolutely huge opportunity. If the first fear wins out, cognitive dissonance makes it important to convince themselves they've made the right decision - to keep the second fear at bay. That cognitive dissonance can make them react in what seems like a weirdly-hostile manner to pro-Bitcoin arguments.
paulie_w
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July 10, 2012, 05:36:23 PM
 #26

Indeed it seems Bitcoin somehow very often intuitively disturbs many people. It often inspires modern day Luddism.


It's true. There's some kind of visceral response to the concept that I just don't really understand.

Money, like religion, is one of those subjects that makes many people uncomfortable because it can trigger some very deep-seated anxieties. I've seen the visceral reaction to Bitcoin you're referring to and my theory is that it's a fear response. They're afraid to invest because they're afraid of losing their money and even worse, feeling like suckers for taking a bath on "fake digital money." But they're also afraid not to invest and missing out on an absolutely huge opportunity. If the first fear wins out, cognitive dissonance makes it important to convince themselves they've made the right decision - to keep the second fear at bay. That cognitive dissonance can make them react in what seems like a weirdly-hostile manner to pro-Bitcoin arguments.

this is probably the most sensible answer to the question, though i think there is more to it. as i said, i find myself rather surprised that all of these people in a 'disruption' industry would be so fearful and queasy about something disruptive: it's not as though people in that industry haven't tried to disrupt money before.
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July 10, 2012, 05:46:17 PM
 #27

A lot of people in IT opposed the Internet in 1993. Took 6 years. In 1999 they said it all along how great the Internet is.

Opposed?

Opposed! You could read it in the press, in books of the time and you could hear it from AOL or Compuserve if you cared. How it is not user friendly, how it is chaotic, how it's limit of 2^32 addresses would cause it to collapse....

Or, from the side of the Netiquette Fundamentalists: How giving the Net to the unwashed masses would spoil it: One time, in 1992, I sent an email with a commercial character to Russia. It was returned to me with a remark that if that happened again, they (the Russians) would contact my admin in Heidelberg so my account would be closed.

Can't remember the times?

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July 10, 2012, 06:39:36 PM
 #28

Anybody remember wikipedia? Now, everyone like "meh".

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July 10, 2012, 06:46:56 PM
 #29

Anybody remember wikipedia? Now, everyone like "meh".
All the school teachers were like "but anyone can post anything on it! ZOMG bad!"

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July 10, 2012, 07:16:08 PM
 #30

Money, like religion, is one of those subjects that makes many people uncomfortable because it can trigger some very deep-seated anxieties. I've seen the visceral reaction to Bitcoin you're referring to and my theory is that it's a fear response. They're afraid to invest because they're afraid of losing their money and even worse, feeling like suckers for taking a bath on "fake digital money." But they're also afraid not to invest and missing out on an absolutely huge opportunity. If the first fear wins out, cognitive dissonance makes it important to convince themselves they've made the right decision - to keep the second fear at bay. That cognitive dissonance can make them react in what seems like a weirdly-hostile manner to pro-Bitcoin arguments.

That's pretty much the end of this thread. Smiley

My corollary to RM's insight: If the second fear wins out, cognitive dissonance makes it important to convince ourselves that we've made the right decision. That cognitive dissonance can make us react in what seems like a weirdly-cult like manner to anti-Bitcoin arguments. Tongue

Conclusion: don't buy into Bitcoins because you're scared that you might miss out. Do it because the idea is revolutionary!
Raoul Duke
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July 10, 2012, 07:24:55 PM
 #31

Remember: people used to fear the email.

I still do...
I got an email a couple days back who said that "I would have sex like a donkey" lol

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July 10, 2012, 07:48:51 PM
 #32

Bitcoin is generating demonstrative proof that it actually works in the real world as I type this.

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July 10, 2012, 08:14:11 PM
 #33

My corollary to RM's insight: If the second fear wins out, cognitive dissonance makes it important to convince ourselves that we've made the right decision. That cognitive dissonance can make us react in what seems like a weirdly-cult like manner to anti-Bitcoin arguments. Tongue

Conclusion: don't buy into Bitcoins because you're scared that you might miss out. Do it because the idea is revolutionary!

+1

Did people need to mount campaigns to convince others to use email...
did they need to attack the postal system as evil and everything else that is bad...
in order for it to catch on and be successful?

Sure Bitcoin is about money and that changes things somewhat...
but Bitcoin isn't really about becoming rich.   

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July 10, 2012, 08:15:29 PM
 #34

The legal status of Bitcoin is the only reason why big players can not embrace Bitcoin. Persuading the average Joe to use Bitcon is therefore more important than persuading the Internet industry.


Remember, YCombinator invested in a bitcoin startup. If that bitcoin startup succeeded and makes YC shit load of money, everybody else in the VC community will rush like mad and get in. Of course, many venture capitalist will lost a lot of money over this, but it will put bitcoin on the map.

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July 10, 2012, 08:23:03 PM
 #35

In my view, I think it's entirely likely that many in the internet industry bought into Bitcoin last summer during the run-up, without doing much research first, and as a consequence convinced themselves that since the Bitcoin price didn't hold at $20, it is some kind of scam.

