Let’s break it down in the simplest terms: Bitcoin is what you can use to purchase products and services online. Among many things, Bitcoin is money. Digital money. By digital, we simply mean the kind of money people use online to purchase books, gadgets, clothes, accessories, DVDs, the money used to order pizza. Everything purchasable online.
It’s the currency potentially replacing all the currencies used in online transactions. Right now people pay money with credit cards, debit accounts, and Paypal. In the future, if trends had their way, all of these will be replaced with Bitcoin. Why? Because Bitcoin is faster, safer, cheaper and not susceptible to manipulation.
Another important thing you should know about Bitcoin is that it allows people in marginalized countries to engage in online transactions that governments usually hinder because of their financial status. Remember those times when you were just a student and you couldn’t get a credit card or get a loan because of your economic status? Bitcoin fixes that by giving you access to the needs you want even without that status.
Bitcoin gives more purchasing power to individuals and merchants.
Right now, some people argue that Bitcoin is a bit like a financial bubble, waiting to burst and crash to the chagrin of its users. However, more and more people and businesses and online influencers all over the world acknowledge this form of online payment. From movie theaters to online food delivery stores, Bitcoin is accepted. The fact that it is becoming widely accepted, empowering and offers you greater economic independence should be reason enough to know more about it. Here are some essential facts:
1. Bitcoin is Greed-less money
Bitcoin is attractive because of what it is: a money generated by algorithms and mathematics and not by humans, which means it is more objective and less prone to human errors. The money is generated through a system that excludes government intervention and is run by a network of computers all over the world.
This means there’s no chances of human manipulation and irrational behaviour, and is more secure considering that encryption protocols are installed to secure anonymity.
2. Bitcoin is Easy Money
Using Bitcoin is easy. You open a Bitcoin account, purchase bitcoins using cash here, then start making transactions from your computer or smartphone to anyone anywhere in the world, instantly and for free. Simple.
Actually, there’s a lot of complex math behind all this, but you don’t want to know anyone of that, the same way you don’t really want to know how Google manages to give you an immediate answer to your search query in less than a second.
3. Bitcoin can be Untraceable or Traceable
Bitcoin is the first form of currency which can give its users complete anonymity and/or complete transparency depending on how they use it.
When you transfer your bitcoins to someone during purchase of products and services, your transaction is logged in the central Bitcoin ledger called a “Blockchain” without government interference.
Complete anonymity is guaranteed, and the transactions are transparent, which means they are all available for everyone wishing to see where the transactions originate.
But spending or receiving with Bitcoin can also be traceable. You can ensure your privacy is protected, and it’s almost impossible to get your identity compromised, but at the same time, you can share your wallet address to someone and let the person trace the transaction from inception to final destination.
Which simply means: you can both be transparent and anonymous. This is an ethically powerful combination.
4. Bitcoin Started From Satoshi Nakamoto
The concept is a reactionary idea by a guy named Satoshi Nakamoto to the 2008 Financial crisis. He highlighted the high stakes and damages of government-backed currencies that depressed governments and states due to human irrationality.
The concept is created to empower individuals instead of the easily corrupted officials that govern the economy. Satoshi argued that eradicating human factors in the Bitcoin currency set-up will create more benefits for the individual and regulate the faceless and abstract economies that jeopardize the majority of the citizens in favor of the few that control it.
There is a part of Bitcoin that shows how important of a breakthrough it is for everyone in the world who lives and transacts online and who wants more separation from the entities that deprive them of their financial privacy. But that’s for the next article. For now, be content that you know what your friends talk about when they talk about Bitcoin.