My other main theory is that those in the internet industry tend to be the type who think they understand how the world works.  For the most part, this is true.  But, when it comes to money, most of them haven't the slightest clue.  Their worldview is heavily-invested in the notion that the global economy is an even playing field, fairly regulated by governments, and that currencies are backed by everyone working hard and paying their fair share in taxes.  So they intuitively reject the idea of private money, and currency speculation, as being against their interests or somehow "cheating".  Even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, most of them will maintain their faith in government-backed currency for the simple fact that they are so heavily invested in it.

It's unfortunate, but from what I've witnessed over the last dozen years or so is that the "internet industry" is no longer primarily composed of innovators.  It is filled with authoritarian "yes-men" who are over-paid for doing relatively menial work.

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July 10, 2012, 08:27:24 PM
 #36

Some people really like established businesses.

I have this friend that's super smart, but all his ideas and investment proposals are firmly in the consumerist market - because he sees it as big, old and stable.

I think he gets BTC are safe and easy, but he correctly points out that the conversion fees to fiat and back are eating the advantage and that like all things BTC rely on faith which could be shaken in a financial crises like other things.

As a marketing man, he cannot imagine something growing on its own, let alone taking over the market economy or solving the chicken/egg problem.


Personally I believe humans are not like water or sheep; they will actively object to inflation and move to something better once they see the issue. Even if there is an upfront cost, because we are irrational and get pissed.
We can DESIGN the chicken and egg at the same time.

BTC has grown more in 3-4 years than ANY marketing campaign could have accomplished. Ideas really do take down empires. BTC needs a little work on services and software, but so did the internet 10 years ago.

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July 10, 2012, 08:38:21 PM
 #37

Some people really like established businesses.

I have this friend that's super smart, but all his ideas and investment proposals are firmly in the consumerist market - because he sees it as big, old and stable.

I think he gets BTC are safe and easy, but he correctly points out that the conversion fees to fiat and back are eating the advantage and that like all things BTC rely on faith which could be shaken in a financial crises like other things.

As a marketing man, he cannot imagine something growing on its own, let alone taking over the market economy or solving the chicken/egg problem.


Personally I believe humans are not like water or sheep; they will actively object to inflation and move to something better once they see the issue. Even if there is an upfront cost, because we are irrational and get pissed.
We can DESIGN the chicken and egg at the same time.

BTC has grown more in 3-4 years than ANY marketing campaign could have accomplished. Ideas really do take down empires. BTC needs a little work on services and software, but so did the internet 10 years ago.

Bitcoin doesn't just grow itself, ya know? The bitcoin community did some advertising campaign that put us on the map, such as the EFF donation drive and the animation bounty project. Those were just brilliant and the EFF campaign put us on the map, while the animation project help present bitcoin in a very slick manner.

I wish the community exert every fiber of their being on something cool and high impact again.

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July 10, 2012, 09:10:03 PM
 #38

In my view, I think it's entirely likely that many in the internet industry bought into Bitcoin last summer during the run-up, without doing much research first, and as a consequence convinced themselves that since the Bitcoin price didn't hold at $20, it is some kind of scam.

what is troubling is that even the most basic research would have revealed that it didn't make any sense to call it a scam. what i find even stranger is ignoring that bitcoin is a totally open source project: if any one of those folks had better ideas they could easily fork and apply.

so maybe i should reword my question in such a way: "is the internet industry opposed to totally decentralized, not-corporate-controlled cryptographic currencies?"

Quote
My other main theory is that those in the internet industry tend to be the type who think they understand how the world works.  For the most part, this is true.  But, when it comes to money, most of them haven't the slightest clue.  Their worldview is heavily-invested in the notion that the global economy is an even playing field, fairly regulated by governments, and that currencies are backed by everyone working hard and paying their fair share in taxes.  So they intuitively reject the idea of private money, and currency speculation, as being against their interests or somehow "cheating".  Even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, most of them will maintain their faith in government-backed currency for the simple fact that they are so heavily invested in it.

i would agree, though i really don't know enough of such people at high levels to know for sure. out of curiosity what makes you think that "their" understanding of how the world works is for the most part true?

Quote
It's unfortunate, but from what I've witnessed over the last dozen years or so is that the "internet industry" is no longer primarily composed of innovators.  It is filled with authoritarian "yes-men" who are over-paid for doing relatively menial work.

this mirrors what unfortunately is becoming my view as well. but i really hope that view is merely a misunderstanding, which is actually the point of my original post. it begins to feel like some kind of strange conspiracy.

one other thought: do you think the anonymity of the creation of bitcoin irks these folks? is that gesture itself somehow damaging to the ego of the internet entrepreneur, to have something like this built and no one wanting to take credit for it? certainly, at least, it goes against the grain...
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July 10, 2012, 09:36:59 PM
 #39

Written in 1995:
http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/1995/02/26/the-internet-bah.html

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The truth in no online database will replace your daily newspaper, no CD-ROM can take the place of a competent teacher and no computer network will change the way government works.

For every action you make, you find resistance. It's called fear. Everybody has a different mindset and have a different level of courage. It takes hard work to change your view on the world. Especially when something you can't imagine happens.

I mean, some people still believe that the world has been made 4000 years ago by a ghost. Some people take a long time understanding new things...if they understand it.
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July 11, 2012, 02:57:45 AM
 #40


Are you related to YCombinator? I am looking for financial support for my non-profit project.

I am not related to YCombinator.

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